Winter visitors to Yellowstone National Park may soon get to explore the park on self-guided snowmobile tours, according to the new proposed Winter Use Plan released today.
The plan includes guidelines for how many visitors can enter the park on snowmobiles and snow coaches, and also allows for visitors to tour the park without a professional guide, which is currently required.
However, Park Superintendent Dan Wenk says that participants of non-commercially guided tours will still have to meet minimum standards.
This week Yellowstone National Park has held a series of meetings discussing its new proposed winter use plan. Yellowstone Superintendent Dan Wenk joins Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck and they discuss the fact that after several years of reduced numbers, more snowmobiles may soon be allowed in Yellowstone.
Yellowstone National Park officials are trotting out their latest proposed winter use plan for public comment this week. The plan describes how park officials believe they can increase the number of snowmobiles per day into the Park, while reducing environmental impacts.
Yellowstone National Park officials have released the park’s latest winter use plan, which increases the number of snowmobiles that will be allowed in the park.
The plan would allow 60 snow coaches, but increase the maximum number of snowmobiles from the current limit of 318 up to 480. It’s the seventh time that Yellowstone has released an environmental document on what has become a controversial issue. Environmental groups have called for the elimination of snowmobiles inside Yellowstone.
The state of Wyoming is asking a federal appeals court to reconsider its recent decision that the state can't sue the federal government over how many snowmobiles are allowed in Yellowstone National Park. Wyoming had argued that limiting snowmobiles to 318 a day was arbitrary and would hurt tourism and tax revenue. A panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last month rejected the state's arguments, saying it failed to show the rule would harm the state economically. Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead on Wednesday noted that Yellowstone is
Beginning Thursday, the National Park Service will call on the public to give its feedback on their latest ideas for winter use of Yellowstone Park. This is part of the Supplemental Impact Statement which will help inform the final winter management plan expected to be ready by December of this year. The most controversial part of the proposal deals with reduced snowmobile numbers. It would require that all snowmobiles be guided and that only between 110 and 330 will be allowed inside Yellowstone. Cody Chamber Director Scott Balyo says he would like to see substantially more allowed.