Ameera Butt

UPDATE: Joshua Tree National Park Will Remain Open

January 10, 2019 - 8:09 am

(KNX 1070) - Earlier this week, Joshua Tree National Park had indicated it would temporarily close Thursday because of the partial government shutdown.

 Park officials have dipped into fee money to cover the cost of keeping it open. 

With the re-allocated funds, officials believe the already-closed areas will be opened back up as well.

There have been concerns that visitors have damaged sites and left a mess behind.

The park has been working with a skeleton crew and volunteers since the partial shutdown began.

Volunteers led by Cliffhanger Guides have been cleaning up trash left behind and maintaining restrooms.

Office Manager Zachary Karcher with Cliffhanger Guides tells KNX...this will hurt business but says it's a good move.

"We did as much as we could during these last few weeks of the shutdown to try to minimize the impact of park usage without government presence. We kind of anticipated that if the shutdown was to continue, it would ultimately end up with the park being shut down."