GRANITE PEAK PUBLICATIONS: Accompanying travelers to the national park since 2002

Hurray! Public transportation is coming to Yellowstone

While today was opening day for Yellowstone’s major season, and tomorrow is the beginning of National Park Week, during which entrance fees will be waived, there is more good news.

From June 15th to September 30th this year [2012], visitors and park employees who want to or need to come to the park without a car can make connections between neighboring communities and points within Yellowstone on a system called LINX. This is not a tour company and is not government sponsored, but it surely answers a long-time need and makes a good start toward reducing traffic in the park.

You can buy a pass for one day for $20 or five days for $80. You can also connect from as far away as Salt Lake City, UT or simply between Old Faithful and West Yellowstone, for example, with vehicles running in each direction around the northern Grand Loop Road twice a day. For all the details, see their easily navigable website: http://www.linx.coop or call 877-454-5469.

My hope has been for several years to see a shuttle system in the most congested western part of this loop. Although I applaud the LINX system, it does not really solve the need to get from place to place within the park without a car. I’ve written a couple of blog posts about my ideas for park shuttles and even managed to sound off about it when I met Yellowstone Park Superintendent Dan Wenk during my January Tauck Tour in the park.

If you’d like to read what my long-term scheme for such a system might comprise, I posted about transportation in 2009 and 2011 on this blog. Of course, there are problems with any plan one might come up with, not the least of which is finding the money for it, but I feel there ought to be an ongoing dialog about Yellowstone shuttles.

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