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John A. Gellatly - A History of Wenatchee

p. 60: The author discusses the history of the Blewett Pass and Stevens Pass highways. When the State opened a highway over Snoqualmie Pass, Wenatchee area road enthusiasts promoted development of a road over Blewett Pass to connect with the Snoqualmie road near Cle Elum. In the early days, it took from twenty to thirty hours to make the trip from Wenatchee to Seattle. Blewett Pass was usable during the snow-free months as far back as 1912. It was one of the first passable entrances into the Wenatchee Valley from the outside world.

M.F. Smith operated a summer resort and general store at Miller River near Skykomish in 1921 and 1922. He was the prime sponsor for a modern highway over Stevens Pass, enlisting boosters from Chelan and Snohomish counties. The Forest Service was interested in having such a road constructed so its men could access timbered areas in case of fire. Hal Sylvester, Wenatchee forest supervisor, helped get a pledge from the Forest Service to contruct the proposed highway if the three counties of King, Chelan and Snohomish would put up $120,000. They did. The Forest Service started construction and by the fall of 1924 the road was opened for use in a crude state. A celebration was held at the summit of the Cascades in July 1925. The author discusses efforts to get the road added to the State Highway system in 1929.

p. 206: The author discusses the origin of ski areas at Stevens Pass and Leavenworth, but offers little little of note. Walter Anderson of the U.S. Forest Service initiated action for development of a ski hill at Leavenworth in 1928. In the late 1940s, the Wenatchee Ski Club began to develop a ski area at Squilchuck, about seven miles from Wenatchee. They interested the State Park Board in purchasing land at the site. After local volunteers cleared trails, the Park Board constructed a lodge.

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Last Updated: Thu Feb 6 12:21:58 PST 2003