Yellowstone Park Open to Snowmobiles Again This Winter!

Contacts

Jack Welch, Volunteer Consultant, BlueRibbon Coalition

- Phone: (303) 279-8436 or Cell (303) 324-7185

- Fax: (303) 279-8214

- Email: brjack_w@sharetrails.org

- Webpage: http://www.sharetrails.org/staff/#JackW

Date: 01/29/2010

On December 15, 2009, the gates opened to another season of snowmobile access to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. This access is permitted this season under a new Temporary Plan.

The new Winter Use Temporary Plan Environmental Assessment was released on October 15 2009. The regulation to implement the Temporary Plan was published on November 20, 2009 in the Federal Register. The parks will operate under this new temporary rule for this 2009 and 2010 season and the 2010 and 2011 winter season. The regulation provides visitors, area businesses, and park employees with a plan they can count on. This temporary rule for the next two seasons will allow the National Park Service (NPS) time in order to develop a new long-term plan for winter use in Yellowstone National Park.

Under the temporary rule, motorized over snow access will be allowed this winter. Up to 318 commercially guided, Best Available Technology (BAT) snowmobiles and up to 78 snowcoaches will be allowed per day in Yellowstone National Park. Yellowstone's East Entrance and Sylvan Pass will be open for motorized and non-motorized over snow travel, subject to weather and safety constraints. Trail and off-road use of snowmobiles and snowcoaches has always been, and will continue to be, prohibited.

Another special rule has been published that addresses snowmobile access in Grand Teton Park and the John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway, including access along Grassy Lake Road from Flagg Ranch to the National Forest and on Jackson Lake for licensed anglers.

In closing, I understand that the fight over Yellowstone has been a long, contentious and complicated battle. Please remember the fact that Yellowstone remains open to snowmobiles represents one of the most profound victories over the extreme environmental movement in our lifetime. Enjoy the victory and make your plans to come and enjoy Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks this winter on a snowmobile!

Note: For current information on items covered in this summary go to our dedicated website (www.saveyellowstonepark.com).BlueRibbonCoalition?d=qj6IDK7rITs

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