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Yellowstone National Park

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Yellowstone National Park

When Is the Best Time 

Best Weather:
Long, cold winters. Mild, but short summers. The warmest months are from June to August and a great time for hiking. In spring the weather is unpredictable: Cold and even snow can linger into April and May. A warm jacket and rain gears are a must-have in spring. Fall months, especially SEPTEMBER and early OCTOBER may be the best months with mild weather, fewer crowds and lots of wildlife. In winter heavy snowfall occurs from December to March.

Avoiding Tourist Crowds:
July and August are also the peak tourist months. Crowds start to thin out after Labor Day in September. In October it even gets much quieter. A perfect month to enjoy many places without many others. Just keep in mind that a lot of facilities close sometime in October and November: NPS Yellowstone - Operating Hours.

Please note, that September became busier in the recent years. It's less busy than in summer but not a super quiet shoulder month anymore. Follow our September Tips:

  • Go mid-September, as it gets quieter. A great sweet spot week is the last week in September.
  • Go as early as possible. If you get up early you'll avoid heavy traffic at the busy areas like Old Faithful or elk rutting spots along the road.
     

Another great month is the first week of June with warm weather and fewer crowds before the peak summer season starts. Again, keep in mind that June became much busier recently: Go early in the morning and try to avoid weekends.
 

Discover 
A Great Place
US
Where  
United States, Wyoming
Review and Tips 

Yellowstone is the world's first national park, established in 1872. Witness volcano’s hidden power rising up in colorful hot springs, mudpots, and geysers. Explore mountains, forests, and lakes to watch wildlife and watch the beauty of the natural world unfold.

Helpful websites:

https://www.nps.gov/yell/index.htm
http://www.yellowstonepark.com/


Top Tips:

  • Avoid the crowds! Visit the popular areas (NPS - Yellowstone Places To Go) in the early morning or in the evening. Try to get to the busier spots either first thing in the morning or later in the evening when most visitors already left.
  • Bring layers of cloth! Especially in spring, early summer and fall, it's a good idea to bring layers of cloth. With layers, you can peel a layer off or on. Suggestion: Base layer, wool sweater, fleece jacket, waterproof breathable rain gear works.
  • Go hiking! Even a short hike will take you away from crowds and offers a much more rewarding experience of Yellowstone's amazing landscapes.
  • Watch the wildlife! The best times for wildlife spotting is either early morning or in the evening. Read our special wildlife tips: Yellowstone - Wildlife
  • Stop at the Visitor Center and check for the Ranger Programs.

 

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Comments

Apr 25, 2016

Wow, terrific pictures with a fantastic illumination ! And yes - a long time ago even in April we couldn´t go there by a normal care because of so much snow.

Apr 15, 2018

Grand Prismatic Spring has got to be the most dramatic and color spectacular ever found in Yellowstone. During each season it has the ability to change colors in coordination with the weather of the day. The colors are the most prolific when they are found under a sunny sky. The steam has the ability to create an entirely different mood when the wind blows cold and mingles with the warmth of the boiling steam.

Apr 15, 2018

There's nothing more welcoming than the Grand Loop Rd that travels from one end of the park to the other. With each curve appears or bridge that is crossed you find yourself in one stunning and unique landscape after another. The amazing history and stunning beauty of Yellowstone National Park is as unique as a fingerprint. Adventure and photographic memories are the priceless and one of a kind souvenirs we each take home. Memories are relieved, stories are told, and relationships are built when photos are shared.

Apr 15, 2018

Yellowstone's Grand Canyon Lower Falls is an epic experience. The depth in which the water plunges below is quite spectacular. The eroded canyon with it's rich rust colored walls is a sight to behold. Early Spring leaves just a small remnant of Winter's blanket of snow to highlight a contrast in color and rugged character. Standing at Artist Point looking up towards the Brinks demands a commanding presence.

Apr 15, 2018

Lamar Buffalo Ranch, what a special feeling it is to be able to still walk among buildings and working locations of history and wish you could hear what the walls would say!

The historic livestock ranch is located in the Lamar River valley of Yellowstone National Park, in the state of Wyoming. As listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Lamar Buffalo Ranch Historic District established in 1907 includes five buildings: a ranger station used for residence of the assistant buffalo keeper that was moved to the ranch in 1938 from Soda Butte (1915), a pole fenced corral built from 1915 to the 1930s, a log barn for hay and horses (1927), a bunkhouse (1929) which the interior has since been remodeled and is currently used by the park's public stewardship institute, Yellowstone Forever, which conducts classes and seminars there. The ranch was created to preserve one of the last free-roaming American bison (buffalo) herds in the United States. It was started with the 28 bison that were moved from Fort Yellowstone to the Lamar Valley in the northeast corner of the park. The herd at the Lamar Buffalo Ranch was maintained as a semi-domesticated source of additional bison to enhance the park's natural herd. As the ranched herd increased in size, it was released to the open range, where it interbred with the wild herd. After the ranched bison were successfully integrated, the ranch continued to be used to produce hay to feed wild bison in the winter until the 1950s.

The vegetation around the ranch is mostly sagebrush and nonnative grasses that were planted during the period of hay cultivation or migrated into the area. Remnants of irrigation ditches, fencing, and water troughs can still be found. Rose Creek has historically run along side the pole fenced area and down into the Lamar Valley where it provides water access for a variety of wildlife.

