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Holiday weekend travel: Plan ahead, be informed, keep warm, eat turkey

(OLYMPIA)– A few key steps are all it takes to make Thanksgiving weekend travel as smooth as grandma’s gravy.

Step 1:  Plan ahead and check with the Washington State Department of Transportation’s best times to travel on key holiday routes such as Interstate 90 over Snoqualmie Pass.

Step 2: Bookmark and check  online tools that provide traffic information and ferry schedules.

Step 3:  Get informed about WSDOT’s mobile app and social media.

Step 4: Leave extra time for travel, drive safe and keep warm.

WSDOT crews will be out treating highways to prepare for continued freezing temperatures forecast through the weekend. Drivers should prepare, too: Carry chains and know current traction and chain requirements. Mountain-pass traction and chain requirements are available on the WSDOT website, highway advisory signs and highway advisory radio (530 AM and 1610 AM) or by calling 5-1-1.

If travelling over Washington’s highest mountain highways, avoid State Route 123 Cayuse Pass (elevation 4,675 feet).  The pass is closed for the season in Mount Rainier National Park from the summit to Stevens Canyon Road.

Both State Route 20 North Cascades Highway (elevation 5,477 feet) and Chinook Pass (elevation 5,430 feet) remain open. Before you go, know the most current conditions on all Washington’s mountain pass highways.

To help keep traffic moving, WSDOT and its contractors suspended most state highway construction work beginning noon Wednesday through the holiday weekend.