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Yellowstone Flooding

Old 06-18-22, 07:17 AM
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Yellowstone Flooding

I'd imagine some of the westbound Trans America riders would be dealing with Yellowstone closures by now. Anyone here dealing with that? Are you detouring to the south? It looks like folks will miss all the geothermal stuff, but get great views of the Tetons. At least that seems like the likely detour.

I wonder how bad and for how long this will impact folks riding the Trans America or other rides through the area. It looks like maybe fairly long term impacts from what they are saying is a 1000 year event.
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Old 06-18-22, 10:29 AM
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Tell'em to bottle it up & send it out here to California.😁😉 We oughta end this darn drought, somehow. I recently discovered Star Thistles, which look pretty cool, with yellow flowers, but have some nasty poky Thistles. 😟
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Old 06-18-22, 03:01 PM
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And now up to 2í of new snow on Going to the Sun in Glacier, creating avalanche danger.


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Old 06-18-22, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
And now up to 2í of new snow on Going to the Sun in Glacier, creating avalanche danger.
I plan to ride Going to the Sun at the beginning of the second week of July. In my mind, that's plenty of time for the snow to melt. Am I daydreaming?

[I also plan to ride Yellowstone sometime in August - looks like Mammoth Falls might be closed and possibly other sections of the park. Firsthand observations appreciated]
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Old 06-19-22, 04:48 AM
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Originally Posted by gauvins View Post
I plan to ride Going to the Sun at the beginning of the second week of July. In my mind, that's plenty of time for the snow to melt. Am I daydreaming?

[I also plan to ride Yellowstone sometime in August - looks like Mammoth Falls might be closed and possibly other sections of the park. Firsthand observations appreciated]
Not first hand, but I do see that the NPS is posting some progress on Yellowstone. The southern part of the park is opening with an odd even license tag entry system on June 22nd. No mention of bikes that I see.
https://www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvis...d-recovery.htm
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Old 06-19-22, 05:44 AM
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My fantasy was they'd bridge the washed out road sections



with prefab 'pedestrian' bridges



and reopen Yellowstone roads for cyclists only.

In response to cycletourists' feedback of RV terror, Adventure Cycling mapped an 'official' detour to the southwest a few years back to bypass the crush of motor vehicle traffic through Yellowstone - and bypass one of North America's most unique geographical areas. Sad that it's come to that.

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Old 06-19-22, 06:49 AM
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
In response to cycletourists' feedback of RV terror, Adventure Cycling mapped an 'official' detour to the southwest a few years back to bypass the crush of motor vehicle traffic through Yellowstone - and bypass one of North America's most unique geographical areas. Sad that it's come to that.
I didn't think the traffic was bad enough to warrant bypassing Yellowstone if you have not seen the geothermal stuff before. It will depend on your traffic tolerance though, I guess. Picking lower traffic days of the week and times of day go a long way toward minimizing the traffic worry. It has been a while since I have ridden through, but I have driven there more recently and still would probably ride through unless the NPS prevented me from doing so. Since I have seen the park before it would be less of a slam dunk than if I hadn't.

The detour looks like it would give amazing views of the Tetons at the cost of a quite a bit longer route (as long as going through Yellowstone and doing an out and back on the Teton Spur). I tend to like direct routes and especially dislike going out of my way in an out and back fashion, so something like the Teton Spur isn't very appealing to me despite the breath taking views. For some reason I mind a meandering out of the detour less. I guess I am a little obsessive about it, but I hate going off route for anything if it means backtracking the same way to get back on route. Going off route to take a parallel route doesn't bother me.
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Old 06-19-22, 08:55 AM
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Originally Posted by gauvins View Post
I plan to ride Going to the Sun at the beginning of the second week of July. In my mind, that's plenty of time for the snow to melt. Am I daydreaming?

[I also plan to ride Yellowstone sometime in August - looks like Mammoth Falls might be closed and possibly other sections of the park. Firsthand observations appreciated]
I would expect it to be clear by then, but who knows? More precip is expected for that area this week.

Road crews typically work Monday through Thursday between 6 am and 4 pm MDT.

There is approximately 1.5-2' of new settled snow at 6250' on the road and much more expected in the avalanche start zones above GTSR. Much of this new snow is expected to avalanche over the next few days due to the dramatic warm up and sunshine, with large amounts of avalanche debris being deposited on the road between Road Camp and Siyeh Bend. This late storm delayed progress on clearing GTSR and plow crews should return to higher elevations on Tuesday.

When crews are delayed at higher elevations, they are typically found at lower elevations clearing rocks, working on guard rails, etc.

As of last week, West Side crews re-cleared the snow that slid at Triple Arches over Memorial Day weekend and cleared almost to Rim Rocks.

