Days of heavy rain have pummeled Yellowstone National Park and some of the surrounding cities. In Gardiner, Montana, people were stranded for hours until U.S. Highway 89 opened Tuesday afternoon.
Videos on social media show a home fall into the Yellowstone River. Yellowstone Superintendent Cam Sholly says it was evacuated Tuesday morning. The six Yellowstone National Park employees and their families living in the home were able to get some of their belongings out, but not much.
“That entire structure floated on the water for about five miles. Unfortunately, although a lot of the belongings did get out of this house, many of our employees lost a considerable amount,” Sholly said.
The Montana National Guard has sent Search and Rescue crews throughout south-central Montana where they’ve rescued people in towns like Cooke City and Fromberg.
In Yellowstone National Park, the road in Gardner Canyon between Gardiner and Mammoth Hot Springs is washed out in several spots.
Sholly says it will take time to assess the damage and fix all the problems, but he’s optimistic the southern loop of the park can reopen relatively soon. Possibly in a week or two. He says they are looking at revising their reservation system, as half the park cannot support the usual number of visitors.
Meanwhile, the gateway communities will need some help. Park County Commissioner Bill Berg has two words for how you can help.
“Gift certificates. You know, they put cash in the registers of those businesses and are a future promise of support. So, another great way that you can just pick a business in these gateways and show them a little love,” Berg said.