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National Parks open during shutdown

National Parks open during shutdown

Roads, lookouts and features are open at Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks but without visitor services

@TheSunGazette

SEQUOIA AND KING CANYON NATIONAL PARKS – The federal government may be shut down but the national parks are open for business. Just don’t expect there to be anyone around to answer questions.
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks announced on Dec. 22 that the parks will be “as accessible as possible” to the public during the shutdown of the federal government, which happened earlier in the day after federal lawmakers failed to pass an appropriations bill.

Most park roads, lookouts, trails and open-air memorials at Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, will re-main accessible to visitors, but emergency and rescue services will be limited. There will be no NPS-provided visitor services at Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, including public information, restrooms, trash collection, and facilities and roads maintenance.

“As a rule, staffing will be held to the amount needed for the protection of life, property, and public health and safety. Staffing levels will be based on the assumption that the NPS is conducting no park operations and providing no visitor services,” stated the U.S. Department of the Interior in a memo to its agencies last week.

Services such as lodging, restaurants, and other services provided by the parks concessioner, Delaware North, and walks and programs provided by park partners, such as Sequoia Parks Conservancy, will continue. For reservation information and a complete list of services, visit, www.visitsequoia.com and www.sequoiaparksconservancy.org.

Because of the federal government shutdown, NPS social media and websites are not being monitored or up-dated and may not reflect current conditions. All park programs have been canceled. For updates on the shut-down, please visit www.doi.gov/shutdown. For current road conditions and weather information, please call 559-565-3341.

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