WORLD / AMERICAS
Sections of Yellowstone to remain shut for rest of year
Published: Jun 16, 2022 05:02 PM
A handout picture released on June 13, 2022 by National Park Service shows roads in northern portion of Yellowstone National Park closed temporarily due to heavy flooding, rockslides and extremely hazardous conditions. Photo: AFP

A handout picture released on June 13, 2022 by National Park Service shows roads in northern portion of Yellowstone National Park closed temporarily due to heavy flooding, rockslides and extremely hazardous conditions. Photo: AFP

Parts of Yellowstone will remain closed for the rest of 2022 because of extensive flood damage, managers say, with the oldest national park in the US completely shuttered Wednesday.

Roads have been washed out in the northern portion of the 9,000 square kilometer park after torrential rainfall and snowmelt sent months' worth of runoff into rivers in just a couple of days.

All the entrances to the park, which sits chiefly in Wyoming and is home to the Old Faithful geyser, remained closed Wednesday for a third consecutive day. Images released by the National Park Service showed large sections of paved road had been swept away by raging rivers.

Aerial reconnaissance revealed "major damage to multiple sections of road" in the northern part of the park, the agency said in its latest assessment.

"Many sections of road in these areas are completely gone and will require substantial time and effort to reconstruct."

"The National Park Service will make every effort to repair these roads as soon as possible; however, it is probable that road sections in northern Yellowstone will not reopen this season."

Several communities on the north side of the park in Montana also experienced significant flooding, with bridges and roads washed out in Park County. 

Montana Governor Greg Gianforte declared a statewide disaster on Tuesday "to help impacted communities get back on their feet as soon as possible," he said on Twitter.

A huge dome of high pressure is sitting over the US, sending temperatures soaring for 120 million people.

AFP