Category archive

Yellowstone

Yellowstone Reminds Tourists Not to Cook Thanksgiving Turkey Over Hot Springs

in News/Yellowstone
7342

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Yellowstone National Park continues to have a sense of humor.

A few months ago, the Park posted some advice for tourists on what to do if they see a bear.

They advised not tripping your friend and then running (which is, although humorous, still good advice).

On Saturday, they took it to a different level.

Using Legos, they reminded tourists that it is illegal to cook turkeys in the hot springs of Yellowstone.

This advice, of course, jumps on the recent story of the idiots from Idaho who attempted to cook a chicken in the hot springs of Yellowstone.

“We don’t know who needs to hear this, but it is illegal to cook a turkey in the hot springs at Yellowstone National Park,” the Facebook post reads. 

“Boiled, baked, stewed, brined, spatchcocked, grilled, braised, smoked, and deep fried are all illegal.  They will ban you from the park!  Just don’t do it,” it said.

Kudos to Yellowstone not only for the usage of Legos but because the park ranger and the lawbreaker are both wearing masks.

In Lego court, we hope the ruffian gets probation just because — even though he is breaking the law — his mask covers his nose (which so many non-Lego people don’t understand).

#GiveTheLegoLawbreakerAPass

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Yellowstone Sets Another Milestone With Busiest October In Recorded History

in News/Recreation/Yellowstone
7313

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Continuing a trend seen throughout the fall, Yellowstone National Park smashed another visitation record, reporting its busiest October in recorded history.

The park hosted 360,034 recreation visits in October, up 110% from October 2019. October’s visitation numbers also exceeded the previous record of 252,013 set in 2015 by 43%

The park hosted 837,499 recreation visits in September, a 21% increase from September 2019.

August was the second-busiest on record for the area — with visitor numbers coming in at 881,543, second only to 2017, the year of the total solar eclipse.

The park has hosted 3,743,907 visits so far this year, down 6% from the same period last year. However, the park was closed due to health and safety reasons related to the coronavirus pandemic beginning March 24 until mid-May, when its two Wyoming entrances opened.

All five of the entrances were opened on June 1, and the park has been completely open since then.

Here are the park’s year-to-date visitation numbers through October for the last several years:

  • 2020 – 3,743,907
  • 2019 – 3,979,153
  • 2018 – 4,078,771
  • 2017 – 4,084,762
  • 2016 – 4,212,782
  • 2015 – 4,066,191

All roads in Yellowstone, with one exception, are closed to automobile traffic from early November to late April.

The road from the park’s North Entrance at Gardiner, Montana, through Mammoth Hot Springs to the northeast entrance and the communities of Cooke City and Silver Gate, Montana, is open year-round, weather-permitting.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Most Roads Into Yellowstone To Close Monday

in News/Yellowstone
7136

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Three of the four entrances into Yellowstone National Park, including all of those from Wyoming, will close beginning Monday for winterization reasons.

The west, south and east entrances and all roads in the park, with one exception, will close to vehicle travel at 8 a.m. Monday. This is an annual closure to allow park staff to prepare the roads for the winter season and snowmobile and snowcoach travel, which begins Dec. 15.

The park’s north entrance at Gardiner, Montana, through Mammoth Hot Springs to the park’s northeast entrance and the communities of Cooke City and Silver Gate, Montana, remains open all year, weather permitting.

However, travel east of Cooke City isn’t possible from late fall to spring because the Beartooth Highway between Cooke City and Pilot Creek is closed to vehicle travel.

Officials from Yellowstone National Park did not return Cowboy State Daily’s request for comment on Thursday.

These road closures come after a massively successful summer and fall for the park. Yellowstone saw its busiest September in recorded history this year, a 21% increase in visitation over September 2019.

The park was closed from March 24 until May 18 due to the coronavirus pandemic. The two Wyoming entrances opened in May and the Montana entrances opened in June.

Yellowstone saw its second-busiest August on record this year, as well. It should be noted that monthly records have only been kept since 1979.

In addition to the surge in visitors on September, the park also saw an increase in coronavirus cases among park staff. Last month, 16 Yellowstone employees, 0.8% of the entire personnel at the park, tested positive for the coronavirus.

Temporary travel restrictions or closures in the park can occur at anytime, so visitors are encouraged to keep track of updates on the park’s website.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Yellowstone To Introduce Automated Vehicles; What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

in News/Yellowstone
7064

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

If there is a fear that automated vehicles in Yellowstone will turn the park into the movie set of “Maximum Overdrive” — the Stephen King movie where machines (especially cars and trucks) come to life and run over people for fun — that fear is probably overblown.

