The Olympic National Forest will close six seasonal gates on the south part of the forest on Monday, October 3, 2022.
- 2451 road in the North Fork Skokomish River watershed;
- 2354, 2353, and 2361 roads in the South Fork Skokomish River watershed
- 2294 (two gates) in the Wynoochee River watershed
This year the gate on the 2270 road in the Wynoochee will close on November 1 instead of October 3.
These closures happen each winter season from October 1 through April 30, are part of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Olympic National Forest and the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife and are designed to:
- increase wildlife utilization of habitat;
- reduce the siltation of lakes and streams, and protect road systems;
- provide diverse recreational hunting opportunities;
- reduce harassment levels on deer and elk; and
- increase the escapement rate of buck deer and bull elk.
The road systems behind these gates will be closed to vehicle travel until May 1, 2023. The closures extend only to the use of motorized vehicles, including electric bikes; accessing the road systems behind the gates via hiking or non-electric biking is still permissible.