Moving Heavy Metal at High Altitude in Yellowstone

Three rotary plows operated by drivers from Yellowstone National Park work in staggered succession to clear snow from the Beartooth Highway in spring 2021. (Courtesy photo from Jacob W. Frank/National Park Service)

By Ruffin Prevost

CODY, Wyo. — For several days this spring — after Yellowstone National Park had closed to snowmobiles and snow coaches, but before it had opened to automobile traffic — road maintenance crews there were burning through 1,500 gallons of diesel fuel per day. But they were hauling nothing and not building anything. In fact, they were making no permanent changes to any roads. Continue Reading →

Yellowstone, Grand Teton Planners Tackle Traffic

Traffic backs up at Norris Junction in Yellowstone National Park in this September 2017 file photo. Park planners are working to ease congestion here and at a handful of other especially busy spots in Yellowstone. (Courtesy photo from Jacob W. Frank/National Park Service)

By Ruffin Prevost

CODY, Wyo. — With the advent of warmer weather in Yellowstone National Park and Memorial Day approaching, tens of thousands of out-of-state visitors will be arriving to kick off the summer season. Or as park employees and locals call it: construction season. Continue Reading →

Spring in Yellowstone ‘Beyond Expectations’

Bebe Bushra, an Instagram influencer from Texas, poses for a photo Sunday at Mud Volcano in Yellowstone National Park. (photo by Ruffin Prevost)

By Ruffin Prevost

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. — As spring slowly takes hold in Yellowstone National Park, a familiar cast of critters are emerging to claim center stage on a landscape still shedding the snow and ice of a long, cold winter. Familiar favorites like sandhill cranes and harlequin ducks have flown in from far-flung locales. But some new stars have arrived too, including baby bison, grizzly bear cubs and even a few nascent bubbling mud pots and babbling brooks that have emerged since fall. Continue Reading →

Cody Firm Makes Parts for Space Rockets, Fighter Jets

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying the company’s Crew Dragon spacecraft and four astronauts launches in October 2022 from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. A Cody, Wyo. company makes custom parts for the Dragon spacecraft. (Courtesy photo from NASA)

By Ruffin Prevost

CODY, Wyo. — The famous Renaissance artist Michelangelo said that the “sculpture is already complete within the marble block, before I start my work. Continue Reading →

Wyoming Tourism Leaders Hoping for ‘Normal’ Summer

Yellowstone National Park Superintendent Cam Sholly spoke Monday in Cody about how the National Park Service responded to historic floods last spring that closed parts of the park for most of the summer. (photo by Ruffin Prevost)

CODY, Wyo. — Yellowstone National Park Superintendent Cam Sholly spent much of his time Monday during an annual tourism industry luncheon in Cody covering his agency’s response to last year’s historic floods that closed entrances from two gateway communities for most of the summer. The year before, Yellowstone saw its busiest summer ever, as visitors looking to avoid the COVID-19 pandemic flocked to the great outdoors. In 2020, the park was closed to visitors for two months in the spring, as officials worked to cope with the early stages of a fast-spreading virus before vaccines were widely available and best health practices were still being debated and developed. Continue Reading →

Independent Bookstore Caters to Cody Community

Kalyn Beasley and his mother Teresa Muhic operate Legends Bookstore, a Cody, Wyo. small business that finds success through personal connections with customers. (photo by Ruffin Prevost)

By Ruffin Prevost

CODY, Wyo. — When Legends Bookstore owner Teresa Muhic retired in 2013 from a career as a petroleum engineer and management executive in the oil industry, she was searching for a new project to help her stay busy. “I kind of poked around for about a year,” she said, while considering consulting and other options. Continue Reading →

Wyoming Bread Doctor Shares ‘Marda’s Gift’ With Community

“Marda’s Gift,” an award-winning short documentary, focuses on the relationship between baking instructor Marda Stoliar and the Fluckiger family, including Ezdan Fluckiger, back right, Lisa Fluckiger, center, and Eleanor Fluckiger, far left. It was directed by Kate McMahon, far right, and Daria Matza, back left. (Courtesy photo from Sheila Rittenberg)

By Ruffin Prevost

Eleanor Fluckiger’s favorite items at The Bread Doctor are the peanut butter cookies, English muffins, strawberry shortcakes and pizzas, a savory treat only offered every couple of months as a lunch special. She’s not alone in her passion for pastries. Five-star reviews abound on Yelp, TripAdvisor and Google for the family-run bakery in Torrington, a town of just over 6,000 people situated on the North Platte River in southeastern Wyoming, 10 minutes from the Nebraska border. But Eleanor, 25, has an advantage over the bakery’s many enthusiastic customers. Continue Reading →

Taste of the Trails brings ‘pure joy’

WAPITI, Wyo. — A five-kilometer race, run or walk is a staple fundraiser for community nonprofit groups across the country. It’s relatively simple to organize, and draws a wide range of participants—some are zealous competitors, others show up mainly to support a beloved cause. But the most exotic and popular 5K fundraiser in Cody doesn’t have any running, and it isn’t a race. Instead, it features stops at several points along the course to sample treats like artichoke dip or tomato basil soup. Continue Reading →

Push grows to ‘plow the plug’ in public road access dispute

CODY, Wyo. — Living in a remote mountain community can come with unique challenges. But that’s something Joelle Passerello knew in 2019 when she moved to Cooke City, Mont., a tourist town literally at the end of the road. Passerello, a single mother of two, manages a gas station in the isolated mountain town located just outside the Northeast Entrance to Yellowstone National Park. In the winter, the only way in or out of town is a 55-mile trek through the park’s northern range to Gardiner, Mont. Continue Reading →

The Unique Mystique of South Fork Ice

CODY, Wyo. — Dozens of adventurers gathered here over the weekend to strap sharp metal blades to their feet and grip long, pointed axes in each hand before venturing into the Shoshone National Forest in pursuit of their dangerous and elusive prey: frozen waterfalls. Ice climbers from across the country attended the inaugural Wyoming Ice Festival, a four-day event offering clinics, gear demonstrations, a film screening and social gatherings for enthusiasts eager to climb some of the most challenging ice in the country. Less than an hour’s drive southwest of Cody, ice climbers converge each winter in the South Fork Valley to scale literal frozen waterfalls. Some are freestanding columns of ice—gargantuan icicles the size of grain silos—unconnected to anything but the ground below and a cliff edge above. Continue Reading →