36 National Park Service employees on furlough at Lake Meredith

36 National Park Service employees on furlough at Lake Meredith

FRITCH - From the Grand Canyon all the way to Gettysburg, all 401 national parks are closed and over 21,000 park service employees furloughed due to the government shut down.

The Lake Meredith National Recreation Area and the Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument near Fritch are closed and its 36 employees on furlough. That means no fishing, hunting, boating, or camping near the lake.

Park Superintendent Robert Maguire said Tuesday all over night campers already in the park have until 6 p.m. on Thursday to leave the park. All coming events and programs, including the "Alibates Rocks! Flintfest 2013," are canceled until further notice.

Traffic to Lake Meredith was already hurting thanks to the drought,  but employees at the only bait shop left in the area say their business is still surviving from fishing and hunting in the park and they're worried about how the shutdown will effect them.

"It does make me mad to a point that they're going to take a way really the only thing we do for fun around here. It's a big part of the population around here. That's what we do," C.J's Bait Shop employee Dusti Wolfe said.

All campgrounds, restrooms and roads, except for Highway 1319 which cuts through the park, are closed.

The National Park Service says October is traditionally the most busy time of year for them. They estimate to lose about $450,000 a day while the government is shut down.