For three days in a row beginning this Saturday, visitors will be allowed into Mount Rainier National Park free of charge in honor of Veterans Day.
In addition to Saturday, the entrance-fee waiver will include Sunday (the actual Veterans Day) and Monday, when the holiday will be observed as a day off for many.
National parks and other federal public land managed by the departments of Interior and Agriculture have offered entrance fee waivers for Veterans Day holiday since 2006.
Facilities open within the park for all three days of the holiday weekend include the museum, National Park Inn and general store at Longmire. The Henry M. Jackson Memorial Visitor Center at Paradise will be open on Saturday and Sunday.
All motorists in the park must have tire chains in their vehicles in case they’re needed for traction. The requirement, which applies to all vehicles (including four-wheel drive) and regardless of tire type or weather conditions, went into effect last Thursday. Weather in the mountains can change rapidly this time of year, and visitors must be prepared for possible storms that could also cause park roads to close unexpectedly, a park spokeswoman said.
The road between Longmire and Paradise closes nightly and reopens each morning after any snow and ice are removed.