Going-to-the-Sun Road being cleared

WEST GLACIER, Mont. – A Glacier National Park official says the annual battle to clear Going-to-the-Sun Road of snow has begun and progress is about equal with previous years.

Spokeswoman Denise Germann tells the Missoulian that crews started work the week of April 1 and have found below-average snowpack at elevations under 4,500 feet.

But she says there is above average snowpack at elevations above 4,500 feet.

The road that bisects the park is a major tourist draw, but clearing it of snow is a months-long task often beset by spring snowstorms.

Park officials had planned to delay opening the road due to automatic federal budget cuts, but the Glacier National Park Conservancy came forward with additional money.

However, visitor centers and campgrounds will close earlier this season because of budget cuts.

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