Yellowstone National Park is simply massive. Encompassing 2.2 million acres, the park has grizzly bears, wolves, bison, elk and two-thirds of the world’s geysers. Top on the list of attractions is Old Faithful Geyser. With stunning views, one can truly enjoy the work of mother nature.
Two of the most splendid National Parks in the country, the-one-of-its-kind Yellowstone National Park and the magnificent Grand Teton National Park, are part of Wyoming, which along with the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area and Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area, offer brilliant vacationing experiences for the entire family. The Dragon’s Mouth, Mud Volcano and Yellowstone Lake are some of the beautiful destinations within Yellowstone National Park. Additionally, the over 10 state parks, 5 major rivers, and the numerous lakes make outdoors a sheer pleasure. Winters draw tourists to world-class skiing resorts.
Situated in the western part of the US, Wyoming has mountain ranges and prairie lands as a large part of its terrain. Wyoming’s natural world is by itself the greatest reason to visit the state. However, the fascinating historical background of the native peoples has contributed to the innumerable historic sites across Wyoming. Devil’s Tower National Monument, Fort Caspar Museum, Cheyenne Frontier Days Old West Museum, Wyoming Territorial Prison State Historic Site, and Buffalo Bill Historical Center are some of the noted destinations of the past.
Of course, there is one unsettling thing about Yellowstone National Park. Literally. In recent years, scientists and park rangers have notice fairly massive movements in the park. The first discovery was the fact one of the lakes was “slipping” sideways at a rather dramatic rate. After extensive investigations, it was discovered that the Park sits on a massive magma vent. The vent is so massive that should it blow… Well, lets just say it would be a good year to travel abroad. Despite rumors to the contrary, the park is safe and a supervolcanic event is extremely unlikely.
Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone is more than geysers galore! The colors, canyons, and wildlife at Yellowstone make it one of the most diverse national parks to visit. Yellowstone is located primarily in Wyoming, though it also extends into Montana and Idaho. The park was the first of its kind and is known for its wildlife and its many geothermal features, especially Old Faithful Geyser, one of the most popular features in the park. It has many types of ecosystems, but the subalpine forest is dominant.
Tours of the park can be arranged by horseback, stagecoach, motorcoach. There are Lake Yellowstone cruises, guided fishing trips, and photo shooting safaris too. The park has information centers, visitor centers, ranger stations where you will find restrooms, exhibits, first aid, books, general stores, and backcountry permits
- Park is open all year round. It has over 2 million acres of unspoiled wilderness. Yellowstone is known for its wildlife, beautiful scenery, and fly fishing.
- Yellowstone has over 300 geysers and over 290 waterfalls.
- Old Faithful Geyser is in Yellowstone Park and is named so because its eruptions are at regular intervals of 65 minutes or so.
- There are large hot springs at Thermopolis and Saratoga in the Yellowstone Park area.
- There are over 50 species of mammals and over 311 species of birds making the area a birdwatchers and wildlife enthusiast haven.
- There are over 1700 species of plants and 466 trails for hiking.
- The highest peak is Eagles Peak at 11,358 ft.
- The average daytime temperature in the summertime is 70 degrees.
Yellowstone Must-See Places
Yellowstone is an unforgettable experience. Lose yourself in the wonder of nature – deep canyons, stunning wildlife and steaming geysers. All these attractions make Yellowstone one of the top park destinations. No two experiences are the same; what will yours be?
1. Yellowstone’s unparalleled array of hydrothermal features–geysers, hot springs, mud pots, and steam vents–provide evidence of the active volcano beneath our feet. In the 40 miles between Mammoth Hot Springs and Old Faithful, you’ll see travertine terraces at Mammoth Hot Springs, acidic features at Norris Geyser Basin, mud pots and geysers at Fountain Paint Pot, giant hot springs at Midway Geyser Basin, plus Biscuit and Black Sand basins near Old Faithful. West Thumb Geyser Basin is 17 miles east of Old Faithful; Mud Volcano is north of Yellowstone Lake.
2. The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River extends from just south of Canyon Village north to Tower Junction. The most famous and spectacular section, including the Upper and Lower Falls, is seen from overlooks along the North and South Rim roads near the Canyon Village area. The northernmost extent of the canyon is visible from Tower Fall and Calcite Springs overlooks, south of Tower Junction.
3. Yellowstone Lake is the largest high elevation lake (above 7,000 feet) in the Western Hemisphere. It has 110 miles of shoreline and is approximately 400 feet deep at its deepest spot. With the Absaroka Mountains as a stunning backdrop, this area offers boating, fishing, hiking, and wildlife viewing, and hydrothermal features.
The best thing about Yellowstone is simply the opportunity to truly be in nature. I’ve only been once, and was ill, but a return is definitely on the “to do” list.
- Go hiking, fishing, fly-fishing, boating, camping, wildlife viewing, bird watching.
- Take guided snowmobile trips in winter.
