Madison and most of the Firehole and Gibbon Rivers to close-

The Gibbon River is above 73 degrees F. and the Firehole is 78 degrees. This is too high for trout to survive for long especially with people wading and fishing. As a result the streams close to fishing tomorrow (except for some well upstream sections of the Gibbon and Firehole). They will stay closed until the temperatures go down and ??   In other words, the closures are temporary but indefinite.

More creeks and rivers are likely to close as the hot weather continues.  Streams are also closing in Montana.

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About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan's Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of "Hiking Idaho." He also wrote "Beyond the Tetons" and "Backpacking Wyoming's Teton and Washakie Wilderness." He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

4 Responses to Three Yellowstone Park rivers close August 1 due high water temperatures

  1. SEAK Mossback says:

    Incredible. In contrast, it’s been a cold spring and summer here. A remaining patch of snow that I could glance out my window at, located within 50 feet of saltwater, finally disappeared a few days ago (albeit the last remains of a substantial avalanche) and on July 22, I photographed a big black bear in a basin up behind my house that still had most of his winter coat. Am planning to go up on an overnight alpine deer outing with my son this weekend and, from the looks of the mountain tops, we will be crossing lots of snow. Gulf of Alaska sea surface temperatures are quite cold. Global weirding?

    • Salle says:

      Some folks I know from around here went to the Oregon coast in June and came back with tales of wild flowers and migrating birds being up to six weeks later than normal. Here, in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem, countless birds and flowers came six to eight weeks early… some birds not being reported as present at all. I usually watch for the songbirds and hummingbirds. I have not seen one hummingbird this year, the warblers and red winged blackbirds arrived nearly eight weeks early, and I think they may have departed already. I haven’t been inside YNP since mid June so I can’t report on anything beyond that. The elephantheads around Firehole Lake were several weeks early and very small this year while cyclamen showed early and were present for three to four weeks.

      Yup, climate weird is appropriate.

  2. TetonBadger says:

    I have seen more swimmers in the firehole this year than any year I can remember, with the firehole falls drive swimming spot closed almost all the time now I wonder if this is also just a way for the park to get people to stop swimming everywhere. They seem to want to stamp out swimming entirely.


July 2012


‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey