You are here: Home Advocacy Road Access to Trails

Road Access to Trails

Getting to the trailhead of your favorite trail depends on well-maintained backcountry roads. When these connectors wash out or are damaged, dozens of trails in your favorite wild places can become inaccessible. Join WTA to help create a rational and sustainable system of backcountry roads designed and maintained to provide wildland access while minimizing environmental impacts.

Getting to the trailhead of your favorite trail depends on well-maintained backcountry roads. When these connectors wash out or are damaged, dozens of trails in your favorite wild places can become inaccessible. Join WTA to help create a rational and sustainable system of backcountry roads designed and maintained to provide wildland access while minimizing environmental impacts.

________________________________________________________________________

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ISSUE

State of Access: The Future of Roads on Public Lands

Get the full story of how WTA evaluates roads, which roads we recommend fixing, and how to get involved.

> Download the 26-page report.

Roads to Fix, Roads to Let Go

Looking at hiker use, cost of repair and environmental impact, WTA recommends the following for each of the eight roads. To learn the story of each road and the details of our position on repair, download the report.

      1. Suiattle River Road: Critical access to the heart of the Glacier Peak Wilderness that has been thoroughly studied and is ready for repair.
      2. Middle Fork Snoqualmie River Road: A successful collaboration of land management agencies and the public to rehabilitate an important recreation area. A paving project should be completed by 2015.
      3. Carbon River Road: A dynamic landscape rendered road realignment unfeasible, making this road an ideal conversion to a hiker/biker trail to a wilderness campground.
      4. Dosewallips River Road: An important access road that should be reopened as new repair standards can offer access to the west side of the Olympics.
      5. Stehekin Road: A little-used mountain road that should not be repaired. Relocation would require realignment of the wilderness boundary, as well as the Pacific Crest Trail.
      6. Illabot River Road: A well-built road threatened by a lack of funding for maintenance that nevertheless should remain open.
      7. Mountain Loop Highway: A critical recreation access road requiring major repairs on a regular basis necessitates continued investment.
      8. Mitchell Peak Road: DNR should seek take all reasonable steps to secure an easement for recreational travel.

            State of Access Map
            State of Access Map: Explore what these eight roads mean to hikers.

            ________________________________________________________________________

            GET THE LATEST NEWS FROM THE BLOG

            How Do You Hike and Camp on Gifford Pinchot National Forest?

            How Do You Hike and Camp on Gifford Pinchot National Forest?

            Two great opportunities to shape the future of roads in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. Join us at our annual Vancouver Hiker Potluck and fill out a short questionnaire before the Apr. 30 deadline.

            Read More…

            Saving Green Mountain Lookout, A Brief Retrospective

            Saving Green Mountain Lookout, A Brief Retrospective

            This week, President Obama signed the Green Mountain Lookout Heritage Protection Act, putting an end to years of uncertainty around the fate of the beloved lookout perched high in the Glacier Peak Wilderness of Washington's Cascade range.

            Read More…

            Upcoming Closures: Middle Fork Snoqualmie River Road

            Upcoming Closures: Middle Fork Snoqualmie River Road

            While the paving of the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River Road is welcome news for hikers who use the route to reach their favorite trails, the project will cause some closures and delays. Here's what you need to know.

            Read More…

            Officials: Please Steer Clear of Mountain Loop

            Officials: Please Steer Clear of Mountain Loop

            As response efforts at the devastating mudslide on Highway 530 continue, Snohomish County and U.S. Forest Service officials are urging people to stay clear of the area.

            Read More…

            Help Olympic National Park Plan for Wilderness Management

            Help Olympic National Park Plan for Wilderness Management

            Learn about Olympic National Park draft plans for managing the park’s wilderness on everything from trails to bear canisters to self-registration stations. Then, find out how to weigh in.

            Read More…

            Klickitat County Trails Plan Seeks Input from Local Residents

            Klickitat County Trails Plan Seeks Input from Local Residents

            Local trails plan to connect the Lyle Cherry Orchard Trail to the town of Lyle is seeking input from Klickitat County residents.

            Read More…

            Heavy Snows Close Mount Rainier Passes

            Heavy Snows Close Mount Rainier Passes

            About 20 inches of fresh snow fell on Mount Rainier passes over the weekend, increasing avalanche danger and prompting the Washington State Department of Transportation to close Cayuse (SR 123) and Chinook Passes (SR 410) to vehicles for the season, though they remain open to winter recreation.

            Read More…

            How Do You Hike on Mount-Baker Snoqualmie Lands?

            How Do You Hike on Mount-Baker Snoqualmie Lands?

