Expect Intermittent Closures of Moose-Wilson Road During October
Contact: Public Affairs Office, 307.739.3431
A temporary closure of the Moose-Wilson Road went into effect again on Friday afternoon at 3:30 p.m. Visitors and park users should expect intermittent closures of the Moose-Wilson Road in the coming weeks due to grizzly bear activity near the road. There is no immediate timeframe for re-opening the road.
The Moose-Wilson Road was closed earlier in the day from 9:00 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. then temporarily re-opened once the bears had moved away from the roadway. Park Superintendent Mary Gibson Scott in consultation with park law enforcement, wildlife biologists and other park managers determined a closure was necessary for a variety of reasons but most importantly for the protection of the grizzly bears foraging near the road. The Moose-Wilson road is narrow, winding and has thick vegetation in many areas, which all contribute to low visibility. These factors make it extremely difficult to safely manage a large wildlife jam on the narrow road corridor.
Throughout the fall of 2010 when many black bears were seen along the Moose-Wilson Road, the park monitored the situation and discussed several possible options for managing the presence of bears and other wildlife along the road in accordance with the Code of Federal Regulations chapter 36 §1.5.
One of the options discussed was that the presence of grizzly bear(s) along the road may trigger a closure. An abundance of Hawthorne bushes with berries along the road are attracting bears to the area. In the coming weeks it is possible that Superintendent Scott may determine intermittent closures are again necessary for protection of the resource and public safety. Local residents and park visitors are advised to plan ahead and use an alternate route because this temporary closure prevents the ability to make a 'through trip' on the Moose-Wilson Road. To alert travelers of the road closure, signs will be placed on Wyoming Highway 390. For motorists heading south to Teton Village from Moose, signs will also be placed near the junction of the Teton Park and Moose-Wilson roads.