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Riding Our National Parks

Cruising through (some of) America's national treasures

Published online: Feb 16, 2005 Feature Mary O'Byrne and Lane Lindstrom
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America's national parks and monuments provide adventurers, vacationers and sight seers alike with an opportunity to recreate, summer and winter. While nearly every single national park and monument sees the majority of its visitors during the summer months, a handful offer the unique opportunity to see these national treasures during the winter from the seat of a snowmobile.
It was in November 2001 when SnoWest first presented exclusive information on which national parks and monuments allowed snowmobiling. Most snowmachiners know about riding in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, as well as Crater Lake National Park, but did you know there are nearly a dozen parks across the western United States where snowmobiling is allowed? 
Since the November 2001 issue, the federal government has put the brakes on snowmobiling in Colorado's Rocky Mountain National Park. However, we've discovered a couple of additional national parks and monuments where snowmobiling is allowed. Two of those are in Alaska: Klondike Gold Rush National Park and Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve. We're not giving a detailed report on those two parks because, well, quite honestly, information about snowmobiling there is pretty sketchy. For more information on riding in either of those two parks, contact Klondike Gold Rush National Park (907-983-2921) and Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve (907-547-2233). One other national monument we discovered allowed snowmobiling is Giant Sequoia National Monument in California. Information on that monument is listed below.
Even with these gains, the controversy over whether to allow snowmobiles is still churning at several national parks including Denali (AK), Yellowstone (WY, MT, ID) and Grand Teton (WY).
Certainly we're not making any claims as to how good the snowmobiling is in the national parks open to our sport; rather, we're presenting this information for the purpose of giving sledders options when they go riding. There are definitely some national parks which are snowmobile destinations unto themselves-like Yellowstone National Park or Newberry National Volcanic Monument-but others are a nice side trip if you're in the neighborhood. For example, if you're riding the Diamond Lake (OR) area, you should definitely visit Crater Lake National Park.
National parks and monuments that allow snowmobiling include: Lake Clark National Park and Preserve (AK), Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve (AK), Curecanti National Recreation Area (CO), City of Rocks National Reserve (ID), Crater Lake National Park (OR), Newberry National Volcanic Monument (CO), Cedar Breaks National Monument (UT), Mount Rainier National Park (WA), Grand Teton National Park (WY) and Yellowstone National Park (WY).
One suggestion would be to call before you go (all numbers are listed in each park's section).

ALASKA
Denali National Park
and Preserve
Denali is located in central Alaska and is home to Mt. McKinley (20,320 feet), the highest mountain in North America. Mt. McKinley sits among several impressive mountains and is the centerpiece of the Alaska Range. Add to that many large glaciers, abundant wildlife and you have a great place to visit and ride.

DNP&P General Information
 All lands within the former Mt. McKinley National Park, on both sides of the Alaska Range, are closed to snowmobile use.
 Intentionally disturbing or frighte ing wildlife is prohibited.
 Operating a snowmobile that makes excessive noise is prohibited.
 Operating a snowmobile without a headlight and red taillight a half-hour before and after sunrise/sunset or when persons and vehicles are not clearly visible for 500 feet is prohibited.
 The speed limit is 45 mph.
 Snowmobile operators must be at least 16 years old unless accompanied by an adult 21 years old or older.

Denali National Park and Preserve
Elevation 1,200-20,320 (Mt. McKinley)
Snowfall 90-100 inches
Groomed Trails None
Location Central Alaska
Closest Trail System None
National Park Established 1980
Size 6,075,028 acres
Full-Service Town Cantwell
Nearest Airport Fairbanks (130 miles) 
Information Denali National Park and
Preserve (907) 683-2294 or
www.nps.gov/dena

Lake Clark Park National Park and Preserve
Lake Clark National Park and Preserve is an isolated wonder located in southern Alaska across the Cook Inlet from the Kenai Peninsula. There is no highway access, therefore airplane access is the most practical option. An airport is located in Iliamna, about 30 miles from the park.
Once inside the park the visitor will have the opportunity to enjoy more than 4 million acres of beauty. The park is home to several mountain ranges including the Chigmit, Alaska and Aleutian. The park is also known for its seismic activity as there are two active volcanoes, Mt. Redoubt and Mt. Iliamna, within the borders.
Snowmobiling within the park is not limited to trails. In fact, there are no trails or roads to follow within the park.

