3 Banned From Yellowstone For 2 Years For Cooking Chicken In Thermal Feature

Cooking chickens in a thermal area of Yellowstone National Park in August has landed three people in hot water, too.

      Eric Romriell of Idaho Falls, Idaho, paid $1,200 in fines and fees and was banned from Yellowstone for 2 years after pleading guilty to foot travel in a thermal area and violating closure and use limits.

       Eric Roberts, also of Idaho Falls, and Dallas Roberts of West Valley City, Utah, must each spend 2 days in jail and pay $540 in fines and fees for the same charges. They, too, are banned from the park for 2 years.

       The incident began Aug 7th when a park ranger was told of a group hiking toward Shoshone Geyser Basin with cooking pots. The ranger investigated and found 2 chickens in a burlap sack sitting in a hot spring. 

       The group of 10 people, which included a child, also had a cooking pot nearby. When asked this week what they were trying to accomplish, Eric Roberts said “Make dinner.”

      Visitors at Yellowstone National Park must stay on trails and boardwalks in thermal areas and are barred from “throwing anything into thermal features.” 

       The access limits are to protect visitors from the extremely hot water and deceptively strong-looking crust areas surrounding thermal features while throw things into features is banned because it can harm the features 

       Several geysers became permanently plugged decades ago from visitors throwing coins and other items into them.