Yes, the National Park Service did announce it is going to demo driverless, electric, low-speed vehicles next summer in the park, but that doesn’t mean it’s a recipe for sheer chaos. 

Granted, there are some similarities between the movie and the upcoming foray.

In the movie Maximum Overdrive, automated 18-wheelers — to an AC/DC soundtrack — circle around a truck stop and run-over patrons who unwisely step outside the facility.

In Yellowstone, automated shuttles — to a yet unspecified musical selection — will reportedly circle around pre-determined areas such as campgrounds, commercial buildings, and lodging areas.

But instead of running over patrons, the plan is to drop visitors off at these facilities.

“Yellowstone and the National Park Service are proactively engaging with emerging transportation technologies by looking for ways to test, pilot and learn from these capabilities,” Yellowstone Superintendent Cam Sholly said.

On its surface, the Yellowstone plan appears to be more user-friendly than the Stephen King plan.

Another nice benefit to the automated vehicle plan is it is unlikely — unlike many tourists — that the automated vehicle will stop when it detects a squirrel on the side of the road and run out to take photos, thereby causing a two-mile long traffic jam.

Park officials say they are giving the automated thing a try in an effort to make the Yellowstone experience better.

“We will continue exploring possible ways to reduce congestion and to improve visitor experience and access in heavily traveled areas of the park,” Sholly said.

To find out more about this upcoming pilot program, check out this page.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Pittsburgh Family Spots Pack of Wolves; Doesn’t Attempt to Pet or Ride Them

in News/Yellowstone
6850

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Not every tourist to Yellowstone deserves to be described as a “touron” (the combination of the words tourist and moron).

Put Kristie Campbell and her family from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in that camp.

While driving to Old Faithful, the family saw a pack of wolves cross the road and did a lot of things right.

They slowed and eventually stopped the car.

They seemed to know right away that the animals they spotted were wolves, not dogs.

They didn’t get out of the car and try to pet them.

They didn’t try to take them home.

Perhaps most impressively, they shot their video horizontally and not vertically.

Instead they proceeded slowly and acted thrilled that they spotted wolves.

“There’s another one,” one of the family members screamed.

“Oh my God, there’s two, there’s three!,” they yelled over each other.  “There’s the whole pack!”

“There’s six. There’s seven,” they continued like they were auditioning for Sesame Street.

When the last wolf crossed the road, one member of the family (perhaps a wildlife biologist) opined that it looked tired.

“He must have been chasing something,” she said with authority. “He looks tuckered out.”

“That is amazing,” another chimed in.

In short, the tourists acted like responsible visitors and should give us all hope that not all tourists act like Yellowstone National Park is a petting zoo.

Campbell family: You made Pittsburgh, PA look good. You are a credit to your community.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Bison Herd Keep Tourists Away From Calf In Yellowstone

in News/wildlife/Yellowstone
6857

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Tourists managed to avoid being treated like a “Mortal Kombat” character, thankfully, after being warned to keep away from a herd of bison in Yellowstone recently.

By the bison.

A video posted to Rumble that was recorded in August showed three bison warding off curious tourists trying to get a closer look at the herd and a calf in particular.

Unlike many other wildlife encounters in the park, this one ended peacefully and with no blood or pants being ripped off.

A family was shooting a video of the bison as two males began to approach, grunting loudly.

It was unclear if the family recording a video were the same people who uploaded the video to Rumble.

In the video, people can be heard commenting on the bison calf, saying things such as “Look at the baby.”

“The person shooting the video realized the danger of the situation and quickly jumped into the car to get out of their way,” the video description said.

After the person shooting the video got into their car, you can hear them say “Oh my God” as more of the bison herd appears in the frame.

It should be noted that the average bison weighs in at one ton, making it about an even match with most of the cars usually surrounding the animals in Yellowstone.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Child Suffers Thermal Burns In Yellowstone, Life-Flighted To Idaho

in News/Yellowstone
6806

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter*** 

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

A three-year-old was burned on Friday near the Midway Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park.

The child took off running from the trail, slipped and fell into a small thermal feature on Friday morning, officials announced in a release. The child suffered second-degree burns to their lower body and back.

Due to the injuries, the child was life-flighted to the burn center at Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center. The incident is under investigation.

The ground in hydrothermal areas is fragile and thin and there is scalding water just below the surface. Visitors are to remain on boardwalks and trails and exercise caution around thermal features.

