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Jul 12, 2013 - The Associated Press

Yellowstone hits 1 million already

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK -- The number of people visiting Yellowstone National Park so far this year has topped 1 million.

The National Park Service reports that more than 744,000 recreational visitors entered the park in June, bringing the six-month total to just over 1 million.

The world's first national park attracts about 3 million visitors a year.

July is typically the park's peak visitation month, followed by August, June, September and May.

Council member pleads guilty to DUI

SHERIDAN -- Sheridan City Council member Shelleen Smith has been sentenced to a year of unsupervised probation after pleading guilty to driving under the influence.

Smith previously pleaded not guilty but changed her plea on Thursday.

She declined comment.

She was arrested on April 26. Court documents say her blood-alcohol level was 0.12 percent. The legal limit is 0.08 percent.

Smith was elected in November.

Glider, climbers injured in park

JACKSON -- A paraglider and two climbers are recovering from injuries in separate accidents at Grand Teton National Park.

Park spokeswoman Jackie Skaggs said paraglider Rebecca Bredehoft was seriously injured Wednesday after a hard landing in Death Canyon. It's illegal to land in the park, but Skaggs says Bredehoft received a warning rather than a citation.

Also Wednesday, a climber from Austin, Texas, fell while on a guided climb of the Grand Traverse after he grabbed a rock that pulled loose. He injured his ankle and was flown out Thursday.

Later Thursday, rangers reached a Jackson woman who had a facial injury and possible head injury after a fall at the Golden Staircase of the Exum Ridge on the Grand Teton.

College tries outdoor degree

GILLETTE -- Gillette College is starting a pilot program for an associate degree in outdoor leadership.

The program will offer classes for a range of fields including agriculture and environmental science.

It's designed for students who want to transfer to four-year colleges as well as people seeking work as soon as they get the degree.

The pilot program will also be offered at Sheridan College through the Northern Wyoming Community College District. If the program attracts sufficient students, the Wyoming College Commission could make it permanent.

Courses will begin in the fall.

BLM to sell coal near Cordero Rojo

CHEYENNE -- The U.S. Bureau of Land Management is preparing to auction off $149 million tons of federal coal next to a surface mine in Campbell County.

The coal underlies a 1,300-acre area known as the Maysdorf II North Coal Tract. The BLM says the coal will be offered for lease to the qualified high bidder.

Bids will be unsealed in Cheyenne on Aug. 21.

The tract is located next to Cloud Peak Energy's Cordero Rojo mine 15 miles southeast of Gillette.

The company that wins the lease will need to make an annual rental payment of $3 per acre and royalties equal to 12.5 percent of the coal's value.

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