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On the Yosemite Twitter account, officials said Sunday a "lack of the restrooms and resulting impacts from human waste" forced campgrounds to close.

As the government shutdown persists, nature lovers are coping with overflowing toilets and garbage cans, and improvised open-air bathrooms.

Joshua Tree, more than 792,000 acres of national park nestled between Palm Springs to the south and the town of Joshua Tree to the north, will remain open during the shutdown but its popular campgrounds will close at noon Wednesday, according to the National Park Service.

With no sign of the government shutdown ending, American national parks are left severely understaffed and uncleaned. However, the number of visitors has swelled, "no one is at the gate", and "no one is collecting a fee". Less civic-minded folks are illegally off-roading, tromping though delicate natural areas that are off-limits, and leaving behind mountains of garbage that can endanger wildlife.

It also issued a reminder that normal park rules and regulations still apply and violators will be cited.

Trash begins to accumulate along the National Mall near the Washington Monument due to a partial shutdown of the federal government.

Visitors to Joshua Tree National Park may want to re-think their plans this week as the park will close down all of its campgrounds on January 2 due to the government shutdown.

Yosemite National Park in California also daces similar struggles.

While Washington continues to butt heads over the funding for Trump's border wall, the partial government shutdown has seen hundreds of thousands of federal government employees put on furlough, including rangers, cleaners, and other staff at numerous U.S. national parks.

Volunteers and nonprofit groups like Friends of Joshua Tree National Park are stepping in to help but can't make up for everything that would normally be done. Although, there will be no park rangers on staff to enforce the closures - so all they can do is close designated camping areas and restrooms.

"I love the park", he tells TIME. Volunteers and "essential staff" are doing their best to keep the park services running along, but it's led to filthy restroom facilities without toilet paper and tourists relieving themselves along the side of the road, reports the Los Angeles Times.

The National Park Service noted that the pit toilets were near capacity and human waste in public areas was becoming a problem, adding that illegal off-roading and other harmful actions were also causing damage to the park. Indian Cove and Black Rock campgrounds will be open for day-use only, sunrise to sunset.


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