Yellowstone's East Entrance Opens on Friday, May 5

Yellowstone’s East Entrance Opens – And May Temporarily Close – Friday, May 5

Written by on May 4, 2023

The summer season for Cody and northwest Wyoming starts this Friday with the opening of the East Entrance to Yellowstone National Park. But the entrance could close on the same day – temporarily.

Weather permitting, the road from the East Entrance to Fishing Bridge Junction (Sylvan Pass) & Canyon Village to Lake Village will open Friday, May 5 at 8 a.m. to all public motor vehicle traffic.

Opening the East Entrance this earlier in the season is a relatively recent and significant accomplishment. However, that doesn’t mean the factors that historically kept the route from opening in early May aren’t potentially dangerous.

Many areas of the park are still experiencing winter conditions, and snow and ice may cover sections of the road. The forecast calls for precipitation and temperatures in the forties, but the park’s weather is notorious for changing quickly.

Furthermore, there is an increased risk of avalanches in Sylvan Pass due to recent snowfall and warm temperatures.

Park officials are asking the public to anticipate temporary road closures near Sylvan Pass and watch for quickly changing weather conditions all-day Friday and likely through the weekend.

Closures can occur at any time and can last several hours. At this time of year, visitors can often find themselves stranded within the park as a temporary closure blocks the only route to the East Entrance and Cody.

To stay  informed about up-to-date road conditions in Yellowstone:

  • Visit Park Roads.
  • Call (307) 344-2117 for recorded information.
  • Receive Yellowstone road alerts on your mobile phone by texting “82190” to 888-777 (an automatic text reply will confirm receipt and provide instructions).

Services in the spring are limited. Visit Operating Hours & Seasons for area-specific season opening dates.

These are the tentative opening dates for the remaining roads still closed in Yellowstone National Park:

  • Roads to open May 12 at 8 a.m. include:
    • South Entrance to West Thumb
    • West Thumb to Lake Village
    • West Thumb to Old Faithful (Craig Pass)
    • Tower Junction to Tower Fall
  • Road to open May 26 at 8 a.m. includes:
    • Canyon Village to Tower Fall (Dunraven Pass)

The Beartooth Highway – from Red Lodge to the Northeast Entrance at Cooke City/Silvergate – also has an intended opening on May 26.

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