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No surprises expected in Park Service snowmobile proposal

The National Park Service is expected to release its newest proposal for regulating snowmobiling in Yellowstone National Park and surrounding areas next week.

The new plan will contain only minor changes from the draft plan released late last fall, said Al Nash, Yellowstone spokesman.

The announcement could mean bad news for conservation groups and pro-snowmobile groups, each of which had problems with the previous draft’s chosen plan.

The current draft plan would allow a maximum of 720 snowmobiles in Yellowstone per day. All snowmobilers would have to use a commercial guide and machines would be required to have four-stroke engines that are considered quieter and less polluting than traditional two-stroke machines. It also would require the best available technology for snowcoaches.

The regulations are similar to those currently enforced in Yellowstone.

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