An Idaho man is in hot water after he tried to use a hot spring as a hot pot. Yellowstone National Park has banned him and his sous chefs following an incident where they used a thermal spring in the park to cook chicken, according to East Idaho News.
The incident occurred on Aug. 7 when the rogue gourmand was spotted hiking toward the Shoshone Geyser Basin with several others in tow, armed with cooking pots. When a ranger investigated the report, he discovered a group of 10, including one child, hanging out while two whole chickens in a burlap sack floated in the nearby hot spring.
The man, who was not named in the official report, and two others were cited for “foot travel in a thermal area.” The man pleaded guilty to the charges on Sept. 10 in a Yellowstone court. He was ordered to pay $600 for each charge and serve two years of unsupervised probation. He is also forbidden from entering Yellowstone during that time.
The park prohibits any travel beyond boardwalks or designated trails inside hydrothermal areas due to safety concerns. Active geysers are found throughout 3,472 square miles of Yellowstone and the water can reach temperatures that exceed 400°F. In fact, according to the National Park Service, hot springs have injured or killed more people than any other natural feature in the park.
But despite warnings and signage prohibiting this sort of activity, the hot springs chicken chef wasn’t the first person to cook something in a thermal spring. In 2001, KING-TV’s “Evening Magazine” host John Curley and his producer headed to the park to re-enact a story they had heard about early tour guides showing off the geysers’ heat by cooking meat for visitors, according to the Montana Standard. Curley and his producer were fined $150 and put on a two-year probation for “disturbing mineral deposits in a national park and stepping off trails near steaming geysers.”
Feature image via Wiki Commons.