Chinook, Cayuse passes close for the season

Chinook and Cayuse passes closed for the season Monday because of the high risk of avalanches, according to the state Department of Transportation.

Nearly 3 feet of snow fell on the passes over the weekend.

The Transportation Department typically closes the passes in late November and reopens them in May.

State Route 410 on Chinook Pass, at 5,430 feet, is closed from Morse Creek to Cayuse Pass. Many drivers use the pass to reachs the eastern entrance of Mount Rainier National Park.

State Route 123 on Cayuse Pass, at 4,675 feet, is closed inside Mount Rainier National Park from Crystal Mountain Boulevard to Stevens Canyon Road.

Also closed for the season is the North Cascades Highway. State Route 20 shut down Sunday from the Diablo Gate at milepost 134 to the Silver Star Gate nearly 40 miles away.