- See the famous sites like Old Faithful geyser and Lower Falls.
- Hike to secluded spots – Be careful of wildlife.
- See Grizzly bears, black bears, antelope, mule deer, bison, elk, moose coyotes, bighorn sheep, wolves, otters, and other wildlife.
- Fish the Yellowstone River for rainbow trout, brook trout, brown trout, and cutthroat trout.
History of Yellowstone
Yellowstone National Park was the first national park in the US. It was established in 1872 after the 1871 expedition of the area by Dr Ferdinand Hayden. The report from the expedition contained photos of the area by William Jackson and paintings by Thomas More.
- Yellowstone National Park, the world’s first, was authorized by an act of Congress in 1872.
- Yellowstone lies within one of the world’s largest volcanic calderas, and is comprised primarily of a high, forested, volcanic plateau that is traversed by the Continental Divide.
- The park receives 3 million total recreation visits annually.
- The largest concentration of geysers in the world is in the Upper Geyser Basin in the Old Faithful area.
Yellowstone, encompassing 2.2 million acres, is one of America’s premier wilderness areas. Most of the park is backcountry and managed as wilderness. Over 1,100 miles (1770 km) of trails are available for hiking. However, there are dangers inherent in the wilderness: unpredictable wildlife, changing weather conditions, remote thermal areas, cold water lakes, turbulent streams, and rugged mountains with loose, “rotten” rock.
Visiting wilderness means experiencing the land on its terms. If you choose to explore and enjoy the natural wonders of Yellowstone, there is no guarantee of your safety. Be prepared for any situation. Carefully read all backcountry guidelines and regulations.
Campsite availability is first-come, first-serve at the following seven campgrounds in Yellowstone: Indian Creek, Lewis Lake, Mammoth, Norris, Pebble Creek, Slough Creek, and Tower Fall. Campgrounds may be filled by 11 a.m.; arrive early to obtain a site. Overnight camping of any type (tent, vehicle, or RV) outside designated campgrounds is not permitted.
Xanterra Parks & Resorts operates campgrounds at Bridge Bay, Canyon, Fishing Bridge RV Park, Grant Village, and Madison. Same-day reservations can be made by calling: 307-344-7901. Future reservations can be made by calling: 307-344-7311 or 1-866-GEYSERLAND (439-7375).
There are numerous outfitters in Wyoming who can take you hunting or fishing. Hunt for elk, deer, moose, bear, goat and more wildlife. Every outfitter company is different. Many offer fishing trips to major rivers or mountain streams. Some offer horseback riding, overnight camping, wilderness pack trips, fly-fishing, chuckwagon dinners, private scenic river tours, backpacking trips and more. It’s best to find an outfitter because they know the best places to fish or hunt. At Yellowstone National Park, you can find elk, buffalo, moose, coyotes, deer, bighorn sheep, grizzly bears, black bears, and more wildlife.
Old Faithful Inn
Old Faithful Inn is said to be the largest structure of logs and boulders in the world. Old Faithful Inn, located in Yellowstone National Park near the famous geyser of the same name, is a landmark building that attracts visitors from around the world.
Old Faithful Inn was originally built to house rail passengers. The Northern Pacific Railroad supplied the financing, and the Yellowstone Park Association provided the planning. And Seattle architect, Robert Reamer, was commissioned to build it. The ground was broken and much of the construction took place in the cold, harsh conditions of a Yellowstone winter with a workforce of 40 skilled craftsmen. Cut-timber was taken from nearby forest land, and the stone is from the Black Sand Basin. In the spring of 1904, Old Faithful Inn was completed, and open for business and sightseeing.
Old Faithful Inn featured over 140 rooms. Rooms with electricity, plumbing, and steam heat, wonderful luxuries in 1904. The exterior is absolutely stunning, and the interior is just as breathtaking. The signature feature at Old Faithful Inn is the spectacular lobby. It is four levels that surround a beautiful atrium. Knotted burl wood forms staircase bannisters, huge logs tower to the ceiling 90-feet up, and there are rich leather chairs placed about.
Old Faithful Inn is one of the premier wilderness lodges in the world, located in America’s first National Park.
Lodging in Yellowstone is operated by Xanterra Parks & Resorts. Visit their website for information about accommodations or phone 307-344-7311 or 1-866-GEYSERLAND (439-7375) for reservation information.
Canyon Lodge and Cabins
Canyon Country, 1 Grand Loop Rd, Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone National Park
Lake Lodge Cabins
Lake Country, One Grand Loop Rd, Yellowstone National Park
Lake Yellowstone Hotel & Cabins
Lake Country, One Grand Loop Rd, Yellowstone National Park
Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel & Cabins
Mammoth Country, One Grand Loop Rd, Yellowstone National Park
Old Faithful Inn
Geyser Country, One Grand Loop Rd, Yellowstone National Park
Old Faithful Lodge Cabins
Geyser Country, Yellowstone National Park