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Tourist trap

Yellowstone Park closed due to government shutdown
Courtesy Brad Orsted

Tim Reid, Yellowstone National Park's chief ranger at the North Entrance, explains to visitors Tuesday morning, Oct. 1, that the park is closed and that the only way out is back through Gardiner.


The federal government shutdown and winter weather have forced the closure of all roads connecting Cooke City to the rest of the world and turned the gateway town into a literal tourist trap.

Snowstorms have caused the National Park Service to keep the Beartooth Pass closed since Sept. 24, said Al Nash, Yellowstone National Park spokesman. The most recent storm dropped between 10 and 14 inches of snow, preventing road travel to the Chief Joseph Highway, which can be used as an alternate route out of Cooke City. And Yellowstone closed Tuesday because of a congressional budget impasse that caused the federal government to shut down.

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Jason Bacaj can be reached at jasonb@dailychronicle.com or at 406-582-2635. Bacaj is on Twitter at @j_bacaj.

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