SALT LAKE CITY -- Utah's national parks were bustling with visitors over the weekend as they reopened for the first time since the partial government shutdown began Oct. 1.
National parks official say thousands flocked to the state's red rock recreation spots after gates were reopened Friday and Saturday at Zion, Bryce, Arches, Canyonlands and Capitol Reef national parks.
The state sent $1.67 million to the U.S. government to pick up the tab for 10 days in hopes of saving its lucrative fall tourist season.
There is still uncertainty among businesses in the tourist towns because the parks could be closed again Oct. 21 if the government shutdown is ongoing. Utah Gov. Gary Herbert has scheduled a special legislative session to discuss the possibility of finding funds to keep them open beyond that date.