As damaging as they w ere, the storms of 2006 and 2007 revealed how much Washingtonians care for their national parks. At Rainier alone, roughly 2,000 people turned out to repair trails and rebuild facilities.
It is the love Washingtonians have for their national parks and the life-changing experiences they want to pass along to their children that has generated so much volunteer support. However, the storms also revealed just how fragile park roads and trails are. There will undoubtedly be more storms. More roads and trails will be washed out. The public will continue to respond, but the Park Service, the Forest Service, and state and county road agencies must begin working together to ensure that the most important and highest priority roads and trails receive the most immediate post-storm attention. There are only so many storm recovery dollars available for road and trail repair. Only by working together can we all ensure that those funds are invested for the most public good.