            Don't miss your opportunity to shape the future of roads in the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. Attend the last public meeting in Everett on Nov. 13 and fill out a short questionnaire before the Nov. 30 deadline.

            Read More…

            Mudslides Close Hwy 20 (N. Cascades Hwy) and SR 410

            Mudslides Close Hwy 20 (N. Cascades Hwy) and SR 410

            For the second time this summer, heavy rains caused mudslides that closed the North Cascades Highway (SR 20). Mudslides also closed sections of the SR 410 west of Naches and Icicle Road outside of Leavenworth.

            Read More…

            Break Out the S'mores, North Cascades Roads Update

            Break Out the S'mores, North Cascades Roads Update

            The campfire ban on state lands is lifted west of the crest, but you'll have to celebrate National S'mores Day over a backpacking stove in most of the state. A section of the North Cascades Highway (Hwy 20) remains closed as crews work to clear massive mudslides. Cascade River Road closed to cars, open to foot traffic.

            Read More…

            Mudslides Close Two Major North Cascades Roads

            Mudslides Close Two Major North Cascades Roads

            Thunderstorms with intense rains caused wash-outs of two very popular roads this past weekend in North Cascades National Park. Highway 20, the major east-west route through the park, is closed for further notice due to a series of at least eight mudslides between mileposts 150 and 155. Heavy rains also caused the Cascade River Road to wash out at milepost 18, affecting the popular Cascade Pass trailhead.

            Read More…

            Spotlight on the Suiattle, Action on Trail Access

            Spotlight on the Suiattle, Action on Trail Access

            As repairs to the Suiattle River Road slowly begin to approach reality, Ron Judd, a staff writer for The Seattle Times, has written thoughtful article in examining the challenges that hikers are facing in accessing some of the wild places hikers love. Find out how you can get involved in access issues.

            Read More…

            St. Helens, Artist Point, Mount Rainier Open Roads

            St. Helens, Artist Point, Mount Rainier Open Roads

            Roads leading into three great recreation areas -- Artist Point, Mount Rainier and the east side of Mount St. Helens -- have opened for the Fourth of July weekend (thanks road crews!). Get the details and remember: just because a road may be open, it doesn't mean hiking trails will be clear or snow-free.

            Read More…

            Road Conditions: Open Passes, I-5 Detour, Mountain Loop Hwy Open

            Road Conditions: Open Passes, I-5 Detour, Mountain Loop Hwy Open

            Hitting the road and the trails for a holiday weekend adventure? Get updates on the I-5 reroute, the opening of the Mountain Loop Highway and resources for keeping up to date through your holiday travel plans:

            Read More…

            Washout Closes Glacier Creek Rd to Heliotrope Ridge Trail

            Washout Closes Glacier Creek Rd to Heliotrope Ridge Trail

            On Tuesday, May 14, the Forest Service closed Glacier Creek Road (Forest Service road 39) due to a washout. The road leads to the Heliotope Ridge Trail, a popular Mount Baker hike which WTA crews have worked on the last three years.

            Read More…

            WTA Releases State Of Access Report

            WTA Releases State Of Access Report

            WTA today released State of Access: The Future of Roads on Public Lands. In an era of major storm events, budget cuts and environmental sustainability, this report is a tool to help land managers and the hiking community assess which roads to fix and which roads to let go.

            Read More…

            Suiattle Road 'No Impact' Finding a Big Impact on Hikers

            Suiattle Road 'No Impact' Finding a Big Impact on Hikers

            Repairs to the Suiattle River Road may finally become a reality after a new finding from the Federal Highways Administration Western Federal Lands Division. WTA and hikers have been advocating for repairs to the Suiattle River Road since flooding and landslides closed it in 2003.

            Read More…

            Suiattle River Road: One More Chance To Comment!

            Suiattle River Road: One More Chance To Comment!

            You have one more chance to help repair the Suiattle River Road, a tremendous opportunity to regain access to some magnificent hikes in the North Cascades.

            Read More…

            Suiattle Road Environmental Assessment Released

            Suiattle Road Environmental Assessment Released

            Landslides in 2003 and 2006 have closed 11 miles of the Suiattle River Road (FR 26) to hikers and campers wishing to access the Glacier Peak Wilderness. Now more than 8 years after the road was damaged, an Environmental Assessment has been published, kicking off a 30-day public comment period.

            Read More…

            Repairs to Index-Galena Road Delayed

            Repairs to Index-Galena Road Delayed

            Repairs to Snohomish County's Index-Galena Road have been put on hold while the county and Federal Highway Administration perform a full Environmental Assessment on the remainder of the the project.

            Read More…

            Document Actions
            • RSS feed
            • Print this
            • Share