Motorized over-snow travel in Yellowstone National Park started Friday. Most park roads were closed in early November, and today’s winter opening means many of those roads will now be accessible by snowmobile and snowcoach.
Controversy in recent years about snowmobile use in the park has led to stricter regulations.
Snowmobilers who want to travel without a commercial guide have to apply for a limited number of permits distributed by lottery each September. Otherwise, visitors have to use commercial snowmobile and snowcoach operators.
Travel from Fishing Bridge to Lake Butte is still closed until more snow accumulates. Travel through the park’s East Entrance over Sylvan Pass to Lake Butte is scheduled to begin Friday, December 22, weather dependent.
Cars can still use the road from the park’s North Entrance at Gardiner, through Mammoth Hot Springs to Cooke City, which is open year-round.
Over-snow travel ends in mid-March.