"People really struggle with staying 50 feet away from a bison, let alone six feet from each other. We're social critters."

Garrett Ostler who owns the Madison Hotel on the edge of Yellowstone National Park; Yellowstone starts a limited reopening after a COVID-19 shutdown on Monday.

  • Yellowstone, America’s first National Park, will start a partial reopening on Monday.
  • Yellowstone touches three states (Wyoming, Idaho, Montana) and will only be opening in Wyoming.  (Fun Fact: Pres. Ulysses S. Grant signed legislation passed by Congress to protect the land in 1872, shortly after the end of the Civil War.)
  • Ostler owns a hotel based in Montana, the state where the majority of visitors enter Yellowstone. He says reservations are down and uncertain for weeks to come. The gates to enter the park in Montana will remain closed for now.
  • The National Park Service determines which parks open/stay closed in coordination with agencies like the CDC, federal government/state/local governments.
  • Why It Matters: Many national parks closed late March/early April, and locals express a balance of enthusiasm and trepidation not uncommon as America  emerges from stay-at-home orders –  concern about huge crowds and the contagion of COVID-19 vs. worry about the lack of business and deterimental impact to the economy.
  • READ MORE: Yellowstone National Park Set To Reopen — But With Caveats
  • Some animals are making the most of our absence: READ MORE


How the Grand Canyon became a national park (and the one-armed veteran who explored it): CLICK HERE