Entrances to Yellowstone National Park are temporarily closed

(CNN) – Yellowstone National Park announced on Monday all entrances to be temporarily closed due to “extremely hazardous conditions” caused by “unprecedented” rainfall and flooding.
“Effective immediately, all entrances to Yellowstone National Park are temporarily closed due to significant flooding, rockslides and road mudslides due to unprecedented amounts of rain and recent flooding,” the park said in a Facebook post.

The post added that no internal traffic was allowed “until conditions stabilize and the park can assess the damage to roads and bridges.” The northern, northeastern, western, southern and eastern entrances are all closed.

The park posted an update on the situation on its website on Monday afternoon saying that incoming visitor traffic will not be allowed on Tuesday or Wednesday “at least.”

“Our first priority was to clear the northern part of the park where we have many faults in roads, bridges, mudslides and other issues,” Superintendent Cam Choli said in a statement.

The statement said that visitors will be evacuated from the park’s southern ring starting later Monday due to expected high levels of flooding and concerns about water and sewage systems.

The northern loop will likely be closed for an “extended period of time”, and the reopening of the park will be determined after the floodwaters recede and the damage assessment.

The statement said Park staff are working with the county and state to provide support to residents of Gardiner, Montana, a town just north of the park that is currently isolated due to the hazardous conditions.

The park said in its post that multiple parts of the park are also experiencing power outages.

“With additional rain expected, the park does not want the large numbers of visitors who use the day stranded in the park,” the park said on Facebook and its website.

“The river has never been this high before before my house,” said Gardiner resident Elizabeth Allock, who serves as a gateway for visitors.

As of Monday afternoon, Alek said she was unable to evacuate because roads and bridges in the area were swept away.

The park advised travelers planning to visit Yellowstone National Park in the coming weeks to monitor road conditions.

‘Things are getting tougher’

A family staying in a short-term rental home in Gardiner near the park entrance is now unable to leave their rental cabin due to flooding in the area.

Indiana couple Melissa and Parker Manning told CNN that they arrived home on Saturday with their family, and are expected to leave Monday morning.

“It’s not going to happen any time soon,” Parker Manning said. “Water levels were high on Saturday but in the last 10-12 hours things have gotten a lot tougher.”

The couple joined a call with emergency management officials on Monday afternoon. Officials on the call suggested that local businesses consider rationing food, just in case.

Manning said they went to the grocery store, everyone was smart about what to stock and they didn’t panic.

“Our way out of town will be north at 89, but those roads are all underwater right now,” Manning said.

The couple have no idea when they will leave town, but Manning is hopeful within the next 48 hours.

Manning added that their rental host was very understanding of the situation.

Avoid tables and tables

Earlier on Monday, the park said in a press release that roads in the northern part of the park will be temporarily closed for “an extended period of time” before the closure is spread more widely.

“Initial assessments show that multiple sections of the road in the park have been swept between Gardiner and Cook City, Montana, and several bridges may be affected,” the statement said, adding that visitors are being evacuated in the northern part.

The National Weather Service issued a flood warning for the park Monday and advised campers and hikers to avoid streams and streams.

The NWS warned those in vehicles: “Turn around, do not sink when encountering flooded roads.”

The weather service said Mammoth, Osprey Falls, Indian Creek Campground and Lava Creek Campgrounds, all located in the park, are locations that are expected to experience flooding.

The Yellowstone River reached record levels Monday in Corwin Springs and Livingston, Montana.

In Corwin Springs, the river rose more than 5 feet on Monday morning, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s river gauge data. The gauge reading was 13.85 feet on Monday afternoon, surpassing the historic 11.5-foot peak from 1918.

Livingston’s hydrometer reading set a record 10.9 feet.

Rainfall in June was more than 400% of average in northwest Wyoming and southern Montana, according to CNN meteorologists.

Top photo: Rising waters of the Gardner River beside North Entrance Road in Yellowstone National Park.

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