Shutdown's over, park services resume

During shutdown, national recreation areas stayed open but limited services


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Photos



  • You could still park at the Roebling Bridge, but the walkways, tollhouse (at far end of bridge), and restrooms were closed during the shutdown. (Photo by Pamela Chergotis)




  • People were fishing at the Lackawaxen access along the Upper Delaware and Scenic River during the first weekend of the shutdown. (Photo by Pamela Chergotis)



— The shutdown of the federal government ended Monday night, putting national parks back into their regular routine.

The three-day shutdown was much shorter than the shutdown in 2013 that lasted 16 days and had a greater impact on national parks, like the Delaware Water Gap National Recreational Area and Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River. In 2013, park roads, lookouts, trails and open-air areas were closed. This year, these facilities remained open with a warning that they would not be plowed or otherwise maintained, except for "primary roads," by the National Park Service.

As long as conditions permit, at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area will remain accessible to visitors, but emergency and rescue services will be limited.

Still, some services were limited during the shutdown just ended: The Roebling Bridge was open but the walkway closed off. No visitor services were provided by the National Parks Service, including public information, restrooms, trash collection, and facilities maintenance. NPS social media and websites were monitored or updated. All park programs were canceled. These conditions applied along the 40-mile Delaware Water Gap National Recreational Area as well as the 74-mile Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River.

The Pocono Environmental Education Center, Peters Valley School of Craft, Mohican Outdoor Center, and Bushkill Outreach, all in the Water Gap area, remained in operation.

Congress broke its impasse but with another short-term spending bill, which resembles more a cease-fire than a truce.

For more information or updates on the shutdown, visit doi.gov/shutdown.

Related stories:

"Shutdown story emerges with re-opening": http://bit.ly/2n4Wbv8

"Business slides during shutdown": http://bit.ly/2GboQHF

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