Arts&Culture

How government shutdown affects Gettysburg battlefield & other midstate agencies

How government shutdown affects Gettysburg battlefield & other midstate agencies

Snow coaches - small buses with tank-like tracks and oversized tires - shuttled visitors from the edge of the park to the geyser field that includes Old Faithful and to other popular destinations within the parks remote interior.

Regarding snowmobilers, guided commercial trips will be permitted, but non-commercially guided snowmobile trips will not allowed in the park until the government shutdown ends.

If conditions in the park become unsafe, roads and developed areas will be closed.

"The National Park Service's mission shouldn't be held together by duct tape and bailing wire in order to lessen the public's blowback", said Kate Kelly, a former Interior Department official under Obama.

Safety is also a factor, since park rangers won't be working. Visitors at the park were ordered to leave by 3 p.m. October 3.

The shutdown that kicked off at midnight Saturday and will continue into the weekend will be a little different though, as the Trump administration announced that national parks will remain open during the lapse in federal funding.

Access to Yellowstone National Park's south entrance will continue, including staging and winter services that are now available at Headwaters Lodge at Flagg Ranch.

This stands in contrast to the last government shutdown in 2013, when gates were closed and people told to leave the park.

"But the next thing is, you know - it's troubling that the people we voted in are not doing the job that they're supposed to be doing".

Meanwhile, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser called a news conference from the National Mall Friday morning to assure residents the District government would remain open and continue to provide uninterrupted service no matter what happens on Capitol Hill.

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Park website and social media sites will not be maintained.

Teton Interagency Dispatch Center will be available during normal winter hours-6 am to 10 pm daily.

During the last government shutdown, monuments were blocked off with barricades and parks were closed, an obvious inconvenience to tourists.

Devils Tower National Monument: Access is unavailable. "For example, this means that roads that have already been open will remain open (think snow removal) and vault toilets (wilderness type restrooms) will remain open".

At the National Elk Refuge, sleigh ride tours will continue as scheduled.

The Jackson Hole & Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center, located at 532 N. Cache Street in Jackson, will remain closed until further notice.

U.S.F.S.: Access is not restricted on U.S.F.S. land, but services will be unavailable with the exception of limited emergency services.

"This is our public land, and we should be able to use it any time we want", she said.

In New Mexico, parts of Bandelier National Monument's cliff dwellings and fragile archaeological sites were off-limits to protect them from damage, but the entrance road and some trails were open.


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