What if beach access went bye-bye? Would visitors follow suit?

29 Jul

Washington has wrestled with parks funding in the past. In the current economic climate, state officials are again taking a look at the possibility of closing some state parks, including three very popular with visitors to the Gorge during the summer — the Spring Creek Hatchery, Doug’s Beach and Maryhill.

According to the Columbia Gorge Windsurfing Association, a 2007 poll of 580 Gorge windsurfers showed that the Hatchery ranked the highest in use among Gorge beaches, followed by Doug’s Beach at 2nd and Maryhill at 6th.

This would be a kick in the teeth to the Gorge economy. No place to play? No reason to stay.

Learn more about how important these sites are to windsports fans, and some of the numbers behind the issue, in a report by Katie Crafts of the Columbia Gorge Windsurfing Association.

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