LCNP&P General Information
 Snowmobiling is only allowed when there is adequate snow cover.
 This is extreme backcountry riding so snowmobilers should be prepared for the elements and carry adequate supplies.

Lake Clark National Park and Preserve Elevation 254 (Lake Clark)-10,016 (Iliamna Volcano)
Snowfall 100 inches
Groomed Trails None
Location Southern Alaska
Entrance Fee None
Closest Trail System None
National Park Established 1980
Size 4,030,058 acres
Full-Service Town Iliamna
Nearest Airport Iliamna (30 miles) 
Information Lake Clark National Park
and Preserve (907) 781-2218 or
www.nps.gov/lacl

Wrangell-St. Elias National Park And Preserve
The Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve is the largest national park in the United States and is located in southeastern Alaska, along the border with Canada. The park spans more than 13 million acres and is home to three mountain ranges, including the Chugach, the Wrangell and the St. Elias.
The park/preserve includes the greatest concentration of glaciers and the greatest number of peaks above 16,000 feet, including St. Elias (18,008 feet), the second highest peak in the United States. Many of the peaks in the park's mountains were once active volcanoes. Today, the only active volcano is Mt. Wrangell (14,163 feet), located near the center of the upper portion of the park. According to park sources, in the winter and on cool summer mornings, it's not unusual to see a steam plume rising up out of the vents situated in the craters along the margin of the summit caldera. The park also reports that permanent snow and ice cover 50 percent of the land.
There are no groomed trails but there is plenty of snow in the mountains, valleys and drainages to keep sledders busy for days. There are two roads passing through the park which provide a riding guide for snowmobilers in the winter. One road extends 42 miles and the other extends about 60 miles into the interior. There are few restrictions on snowmobiles in the winter, except sledders should use common sense like not harassing wildlife and don't ruin the vegetation.
One cool option for sledders riding in Wrangell-St. Elias is to overnight at one of the many cabins available for public use. Contact the park for more information on these cabins.

WSNP&P General Information
 Snowmobiling is only allowed when there is adequate snow cover.
 This is extreme backcountry riding so snowmobilers should be prepared for the elements and carry adequate supplies.

Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve Elevation Sea level (south end of the park/preserve)-18,008
(Mt. St. Elias)
Snowfall 50-200 plus inches
Groomed Trails None
Location Southeast Alaska
Entrance Fee None
Closest Trail System None
National Park Established 1980
Size 13,175,901 acres
Full-Service Town Glennallen
Nearest Airport Anchorage (200 miles) 
Information Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve (907) 822-5234 or
www.nps.gov/wrst

CALIFORNIA
Giant Sequoia National Monument
The Giant Sequoia National Monument has basically been carved out of some spectacular mountainous national parks in southcentral California. It is surrounded by Kings and Sequoia National Parks, several Wilderness Areas and the Tule River Indian Reservation.
The riding in the national monument is on roads not plowed in the winter, including the Great Western Divide Highway in the southern portion of the monument. There are two sections of Giant Sequoia, a northern portion around Sequoia Lake and west of King's National Park and the larger southern portion west of Springville and then curving south around the Indian reservation. The two parcels are bisected by Sequoia National Park.
The national monument was created in 2000 to protect the giant sequoia groves (38 in all) within the Sequoia National Forest, which still manages the land in the monument.
Gorges, domes, spires, mountains, lakes, rivers and stream drainages all combine to give this national monument a terrain where you can climb from 2,500 feet to more than 9,000 feet in just a few miles.
Several miles of groomed trails are maintained during the winter, allowing sledders to take in the winter scapes and awesome scenery this part of California holds. Several trails lead up to vistas and lookouts so you can take in the views of the Sierra Nevada.
Detailed maps of the available trails are on Giant Sequoia's website (listed below). Nearly 100 miles of the trails in the national monument are in the southern portion with the balance in the north.

GSNM General Information
 Snowmobiling is only allowed on roads. No off-trail riding is allowed.
 There are services such as gas and food in several spots in the national monument.

