Just in time for the Winthrop’49er Days celebration, the North Cascades Scenic Highway will open for vehicle traffic at 1 p.m. on Wednesday (May 5).
On this side of Washington Pass, the opening will occur at the Silver Star Gate on Highway 20 west of Mazama. Be prepared for a line of vehicles at the gate.
The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) reported that after four weeks of work, the east side (Methow Valley) and west side crews clearing the highway met in the middle last week.
“After wrapping up the clearing work last week, we completed an avalanche control effort Monday and have a few final repairs to the roadway to make today,” WSDOT said in a press release on Tuesday (May 4).
“We know there are some of you that plan to be present when our maintenance crew reopens the gates,” WSDOT said. “We ask that if you do, please do so safely by maintaining a safe physical distance and wearing masks if you’re in a group outside of your vehicle.”
Many U.S. Forest Service and National Parks Services facilities that are accessible from the highway are still closed. If you are considering a trip into the backcountry, WSDOT advises that you check avalanche conditions.
In 2020, the pass opened for traffic on May 12.