This is the second significant injury in a thermal area in the park that’s occurred this year. In May, a visitor illegally entered the park while it was closed and fell into a thermal feature at Old Faithful while backing up and taking photos.

In September 2019, a man suffered severe burns after falling into thermal water near the cone of the Old Faithful geyser.

In June 2017, a man sustained severe burns after falling in a hot spring in the lower Geyser Basin. In June 2016, a man left the boardwalk and died after slipping into a hot spring in Norris Geyser Basin.

In August 2000, one person died and two other received severe burns after falling into a hot spring in the Lower Geyser Basin.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter*** 

Yellowstone Records Busiest September Ever

in News/Yellowstone
6765

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, Yellowstone National Park has concluded its busiest September on record.

Officials announced this in a news release on Thursday, noting the park hosted 837,499 recreation visits in September, a 21% increase from September 2019.

So far this year, the park has hosted 3.3 million visits, down 11% compared to the same period last year.

However, the park was closed from March 24 until May 18, when two Wyoming entrances opened. The three Montana entrances opened June 1.

The list below shows the year-to-date trend for recreation visits over the last several years (through September):

  • 2020 : 3,383,872
  • 2019: 3,807,815
  • 2018: 3,860,695
  • 2017: 3,872,775
  • 2016: 3,970,778
  • 2015: 3,814,178

In September, park officials announced that the park had seen its second-busiest August in its recorded history. Month-to-month records have only been kept 1979, however.

Unfortunately, with an increase in tourists comes an increase in visitors who may not behave in the most prudent way — like the two guys charged with harassing bison last month.

Then there was the moron who miraculously survived when she was out hugging bison like she was at a petting zoo in a McDonald’s parking lot.

Darwin helps keep these numbers down but clearly not enough.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Yellowstone Sees Surge In Employee Coronavirus Cases Over September

in Coronavirus/News/Yellowstone
6694

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

After seeing only four positive coronavirus cases all summer, Yellowstone National Park employees have seen an uptick in positive virus cases over the last month.

In September, 16 Yellowstone employees, 0.8% of the entire personnel at the park, tested positive for the coronavirus, according to an announcement from the park.

This includes seven National Park Service employees and nine concession workers. Eight of the 16 individuals have recovered and the other eight are in recovery.

All employees who have tested positive have been isolated per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and county public health guidelines.

In partnership with Montana and Wyoming, the park has substantially increased employee surveillance testing and has conducted more than 1,100 tests since the first week of September. More than 3,000 tests have been conducted since the park reopened in May.  

Contact tracing has occurred with the assistance of Park County, Montana and Park County, Wyoming.  

The park only had four positive employee cases between May 18 and Aug. 30.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Yellowstone Records Second-Busiest August In History

in News/Yellowstone
6379

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

The coronavirus wreaked havoc on many industries across Wyoming and America, but tourism in Yellowstone National Park — at least recently — doesn’t seem to have been affected.

The Park Service announced on Thursday that this past August was the second-busiest on record for the area — with visitor numbers coming in at 881,543, second only to 2017, the year of the total solar eclipse.

To be fair, month-by-month records have only been kept since 1979. So there could have been a bigger August. Cavemen, theoretically, could have had a huge August retreat back in 39,000 BC. We just don’t know.

When a spokesperson for the National Park Service was asked why she thought the numbers were up, the spokesperson chose not to speak saying that she didn’t want to speculate.

We can speculate. People are tired of being in their homes and Yellowstone is a great place to be.

Unfortunately, with an increase in tourists comes an increase in visitors who may not behave in the most prudent way — like the two guys charged with harassing bison the other day.

Then there was the moron who miraculously survived when she was out hugging bison like she was at a petting zoo in a McDonald’s parking lot.

Darwin helps keep these numbers down but clearly not enough.

Although it was a great August, overall numbers are down for the year.

Back in June, the outlook was dismal as there was a sizable drop in visitors. But the park has rebounded since then.

So far in 2020, the park has hosted 2,546,373 recreation visits, down 18% from the same period last year. But, the park got a late start because of the pandemic.

The park was closed due to health and safety reasons related to COVID-19 beginning March 24, 2020. Two Wyoming entrances opened on May 18 and three Montana entrances opened on June 1, 2020. All five entrances have been open since June 1.

If you are interested in all of these statistics, here’s a good page for you. It includes traffic counts, camping reports, how counting is administered, etc. etc. Lots of good stuff.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

1 2 3 5
Go to Top