Buresh Blog: It’s Summer(!)... Lightning Safety... Yellowstone Flooding Disaster

Jacksonville, FL — “Talking the Tropics With Mike” - updated everyday through the hurricane season.

June 21: Summer Solstice. It’s when the tilt of the earth - for the Northern Hemisphere - is toward the sun & the days are some of the longest of the year (more than 14 hours for Jacksonville/NE Fl./SE Ga.). Jacksonville’s avg. high temp. is 90+ degrees through Aug. 30th.

Lightning Safety Awareness Week: June 19-25:

Duval Co. lightning typically peak from late June through mid July in the hours between 3 & 6pm....

Yellowstone National Park was hit hard by a flooding the week of June 13th. A combination of heavy rain & melting snow made for some of the highest water ever measured in the park. The USGS says the massive flooding is *not* likely to have adverse impacts on seismic & hydrothermal activity. Some good news regarding reopening plans from the National Park Service:

MAMMOTH HOT SPRINGS, Wyo. — During a visit to Yellowstone National Park and Gardiner, Montana, on Sunday, June 19, National Park Service Director Chuck Sams with Yellowstone National Park Superintendent Cam Sholly announced $50 million to kick-start recovery efforts from record breaking floods.They also announced that in addition to the park’s southern loop reopening on June 22, the park’s northern loop is expected to reopen in two weeks or less following completion of clean-up, repairs and final inspection of the northern loop infrastructure. This will allow visitors to access Dunraven Pass, Tower, Mammoth Hot Springs and Norris opening visitor access to approximately 80 percent of Yellowstone National Park. Additional details on access will be announced in the coming weeks.

The initial $50 million will be used to restore temporary access to Gardiner and Cooke City, Montana and other additional sites. Plans are being finalized for improving the Old Gardiner Road for temporary access between Yellowstone and Gardiner, Montana. In partnership with the Federal Highway Administration, road construction crews and materials that were already in the park for a previously scheduled road project to repair 22 miles of the Grand Loop Road between Old Faithful and West Thumb Geyser Basin will be diverted to the Old Gardiner Road project.

The NPS currently anticipates the Old Gardiner Road will be substantially improved over the upcoming months, ensuring that essential emergency services, food, supplies and other administrative needs will be available throughout the winter months. As work proceeds through the summer, the NPS will look for opportunities to restore limited visitor access at the park’s North Entrance. Emergency environmental and historic preservation compliance is underway in accordance with the National Historic Preservation and Environmental Policy Acts. Permanent reconstruction options are being developed and alternatives will be completed in the upcoming months.

In addition to plans to reopen Yellowstone’s northern loop much sooner than initially anticipated, the NPS is working with the Federal Highway Administration on a range of temporary and permanent options to restore access to Silver Gate and Cooke City at the park’s northeast entrance. Currently, the Northeast Entrance Road is impassible between Lamar Valley and Silver Gate. Cost, funding and timelines are not yet available for these short or long-term repairs to the Northeast Entrance Road but will be released as soon as possible.

Images & info. below from the Center for Western Weather & Water Extremes:

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