Roads to Old Faithful and Canyon open for season April 15
Park entrance fees will be waived April 16-24 as part of National Park Week
by Yellowstone National Park
April 11, 2011
The roads into Yellowstone National Park from the north and west reopen for the season to automobile travel beginning at 8:00 a.m., Friday, April 15.
Visitors eager to experience early spring in Yellowstone’s interior will be able to travel by car through the park’s North Entrance at Gardiner, Montana, and West Entrance at West Yellowstone, Montana, to Norris, Madison, Canyon and Old Faithful.
As an added incentive for spring visitors, park entrance fees will be waived April 16-24 as part of National Park Week. The week-long annual celebration is designed to encourage people to visit one of America’s 394 national parks in order to reconnect with nature and their heritage.
This year's focus, Healthy Parks, Healthy People, highlights the connection between human and environmental health and the vital role America's national parks play in both. A seven-day pass to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks is normally $25 for a private, noncommercial vehicle.
Visitors should be aware that spring in Yellowstone is very unpredictable and often brings cold temperatures, high winds and falling snow. Even cleared sections of roads can be narrow and covered with a layer of snow, ice and debris. Therefore, visitors should use extreme caution when driving as road clearing operations can be ongoing at any time throughout the park. In the case of extreme weather conditions, temporary road closures are also possible with little or no advance warning. Due to the deep snow present in the park’s interior, walking on trails including those along the Canyon Rim or on boardwalks through thermal areas may also be difficult or impossible for some time.
Very limited visitor services will be available during the next several weeks. The Visitor Education Center and the Snow Lodge Geyser Grill at Old Faithful open for the season on April 15, as do the Canyon Adventure Store and the West Yellowstone Visitor Information Center. Gasoline will be available inside the park using 24-hour pay at the pump stations at Mammoth Hot Springs, Tower Junction, Canyon and Old Faithful. The Yellowstone General Store, clinic, post office, campground and Albright Visitor Center in Mammoth Hot Springs are open all year.
Each spring, Yellowstone National Park crews clear snow and ice from 198 miles of main road, 124 miles of secondary roads and 125 acres of parking lots inside the park as well as 31 miles of the Beartooth Highway outside the park’s Northeast Entrance to prepare for the summer season.
The park’s East, South and Northeast entrances will follow suit in the month of May as road clearing operations progress.
Updated Yellowstone National Park road information is available 24 hours a day by calling 307-344-2117. More information is available online at www.nps.gov/yell.