YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK (ABC4) – Yellowstone National Park saw a surge of stormy weather on June 13 when a substantial amount of unusual flooding ripped through the northern half of the park. As a result, over 10,000 visitors were evacuated as watered demolished bridges and roads.
The National Park Service (NPS) reports the northern portion of the nation’s oldest national park is estimated to remain closed for a “substantial length of time due to severely damaged, impacted infrastructure.”
The majority of the flooding affected parts of Montana. According to the Associated Press (AP), Parker Manning was visiting a cabin in Gardiner, Montana, when he got a close-up view of the Yellowstone River tearing through his yard. By the evening, waters were still rolling. At this point, Manning grabbed his camera and shot video footage as the river engulfed the opposite bank where a large brown house home to park employees who had evacuated was swallowed whole.
Superintendent Cam Sholly told AP that the house floated five miles before sinking. Sholly believes the park has never before been shut down due to flooding.
According to AP, “The Yellowstone River at Corwin Springs crested at 13.88 feet (4.2 meters) Monday, higher than the previous record of 11.5 feet (3.5 meters) set in 1918, according to the NPS.”
In the most recent update on park-wide closure, NPS says, “All entrances to Yellowstone National Park remain temporarily CLOSED while the park waits for flood waters to recede and can conduct evaluations on roads, bridges and wastewater treatment facilities to ensure visitor and employee safety. There will be no inbound visitor traffic at any of the five entrances into the park, including visitors with lodging and camping reservations, until conditions improve and park infrastructure is evaluated.”
To view the full update posted on June 14 at 6:38 p.m., click here.