At national parks, the confusing reality of the government shutdown’s first day

At national parks, the confusing reality of the government shutdown’s first day

By Rob Kuznia, Deby Dixon and Diana Crandall

Jan. 20, 2018

JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK, Calif. — Jay Brown and Michelle Tukel picked a surreal weekend to visit sprawling Joshua Tree National Park. They arrived from Detroit to find the Southern California desert covered with a morning dusting of snow, and it was — briefly — colder than Michigan.

Stranger yet, the popular park was open but eerily devoid of staff.

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