Outdoors

Avalanche risk level elevated to “high” for Cascades, Olympics

An avalanche warning has been issued for the Cascade and Olympic mountains by the Northwest Avalanche Center.
An avalanche warning has been issued for the Cascade and Olympic mountains by the Northwest Avalanche Center. courtesy

An avalanche warning has been issued for the Cascade and Olympic mountains by the Northwest Avalanche Center.

The NWAC has classified avalache risk as “high” (its second highest level) throughout the Washington portion of both mountain ranges. The NWAC’s risk ratings are for backcountry terrain and don’t include ski resorts and roads.

Jeff Gardner, director of the Mount Rainier Nordic patrol, said recently that “If it’s (NWAC avalanche risk rating) orange (considerable), red (high) or black (extreme), it’s not really worth coming to the park. It also means the road crews are working hard to clear the avalanche paths that cross the roads.”

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