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HikerJohn
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PostMon Feb 24, 2020 5:47 am 
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Well, folks, talked to a Park Ranger and it looks like it could be a long year until we get access to the NW corner of Mt Rainier.
- Fairfax Forest road (which leads to Carbon River entrance, Summit Lake, and others) is totally washed away and a gully in it's place just past the Y that splits and also goes to Mowich.  It's a Pierce County road and it looks like an expensive fix....  There is also a major washover just before the Carbon River visitor center that is covering about 100' of road.  And another washout just before the Carbon River entrance station.
- Summit Lake road (FS 7810) got hammered and has numerous washouts.  No idea when USFS will be able to get in there to start repairs...

I'm going to try to hike up the Summit Lake road soon and see how bad it is...
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timberghost
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PostMon Feb 24, 2020 6:33 am 
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Ok keep us updated!!
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stever
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PostMon Feb 24, 2020 7:03 am 
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Info from Pierce County.

https://www.piercecountywa.gov/6708/Fairfax-washout
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Backpacker Joe
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PostMon Feb 24, 2020 7:15 am 
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Just another reason to get an e-bike.

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"If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time or die by suicide."

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RichP
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here and there
PostMon Feb 24, 2020 8:44 am 
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Summit Lake could use a rest. That area gets hammered by bipeds.
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JPH
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PostMon Feb 24, 2020 10:33 am 
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Backpacker Joe wrote:
Just another reason to get an e-bike.

I wonder if they'll open it for bikes - doesn't look like much asphalt left even for bikes.
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Randito
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PostMon Feb 24, 2020 10:41 am 
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JPH wrote:
Backpacker Joe wrote:
Just another reason to get an e-bike.

I wonder if they'll open it for bikes - doesn't look like much asphalt left even for bikes.

Regardless of the width of the remaining asphalt,  I think Pierce county has closed the road to all users, including walkers.   That hillside looks unstable and it would be tons of fun to have the rest of the asphalt crumbled while folks are out past the closure and became stranded.
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Cyclopath
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PostMon Feb 24, 2020 10:43 am 
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Backpacker Joe wrote:
Just another reason to get an e-bike.

And a gym membership.  Do a lot of heavy overhead presses and squats.  You want to be able to lift the ebike out of the ravine without hurting yourself.
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HikerJohn
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PostMon Feb 24, 2020 1:42 pm 
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Because of the multiple slides, it's closed to everyone right now.  NPS said they MAY try to open it for hikers/bikers later this spring, but will have to wait until Pierce county comes up with their plan...
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flatsqwerl
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PostThu Feb 27, 2020 6:50 pm 
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I rode the Carbon rd today up to the campground and 4" of snow there. Only the last 1/8 mile before the campground was snowy. There are 2 washouts of note. All the other slides have been swept off the road. A wonderful time to be up there. I rode a small amount up the rd toward summit lake. A large elk herd was hanging out by the road as I went by. Had a nice chat with the ranger at the ranger station. If the county's aim is to keep walkers/bikers out of this area, they need very specific language on the signage. " road closed " is not enough. They need words like: Dangerous, no personal entry of any kind...etc. There are plenty of redundant barricades though.

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Backpacker Joe
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PostFri Feb 28, 2020 4:24 am 
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So wait, the ranger wasnt angry you were there?

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flatsqwerl
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PostFri Feb 28, 2020 8:27 am 
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The ranger was not angry. He said a few people have been coming in..I saw one set of bicycle tracks about a couple miles down from the last campground. The road is the countys problem so I imagine their opinion is different.
I was on the way out when I met the ranger. On the way in there were 4-5 trucks at the ranger station and I nervously sped by hoping to remain unseen like the rebel that I am...They can drive in through a bunch of gravel roads which bypass the first main washout. I do not think the public has that same access.
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HikerJohn
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PostFri Feb 28, 2020 2:32 pm 
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I'm really surprised they didn't stop you...

Yes, there is a "back way" via private logging roads, which they MAY open to the few residents on the wrong side of the gully, but the rest of us won't be gaining access that way...
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Ski
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PostFri Feb 28, 2020 4:26 pm 
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Friday February 28, 2020 14:51 PST

Pierce County Planning & Public Works, in their email of 02/28/20 wrote:


RE: Fairfax Forest Reserve Road

I was forwarded your message from our capital project group.  Iím responsible for the repairs of Fairfax Forest Reserve Rd, so I hope to be able to answer most of your questions.

The road is closed to all traffic, and we are currently working to design a repair.  We donít have a strong sense of timeline at this point, but should be better able to release a schedule in about two weeks.  Our Geotechnical Engineer was on-site this week gathering information, and they are steadfastly developing a plan.

The road is so undermined at this spot, we donít want any foot/bicycle traffic, as the road may endure further washing-out.  Unfortunately, this means access to the wonderful trails is cut-off at this time.  Our goal is to reopen the roadway as soon as possible, so we can all enjoy the Park and Forest.

There is also a portion of the road at the park entrance that is washed out, but foot/bicycle traffic wonít be hindered once we repair the first slide.

Please let me know if you have any other questions.  We are keeping the website up-to-date as we progress, https://www.piercecountywa.gov/6708/Fairfax-washout

Sarah Grice, PE
Maintenance & Operations Engineering
Pierce County Planning & Public Works
(253) 798-6427 | sarah.grice@piercecountywa.gov
Cell - (253) 861-9358


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flatsqwerl
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PostFri Feb 28, 2020 4:33 pm 
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Thanks Ski...now I'm in trouble.
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