Apr 16, 2018

Mammoth Hot Springs ~ The chapel of 1913 in Yellowstone National Park (Fort Yellowstone) was the last existing building completed during the army era. Built of native stone with a slate roof and oak furnishings, it is still used today and is the best preserved building at the fort inside and out.

Apr 16, 2018

Boardwalks of Yellowstone ~ Reminds us that staying on provided walk ways help to insure our safety while we are enjoying the park! Most are a beautiful walk to our destinations and provide great views and opportunities for photos. During winter visits the boardwalks help to guide you in the right direction.

Apr 17, 2018

Color and textures can be found throughout Yellowstone. You will find some of the deepest and brightest colors that can only be found in the park that have never been named. Rugged and chiseled textures run through the thermal landscape and reflect a more primitive time of long ago.

Apr 17, 2018

Yellowstone is filled with many species of trees however it seems the standing dead or those trees that are known for their locations are the most fascinating. In and around the thermal features you can see quite a few lodge pole pines that have died but are still standing. Some trees like the ones found in Lamar Valley are iconic to most frequent visitors as they seem to never change.

Apr 17, 2018

Thermal features such as springs and pools have some of the most vivid colors you'll ever see. The aroma of sulfur is ever present with a lovely mist of steam that feels like a day at the spa. The temperature of the day mixed with the temperature of the thermal feature will determine the amount of steam that's visible and at times will completely cover all the colors you would normally see. The colors are most vivid on clear sunny days.

Apr 17, 2018

Rustic Falls is located in the northwest area of Yellowstone, about four point seven (4.7) miles south of Mammoth Hot Springs on the Grand Loop road. Small but beautiful and takes walking along Grand Loop road next to the guard rail to reach an area to photograph. Driving south is easiest direction to see it as it is located directly under the pull out on the road driving north.

Apr 17, 2018

Soda Butte, a striking hot spring cone about two and a half miles above the mouth of Soda Butte Creek, is the feature that suggested this place name. Parked at the roadside pullout gives you a great view as it is located along side the road. A small steady amount of steam is released and carries the unmistakable aroma of sulfur.

Apr 17, 2018

At Mammoth Hot Springs the travertine terraces are formed from limestone. Thermal water rises through the limestone, carrying high amounts of the dissolved limestone (calcium carbonate). At the surface, carbon dioxide is released and calcium carbonate is deposited, forming travertine, the chalky white mineral forming the rock of travertine terraces. The formations resemble a cave turned inside out. Colorful stripes are formed by thermophiles, or heat-loving organisms. Travertine formations grow much more rapidly than the more common sinter formations in the park because of the "soft" nature of limestone. Due to the rapid deposition, these features constantly and quickly change.
Also located in Mammoth Hot Springs is Liberty Cap that standing 37-feet (11 m) tall, Liberty Cap was named after peaked knit caps from the French Revolution. It was created by a hot spring that was active in one location for a long time. This allowed mineral deposits to build up over that time.

Apr 17, 2018

The Firehole River flows through several significant geyser basins in the park to include the Upper Geyser Basin, which contains the world-famous geyser Old Faithful. The river was named by early trappers for the steam that makes it appear to be smoking as if on fire. The Firehole flows over three of Yellowstone's major waterfalls: Kepler Cascades south of Old Faithful, Firehole Falls and the Cascades of the Firehole in Firehole Canyon. Thermal features empty into the river and slightly raise the water temperature in certain areas. Beautifully colored banks can be seen near thermal features as well. It's one of the most popular fishing locations in Yellowstone.

Apr 17, 2018

The arch constructed over the road became known as Roosevelt Arch because President Theodore Roosevelt, who happened to be vacationing in the park, spoke at the ceremony to lay the cornerstone in 1903. The plaque on the arch is inscribed with a phrase from the legislation that established Yellowstone National Park: “For the benefit and enjoyment of the people.” Today it would be considered inappropriate to embellish the park’s landscape with such a conspicuous, non-functional structure, but Roosevelt Arch continues to serve as a historical marker for a time when cultural values called for a monumental entrance to Yellowstone. The Roosevelt Arch is in the North Entrance Road Historic District and is part of the Fort Yellowstone Historic Landmark District. The structure was conceived by US Engineer Hiram Chittenden; Robert Reamer may have contributed to the design, and architect N.J. Ness also worked on it.

Apr 18, 2018

Abiathar Peak ~ It's elevation 10,928 feet (3,331 m) is a mountain peak in the northeastern section of Yellowstone National Park of Absaroka Range. Located a short distance inside the Northeast Entrance which is located near Cooke City, MT sometimes referred to as Silver Gate. The peak was named by members of the 1885 Hague Geological Survey to honor Charles Abiathar White, a geologist and paleontologist who had participated in early western geological surveys. White never visited Yellowstone.

Apr 18, 2018

The road that leads you in and out of Mammoth Hot Springs from the North Entrance is a wonderful welcome and introduction to Yellowstone NP. I have been greeted by the American Bison, Pronghorn, Coyote, Rocky Mountain Elk, Bighorn Sheep and on that rare occasion a grizzly or black bear! The road runs along side of the Gardiner River and has many places to pull over and snap some photos.

Apr 18, 2018

Winter in Yellowstone is that wonderland you hear of so often. Pristine white crisp snow blankets all in it's path. At times it allows the contrasting colors of evergreens, sagebrush, thermal features, willows and even flowing rivers and creeks adding drama to the already stunning scenery. Yellowstone has a way of turning the ordinary into extraordinary.