Yakima gets a pretty big financial boost from the travel and tourism industry which has taken a severe blow due to the Coronavirus..

This Friday John Cooper. President and CEO of Yakima Tourism will give a presentation at the Yakima Convention Center of the current state and future for Tourism.

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Yakima County Tourists Spend Nearly $400 Million

Mr. Cooper will have specifics but The internet will tell you just how important tourism is to our local economy.

In 2016 visitors spent more than $380 million in Yakima County. More than 3,800 jobs have been created in tourism-related industries....Our farm-fresh experience, international reputation as a wine destination, 300 days of sunshine and the abundance of outdoor adventures draw visitors from around the globe.

We have good news and bad news on the tourism and travel industry for 2022.

The good news, according to the World Travel Organization, is that Europe and  America recorded the strongest improvement in tourism results in 2021 compared to 2020 with Europe up +19% and America up +17%.

The bad news is that the good news is overshadowed by the fact the 17 to 19 percent improvement is still 63% below pre-pandemic levels and now there is Omicron.

So what will this Summer Season be like?  We'll leave that to Mr. Cooper, but we can tell you a little about some places you might want to visit in the Northwest.

Men's Journal magazine online released a list called "Epic Trips In All 50 States" that sounds like great getaways from all those other people worried about the virus!

We'll start with the homeland -  Washington State.

I must admit I hadn't heard much about the Enchantment Lakes region but after seeing the pictures, wow....I need to go...but it's not easy.  It is a serious hike and is limited in availability.  The Forest Service lays out the process HERE.  Men's Journal says:

The Enchantment Lakes basin is a series of glacial cirques boasting towering peaks, clear lakes, and ancient larch trees. Permits go fast, and it takes nothing short of a seven-mile hike to reach the lower basin. But the reward is solitude in one of the most stunning wilderness areas in the Lower 48.


Idaho's Magruder Corridor - 3.5 Million Acres Of Awesomeness

Through the middle of the largest chunk of wilderness in the Lower 48 runs a single one-lane trail: the Magruder Road. Located in north-central Idaho, between Elk City and Darby, Montana, the 101-mile unimproved path links the 2.3-million-acre Frank Church–River of No Return Wilderness and the 1.2-million-acre Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness. The rugged trail traverses a sea of mountains—home to bighorn sheep, bears, elk, and wolves—and weaves past dozens of subalpine lakes and streams, including the Selway River, equally famous for its rafting and its steelhead.At night, the sky sparkles with constellations you’ve never seen, and in the mornings, you can watch steam rise from spots where elk bedded nearby.

In Oregon, you Can Take The High Ground

 Decommissioned fire towers dot the Oregon wilderness, and for about $40 a night, you can stay at one of the 20 or so the Forest Service now rents out. Not only do these retreats have killer views, but they also have great hiking right outside the door. Check recreation.gov for availability

Finally, the Mighty Missouri And Majestic Montana

The canoe float through the Upper Missouri River Breaks Monument, in north-central Montana, is fantastic.  It’s a good place to reflect on life and have an internal conversation. It will also afford the chance to take a few beautiful side hikes.

LOOK: Stunning vintage photos capture the beauty of America's national parks

Today these parks are located throughout the country in 25 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The land encompassing them was either purchased or donated, though much of it had been inhabited by native people for thousands of years before the founding of the United States. These areas are protected and revered as educational resources about the natural world, and as spaces for exploration.

Keep scrolling for 50 vintage photos that show the beauty of America's national parks.

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