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ONP preps fast-tracked assessment for short move of threatened chalet

April 21st, 2014 - 5:38am

(Port Angeles) – Olympic National Park may move a chalet threatened by the Quinault River a short distance away.

But first, ONP staff are preparing an expedited and concise environmental assessment on what's being called a “short-term action” to protect the natural resources of the Quinault River.

Park spokesperson Barb Maynes says the EA will analyze potential impacts of moving the Enchanted Valley Chalet from its current location where it is being undercut by the East Fork Quinault River. Maynes says moving the chalet a short distance is designed to protect the river and related resources while the park figures out what to do with the historic building long term. Those solutions will come with a more in-depth environmental analysis later.

The Enchanted Valley Chalet is located 13 miles from the nearest road, deep within the Olympic Wilderness. The chalet was constructed by Quinault Valley residents in the early 1930s, prior to establishment of Olympic National Park. The chalet served for several decades as a backcountry lodge and more recently, as a wilderness ranger station and emergency shelter. The chalet was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2007.

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