Some parts of Custer Gallatin forest reopen; closures on Yellowstone River announced

Billings Gazette

The Custer Gallatin National Forest is reopening some areas following historic floods last week, while closures along the Clarks Fork of the Yellowstone and Yellowstone River were announced.

Several sites on the Custer Gallatin were damaged – including bridge washouts – and will remain closed. These include the Main Mill Creek as well as the East and West forks of Mill Creek; the Main Boulder including the Chippy Park, Hicks Park and Snowbank campgrounds along with Fourmile and Six Mile above Gold Prize. In the Gardiner District there is a motorized-use closure to Yankee Jim and Joe Brown trailheads and Bear Creek bridge over Darroch Creek.

Three fishing access sites on the Yellowstone River north of Gardiner that are maintained by the Forest Service – McConnell, Cinnabar and Yankee Jim – were also badly damaged.

Photos provided by the agency show a washout on the West Rosebud Creek Road, which accesses NorthWestern Energy’s Mystic Lake Dam and the Forest Service’s popular trailhead to the lake and beyond. Another photo showed the West Fork Rock Creek bridge had dropped 3 feet after being washed out behind the abutment.

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