National forests and BLM lands will remain open but national parks close

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The difference between national forests and national parks is never more obvious than on the cusp of a federal government shutdown.

All across America, the National Park Service is preparing to close its 384 sites that cover 84 million acres. For those of us in Washington this week it could shut down the cherry blossom festival and close off the national parks and museums along the mall.

But national forests will stay open because there aren’t gates to close. Yellowstone will be closed but the Sawtooth National Recreation Area will be open as usual.

But many employees of all federal agencies, from the Bureau of Land Management to the Internal Revenue Service will go on furlough if the government shutdown proceeds.

Here is a link to the Department of Interior contingency plan. And here's a link to the Forest Service contingency plan.

Few campgrounds are open yet so the shutdown won’t affect that. Bogus Basin operates on national forest land under a permit and it will be open this weekend no matter what.

It’s a little early for controlled burning on the Boise National Forest and federal officials are still trying to decide where they draw the line between essential and non-essential fire programs. Safe to say that firefighters will be out fighting wildfires across the nation as directed from the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise.

But prescribed measures that aren’t necessary are likely to stop. Hopefully the shutdown would be over by the Snake River Birds of Prey Festival in May.

The Bureau of Reclamation and the Corps of Engineers were still figuring out their strategies for shutdown this morning. But releasing water from Lucky Peak Dam to prevent a flood and serve irrigation districts is certain to continue.

I sat in the House of Representatives gallery Thursday and watched the raucous debate over the Republican continuing resolution, the so-called troop funding bill. Republicans loudly applauded Majority Leader Eric Cantor when he said the government is bankrupt and we could no longer continue the status quo.

Democrats responded with hooting and hollering as Minority Leader Steny Hoyer urged Republicans to structure their resolution like Democrats did for George Bush so that shutting down the government was off the table. Each side said they didn’t want to shut down the government. The remarkable scene was more like the British House of Commons.

The bill passed but its not clear what the Senate will do and the last statement from the White House was that President Obama would veto it.

So I’m not planning to tour Gettysburg Saturday until I hear more.

No kidding?

Thanks for letting us know Bogus Basin will be open this weekend no matter what. I was SOOOO worried about that with the Forest Service employee up there and all.

Sounds like some free days in Yellowstone!


"I sat in the House Thursday and.."
Thanks for not letting me down with your writing style Rock!

Get a life

Why don't you knock off this childish, picky crap? It does nothing for this forum.

I agree its getting old.

I agree its getting old.

I agree.

That's just being picky- knock it off.

Google says "Grizz" and has posted 4 times here in the last 6 months. Only on Rocky's blog and 3 of the 4 grizz posts are replies to my posts.

Geez, if wasn't for me, Grizz, you would have nothing to add to this forum.

Childish picky crap.
Do you mean like Rocky making a full blown article about Governor Otter's exaggerated statement comparing the Frank Church Wilderness and CDA golf floating green? Or do you mean some of his other picky crap? Or just his crappy writing? Once again, at least I point out the reasons for my critique.

Still I doubt P2 would MURDER....


You must be lucky to be in the state I was born in!


Gettysburg museum would remain open amid shutdown