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Will Washington's White Pass Open By Christmas?

Crews are hoping to open U.S. Highway 12 at White Pass by Christmas.

Washington’s White Pass on U.S. Highway 12 near Mount Rainier is still closed both eastbound and westbound. Crews are still working 24/7 to open the high Cascade pass by Christmas, but winter storms might slow that work down.

White Pass is used by many recreationalists, residents and holiday travelers. And on average, more than 1,500 cars a day travel that section of Highway 12 over holiday weekends. That includes skiers, trucking traffic and people skating over the hill to get to family.

The state estimates it will cost at least $5.6 million to fix several slides and major washouts. It’s asked for federal disaster assistance. About 40 people are working to reopen the highway. So far, crews have filled the westside washout with 10,000 cubic yards of material.

White Pass ski resort has plenty of snow and resort managers hope they can open for the holidays.

Anna King calls Richland, Washington home and loves unearthing great stories about people in the Northwest. She reports for the Northwest News Network from a studio at Washington State University, Tri-Cities. She covers the Mid-Columbia region, from nuclear reactors to Mexican rodeos.