North Cascades Institute open for business

We are relieved that the 16-day federal government shutdown is finally over and we are able to reopen the North Cascades Environmental Learning Center again.
The closure of North Cascades National Park forced us to cancel four different Mountain School sessions, impacting more than 300 students, teachers and parent chaperones. (You can read about how Bellingham fifth-graders from Wade King Elementary felt about having their Mountain School cancelled on our blog at
The dysfunction in Washington D.C. also meant that we had to furlough nine staff members; shut down our five bookstores; cancel a nature journaling class, a luncheon for Skagit Tours, a yoga retreat and two Group Rentals contracts for staff retreats; and cancel or return food deliveries from local farms.
All in all, we estimate that we’ve lost $65,000 in revenue over these past two weeks.
But the shutdown is over now, the park and Learning Center reopened, and we’re looking for ways to bring the disappointed fifth-graders up to Mountain School later this season. As a good friend of ours pointed out, “Our children need our parks and our parks need our children.”
Plus, the sun is out, there is new snow dusting the peaks and the larches on the eastslope and vine maples to the west are in glorious fall  color!
Thanks for your continued support.

Photo by Ethan Welty.

Leave a Comment