Giant Sequoia National Monument
Elevation 2,500-9,000
Snowfall 150 inches
Trails 171 miles 
Location  Southcentral California
National Monument Established 2000
Size 327,769 acres
Full-Service Town Pinehurst, Fresno
Nearest Airport Fresno  
Information Giant Sequoia National
Monument ((559) 784-1500 or
www.fs.fed.us/r5/sequoia/gsnm.html

COLORADO
Curecanti National
Recreation Area
Curecanti National Recreation Area, located in southwest Colorado, is a water lover's dream in the summer and a sheet of ice in the winter. The recreation area contains three reservoirs: Blue Mesa, Black Canyon and Morrow Point. The Blue Mesa is the largest reservoir in Colorado. The area surrounding the reservoirs is also impressive including mesas and steep narrow canyons. U.S. Highway 50 runs through the center of the recreation area, making it easily accessible to recreationists.
Snowmobiling is subject to conditions such as ice and adequate snow cover. Provided adequate conditions exist, snowmobiling is allowed on the Iola and Cebolla Basins, as well as the West Elk, Lake Fork and Cebolla arms. Snowmobiling access is also limited to established roads to and from the reservoirs.
 
CNRA General Information
 Snowmobile travel is limited to the frozen surface of the Blue Mesa Reservoir and on established access roads to the reservoir only.
 Maximum gross weight is 1200 lbs. (snowmobile and cargo).
 Avoid interface with other recreationists.
 Do not disturb wildlife. Snowmobile access may be limited to reduce stress to wildlife during harsh winters.

Curecanti National Recreation Area
Elevation 7,519 (Blue Mesa Reservoir)
Snowfall 250 inches
Groomed Trails None
Location Southwest Colorado
Entrance Fee None
Closest Trail System Gunnison
National Recreation Area Established 1965
Size 41,972 acres
Full-Service Town Gunnison
Nearest Airport Gunnison (25 miles) 
Information Curecanti National
Recreation Area (970) 641-2337 ext. 205
or
www.nps.gov/cure

IDAHO
City Of Rocks National Reserve
City of Rocks, located in southcentral Idaho, contains some of the most impressive rock formations dating back billions of years. Though the park is small-14,107 acres-there are 11 miles of road open to snowmobilers. The City of Rocks was a historical landmark for emigrants traveling the California trail in the mid 1800s.
Snowmobiling is restricted to roadways when there is appropriate snow cover. An option for riders is to ride the City of Rocks Backcountry Byway, a roadway, connecting both the Almo (east) and the Emery Canyon (west).  The road itself is about 6 miles long but follows a scenic path past Treasure Rock, Elephant Rock, Bath Rock and the Bread Loaves rock formations.
It's also possible to enter the reserve from its southwest corner, at the Junction entrance. From there it's a five-mile ride to where it meets the scenic byway. There is no fee to enter the reserve.
Sledders can also access the Sawtooth National Forest through the City of Rocks park roads. Snowmobilers use the Logger Springs Road, which heads north from the main park road in Emery Canyon, go past Finger Rock and into the national forest. The popular destination is Almo Park, where you boondock, hillclimb and play in open meadows of the Albion Mountains.

CRNR General Information
 Snowmobiling is restricted to existing roadways only when there is adequate snow cover.
 Snowmobiles must have current registration.
 The reserve is open year round but reserve headquarters hours in the winter are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

City of Rocks National Reserve
Elevation 5,500-6,200 feet
Snowfall 75-100 inches
Groomed Trails None
Location Southcentral Idaho
Entrance Fee None
Closest Trail System Howell Canyon
National Reserve Established 1988
Size 14,107 acres
Full-Service Town Burley
Nearest Airport Twin Falls (84 miles) 
Information City of Rocks National
Reserve (208) 824-5519 or
www.nps.gov/ciro

OREGON
Crater Lake National Park
Crater Lake is one of the oldest national parks in North America and one of the most unique. Crater Lake has become famous for its deep blue color and impressive ride of mountains that surround the lake. And all that is draped in a heavy blanket of snow during the winter as the park averages 533 inches of snow each year, making it the snowiest place in all of Oregon.
Snowmobiling is limited to one road in the park but it's where that road leads that makes a trip to Crater Lake so cool. The view from the North Rim Overlook offers great views of the lake and surrounding mountains. Sites along the road include the Pumice Desert, Red Cone (8,763 feet) and Grouse Hill (7,412 feet).
While Roseburg is the closest full service town, the Diamond Lake Resort (800-733-7593) has nearly everything a snowmobiler needs, including food and fuel.
 