East Side crews cleared up to No Stump Point and will be working toward the East Tunnel.
Also the Chief Mountain border crossing is closed indefinitely.

https://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/directions.h
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Old 06-19-22, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by skookum View Post

Also the Chief Mountain border crossing is closed indefinitely.

https://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/directions.h
​​​​​​Geez... Wasn't aware of that... Looks COVID related though and the word seems to be that all such measures will soon be relaxed. This being said, the Carway crossing is not that far. I hope the view is worth the extra mileage

[EDIT]
For those who, like me, would wonder if the USA border station remains open (i.e. not possible to enter Canada, but possible to enter the USA) -- no love. Carway is the nearest entrance.
[/EDIT]

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Old 06-19-22, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by gauvins View Post
I plan to ride Going to the Sun at the beginning of the second week of July. In my mind, that's plenty of time for the snow to melt. Am I daydreaming?]
You could be okay, but thatís not a certainty. It all depends on what happens between now and then. And itís not just a question of snow on the roadway. Avalanche danger is a major concern. A couple of years ago some cyclists went up later in the day and became trapped for hours after an avalanche behind them blocked the road so they could not get back down until the road was cleared. Avalanche danger increases as the day goes on because the sun loosens up things.

But the park does try to get the road open as soon a possible because itís a major economic driver for the area.

The Marias Pass alternative is nowhere near as interesting. The GF and I rode from St. Mary all the way to Sprague Creek Campground in one day so that we would have time to ride at least some of the west slope of GTS. It was a 100 mile day. Fortunately, GTS opened all the way the next day so we got to ride up to Logan Pass and back down after hanging out for an hour at the closure point until they opened the road completely.
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Old 06-19-22, 01:35 PM
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Here is a good read on the Yellowstone NP closures. Kent R (the op of the thread linked below) works very closely with the NPS directors doing park cleanups, trail maintenance, and other volunteer work within the NPS system.

https://www.overlandbound.com/forums...5/#post-620271
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Old 06-19-22, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
You could be okay, but thatís not a certainty. It all depends on what happens between now and then. And itís not just a question of snow on the roadway. Avalanche danger is a major concern. A couple of years ago some cyclists went up later in the day and became trapped for hours after an avalanche behind them blocked the road so they could not get back down until the road was cleared. Avalanche danger increases as the day goes on because the sun loosens up things.

But the park does try to get the road open as soon a possible because itís a major economic driver for the area.

The Marias Pass alternative is nowhere near as interesting. The GF and I rode from St. Mary all the way to Sprague Creek Campground in one day so that we would have time to ride at least some of the west slope of GTS. It was a 100 mile day. Fortunately, GTS opened all the way the next day so we got to ride up to Logan Pass and back down after hanging out for an hour at the closure point until they opened the road completely.
Marias Pass is totally not scenic, but its a reasonable ride.
Used to do a 2.5 day loop, drive from Calgary to St. Mary's, ride to a private campground near Marias Pass (can't remember its name), Have a beer at the bar in West Glacier, then ride up the road to the hiker biker campground at Lake McDonald.
Rise at dawn and ride the west side before the road closure starts. Be down in St. Mary's by early afternoon and drive home.
I haven't done it for 20 years, but Logan Pass is one of my favourite rides.

I hope the road opens soon and people have the opportunity to ride it.
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Old 06-19-22, 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by skookum View Post
Marias Pass is totally not scenic, but its a reasonable ride.
Used to do a 2.5 day loop, drive from Calgary to St. Mary's, ride to a private campground near Marias Pass (can't remember its name), Have a beer at the bar in West Glacier, then ride up the road to the hiker biker campground at Lake McDonald.
Rise at dawn and ride the west side before the road closure starts. Be down in St. Mary's by early afternoon and drive home.
I haven't done it for 20 years, but Logan Pass is one of my favourite rides.

I hope the road opens soon and people have the opportunity to ride it.
Iím pretty sure we stopped at that private campground for a Coke and some water going from St. Mary to Sprague Creek. The woman in the office was really nice. Happily let us bum water. The highlight was seeing mountain goats at Goat Lick.

Once we got into the park I went ahead to make sure we got a campsite. Dropped my gear and rode to the store at the lodge for wood. The GF was so spent when she got to Sprague Creek that she couldnít understand why there were urinals in the womenís room then realized she had walked into the menís room.

Iíve ridden up and over west to east one and up and back down the west slope three other times. Probably my favorite ride.

