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Home National & State Parks Yellowstone Yellowstone’s 2012-13 Winter Season Begins

Yellowstone's Winter Season

Yellowstone’s 2012-13 Winter Season Begins

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Yellowstone National Park's 2012-13 winter season for the public officially opened today, Dec. 15, 2012.

Visitors are now able to travel to the park's interior roads on commercially guided snowmobiles or snowcoaches from the North, West and South Entrances. Travel through the park's East Entrance over Sylvan Pass is scheduled to begin Dec. 22.

yellowstone_crosscountryThe road from the park's North Entrance at Gardiner, Montana through Mammoth Hot Springs and on to Cooke City, Montana, outside the park's Northeast Entrance is open to wheeled vehicle travel all year.

At Old Faithful, the Geyser Grill, the Bear Den Gift Shop, and the Old Faithful Visitor Education Center opened for the season on Dec. 15. The Old Faithful Snow Lodge and Cabins and the Obsidian Dining Room opens on Dec. 18.

The Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel, dining room and gift shop will open for the season on Dec. 20. The Yellowstone General Store, the medical clinic, campground, post office and the Albright Visitor Center at Mammoth Hot Springs are open all year, as are the 24-hour gasoline pumps at Mammoth Hot Springs and Tower Junction.

All communities around and on the way to Yellowstone are open year-round, with local businesses offering a wide range of winter recreation opportunities. Extensive information and assistance for planning a visit to Yellowstone during the winter is on the park's Web site at
www.nps.gov/yell.

Park staff members will continue to closely monitor road conditions and weather forecasts that can have an impact on roadways and guided oversnow travel operations.

Weather during the winter season is extremely unpredictable in Yellowstone and road closures or delays can occur with little or no warning. Visitors are reminded to come prepared by carrying personal emergency survival equipment in their vehicles and dressing appropriately for outside activities in extremely cold weather.

Winter Use in Yellowstone this season is being managed under an operating plan much in the same manner as has been permitted the last three winters.

Under the rule, up to 318 commercially guided, Best Available Technology (BAT) snowmobiles and up to 78 commercially guided snowcoaches will be allowed into the park each day.

In early 2013, the National Park Service intends to issue a Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) and a proposed rule to guide long-term winter use in Yellowstone, which will take effect in time for the 2013-2014 winter season.

 
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