CLNP General Information
 Snowmobile use is permitted in Crater Lake National Park only on the North Entrance Road from the park boundary to North Junction, where the entrance road meets Rim Drive.
 Snowmobile use is limited to the unplowed roadway only.
 Both headlight and taillight must be illuminated while the snowmobile is in operation.
 Operators must carry a valid state registration for each snowmobile.
 Maximum speed is 45 mph.
 Operators must possess a valid state license or proof of state certification by an authorized state snowmobile safety officer.
 Snowmobiles must be equipped with a muffler in good working order.

Crater Lake National Park
Elevation 5,850-7,025 feet
Snowfall 533 inches
Trails  10 miles
Location Southcentral Oregon
Entrance Fee None
Closest Trail System Diamond Lake
National Park Established 1902
Size 183,224 acres
Full-Service Town Roseburg (79 miles
west via Hwy 138)
Nearest Airport Redmond (140 miles)
Information Crater Lake National Park
(541) 594-3100 or
www.nps.gov/crla
Newberry National Volcanic Monument
Created about a dozen and a half years ago, Newberry National Volcanic Monument is a geological wonder with cinder cones, pumice cones, caves, streams, lakes, lava flows, waterfalls, mountains and spectacular geological features. Managed by the U.S. Forest Service, the monument is located in central Oregon.
The two largest lakes are located in the southern part of the monument, as are many of the geological features visitors like to see.
Snowmobile trails, groomed and ungroomed, lace Newberry National Volcanic Monument and take sledders past most of the monument's geological features. For the best view of the monument's caldera, ride to the top of 7,985-foot Paulina Peak, where you can also get a bird's eye view of the Oregon Cascades and the High Desert. Another good viewpoint is Cinder Hill. Or try the ungroomed Roller Coaster trail, which takes you past the Obsidian Flow.
And, unlike many other national parks and monuments, sledders are allowed off-trail to play in several areas, all of which are clearly marked on the trail map.

NNVM General Information
 While off-trail riding is allowed, stay on the trails where required.
 No snowmobiling is allowed on Paulina or East Lakes. Water under the ice is soft.
 Trails are clearly marked on the trail map. Trails numbered with single digits means they are groomed on a regular basis. Trails numbered with double digits are occasionally groomed and trails numbered with triple digits may be poorly marked and never groomed.

Newberry National Volcanic
Monument Elevation 4,700-8,000 feet
Snowfall 110 inches
Trails 175 miles in Paulina system
Location Central Oregon
Closest Trail System Paulina
National Monument Established 1990
Size 50,000 acres
Full-Service Town LaPine, Bend
Nearest Airport Redmond (44 miles)
Information Newberry National
Volcanic Monument (541) 416-6500 or
www.fs.fed.us/r6/centraloregon/recr
ation/winter/area-newberry.shtml

UTAH
Cedar Breaks National Monument
Cedar Breaks National Monument is small-just  6,154 acres-but the scenery is huge. Cedar Breaks is famous for its massive natural amphitheater which extends 2,000 feet deep and more than three miles in diameter. The park is located in Southern Utah and sits on the 10,000-foot high Markagunt Plateau. Deep in the bowels of the amphitheater are spires, columns, arches and pinnacles, all decked out in beautiful colors.
There is one trail available for snowmobilers and it's six miles from one end of Cedar Breaks to the other. The ungroomed snowmobile trail follows Highways 148 and 143 through the monument. On the way through the monument, you can stop and see Point Supreme (10,350 feet), where you can get spectacular views of the amphitheater as you are standing on the very edge of the cliff. There are also two other viewpoints where you can see the amphitheater from a different angle.

