By Bob Beck
Cheyenne, Wy – Governor Dave Freudenthal brought some federal officials to Yellowstone in an effort to convince them to allow more snowmobiles inside the park. Deputy Interior Secretary David Hayes and the Assistant Secretary for Fish, Wildlife and Parks Tom Strickland toured Yellowstone on snowmobiles with the Governor on Saturday. Freudenthal is trying to get federal officials to not only allow snowmobiles to remain in Yellowstone, but to increase the number from the 318 currently allowed in the Park. "Or if we can't do that we need the capacity to have an average of 318, but to have higher than 318 on the critical periods. From Christmas to New Years, President's weekend and Martin Luther King weekend. The other thing we need is some kind of consistency."
Freudenthal says snowmobile operators have been hurt because they have been unable to guarantee that they will have permits for tourists who want to snowmobile in the park. Wyoming and Park County are suing to try and get the numbers of snowmobiles allowed in Yellowstone increased.