Watercraft inspection stations open tomorrow in GTNP

MOOSE, Wyo. — Watercraft inspection stations open for the season in Grand Teton National Park, tomorrow May 22.

The stations are located in Moose, adjacent to the post office and in Moran, north of the entrance station. Both stations will be open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through September 12.

All watercrafts are required to be inspected including non-motorized vessels like canoes, kayaks, SUPs and inflatable boats or tubes.

All boats are required to have a park boat permit prior to launching on any water in the park, including non-motorized watercraft. Non-motorized permits are $17 and motorized boat permits are $56. Permits are available online, at the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center in Moose or at the Colter Bay Visitor Center. The permit is valid through the calendar year.

Recreationalists are required to stop every time they enter the park. Inspectors will provide visitors an inspection verification card. Frequent visitors should carry the card with them to expedite the inspection process.

Inspections aim to prevent invasive species from entering park waters. The aquatic invasive species of greatest concern to resource managers are quagga and zebra mussels.

According to Grand Teton National Park, quagga mussels are native to Ukraine and were first discovered in the United States in 1989. Quagga mussels are considered to be an invasive species because they filter the water and remove plankton, which is a vital food source for other native aquatic species. Quagga mussels can live up to 30 days out of the water. Similarly, zebra mussels are native to Eurasia and are estimated to have been brought to the Great Lakes in the 1980s from ballast water that was discharged by large ships from Europe. Similar to quagga mussels, zebra mussels filter out nutritious algae from the water as well as attach themselves to native mussels, thereby paralyzing them.

Other well-known aquatic invasives include burbot, Rusty Crayfish, curly leaf pondweed and Eurasian milfoil.

In 2020, Grand Teton National Park recorded having 29,933 privately owned watercraft pass through the park’s inspection stations and park staff conducted 59 decontaminations on high-risk boats.

About The Author

Buckrail @ Lindsay

Lindsay Vallen is a Community News Reporter covering a little bit of everything; with an interest in politics, wildlife, and amplifying community voices. Originally from the east coast, Lindsay has called Wilson, Wyoming home since 2017. In her free time, she enjoys snowboarding, hiking, cooking, and completing the Jackson Hole Daily crosswords.

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