CBNM General Information
 Stay on the trail. No off-trail riding is allowed.
 Since the road is not plowed or groomed in the winter, caution is advised because there can be huge wind drifts on the trail.
 The maximum speed (35 mph) is posted and enforced.
 When snowmobilers encounter cross country skiers and/or snowshoers, slow down and give them the right-of-way.
 Because Cedar Breaks was exempted from the ban on snowmobiling in America's National Parks, there is a special concern regarding this national monument. Snowmobilers need to remember that riding here is a privilege, not a right. Snowmobilers bear a special responsibility to heed use regulations in the monument, especially speed and staying on the trail. Failure to comply has brought considerable adverse attention to the monument and its exemption from the snowmobile ban in most national park units. It is the responsibility of each snowmobiler to comply or the privilege could be removed.

Cedar Breaks National Monument
Elevation 10,300-10,500 feet
Snowfall 150-250 inches
Trails 6 miles
Location Southern Utah
Entrance Fee None
Closest Trail System Duck Creek
National Monument Established 1933
Size 6,154 acres
Full-Service Town Duck Creek, Cedar City
Nearest Airport Cedar City (20 miles)
Information Cedar Breaks National
Monument (435) 586-9451 or
www.nps.gov/cebr

WASHINGTON
Mount Rainier National Park
Mount Rainier National Park is located in southwestern Washington and has some of the most rugged backcountry in the state. Still an active volcano, Mount Rainier dominates the terrain, standing at 14,410 feet tall and can clearly be seen from Seattle. Mount Rainier is encased in more than 35 square miles of snow and ice.
There are several riding opportunities within the park- two in the south and one in the northeast corner. In the southwest corner, snowmobiles are permitted to ride along a 6.5-mile stretch of  Westside Road from its junction with the main park road to Round Pass (elevation 3,900 feet). Riders can also ride the Cougar Rock Campground loop. In the southeast corner of the park riders can explore from the Steven's Canyon Entrance to the road tunnel at Box Canyon. In the north, snowmobilers can ride the 12-mile unplowed stretch from the North Park Boundary to the White River Campground on Washington Highway 410.

MRNP General Information
 Snowmobiling is only allowed where previously mentioned. No off-trail riding is allowed.
 Be prepared for extreme winter conditions and check avalanche forecasts prior to entering the park.

Mount Rainier National Park
Elevation 2,032-4,400 feet
Snowfall 300 inches
Trails 18.5 plus miles
Location Southwest Washington
Entrance Fee $5
Closest Trail System Yakima, Mt. Adams/Mt. St. Helens
National Park Established 1899
Size 235,625 acres
Full-Service Town Greenwater
Nearest Airport Seattle (60 miles)
Information Mount Rainier National Park
(360) 569-2211 ext. 3314 or
www.nps.gov/mora
WYOMING
Grand Teton National Park
Grand Teton National Park is often overshadowed by the Park up the road-Yellowstone National Park-but the views and scenery and snow from in this park are as good as it gets.
Towering over the valley-most folks know the area as Jackson Hole-is the 13,770-foot Grand Teton. But 12 more Teton peaks reach past 12,000 feet in elevation. Mountains here are the youngest of the mountains in the Rocky Mountains. Grand Teton is also home to Jackson and Jenny Lakes, as well as an abundance of wildlife and other scenic treasures. Connecting Grand Teton and Yellowstone is the John D. Rockefeller Jr. Memorial Parkway.
There are groomed snowmobile trails in Grand Teton, including a 31.5-mile stretch that is part of the Continental Divide Snowmobile Trail. The trail is between the Moran Station Entrance and the south entrance of Yellowstone and includes the Rockefeller Parkway.
For information on current trail conditions, snowmobilers can call (307) 739-3614, the Moose Visitor Center (307-739-3399) or check with the Flagg Ranch information center.
At Flagg Ranch snowmobilers can also head west on the Grassy Lake Road and hook up with the Island Park, ID, trail system. It's about 20 miles to the Idaho/Wyoming border from Flagg Ranch.
A final rule for snowmobile use in Grand Teton National Park was announced last fall. For more information, see the Yellowstone National Park section.
GTNP General Information
 Snowmobile regulations in Yellowstone National Park differ from those in Grand Teton National Park and Rockefeller Parkway.
 Snowmobiles must exhibit a valid Wyoming snowmobiling registration decal.
 All snowmobiles must have a working headlight and red light.
 Do not exceed posted speed limits.
 Snowmobiles must travel on the designated snowmobile trail.
 Entrance fees are collected at the Moran and Moose Entrance Stations in Grand Teton and all Yellowstone Entrance stations. Entrance permit is good for both Grand Teton and Yellowstone for seven days.
 Use of biodegradable motor oil and improved snowmobile technology such as four-strokes is encouraged.

