yellowstone national park, which is still recovering from this week’s devastating floods, will partially reopen on Wednesday, with traffic allowed through the west, south and east entrances with access to Madison, Old Faithful, Grant Village, Lake Village, Canyon Village and Norris, announced Saturday the park. . Access will be determined by the last numerical digit on the license plates.
The tentative plan, called the Alternate License Plate System, was suggested as a solution by Gateway communities during a major public engagement with the park last week. Park managers and partners have agreed that this system is the best interim solution to ensure the South Loop is not overwhelmed with visitors. The National Park Service will actively monitor the license plate system and simultaneously build a reservation system that will be ready for implementation if needed.
Alternate license plate system
- Entry of public vehicles will be permitted depending on whether the last numeric digit on a license plate is even or odd.
- Admission will be granted on odd/even calendar days.
- The last odd digits on license plates can enter odd days of the month.
- The last even digits (including zero) on license plates can enter even days of the month.
- Personalized plates (all letters, eg YLWSTNE) will fall into the “odd” category for entry purposes.
- Plates with a mix of letters and numbers but ending in a letter (eg YELL4EVR) will always use the last numeric digit on the plate to determine entry days.
- Entrance station staff will refuse vehicles attempting to enter the park when the odd/even numbers do not match the odd/even date on the entry schedule.
- Current commercial use operators with active commercial use permits will be permitted entry regardless of license plate number. This includes trade tours and stock groups.
- Visitors with proof of an overnight reservation in the park will be permitted entry regardless of license plate number. This includes hotels, campgrounds and backcountry reservations.
- Commercial coaches will be permitted entry regardless of license plate number.
- Motorcycle groups can only enter on even dates.
- Essential services like courier and delivery, employees and contractors can enter regardless of license plate number.
“Less than six days ago, Yellowstone National Park was hit by devastating flooding,” Superintendent Cam Sholly said. “Thanks to the tremendous efforts of our teams and partners, we are ready to reopen the South Loop of Yellowstone. It is impossible to reopen a single loop in the summer without putting in place some type of system to manage attendance. My thanks to our gateway partners and others for helping us find an acceptable temporary solution for the South Loop while we continue our efforts to reopen the North Loop.
“During the reopening process, we will monitor the effectiveness of the system and work together to make any adjustments that may be necessary. We will also reopen new sections of the park as repairs continue. It is essential that visitors stay informed about this interim system as we evaluate its effectiveness. plan ahead and be patient with us as we are still managing a significant recovery while entering this operational phase.
Heavy rain falling on an already melting snowpack due to warm temperatures last Sunday through Monday triggered devastating floodwaters that swept across the park road east of Mammoth Hot Springs and Tower through the Valley of Lamar to Silvergate and Cooke City in Montana as well as the road from Mammoth Hot Springs north to Gardiner, Montana. As the floodwaters grew, park staff were able to safely evacuate approximately 10,000 park visitors, including backcountry travelers.
OPEN in the south loop from June 22
CLOSED until further notice in the South Loop
Yellowstone staff are working to determine what other potential sections of the park could be reopened before the roads close Nov. 1. Decisions will depend on the extent of the damage and the ability of park managers to safely open additional sections as the year progresses. Park managers are evaluating plans to reopen roads connecting Canyon Village, Tower Junction, Mammoth Hot Spring and Norris, but that won’t happen initially. The park is also working to reconnect Mammoth Hot Springs to Gardiner and Cooke City/Silver Gate as soon as possible with temporary solutions, while long-term reconstruction is planned.