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Yellowstone road melts as park closes sites, warns visitors

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Streets turn to liquid atop boiling water. (Photo: Yellowstone National Park)

Streets turn to liquid atop boiling water. (Photo: Yellowstone National Park)

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — The ever-changing geology of Yellowstone National Park has melted an asphalt road, blocking access to several popular geysers and other thermal features at the height of tourist season.

Park officials said Thursday they’re evaluating how to address the problem.

Meanwhile, they’re telling visitors not to hike into the affected area. They say the danger of stepping through a solid-looking crust of soil into boiling-hot water is just too high.

The hot spot has closed Firehole Lake Drive, a 3.3-mile loop six miles north of Old Faithful that takes visitors past Great Fountain Geyser, White Dome Geyser and Firehole Lake.

Naturally changing thermal features often damage Yellowstone’s roads and boardwalks. Park spokesman Al Nash says fixing this damage will be a bit more challenging than the typical repair.