Numerous roads within the Olympic National Forest will be closing on October 1.
The US Forest Service reminds anyone using the forestland that October 1 will mark the start of the seasonal road closures to protect wildlife.
The Olympic National Forest will close seven seasonal gates on the south part of the forest, including on the 2451 road in the North Fork Skokomish River watershed; on the 2354, 2353, and 2361 roads in the South Fork Skokomish River watershed; and on the 2294 (two gates) and 2270 roads in the Wynoochee River watershed.
These closures, which 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, 2021.
The closures extend only to the use of motorized vehicles; accessing the road systems behind the gates via hiking or mountain biking is still permissible.
For questions, please contact Betsy Howell at Olympic National Forest, 360-765-2230.