The Mount Rainier snowplay area is expected to open for sledders on Friday morning, park officials announced Wednesday.
The snowplay area at Paradise on the mountain’s south side is the only place in Mount Rainier National Park where sledding is permitted. Only soft-sided, plastic sliding devices are permitted.
At least five feet of snow is required to open the snow play area. Snowplay area grooming was underway earlier in the week.
Jackson Visitor Center at Paradise opened for the holidays on Wednesday. It will be open 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. through Jan. 2, before returning to weekend operations. Ranger-guided snowshoe walks are planned to begin Friday. The walks will be offered weekends and during the holidays through March 26. The walks are at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m and are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Visitors are required to carry chains through April in the park and may be required to use them. The gate at Longmire closes at 4 p.m.