Park video tells story of restoring historic arch

Staff reportJune 16, 2013 

A newly released video details the restoration of the entrance arch at Chinook Pass in Mount Rainier National Park.

The video on the restoration of the 77-year-old arch includes a look at the park craftsmen who work on the project as well as comments from historic architect Sueann Brown describing the work that was done. The project was completed in 2011.

The video was produced by park visual information specialist Kristyn Loving using footage she filmed during the two-year project.

The arch spans the Mather Memorial Parkway at 5,432 feet on the northeastern boundary of the park. It was designed as an entrance portal, but also an overpass to allow hikers and horseback riders on the Pacific Crest Trail to safely cross over state Route 410.

Built in 1936 by the Civilian Conservation Corps, the rustic-style arch was deteriorated by the elements and use.

The restoration included repair or replacement of the deteriorated parts of the structure; assembly and replacement of two 70-foot long log stringers, handrails and wooden bridge deck; repair of the stone abutments and mortared flagstone pathways; and crafting of signs including hand chiseling of the lettering, said a park news release.

The $99,000 to complete the project came from a National Park Service project fund, not out of the park’s operating budget.

Beyond its importance to park visitors and trail users, superintendent Randy King called the arch “an icon on the Mather Memorial Parkway.”

“It is one of the most impressive gateway structures in any national park.”

The film is available on the park’s YouTube channel youtube. com/mountrainiernps and on the park website photosmultimedia/video.htm.


Mount Rainier ranger Margaret Anderson will be featured in the next “Heroes Behind the Badge” documentary, scheduled to be released this fall.

Anderson died of gunshot wounds she suffered Jan. 1, 2012, while trying to stop a man who drove through a tire chain checkpoint. The shooter was a suspect in a Seattle shooting the day before. Anderson was 33 years old at the time of her death, and is survived by her husband and two children.

A production crew was recently at the park doing some filming for the film.

Director Wayne Derrick released the first film in 2012, as a way to honor the men and women who serve in law enforcement and those who have died in the line of duty.

The film is being produced in partnership with the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Rainier operations update

As the busy summer season at Mount Rainier National Park approaches, here is an update on operating hours and seasons for key locations.

Henry M. Jackson Memorial Visitor Center: The Paradise center is now open daily 10 a.m.-7 p.m. That schedule will be in place until Sept. 1. 360-569-6571

Sunrise Visitor Center: Scheduled to open July 3. The White River Road to Sunrise is scheduled to open June 28, but additional time is needed to get the buildings up and running. 360-663-2425

Cougar Rock Campground: Estimated opening is June 27. The campground will stay open until Sept. 29.

White River Campground: Estimated opening is June 28. It too will close Sept. 29

Paradise Picnic Area: Scheduled to open Friday if the weather allows.

Longmire General Store: Now open daily 9 a.m.-8 p.m.

Paradise Camp Deli and Gift Shop: Located in the Jackson Visitor Center, it is now open daily 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

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