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Old 06-19-22, 05:05 PM
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Partial reopening on Wed: https://www.npr.org/2022/06/19/11061...open-wednesday
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Old 06-19-22, 06:05 PM
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I just hate it when they put urinals in the womens' room. 😁 I gotta confess, I've used the womens' room a couple times, when idiot vandals have rendered the men's room unusable. 🙄 A simple yell before entering should tell you if it's all clear. 😉
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Old 06-20-22, 03:53 AM
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Cost and timeline for repairs. Havenít read it yet.

https://www.oregonlive.com/environme...outputType=amp
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Old 06-20-22, 04:52 PM
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Got this emailed to me today. I always appreciate the clarity of a simple map:


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Old 06-20-22, 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
I just hate it when they put urinals in the womens' room....
How would you know?

Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
... I gotta confess, I've used the womens' room a couple times, when ...
​​​​​​​Oh, that is how.
​​​​​​​
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Old 06-20-22, 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
Got this emailed to me today. I always appreciate the clarity of a simple map:


So it looks like Trans Am riders should be ok except for the construction area. Unless the route has changed since did it a coyote decades ago, it enters the park at West Yellowstone, goes through Madison, Old Faithful and the Grant Village area and exits via the south entrance.
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Old 06-21-22, 05:12 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
So it looks like Trans Am riders should be ok except for the construction area. Unless the route has changed since did it a coyote decades ago, it enters the park at West Yellowstone, goes through Madison, Old Faithful and the Grant Village area and exits via the south entrance.
The last info I saw said that was that odd even license plate days would be used for entry to the park and it didn't mention bikes at all. I did see sometthing in the closure info that mentioned that Canyon, Madison, Norris, and Lewis Lake campgrounds remained closed. I assume that means the others are open in the portions of the park that is open. They may not have opened hiker/biker camping though. They specifically did mention that backcountry camping is not open at this time.

Have you seen anything that specifically indicates that bikes are or will be allowed in? able to camp?

The Tetons detour wouldn't be the end of the world, but would be a big disappointment for some who would be looking forward to Yellowstone as a highlight of their trip.
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Old 06-21-22, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
The Tetons detour wouldn't be the end of the world, but would be a big disappointment for some who would be looking forward to Yellowstone as a highlight of their trip.
Agreed. The ACA tours have been taking this route since organized tours were banned from Yellowstone ...


Yellowstone bypass

We'd layover in W Yellowstone and folks would take the tour bus.

edit- oops, map already posted above by tcs. Here it is larger.

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Old 06-21-22, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by BobG View Post
Agreed. The ACA tours have been taking this route since organized tours were banned from Yellowtone ...


Yellowstone bypas

We'd layover in W Yellowstone and folks would take the tour bus.
Taking a bus tour or even renting a car are options I have not taken often enough in various places on tours. I regret not taking a day or a few days to see a few places that I have been near and didn't want to detour to on various tours. In this case I guess it would be a no brainer to do that and yet it probably wouldn't have occurred to me to do it if I was touring there in the past. Maybe I'll do better in the future and take time for side trips like that. It would certainly be a day well spent.
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Old 06-21-22, 08:51 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
The last info I saw said that was that odd even license plate days would be used for entry to the park and it didn't mention bikes at all. I did see sometthing in the closure info that mentioned that Canyon, Madison, Norris, and Lewis Lake campgrounds remained closed. I assume that means the others are open in the portions of the park that is open. They may not have opened hiker/biker camping though. They specifically did mention that backcountry camping is not open at this time.

Have you seen anything that specifically indicates that bikes are or will be allowed in? able to camp?

The Tetons detour wouldn't be the end of the world, but would be a big disappointment for some who would be looking forward to Yellowstone as a highlight of their trip.
The license plate thing is most likely related to managing crowds. Glacier has been limiting visitors along the Going to the Sun Corridor and possibly other area of the park. If you are in a car you need to have a reservation between something like 6 am and some time in the evening. If you have something like lodging reservations that counts as a reservation to enter the park. The l restrictions do not apply to people on bikes. This is the second year in a row.

I am pretty sure Yellowstone had restrictions last year, but I donít know the details.
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Old 06-21-22, 11:22 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
So it looks like Trans Am riders should be ok...
...and, FWIW, any Park, Peaks and Prairies riders, that route running between the East and West entrances.
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Old 06-21-22, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
I didn't think the traffic was bad enough to warrant bypassing Yellowstone if you have not seen the geothermal stuff before.
While I'd personally agree, I've been run off the road by an elderly amateur motorhome driver in a National Park and I wouldn't dismiss any individual cycletourist's concerns.

Picking lower traffic days of the week and times of day go a long way toward minimizing the traffic worry.


Hmm, I suppose. Riding a couple extra-long days or taking some rest days to hit a popular park on a certain day of the week during a long tour is possible.
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