YNP to Open to Bikers Thursday - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

YNP to Open to Bikers Thursday

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MISSOULA -

Yellowstone National Park opens west side roads for spring bicycle season Thursday. Bikers will be able to travel 49 miles from the west entrance to Mammoth Hot Springs. Park officials warn bikers to be aware of quickly-changing weather conditions.  Snow and ice may still cover sections of road and bikers are likely to see bears, bison, elk, wolves and other wildlife.

A release from YNP officials said in part:

Bicyclists are required to ride single file and follow all other rules of the road.  They are strongly encouraged to carry bear spray, should be prepared to turn around and backtrack when encountering wildlife on the road, and must stay out of closed areas. 

Riders need to have a plan for self rescue or repair and be prepared to be out in severe winter conditions for an extended period of time in the event they experience a mechanical breakdown, injury or other emergency.  Cell phone coverage throughout the park is sparse and unreliable for communicating emergencies.  

The road from the North Entrance at Gardiner, Mont., to Cooke City, Mont., at the park's Northeast Entrance is open all year to cyclists and automobiles, weather permitting.    

Cyclists are urged to call 307-344-2107 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekdays for updated road access information, or call 307-344-2113 for 24-hour weather information before committing to any ride in the park.  Additional planning information is also available online at http://www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/springbike.htm.   

Updated Yellowstone National Park road information is available 24 hours a day by calling 307-344-2117.

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