A popular hang out along the Snake River for Washington State University and University of Idaho students has been closed indefinitely after officials say party-goers trashed Granite Point.
The Tri-City Herald reports that law enforcement was called to the area after hearing that 300 to 500 people were partying at the location Friday.
According to the Herald, Army Corps officials discovered "enormous amounts" of garbage, broken bottles and beer cans littered across the area after responding to a call from the Whitman County Sheriff's Office.
The Corps owns the granite rock formation that hangs over a swimming hole just upstream from Lower Granite Dam. During their initial cleanup, officials collected approximately 800 pounds of garbage, the Corps told the Herald. Visitors also spray-painted graffiti on some of the rock formations.
"I have never seen anything like this — the vandalism, garbage everywhere — that isn't even something that I could have ever imagined," Lower Granite natural resource manager Jason Achziger told the Herald. "We simply do not have the resources to clean up after hundreds of party-goers."
Despite the initial cleanup, the area still has a large amount of bottle caps, broken glass, and trash that could pose a hazard to visitors, prompting officials to close the park.
"This is simply unacceptable and quite frankly embarrassing," WSU's student body president Jordan Frost tweeted. "Doesn't matter who did it, we should all be ashamed that we treat such a beloved resource so poorly. Step up Cougs, we can do better."No groups have been implicated in the vandalism and trashing of the park.
The Corps told the Herald that they will develop a plan to manage the park when it reopens in order to prevent something like this from happening again.
No reopening date has been set at this time.
Personal belongings left behind at the park were collected by the Corps during their initial clean up. To claim an item, you can call them at (509) 751-0240.
(story: KHQ.com; photo: @Jaysten25)