October 27, 2021

Meggan Carrigg Davidson
(360) 757-5966

SR 20 North Cascades Highway Seasonal Closure Scheduled for Nov. 15

With winter weather just around the corner, the 2021 seasonal closure of State Route 20 North Cascades Highway is scheduled for Monday, Nov. 15. The road may close earlier depending on the amount of snow and ice that arrives in the meantime. The closure points will be milepost 134/Ross Dam Trailhead on the west side and milepost 171/Silver Star Gate on the east.

Mid-November is typically when this mountain pass closes for the season as weather, snow conditions and avalanche danger threaten the safety of drivers and maintenance crews. Prior to the seasonal closure, crews will perform winter maintenance as needed and will regularly assess conditions to determine whether the highway is safe to remain open.

Prepare for winter driving conditions
North Cascades Highway has few services or facilities, so travelers should be prepared for winter driving conditions. Drivers can visit WSDOT’s winter driving web page for tips and information.

New in 2021: A planned closure date
In the past, the seasonal closure date has been assessed on a case-by-case basis. While there is a chance the highway may close earlier than Nov. 15, WSDOT is setting a closure date this year to allow travelers to plan ahead with more certainty.

Winter recreation on SR 20
Hikers, skiers, snowmobilers and other recreationists can access the closed portion of the highway during the winter season. Users should park in designated parking areas to allow plow drivers the space they need to clear snow around the closed stretch’s access gates.

Since WSDOT closes this stretch of the highway due to avalanche risk, anyone using this area should check forecasts and be aware of quickly changing conditions in the mountains. Travelers can also check conditions with North Cascades National Park before traveling to this area.

Spring reopening
Reopening in the spring is usually accomplished by early May.

        We acknowledge that Whatcom County is located on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples. They cared for the lands that included what we’d call the Puget Sound region, Vancouver Island and British Columbia since time immemorial. This gives us the great obligation and opportunity to learn how to care for our surrounding areas and all the natural and human resources we require to live. We express our deepest respect and gratitude for our indigenous neighbors, the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe, for their enduring care and protection of our shared lands and waterways.
Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism
Visitor Center Located at I-5 Exit 253 - Check Hours
904 Potter Street, Bellingham, WA 98229
Phone: 360-671-3990

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