Yellowstone National Park is a natural wonder that draws millions of visitors each year. The park is home to a variety of outdoor activities, must-see places, and unique experiences. In this guide, we will explore some of the top things to do, see, and know when visiting Yellowstone National Park.
One of the best ways to experience Yellowstone is by hitting the trails. The park offers over 900 miles of hiking trails, ranging from easy nature walks to strenuous backcountry treks. Some popular trails include the Old Faithful Area, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, and the Lamar Valley. Be sure to check trail conditions and bring plenty of water, snacks, and sunscreen.
Yellowstone is home to some of the best trout fishing in the world. Whether you’re an experienced angler or a beginner, there are plenty of opportunities to catch cutthroat, rainbow, and brook trout. Some popular fishing spots include the , the Firehole River, and the Gibbon River. A valid fishing permit is required and can be obtained at park visitor centers or online.
The Old Faithful is one of the most famous geysers in the world and a must-see attraction in Yellowstone. The geyser erupts every 35-120 minutes, shooting hot water and steam up to 185 feet in the air. Visitors can watch the eruption from the Old Faithful Visitor Education Center or the nearby boardwalks.
Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone
The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone is another must-see destination in the park. The canyon is over 20 miles long and up to 1,200 feet deep, offering stunning views of the colorful rock formations, waterfalls, and wildlife. Visitors can take a scenic drive along the North Rim Drive or hike one of the many trails that offer different perspectives of the canyon.
While most visitors come to Yellowstone during the summer months, the park is also a great destination in the winter. The park is open year-round, and the snow-covered landscapes and frozen geysers offer a unique and peaceful experience. Visitors can snowmobile, cross-country ski, or snowshoe through the park or take a guided snowcoach tour to see the geysers and wildlife. Keep in mind that many park facilities and services are closed or limited in the winter, so be sure to check the park website for the latest information.
Norris Geyser Basin
The Norris Geyser Basin is one of the most active geyser basins in the park and home to some of the hottest and tallest geysers in Yellowstone. The basin is also known for its colorful mineral deposits, which give the area a unique and otherworldly appearance. Visitors can take a self-guided tour or a ranger-led hike to explore the basin and learn more about its geothermal features.
Midway Geyser Basin
The Midway Geyser Basin is home to the Grand Prismatic Spring, the largest hot spring in the United States and one of the most photographed places in the park. The spring is known for its vibrant colors, which are caused by different types of thermophilic bacteria that thrive in the hot water. Visitors can take a boardwalk trail to see the spring and other geysers and hot pools in the basin.
The Grant Village Campground is a great option for budget-conscious visitors. The campground offers more than 400 campsites, with amenities such as flush toilets, running water, and fire rings. The campground is located near the West Thumb of Yellowstone Lake and offers easy access to hiking trails, fishing, and boating.
The Old Faithful Lodge Cabins are a great option for those looking for a comfortable and reasonably priced accommodation. The cabins offer basic amenities such as private bathrooms and heating, and are located within walking distance of Old Faithful geyser and other popular attractions in the area.
The Lake Yellowstone Hotel and Cabins is a luxury option for those looking for a more upscale experience. The hotel offers elegant and spacious rooms and cabins, some of which have private balconies with views of the lake. The hotel also offers a restaurant, a lounge, and a gift shop on site.
Under Canvas Yellowstone is a perfect Glamping option for those who want to experience the park’s natural beauty in luxury. The camp offers unique canvas tents, with private bathrooms and comfortable bedding. It is located just a short drive from the park’s main entrance and offers excellent views of the surrounding wilderness.
In conclusion, Yellowstone National Park is a must-see destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you’re interested in hiking, fishing, or wildlife watching, there’s something for everyone in this beautiful and unique park. Don’t miss the Old Faithful geyser, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, and a visit in the winter for a different perspective on this national treasure.