BlueRibbon Coalition BRC: Snowmobile Season in Yellowstone Ended March 15, 2011 - Visitation by Snowmobile and...

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Jack Welch, Volunteer Consultant, BlueRibbon Coalition
- Phone: (303) 279-8436 or Cell (303) 324-7185
- Fax: (303) 279-8214
- Email:
- Webpage:

Date: 04/28/2011

Greetings snowmobile and Yellowstone enthusiasts! To the chagrin of the radical environmentalists, Yellowstone National Park enjoyed another great year of snowmobiling.

According to the final entrance figures from the National Park Service (NPS), snowmobile and snowcoach visitation to Yellowstone is very popular even with the cumbersome regulations placed on wintertime visitors.

NPS statistics through March 15, 2011, or the end of the 2010-2011 winter season, indicate that when given a choice there are an equal number of visitors that want to enter the Park by snowmobiles and by snowcoaches. In other words we need a balance! See the Park Service media release "Yellowstone Winter Visitation Impacted by Heavy Snowfall"

Both national and international appeal of Yellowstone in winter by snowmobile remains high. On my two commercially guided trips into the Park this winter, I met folks from several foreign countries. These international visitors wanted to visit the park by both snowmobile and snowcoach.

This season Yellowstone received more positive press than in the past. The marketing of both snowmobile and snowcoach as special wintertime experiences helped to bring a balance to visitors' preferences.

What next? In early May 2011 the formal Draft Environment Impact Statement (DEIS) will be released. This DEIS will create a basis for a new "Winter Use Plan" for Yellowstone National Park. The formal comment period will be 60 days. The BlueRibbon Coalition, along with the rest of the snowmobile community, will need your help to comment on concerns in the DEIS.

BlueRibbon will be issuing an alert, with a link to our website, which will provide suggested comments to be submitted to the Park Service. Note: For current information on Yellowstone access issues and commenting on the DEIS, visit

In spite of the negative pressure the environmental groups have put on snowmobiling in Yellowstone, NPS statistics prove that it is a popular and appropriate use of this spectacular national treasure. If we all work together on the Yellowstone Winter Use issue, both snowmobile and snowcoach access will see strong increases in the future. After all, a balanced system of transportation into the Park by both snowmobile and snowcoach may be the best answer to the long term Winter Use Issue.

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