The winter of 2009-2010 was pretty bad for many local ski areas : warm temperatures, lack of snow, rain, and "shady " online marketing tactics ( we've just had 6 inches of snow !...but not exactly where you'll be skiing...)
It was even worse for Hurricane Ridge ski area. On January 18th , the only road to Hurricane Ridge was closed , the first time in 50 years since the road was put. The cause: water. Heavy rains triggered the slide and nearly 100 feet of road crumbled into the Ennis Creek valley.
Hurricane Ridge is very important to the area. Many local businesses, from ski operators to gas stations and restaurants, heavily depend on skiers, snowboarders, snowshoers, and tourists.
Repairs started almost immediately, and with crews working 12 hour days, six days a week, the road was opened earlier than expected. To celebrate the reopening of the road, which was accomplished ahead of schedule, and under budget, park officials waived the entrance fee ( which is usually $15 )the last two weekend of March.
My trip to the Olympic Peninsula, couldn't be complete without a visit to Hurricane Ridge. This was my first visit. One of my goals for this year was to ski at every ski area in Washington state. Unfortunately, during my Friday visit the lifts were closed ( but I did take advantage of free entrance ! ). But the views from The Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center were breathtaking !