- Near Bozeman, Yellowstone National Park is America's first national park established in 1872.
- YNP hosts an impressive variety of wildlife including grizzly bears, wolves, bison, and elk.
- Geothermal attractions include Old Faithful and 300 other geysers and hot springs.
- Dress for mountain weather, prepare for wildlife encounters, and check with Visitor Centers/Ranger Stations for trail conditions/closures.
Yellowstone National Park is America's first national park established in 1872. Spanning three states (Wyoming, Montana and Idaho), YNP is a major outdoor recreation destination attracting more than 3 million visitors each year. YNP hosts an impressive variety of wildlife including grizzly bears, wolves, bison, and elk. Other geothermal attractions include Old Faithful and many of the world's most extraordinary geysers and hot springs, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, and Yellowstone Lake.
Yellowstone National Park Headquarters
PO Box 168
Mammoth, WY 82190
From Bozeman, Yellowstone is about 90 miles south. Take US HWY I-91 to West Yellowstone and the YNP West entrance.
Yellowstone National Park is open every day, all year. Temperatures vary widely in the park, resting mostly at or above 7,500 feet. Highs reach approximately 90 degrees in summer and 45 below zero in winter. Most Park entrances (except the North and North East) close in November for road maintenance and also in late March/early April to prepare roads for summer traffic. Internal park roads are only open to over-snow transportation during winter.
YNP has more than 300 geysers. Check out famous Old Faithful, erupting about every hour and five minutes, as well as other geysers in the Upper Geyser Basin like Riverside, Grand and Beehive.
Morning Glory Pool is famous for its incredible colors resembling the morning glory flower. In the Lower Geyser Basin, visit the Fountain Paint Pots to see sputtering colored mud.
Wildlife Viewing and Photography
Watch for black bears, grizzlies, wolves, coyotes, antelope, moose, eagles, and buffalo, elk, big horn sheep, and trumpeter swans throughout YNP.
Dress for unpredictable mountain weather, be prepared for wildlife encounters, and check with Visitor Centers and Ranger Stations for updated trail conditions/closures. Easy day hikes in Yellowstone National Park include:
- Old Faithful Area
Fairy falls - 5 to 6 miles - easy
Mystic Falls - 2.4 miles - moderate
Lone Star Geyser - 5 miles - easy
- Grant Village Area
Shoshone Lake - 6 miles - moderate
Lake Overlook - 2 miles - moderate
Riddle Lake - 5 miles - moderate
- Fishing Bridge - Lake Area
Elephant Back Mountain - 3 miles - moderate/difficult
Pelican Creek - 1 mile - easy
Storm Point - 3 miles - easy/moderate
- Canyon Area
Clear Lake/Ribbon Lake Loop 3 to 6 miles - easy
Cascade Lake - 5 miles - easy
Mt. Washburn - 6 miles - somewhat strenuous
- Mammoth Hot Springs Area
Beaver Ponds Loop - 5 miles - easy/moderate
Bunsen Park - 4 miles - somewhat strenuous
Wraith Falls 1 mile - easy
Reserve a YNP camping site and get more information and camping regulations from Xanterra Parks and Resorts, operating campgrounds at Bridge Bay, Canyon, Fishing Bridge RV Park, Grant Village, and Madison. Other campgrounds include Indian Creek, Lewis Lake, Mammoth, Norris, Pebble Creek, Slough Creek, and Tower Falls and can be reserved on a first come first serve basis.
- Reservations: Call 866-439-7375 or Book Online
Fishing and Boating
YNP fishing season for brook, brown, rainbow and lake trout begins the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend (usually the last weekend in May) and extends through the first Sunday in November. Anglers are responsible to adhere to Park fishing and boating regulations and permit/license requirements and should be aware some streams are closed to protect fish populations. Native fish that must be released unharmed include the Arctic grayling, cutthroat trout, and mountain whitefish
Located south of Bozeman at the junction of US Highway 1-91/287 and US Highway 20, the rustic town of West Yellowstone leads to the YNP west entrance and approximately 180 miles of groomed snowmobile trails. Entrance fees to YNP start at $15 per snowmobile/day and riders are encouraged to contact Yellowstone National Park online?or via phone at (307) 344-2107 for more information.
Popular snow coach tours travel through Old Faithful, Yellowstone Grand Canyon, and the Mammoth Hot Springs areas and cost about $100 to $255 per person, providing a fun, warm, safe transportation alternative.
Cross-Country Skiing and Snowshoeing
Backcountry Use Permits are required for overnight ski trips and maps are available from Xanterra Parks & Resorts and YNP Visitor Centers. Popular ski and snowshoe areas in YNP include:
- Old Faithful
Travelers are encouraged to check weather and road conditions/closures before and during travel to Yellowstone National Park:
- Montana Department of Transportation, 800-226-7623
- Wyoming Department of Transportation, 888-996-7623