Grand Teton National Park
Elevation 6,000-7,500 feet
Snowfall 145 inches
Trails About 55 miles
Location Northwest Wyoming
Entrance Fee $15 (good for GTNP
and YNP)
Closest Trail System CDST
National Park Established 1929
Size 309,944 acres
Full-Service Town Jackson
Nearest Airport Jackson (60 miles)
Information Grand Teton National Park
(307) 739-3300 or
www.nps.gov/grte

Yellowstone National Park
The crown jewel when it comes to snowmobiling in our national parks and monuments is Yellowstone National Park. That's why the snowmobile industry has been fighting so hard to keep this park, along with Grand Teton National Park, open to snowmobiles. Last year was a disaster after a Washington, D.C. judge pulled an 11th hour ruling severely restricting snowmobile access to the park. More on that later.
Yellowstone is not only the first, and oldest, national park in America, but also in the world. Yellowstone has nearly 10,000 hot springs and geysers, the most famous being Old Faithful. Lakes, rivers, waterfalls and streams are plentiful in the park and a must-see is the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.
Then there's the wildlife, which includes bison, elk and wolves.
There are two Wyoming entrances to Yellowstone National Park, one south of the park near Flagg Ranch and the other at Pahaska, west of Cody. The West Entrance is West Yellowstone, MT, and to the north is Gardiner, MT.
About 96 percent of the park lies in Wyoming, and riding there is one of snowmobiling's most unique experiences. There are far fewer people in the winter (about 65,000 snowmobiles a winter prior to last season, compared to more than 2 million vehicles in the summer) and that means you don't have to fight the crowds to see the park's many features. All snowmobile trails follow the park's roadways and aren't plowed in the winter but are groomed. Snowmobiles share the same trails as other recreationists on cross country skis, snowshoes and snowcoaches, so be careful. Most of the park's roadways are open to snowmobiling in the winter except the road between Canyon Village and Tower-Roosevelt, as well as the road from Mammoth Hot Springs to the Northeast Entrance, which is plowed during the winter to provide access to Cooke City, MT.
The National Park Service announced early last winter approved winter use plans for Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks and the John D. Rockefeller, Jr., Memorial Parkway that provides visitors with a range of winter recreational opportunities for a three-year period while protecting park resources. A Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the Temporary Winter Use Plans Environment Assessment ensures that park resources are protected and allows for the use of snowmobiles and snowcoaches in the parks on roads that automobiles use in the summer.
The FONSI, which ensures access and protection of resources, was approved by National Park Service Intermountain Regional Director Steve Martin on Nov. 4, 2004. The plan will be in effect for the next three winter seasons, allowing snowmobile and snowcoach use through the winter of 2006-2007.
Under the decision and the implementing rule, 720 snowmobiles per day will be allowed to enter Yellowstone, all led by commercial guides. This is substantially below the historic peak day use levels in the park and is lower than the level of access allowed during the last half of the 2003-2004 winter seasons.
Commercial guides will not be required for the 140 snowmobiles per day allowed in Grand Teton National Park.
"In 2000, the Clinton administration had developed a plan to eliminate snowmobile use in these parks," Fran Mainella, director of the National Park Service, said. "I commend the Park Service employees for coming up with an environmentally-friendly, common-sense approach to winter use management that incorporates the use of cleaner and quieter snowmobile technology that reduces hydrocarbon emissions by at least 90 percent. For 40 years families have had the opportunity to access the parks by snowmobiles and we want to continue to make a variety of winter activities available to American families."
Snowmobiles in Yellowstone will continue to operate on roads used by automobiles during the summer months. Snowmobiles will continue to be prohibited on specific side roads in Yellowstone including the Fountain Flat Road, Virginia Cascades Drive, North Canyon Rim Drive, Riverside Drive and the road from Canyon Junction to Washburn Hot Springs Overlook. Snowmobiles will be allowed on the Lake Butte Road, and the Firehole Canyon Drive will be open to snowcoaches only from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. and to snowmobiles and snowcoaches from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. each day.
A total of 40 snowmobiles daily will be allowed on the frozen surface of Jackson Lake for purposes of ice fishing only; a valid Wyoming state fishing license and the proper fishing gear will be required. Snowplane use will continue to be prohibited on the lake.
All recreational snowmobiles entering Yellowstone National Park will be required to be four-stroke machines that meet the cleaner, quieter National Park Service (NPS) "Best Available Technology" (BAT) standards. A list of NPS-approved BAT snowmobiles are available on the park's web site at
www.nps.gov/yell/planvisit/winteruse.
BAT snowmobiles will be required in Grand Teton National Park, with the exception of a short segment of the Continental Divide Snowmobile Trail (between Moran Junction and the east park boundary) and those originating in the Targhee National Forest and traveling on the Grassy Lake Road as far as Flagg Ranch.
The temporary winter use management plan is a balanced approach that ensures that resources are protected, provides access and gives visitors, employees and residents of the park's gateway communities the information they want and need to plan for the near term, and will help minimize economic impacts.
Monitoring data gathered during the interim plan will be invaluable in accurately assessing the impact of winter use in the long-term analysis and developing a permanent regulation for winter use in the parks.
Last winter, according to the National Park Service, an average of 258 snowmobiles entered Yellowstone daily during January and February 2004. All snowmobilers were led by commercial guides and the vast majority of snowmobiles met the NPS's best available technology requirements. Historically, an average of about 765 snowmobiles entered Yellowstone each day.
The winter of 2003-04 was also different in Grand Teton and JDR. From Dec. 17, 2003 to Feb. 10, 2004, snowmobile use in the two parks, consisting of the Continental Divide Snowmobile Trail and Grassy Lake Road, averaged about 5 snowmobiles per day. After Feb. 11, when Jackson Lake opened for snowmobile use, the combined number of snowmobiles increased to approximately 20 per day.

