COOKE CITY — The Beartooth Highway is partially open but very quiet, unusual for Independence Day.
It seemed like there were more marmots on the road than people for a while. And there was at least one dog.
Historic flooding washed away roads and isolated towns like Cooke City, Silver Gate, and Gardiner. It impacted recreation and business, even for someone that’s on top of the world.
Jerett Miller owns the Top of the World store, which sits at around 9,400 ft. elevation on the Beartooth Highway.
"We got that heavy snow and then it dumped rain. It was coming straight down and melted everything,” he explained.
Now three weeks after the flooding business is showing signs of life over the holiday weekend.
Patrons that made the trip needed to put in some effort with the northeast entrance to Yellowstone still closed, and the Beartooth highway closed south of Red Lodge to the ski area.
“You gotta take the Chief Joseph highway but it’s a good drive, " says Miller
Evidence of historic flooding is everywhere but the snow is deep, someone told me the skiing is great, wildflowers are blooming, and wildlife just might enjoy the views to themselves for the time being.
And now you’re a little more weather-wise.