Yellowstone in Winter, Bombardier, snowcoach

Public Comment Sought on Winter Use Plan

Public comment is sought on a Winter Use Plan for Yellowstone National Park.

Between now and August 21, 2015, visitors will be able to submit comments here on a draft of the Winter Use Adaptive Management Plan, which seeks to improve the winter Yellowstone experience with public and science input.

Broadly, the Winter Use Adaptive Management Plan seeks to address three objectives:

  1. Evaluate the impact of oversnow vehicle (OSV) use and help managers implement actions to restrain impact.
  2. Gather data regarding the impact of snowcoaches versus a group of snowmobiles.
  3. Reduce overall impact on Yellowstone National Park by gathering data on the social and ecological impacts of winter use after the Plan is implemented.

Looking ahead, Park managers would use this Plan to design future Management Plans for Yellowstone winter use.

Under the Plan, managers would put into place a strategy that identifies which resources should be closely monitored and evaluated. This strategy would also outline how resources should be monitored, as well as how the National Park Service can engage visitors in the process.

Besides the online portal, visitors can also send their comments via mail. The deadline for submitting comments is the same as through the park planning website. Here is the address for submitting comments by mail or in person:

Christina Mills

Office of the Superintendent

Adaptive Management Plan,

P.O. Box 168

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming 82190

In addition, Yellowstone National Park will be hosting a public meeting at the Visitor Information Center in West Yellowstone, MT August 10 at 10 a.m. Topics of discussion will include updates on the draft plan, discussion of public feedback and metrics for monitoring Park resources. More details will follow closer to the date.

After the public comment period ends, the NPS will review visitor and expert feedback for inclusion in the final Winter Use Adaptive Management Plan, which will be released in 2016.

About Sean Reichard

Sean Reichard is the editor of Yellowstone Insider and author of Yellowstone Insider For Families 2017.

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