High Vehicle Traffic and No COVID-19 in Yellowstone
Written by andrew-rossi on July 2, 2020
It seems Wyoming is seeing as much Yellowstone traffic as it ever has, from a certain point of views.
The latest Yellowstone visitation statistics for the period between June 16th – 29th showed some surprising numbers. Overall visitation percentage thru all 5 gates for this period was 89% of 2019’s average. Not a bad showing. But the Wyoming entrances – East and South – saw 99% of 2019’s vehicle count – 37,480 total. The Montana Entrances (North, West, and Northeast) saw 85% of 2019’s vehicle counts. Those numbers would certainly suggest that Yellowstone’s visitation hasn’t really slowed down despite everything happening in the nation. We’ll see if that trend continues as the summer – and spikes in virus cases – progresses.
Widespread COVID-19 surveillance testing continues for Yellowstone employees. These numbers, too, are promising. The total number of Yellowstone-employee tests in Montana and Wyoming completed since late May is 577. The week of June 22, 162 tests were conducted. Wastewater systems in Gardiner, Mammoth Hot Springs, and Old Faithful were tested between June 13th and 16th, using the same sampling methods as the machine used in Park County. And so far, minus a small percentage of false positives, everything is coming back negative. There’s no traces of COVID-19 in Yellowstone. Again, so far. Given the recent spikes seen nationwide, it makes sense that genome traces of the virus will eventually be found in the park.
But in the meantime, good COVID-19 news is always welcome.