East entrance to Yellowstone opens Friday

(Yellowstone National Park, Wyo.) – The East Entrance to Yellowstone National Park will open for the season on Friday morning, May 2, as scheduled.
As of 8:00 a.m. Friday, visitors will be able to travel through the park’s East, West and North Entrances to many popular park destinations including Old Faithful, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, Norris Geyser Basin and Fishing Bridge.
Travel through the South Entrance to Grant Village, West Thumb Junction and on to Fishing Bridge and across Craig Pass to Old Faithful is set to openFriday, May 9, given favorable weather and road clearing progress.
The road from the park’s North Entrance at Gardiner, Montana through Mammoth Hot Springs, and on to the Northeast Entrance and the communities of Cooke City and Silver Gate, Montana, is open all year.  The road east of Cooke City to WY-296 typically opens by mid-May.  Crews from the National Park Service and the Montana Department of Transportation strive to open US-212 over the Beartooth Pass to Red Lodge, Montana, in time for the Memorial Day holiday weekend.
Very limited visitor services will be available during the next several weeks.  For updated information, visit http://www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/index.htm, or consult the park newspaper you receive at the entrance station.
Visitors should be aware that spring in Yellowstone is very unpredictable and often brings cold temperatures, high winds and falling snow.  Extreme caution should be used when driving as road clearing operations can be ongoing at any time throughout the park.  In the case of extreme weather conditions, temporary road closures are also possible with little or no advance warning.
Construction is underway north of the entrance to the Norris Campground on the road to Mammoth Hot Springs.  A 5.4 mile section of the road is being rebuilt, as is the bridge over the Gardner River. Visitors should expect daytime delays of up to 30 minutes, with nightly closures between 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. beginning June 1. This section of road will be closed to all traffic from 11:00 p.m. September 14, to 7:00 a.m. on September 30.
Work will also begin this year to replace the Isa Lake Bridge, which is on the road between Old Faithful and West Thumb Junction.  This section of road will close to through travel for the season at 6:00 a.m. on September 2.
Details on both of these projects and updated Yellowstone National Park road information is available 24 hours a day by calling 307-344-2117, or on the Web at http://www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/roadclosures.htm.
–Provided by Yellowstone National Park