Joshua Tree campgrounds closing during government shutdown due to health concerns

Human waste, rubbish overwhelm some US national parks in shutdown

If nature calls - well, the woods are over that way.

"It's so heartbreaking", the 24-year-old told the Associated Press. "And there's a lot of businesses that actually need the park".

"We have not seen any increase in trash left behind, which is terrific, and we would like to see that continue", she said.

"We just can't continue at the pace we have been at for the last 12 days", said Sabra Purdy, a coordinator of volunteer cleanup efforts. "Who knows how it'll be tonight".

The federal government shutdown began December 22 in a dispute between President Donald Trump and congressional Democrats over funding for Trump's proposed wall along the U.S. -Mexico border, USA Today reported. "Maybe a little more border security but not a wall".

The Smithsonian Institution will close off its museums and the National Zoo on Wednesday because it has depleted its temporary funding. Other recreational sites around the country remain closed or lack adequate staff.

The park has also had to close down some roads due to snowfall because it does not have the staff to sand or plow them.

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The Park Service runs a broad constellation of parks, monuments, battlefields and historic sites. Approximately 16,000 Park Service employees have been furloughed, and many attractions locally and nationally have been temporarily shuttered. We encourage visitors in the area to explore the excellent food, shops, and recreational opportunities available nearby. Park entrances have been closed thanks to unplowed roads. "And there are many companies that are of the national Park".

Joshua Tree National Park, which is located in California, will stay open during the shutdown.

Rock climbers Kiera Waskey, 21, and Stefan Nelson, 22, were able to camp in the park for three nights after arriving on a visit from Minnesota. He was reportedly helped by his friend Michael Bright and good Samaritans that helped carry him 1.7 miles down the trail until they encountered a park ranger.

And Joshua Tree isn't alone in its issues, or its decision to close campgrounds. Indeed, Joshua Tree is reportedly closing all campsites starting today.

"The Trump administration has forced a government shutdown and is trying to avoid its devastating impacts by pretending nothing is wrong - you can't have it both ways", Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.), the chairman-designate of the House Natural Resources Committee, said in a statement to E&E News. Those guides are splitting the cost of grooming the trails used by their vehicles to keep their operations going, said Travis Watt, general manager of See Yellowstone Alpen Guides based in West Yellowstone, Montana.

The partial government shutdown is rippling beyond federal workers and contractors. "We can't make decisions, we layoff employees, we take cancellations", he said.

People were using the spots as open-air bathrooms after overused restrooms were closed, the Los Angeles Times reported.

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