SILVERGATE - The northeast entrance of Yellowstone Park remains closed to cars but, right now the area offers a rare opportunity to see America’s first national park with almost no visitors inside.
To offer a way in and attract tourists, local businesses are getting creative.
“We will never get this experience of being in July, August and there’s 20 people in this town that normally filled with 250 tourists every day and just enjoy this beautiful mountain air,” said Silvergate Lodging, General Store, and Guides general manager Chris Conway.
Businesses across the gateway communities of Cooke City and Silvergate are trying to make lemonade out of lemons and hold onto their livelihoods after June’s disastrous flooding.
“Our reservations immediately dropped down by about 95%,” Conway said.
Silvergate Lodging found an innovative new way to attract visitors, playing off the closure of park roads to vehicles.
“We had been toying with the idea for about three, four years about having an e-bike rental up here, so we bought five of them and they’re pretty much rented at 100%,” Conway said.
Access to Yellowstone through the northeast entrance is changing, as construction crews move in to repair the large sections of road damaged by flooding.
But you can still get in and find a quiet trail or stretch of river to enjoy the park in a rare state of solitude, while also supporting Montana businesses.