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Visitors cautioned as elk rut begins in Yellowstone

An elk snoozes while another grazes on a lawn in Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park.

Placid elk lounging around the lawns of Mammoth Hot Springs are a favorite attraction for Yellowstone National Park visitors. But the start of the fall rut means bull elk are much more aggressive toward both people and vehicles. Several vehicles are damaged by elk every year and occasionally people are charged by elk and can be injured. Visitors and residents are asked to use caution when walking near elk and to look around corners before exiting buildings or walking around blind spots. Continue Reading →

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Yellowstone cracking down use of aerial camera drones

A still image from a video posted to YouTube shows Old Faithful erupting as seen from a camera drone in 2013, before Yellowstone National Park and the National Park Service banned unmanned aerial vehicles.

Just weeks after a visitor crashed a drone into Yellowstone National Park's largest hot spring, park officials have filed criminal charges against the alleged pilot, and are stepping up their efforts to publicize and enforce a ban on unmanned aerial vehicles in the park. Theodorus Van Vliet of the Netherlands has been charged in connection with an Aug. 2 incident in which authorities say he crashed his unmanned aircraft into Grand Prismatic Spring. The drone sank into the popular hot spring and has not been found. Van Vliet is cooperating with the ongoing investigation and faces up to $5,000 in fines and/or six months in jail if found guilty. Continue Reading →

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Yellowstone investigating death of concessions worker

Authorities in Yellowstone National Park are investigating the death of a concessions worker who had been reported missing after failing to show up for work. A search began on Tuesday for Kassandra “Kassie” Wieferich, who had reportedly missed several shifts at work and failed to meet a family member the previous afternoon as planned. After a brief search in the Old Faithful Lodge area, the body of the 21-year-old woman from Twin Bridges, Mont., was located not far from the point she was reportedly last seen by a fellow employee. Park officials said information about Wieferich’s death was not released by the park’s public affairs office until Wednesday to allow for notification of family members. The incident remains under investigation by National Park Service rangers and special agents. Continue Reading →

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Busy year for Yellowstone supervolcano rumors

Steam rises from Excelsior Geyser Crater and Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone National Park.

Have you heard about what's happening with the Yellowstone supervolcano? The biggest earthquake in more than 30 years hit Yellowstone National Park in March. Bison were seen this winter pushing outside the park's boundaries. Extremely high levels of helium are rushing out of hot springs and fumaroles. Seismic detection gear has gone haywire. The roads are melting! All of this can only mean one thing: an eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano is imminent, right? Continue Reading →

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Free admission Monday to Yellowstone and Grand Teton

The National Park Service celebrates its 95th birthday on Monday, August 25. To celebrate, admission to Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks, as well as all other national parks, is free that day. The Park Service is waiving entrance fees on 9 days in 2014 as a way to encourage people to get outdoors and enjoy the remarkable landscapes and historical and cultural sites national parks have to offer. Continue Reading →

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2 dead in separate incidents in Yellowstone

An 8-year-old girl died Sunday morning after falling into the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, a popular attraction in Yellowstone National Park. In an unrelated incident, the body of a concessions worker who died while floating the Yellowstone River was recovered Saturday. The girl, Zahra Allahyari, and family members were following a trail to the Brink of the Lower Falls observation platform when she fell 550 feet into the canyon. Continue Reading →

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Cody Wild West River Fest celebrates role of Shoshone River in local life

River Runners guide Larry Boyles, far left, launches a raft full of whitewater seekers into the middle of the Shoshone River, near the Belfry Highway bridge at the north edge of Cody, Wyo. in this June 2008 file photo.

After an inaugural 2013 program that organizers said was "wildly successful," Cody's Wild West River Fest returns this weekend with a wide range of family-friendly events centered around the Shoshone River. The 3-day celebration includes contests, races, demonstrations, parties, concerts and other events aimed at educating attendees about the importance of the Shoshone River to life in Cody and the surrounding area, and promoting outdoor recreation and stewardship focused on maintaining a healthy waterway. Continue Reading →

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