Video shows large home slipping into river and floating away amid historic Yellowstone flooding

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Video shows large home slipping into river and floating away amid historic Yellowstone flooding

A large house was filmed slipping into a river and floating away amid massive flooding in Yellowstone National Park.

A series of “unprecedented” rain storms have created chaos inside the park, which closed its gates to visitors on Monday.

The severe weather caused mudslides, with multiple roads being rendered impassible, and a bridge getting destroyed.

“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,” park superintendent Cam Sholly said in a statement.

Guests already inside the park have been evacuated. No return date has yet been announced, as the National Park Service described conditions as “extremely hazardous”.

Communities outside of Yellowstone like Gardiner, Montana, have been isolated, as roads going in and out of town are rendered impassible.

In this image provided by Sam Glotzbach, the flooding Yellowstone River undercuts the river bank, threatening a house and a garage in Gardiner, Mont., on June 13, 2022 (AP)
In this image provided by Sam Glotzbach, the flooding Yellowstone River undercuts the river bank, threatening a house and a garage in Gardiner, Mont., on June 13, 2022 (AP)
A house falls into the Yellowstone river due to flooding in Gardiner, Montana, U.S., June 13, 2022 in this screen grab obtained from a social media video (Angie Lilly via REUTERS)
A house falls into the Yellowstone river due to flooding in Gardiner, Montana, U.S., June 13, 2022 in this screen grab obtained from a social media video (Angie Lilly via REUTERS)

One family staying in the area in a rental home told CNN they were stranded.

“The water levels were high on Saturday but within the past 10-12 hours things have gotten rougher,” said Parker Manning, who was visiting from Terre Haute, Indiana.

Mr Manning was staying at a cabin in Gardiner, where he could see first-hand as the water was rising and the riverbank sloughing off not far from his front door.

“We started seeing entire trees floating down the river, debris,” Mr Manning said. “Saw one crazy single kayaker coming down through, which was kind of insane.”

The Boulder River south of Big Timber floods roads and homes on Monday, June 13, 2022, as major flooding swept away at least one bridge, washed away roads and set off mudslides in Yellowstone National Park in Montana (AP)
The Boulder River south of Big Timber floods roads and homes on Monday, June 13, 2022, as major flooding swept away at least one bridge, washed away roads and set off mudslides in Yellowstone National Park in Montana (AP)
In this photo provided by Sam Glotzbach, the fast-rushing Yellowstone River flooded what appeared to be a small boathouse in Gardiner, Mont., on Monday, June 13, 2022, just north of Yellowstone National Park (AP)
In this photo provided by Sam Glotzbach, the fast-rushing Yellowstone River flooded what appeared to be a small boathouse in Gardiner, Mont., on Monday, June 13, 2022, just north of Yellowstone National Park (AP)

Mr Manning said that on Monday evening, he watched as the waters undercut the riverbank on the other side of the stream, leading to the house falling into the river and floating away, mostly in one piece.

Power is out in some parts of the popular natural park.

It is unclear when the park could reopen.

The rains hit during the high tourism season: June, at the onset of an annual wave of over 3 million visitors that doesn’t abate until fall, is one of Yellowstone’s busiest months.

The flooding hit a street in Red Lodge, Montana, a town of 2,100 people where many visitors start their drive into Yellowstone high country.

High water levels in the Lamar River erode Yellowstone National Park's Northeast Entrance Road, where the park was closed due to heavy flooding, rockslides, extremely hazardous conditions near Gardiner, Montana, U.S. June 13, 2022 (via REUTERS)
High water levels in the Lamar River erode Yellowstone National Park's Northeast Entrance Road, where the park was closed due to heavy flooding, rockslides, extremely hazardous conditions near Gardiner, Montana, U.S. June 13, 2022 (via REUTERS)
The highway between Gardiner and Mammoth in Montana is washed out trapping tourists in Gardiner, as historic flooding damages roads and bridges and floods homes along area rivers on Monday, June 13, 2022 (AP)
The highway between Gardiner and Mammoth in Montana is washed out trapping tourists in Gardiner, as historic flooding damages roads and bridges and floods homes along area rivers on Monday, June 13, 2022 (AP)

Twenty-five miles (40 kilometres) to the northeast, in Joliet, Kristan Apodaca wiped away tears as she stood across the street from a washed-out bridge, The Billings Gazette reported.

The log cabin that belonged to her grandmother, who died in March, flooded, as did the park where Apodaca’s husband proposed.

“I am sixth-generation. This is our home,” she said. “That bridge I literally drove yesterday. My mom drove it at 3am before it was washed out.”

Park officials evacuated the northern parts of the park on Monday. The area’s roads may remain impassable for a substantial length of time, Mr Sholly said.

But the flooding affected the rest of the park, too, with park officials warning of yet higher flooding and potential problems with water supplies and wastewater systems in developed areas.

Yellowstone got 2.5 inches (6 centimetres) of rain Saturday, Sunday and into Monday. The Beartooth Mountains northeast of Yellowstone got as much as 4 inches (10 centimetres), according to the National Weather Service.

The climate crisis could bring increased risk of flooding as rainfall comes down in more stronger bursts. Over the past century, a higher percentage of rain across the county has been falling during the most intense storms.

Rapid snowmelt due to warmer temperatures likely also helped spur this week’s flooding in Yellowstone, reports CNN.

At a campground on the Stillwater River in South-Central Montana, 68 people were stranded by the flooding.

Stillwater County Emergency Services agencies and crews with the Stillwater Mine rescued people Monday from the Woodbine Campground by raft. Some roads in the area are closed because of flooding and residents have been evacuated.

“We will be assessing the loss of homes and structures when the waters recede,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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