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The Inertia

In an unprecedented rain event, Yellowstone National Park has been closed until at least Wednesday as the Yellowstone River tore away at roads, creating destruction around the park the likes of which haven’t been seen in years. Many people have been evacuated while some locals are stranded without drinking water.

“Our first priority has been to evacuate the northern section of the park where we have multiple road and bridge failures, mudslides and other issues,” Yellowstone Superintendent Cam Sholly said in a statement Monday.

The Yellowstone River, which runs through the national park, reportedly reached 13.88 feet on the Corwin Springs gauge in Park County, Mont. where much of the flooding is occurring. That’s more than two feet higher than the record of 11.5 set in 1918 and it was expected to rise further late Monday. Heavy rainfall mixed with melting snow to create unprecedented conditions. Towns like Gardiner, Cooke City, and Silver Gate, Mont. were cut off from the rest of the world, leaving locals and some tourists stranded.

The raging river tore apart roads, destroyed bridges, and even demolished a Yellowstone employee housing complex (below).

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