Monday, May 19, 2008

One step back, two steps forward

Over the weekend, efforts to restore access to northwest parks had some bad news and some good. The bad news is this past winter's storms damaged water tanks at the North Cascades' Colonial Creek campground leaving it indefinitely without drinkable water. The Park Service plans to close the campground on May 27th to begin repairs.

On a positive note, last Friday the Park Service at Mount Rainier National Park reopened the Paradise Inn. The Inn had been closed more than two years for renovation. Renovation was slightly slowed by the 2006 storms, but basically opened on schedule. The nearly $23 million renovation has restored, renovated and improved the facility. However, work was done so carefully that many visitors will not notice the changes. Representatives Norm Dicks and Dave Reichert, both big supporters of Mount Rainier, attended the reopening ceremony.

The Park Service took the opportunity to once again thank the storm recovery coalition and the public for all its support these past 18 months.