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Hiker Headlines: Legislative Debrief, Morning Star Meeting, Big Four Closure, Mount Rainier Chains

Posted by Jessi Loerch at May 02, 2019 12:53 PM |

The state legislative session is over, and there were some big victories mixed with disappointments. You have a chance to learn more about Morning Star Natural Resources Conservation Area. The Big Four Ice Caves trail bridge is closed. And chains are no longer required at Mount Rainier.

The state legislative session is over, and there were some big victories mixed with disappointments. You have a chance to learn more about Morning Star Natural Resources Conservation Area. The Big Four Ice Caves trail bridge is closed. And chains are no longer required at Mount Rainier. 

Here’s some hiker news that you may have missed while out on trail this week.

Photo by Paul Wolman.
Ashland Lakes is within the Morning Star Natural Resources Conservation Area. Photo by Paul Wolman.

Some wins, some disappointments: The Washington state Legislature wrap up the 2019 session this week. There was some great news for public lands — including the creation of Washington Public Lands Day. But there was also some discouraging news, including some Discover Pass revenue being transferred to the state’s general fund. Our wrap-up blog has the details hikers need to know.

Shining light on Morning Star: What to know what’s happening at the Morning Star Natural Resources Conservation Area? You can find out during a community conversation from 6-7:30 p.m. May 9 at the Marysville Public Library. Department of Natural Resources staff will talk about what’s happening in the area including the implementation of a trails plan. The Morning Star NRCA is home to popular hiking destinations in Snohomish County like Gothic Basin, Ashland Lakes and Bald Mountain.

You shall not pass: The bridge on the Big Four Ice Caves Trails is closed due to safety concerns. The footbridge, which crosses the South Fork Stillaguamish River, is unsafe during the spring runoff due to erosion around the bridge’s footing. The bridge will be closed until late May and will re-open once it’s confirmed safe. In the meantime, the Big Four picnic area and raised boardwalks can still be used. The road access to the Big Four area is still closed from the winter at Deer Creek. The road is expected to re-open around the time the bridge re-opens. 

Unchained: In one of the early signs of summer’s approach, tire chains are no longer required at Mount Rainier National Park. Reminder: While chains are no longer required, you should still expect very wintery conditions in most areas of the park. 


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