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Yellowstone anticipates limited opening next week

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Visitors watch a Beehive Geyser erupt, 2018. PHOTO BY JACOB W. FRANK / NPS.

EBS STAFF

MAMMOTH HOT SPRINGS, Wyo. – The National Park Service announced on June 17 that preparations are underway for a “limited opening” next week on Yellowstone National Park south loop.

NPS is working to assess and repair damages in regions of Yellowstone inflicted earlier this week by massive flooding. All five entrances are still under temporary closure, however, the West, South and East entrances are expected to reopen early next week. Park crews are working on short and long-term solutions to address damages, including offering support to gateway communities.

Water levels on the nearby Yellowstone and Gardner rivers remain high although flood conditions have subsided and NPS is monitoring weather patterns for potential additional flooding.

NPS is analyzing the carrying capacity of the south loop—which includes some of the park’s most visited destinations including Old Faithful and the Norris Geyser Basin—to determine an appropriate strategy for welcoming visitors back into the area. Damages across other sections of the park are being assessed for potential opening later in the season.

“We have made tremendous progress in a very short amount of time but have a long way to go,” said Yellowstone Superintendent Cam Sholly. “All emergency and life safety objectives within the park have been accomplished or stabilized within the first 96 hours of the flood event, without major injury or death.”

Due to the ongoing nature of damage assessments, NPS does not have an estimate on when the park will fully reopen nor costs for preliminary damages.

NPS suggests that visitors with trips planned to Yellowstone this summer stay informed and check current conditions for updates on park road status.

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