Events listed here are contingent on whether each jurisdiction is approved to enter the corresponding phase of the governor’s four-phase reopening plan. Events may be canceled or postponed. Check with each venue for the latest information.
Fall leaves kayak tour: Paddle to the Snohomish River’s most picturesque spots to see the color-changing leaves. No experience necessary. Kayak tours are 3 to 5:30 p.m. Oct. 9 and Oct. 16, and 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Oct. 11 and Oct. 18 at Cady Park, 40 Maple Ave., Snohomish. All equipment provided by REI. Single kayaks will be used for this tour; tandem kayaks will be optional for members of the same household. Cost is $79 for members, $99 for non-members. There is a wait list. A private session on Oct. 11 or Oct. 18 is $299 for members, $315 for non-members. More at www.rei.com.
Stargazing kayak tour: Paddle up the Snohomish River as the last light leaves the sky. Once it gets dark, float and paddle your way back downstream and turn your gaze upward to the blanket of stars above. No experience necessary. Kayak tours are 6:30 to 9 p.m. Oct. 9, Oct. 16 and Oct. 17 at Cady Park, 40 Maple Ave., Snohomish. All equipment provided by REI. Single kayaks will be used for this tour; tandem kayaks will be optional for members of the same household. Cost is $79 for members, $99 for non-members. There is a wait list. A private session on Oct. 15 is $299 for members, $315 for non-members. More at www.rei.com.
Forest project grants: Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest is seeking grant proposals for forest improvement projects in Snohomish County. The Resource Advisory Committee has $150,000 to allocate toward projects meant to improve Forest Service lands and the rural economies within them. Projects should focus on the enhancement of forest ecosystems, restore and improve land health and water quality, and improve the maintenance of existing facilities within the forest. Deadline is Oct. 16. Go to www.fs.usda.gov/mbs for more information.
Free park-ing: The next day to visit Washington state parks in 2020 without an entrance fee is Nov. 11 (Veterans Day). The last one of the year is Nov. 27 (Autumn Day). More at www.discoverpass.wa.gov.
Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest: There is a phased reopening of the forest’s campgrounds, restrooms, trailheads and day-use areas to align with Gov. Jay Inslee’s transition plan. Garbage service and water facilities continue to be unavailable. Visitors should plan to be as self-sufficient as possible. This includes bringing their own water, knowing how to properly dispose of human and dog waste, and packing out all garbage. Go to www.fs.usda.gov/mbs for more information.
Beware of bears: Bears have been visiting the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest in high numbers this year. The bears are attracted by the scent of garbage and waste. Help limit bear interactions by properly disposing of waste and packing out trash every time you visit trails or day-use areas. If you need to report a problem bear, contact the Department of Fish and Wildlife or call local law enforcement. Go to www.fs.usda.gov/mbs for tips on what to do if you encounter a bear.
Free firewood: Free firewood cutting has been extended in the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest through Dec. 31. No permit will be required during this time. The opportunity was originally scheduled to expire in July. Forest managers made the decision to extend the provision to continue to assist area residents who rely on wood for heat. Woodcutters can collect up to six cords of firewood for personal use. A cord equates to a wood stack that is 4 feet wide by 4 feet high by 8 feet long. Go to tinyurl.com/cutfirewood for more information.
Find your favorite park: Still playing it safe? Virtually explore Washington’s state parks during the pandemic. Washington State Parks Foundation’s website features an interactive map of Washington’s 124 state parks, as well as virtual tours, park information and trip reports. The virtual tours provide a 360-degree view with navigational tools and a walk-through of state parks, trails, campgrounds, retreat centers, interpretive centers and vacation houses. More at www.waparks.org.
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