Yellowstone National Park implements plan for government shutdown

Access to Mount Rainier National Park will be free during the government shutdown, but the experience will be different than usual inside the park, said acting superintendent Tracy Swartout.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said Sunday he has chose to keep many national parks open during the government shutdown because the tourist spots should not "be weaponized".

In Massachusetts, that will go for Cape Cod National Seashore, including the Salt Pond Visitor Center in Eastham and the Province Lands Visitor Center in Provincetown, Bunker Hill Monument in Charlestown, the Longfellow House in Cambridge, the John F. Kennedy birthplace in Brookline, Lowell National Historic Park, Adams National Historic Park in Quincy and Minuteman National Historic Park in Concord as well. McClintock indicates that contingency plans for businesses in the park are now being worked out by National Park Service officials.

During the last government shutdown in October 2013, the park closed during the height of the leaf-watching season in the area.

Government-run operations and facilities are closed.

At the Carbon River Entrance, visitors can still access the trails that start in that corner of the park.

Outside the park, both Yellowstone's NPS website and social media have been suspended. Please be reminded that due to environmental, public safety, or other unknown factors, visitor services may be diminished or additional areas may be closed.

"The American public and especially our veterans who come to our nation's capital should find war memorials and open air parks open to the public", said Interior Department spokeswoman Heather Swift.

Grooming of the Teton Park Road will continue through a partnership agreement with Grand Teton National Park Foundation. A gas station on a road inside the park where it snowed overnight making it impassible would not be open if it relies on park snow removal. As for Alcatraz, visitors can expect to find it open but there will be no ranger-led tours taking place or behind the scenes nighttime tours.

We are prioritizing access to the most accessible and most iconic areas of parks and public lands.

"We have roughly about 180 permanent employees during this time of year, and we're only going to have about 30 that will remain working during the shutdown - and those are primarily responsible for visitors safe", Soehn said.

Fossil Butte National Monument: Facilities will be closed; visitor access to trails remains open.

Access is not restricted on U.S. Forest Service land, but services will be unavailable.

"As a country we can do better, so I hope that we can get the government up an running again and that folks can get back to work as soon as possible", said Jake Cohen, visitor.

Skiing and snowboarding is still available at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Grand Targhee, Snow King, and White Pine Ski areas.

  • Kyle Peterson