Yellowstone: 'This Is a Thousand-Year Event'

Yellowstone to remain closed for a week after devastating floods
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 15, 2022 1:05 AM CDT
Updated Jun 15, 2022 6:23 AM CDT

(Newser) – Following days of massive flooding and mudslides, Yellowstone National Park will remain closed to visitors for about a week—and part of the park is likely closed until late October or early November. Park officials called the days of heavy rain and melting snow "unprecedented," with the superintendent saying at a news conference, "I’ve heard this is a thousand-year event." Roads were washed out, bridges were destroyed, the course of a river was altered, a house was washed away, communities were cut off from vital supplies, and more than 10,000 visitors were evacuated, CNN and the New York Times report. Per the AP, the historic flood "may forever alter the human footprint on the park's terrain and the communities that have grown around it."

The flooding had not yet stopped as of late Tuesday, and more rain and warm weather (which is what led to the melting snow) could arrive in just four or five days. Mashable has "intense" video of the Gardner River destroying parts of a key road leading to the park's North Entrance. The northern part of the park suffered the worst damage, and likely won't reopen for the rest of the season. A statewide disaster was declared in Montana, and Gov. Greg Gianforte said a dozen people stranded by flooding north of Yellowstone had been evacuated by the Montana National Guard. No injuries were reported from the storm, but one person died after suffering cardiac arrest at a Yellowstone campground. Twelve campers are still in the park's backcountry, but all are safe, the superintendent says. (Read more Yellowstone National Park stories.)

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