Yellowstone National Park celebrates its 100th anniversary of the National Park Service this year, but park officials are also looking to the future. Yellowstone Superintendent, Dan Wenk, says he hopes the next 100 years will continue to see conservation efforts, like working with neighboring areas to provide the best migratory routes for wildlife.
“The preservation efforts can’t stop at the boundaries of the park,” says Wenk. “Wildlife, for example, does not respect political boundaries and it needs a much greater ecosystem in order to live and to thrive.”
Yellowstone had a record number of 4 million visitors in 2015. Wenk says the park is beginning to feel the pressures of so much visitation to Yellowstone.
“We want to be sure that not only are we protecting Yellowstone, but visitors are having a great experience and gain a great knowledge of Yellowstone National Park,” Wenk says.
Right now, there are four different wildfires burning in Yellowstone national park officials are working hard to protect buildings and visitors. Wenk says fires are an important part of the natural cycle of the landscape, which is part of what they are celebrating this week. He says visitors planning to join the celebration should stay updated on those fires since a major access road to the South Entrance is expected to remain closed through the weekend due to the blaze.