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home : activities : sports & outdoors April 29, 2016

5/21/2014 11:44:00 AM
Memorial Day tips for Wenatchee River Ranger District
Submitted by Susan Peterson, USFS

Officially considered the beginning of the summer recreation season, Memorial Day weekend is one of the busiest weekends of the year for the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest and particularly in the Leavenworth and Lake Wenatchee areas.

Here are some helpful tips if you're planning on camping in the Wenatchee River Ranger District:

Tip #1- Plan ahead, don't rush and have a contingency plan as sites fill up fast, no matter what the weather.

Tip #2- Be aware that all Forest Service campsites and docks are first come, first served (meaning no reservations except at group sites).

Tip #3- If you're headed to the Leavenworth area, Icicle Road (FS Rd #7600) will be open by Memorial Day for access to developed FS campsites in the Icicle Valley. Eightmile Road #7601 is open.

In the Lake Wenatchee area, Glacier View and Nason Creek Campgrounds are open, but fill-up fast. Chiwawa River Road #6200 is open to Grouse Creek and will continue to open as the snow melts (check with the Ranger District for the most current information); White River Road #6400 is open to the end of the pavement and the road is slowly melting out. Little Wenatchee River Road #6500 is closed and there is no access to Rainy Creek Campground, note- Rainy Pass and Smithbrook are still not accessible.

Tip #4- Popular developed sites usually fill up by 9 o'clock Friday night, and prime sites are usually occupied earlier in the week.

Tumwater Campground, located nine miles past Leavenworth on Stevens Pass Highway, usually doesn't fill up until Saturday afternoon on major holiday weekends. Tumwater has 84 camp sites, and it is located next to the river.

Tip #5- For the most current information contact the Wenatchee River Ranger District's Leavenworth office (509) 548-2550, open 8:00 am to 4:30 pm Monday - Friday (Closed Monday, May 26th for Memorial Day).

Tip #6- Good information for all districts:

• If you plan on hiking, the snow level is around 5,000 feet, although snow may be encountered in lower elevations depending upon aspect.

• Check with ranger districts for current trail/road conditions or visit our website at www.fs.usda.gov/okawen.

• Critters are out, be alert for snakes, lots of ticks, bears, bugs, and other biting things.

• Be cautious around any streams or creeks- water levels and currents change suddenly. The water is exceptionally cold and swift this time of year.

• If you are cutting firewood, you must have a firewood permit and only cut in allowed areas. Resource damage occurs when people illegally harvest wood, mushrooms, and other forest products.

• Stay on roads, if the road is very wet or muddy, don't drive further, as the road will be damaged or you may find yourself having an expensive towing bill if you get stuck.

• Make sure you have the correct recreation pass. There are several options for you to select from, depending upon your length of visit.

• Check Twitter for updates at www.twitter.com/OkaWenNF

Enjoy your national forest and we wish you a fun and safe Memorial Day weekend!

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