Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Timber Thinning Closes Tinkam Road to Public

The American Alpine Institute just got the following press release from Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest:

Everett, Wash. Feb. 17, 2010— The Forest Service has closed Tinkam Road (Forest Service Road 5500) at milepost .5 for logging 8 a.m. Monday through noon Friday until mid-March. Tinkam Road parallels the south side of I-90 from exit 42 to 47. The road will open for traffic Friday noon through Sunday and holidays. Hikers can still reach Asahel Curtis and McClellan Butte trailheads. The road is closed for public safety. “Tinkam Road is narrow with limited turnarounds. The area is not safe for public access with timber equipment that includes a loader, yarder, log decks and skyline cables,” said Jim Franzel, Snoqualmie District Ranger for the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. Access to some recreation sites may require backtracking from exit 47, rather than ascending up the South Fork valley from exit 42. After the thinning on the south side of I-90 is complete, harvest operations will move in late spring and summer to the north side of I-90.

The Forest Service is thinning 350 acres of western hemlock, Douglas-Fir and western Redcedar, cutting trees 60-80 years old to improve the growth and health of those remaining according to Franzel. “Dense unthinned stands are more susceptible to insects, diseases, climate changes,” he said. “These are areas that were logged 70 to 80 years ago and we want to restore the stands to a healthy vigorous condition.”

Call Snoqualmie Ranger District for updates at 425-888-1421, or stop by the office at 902 S.E. North Bend Way, North Bend, Wash., 98045. For updated information about trails and roads, go to alerts and conditions on .

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