YNP General Information
 You must stay on designated roads. Sidehilling, berm riding or any off-road travel is prohibited and carries a hefty fine.
 Thermal basins, viewpoints and walkways are snowpacked and icy during winter; fog reduces visibility. Stay on boardwalks or maintained trails; walk carefully.
 If bison or other wildlife are on the road, stop at least 25 yards away and/or pull your machine as far as possible to the opposite side of the road. Give them a chance to move off the road. e

Winter Facilities and Services
Snowmobile Fuel Old Faithful, Canyon,
Fishing Bridge, Mammoth Hot Springs.
Lodging Old Faithful Snow Lodge,
Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel. Reservations are strongly suggested; call 307-344-7311.
Restaurants Old Faithful Snow Lodge,
Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel. Dinner
reservations are required, call
307-344-7901
Fast Food Old Faithful Snow Lodge
Geyser Grill, Canyon and Madison
warming huts
Lunch Counter, Groceries Hamilton's
Store at Mammoth Hot Springs
Restrooms Heated restrooms are loca
ed at Mammoth Hot Springs cam
ground, Mammoth Visitor Center, Old
Faithful Visitor Center, Madison Warming
Hut, Canyon Warming Hut. Vault toilets
are found at other locations throughout
the park.

Yellowstone National Park
Elevation 6,600-9,000 feet
Snowfall 145 inches
Trails 200 miles
Location Northwest Wyoming
Entrance Fee $15 (good for YNP and GTNP)
Closest Trail System CDST, West
Yellowstone
National Park Established 1872
Size 2,219,790 acres
Full-Service Town West Yellowstone,
Gardiner, Jackson, Cooke City, Cody
Nearest Airport Jackson (60 miles),
Bozeman (90 miles)
Information Yellowstone National Park
(307) 344-7381 or
www.nps.gov/yell.