The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) doesn’t expect the roadway to reopen until June this year.

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The scenic North Cascades Highway that connects Skagit and Okanogan counties along Highway 20 is closed each winter and reopens after it can be plowed and repaired, a harbinger of spring.

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) doesn’t expect the roadway to reopen until June this year.

Crews work from both the east and west sides of the highway until they meet in the middle. Eastside crews are working to remove 20-25 feet of snow along the highway.

WSDOT’s Jim Johnson plows snow from State Route 20 near mile 157, about a half mile from Rainy Pass. (Mike Siegel / The Seattle Times)

The highway is having one of the latest openings of its 45-year-history. Only once, not long after the highway’s 1972 completion, was the spring reopening later in the season — on June 14, 1974. Last year, the highway opened April 22.

“What’s different this year? Primarily the late winter and the volume of snow,” WSDOT spokesman Jeff Adamson said in an email.