Chinook and Cayuse passes are closed for the season - Visit Rainier
WSDOT photo of a snowplow

Chinook and Cayuse passes are closed for the season

 

With more than 30 inches of snow on Chinook Pass and much more in the forecast, it’s that time of year where Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) closes SR 410 Chinook and SR 123 Cayuse passes. 

 
Chinook is closed between Crystal Mountain Boulevard (12 miles northwest of the summit) and Morse Creek (5 miles east of the summit) and Cayuse is closed within the boundaries of Mount Rainier National Park between Crystal Mountain Boulevard and the park arch at SR 410/123 at the southern park boundary.
 
WSDOT coordinates with the National Parks Service to close the passes this time of year due to heavy avalanche danger and hazardous road conditions. People may still access the areas on foot or skis for recreation in the closure area but should use extreme caution due to the avalanche danger. The passes typically reopen in late May.
 
The official press release is listed below.
 

MOUNT RAINIER – The gates to State Routes 410 and 123 inside Mount Rainier National Park, including Chinook and Cayuse passes, will remain closed for the season after heavy snow and a forecast of more to come.

Chinook Pass (elevation 5,430 feet) closed on Saturday, Nov. 6 on SR 410 between Crystal Mountain Boulevard, about 12 miles northwest of the summit, and Morse Creek, 5 miles east of the summit. Cayuse Pass (elevation 4,675 feet) is closed within the boundaries of Mount Rainier National Park between Crystal Mountain Boulevard and the park arch at SR 410/123 milepost 2.5 at the southern park boundary.

People may go in on foot or skis for recreation beyond the closed gates but are advised to use extreme caution as there is often avalanche danger.

Typically SR 410 Chinook Pass and SR 123 Cayuse Pass reopen in late May. 

Tools to keep travelers connected Current weather and highway conditions are posted on the mountain passes webpage.

Visit the Mount Rainier National Park’s road status webpage and follow @MountRainierNPS on Twitter for updates about roads within Mount Rainier National Park.  

Hyperlinks within the release:

November 9, 2021