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Old 11-20-2011, 07:13 PM   #31
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This couple is incredibly short on common sense--
They must not realize that professional photographers capture those close up images by using expensive cameras and lenses the size of your leg. They stay at relative safe distances and aren't actually right in the animals face.
It would have been horrible had that beast charged.
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Old 11-20-2011, 09:55 PM   #32
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Yellowstone Questions:

1. What would be the earliest time of the year to visit without any chance of new snow falls? Late June. We went the last 2 weeks of July and still ran into snow at higher elevations.

2. How many days would you feel is adaquate to see Yellowstone? I have heard 4 days to 7 days. What do you think? We were there for 8 days and barely scratched the surface.
But, we like to explore EVERYTHING. If you prefer to stay in your car, just getting out at visitor centers or very short walks, the 4-7 days might be ok.


3. What park sites are on your "A LIST" that must not be missed?
Great Fountain Geyser and Beehive Geyser were spectacular, especially seeing Beehive Geyser in the evening light – it caused a full double rainbow. But both of those sightings were sheer luck. I don’t know how predictable those two are, but they were much more impressive than Old Faithful.
West Thumb Geyser Basin has a beautiful range of vibrant colors.
Of course, the upper and lower falls are awe inspiring.
The view of the canyon just north of Tower Falls is great, and the rock formations are very different from other areas of the park.
The Artists Paintpots trail was very interesting and colorful.
I’d want to walk all the boardwalks for the main thermal features (not in any particular order): Upper Geyser Basin, Black Sand Basin, Midway Geyser Basin, Lower Geyser Basin, and Norris Geyser Basin.


4. I have heard spending 8 to 10 hours a day in the park is resonable time. Does this sound right?
That’s about what we did.

5. I've heard you need to get into the park early to avoid the traffic during peak season. We took the opposite approach and went into the park after lunch. There was still plenty of sun light even at 9:00 in the evening. Usually around 5:00 people are clearing out for dinner and then you pretty much have the park to yourself. And you also get to see some of the features in a different light.
We ate a huge breakfast, got to the park between 11am-1pm, and stopped at a picnic area for lunch sometime between 2-4pm. The first day, we tried to eat lunch at “lunch time,” and it was ridiculous! You couldn’t even find a parking space, let alone a picnic table between 11am – 1pm. There wasn’t a line to get into the park at that time, though!
It seemed like everyone left the park around 5pm. We learned that’s when to head to the really popular areas like Old Faithful or Midway Geyser Basin.
When we stopped for dinner picnics around 6-8pm, we often got entire picnic areas or parking areas completely to ourselves, even though it was the peak part of the season.

6. Is finding a place to eat a problem in the park or should we bring a cooler? We just brought our cooler into the park with us and stopped at a picnic area and had our dinner.
One day, we thought we’d have a special treat and skip the cooler and eat at the fast food restaurant close to Old Faithful. BLECH! It made McDonald’s look like gourmet dining!
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Old 11-21-2011, 01:24 AM   #33
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Was up there the first time in August ? 1976 (two weeks before the first snow anyhow). Was up there the last time in 2009. Seems like alot of stuff has dried up since the 70's, mainly Mammoth Hot Springs on the northwest corner. Still worth the trip if you have never been up there. Wayne
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Old 11-21-2011, 11:06 AM   #34
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I love all this information coming in from everyone.
I wondered if anyone here has considered making the trip to Yellowstone west entrance and the Grizzly campground for July 4th week?

Maybe we can develop a mini Forest River Owners Group (F.R.O.G.) Rally at Yellowstone?
Anyone ready to make plans?
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Old 11-21-2011, 03:14 PM   #35
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Just found this and thought it may be helpful to all.
Do you agree or would like to add anything?
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TEN Best things to do In Yellowstone National Park
1. OLD FAITHFUL GEYSER - This geyser is the most recognizable or famous attractions within Yellowstone National Park. It is without a doubt the world’s most photographed geyser. It is rightly name as time between eruptions can be estimated within a ten minute range. The eruptions occur on a consistent basis between ninety minutes to two hours. Eruption heights can reach 180 feet.

2. OLD FAITHFUL INN - Designed by Robert Reamer, Old Faithful Inn is the standard in which all of Yellowstone’s architecture is compared to. It was constructed from 1903-1904 with the employment of 1,500 craftsmen. The lobby raises six stories high to the roof of the inn. The interior of the building is truly a site to be seen. The rustic look and feel created by the curvature of log-pole pines is a masterpiece in and of itself. This inn is certainly an extension of its environment. If you are waiting around for Old Faithful to erupt, stop in and explore this magnificent building.

3. MAMMOTH HOT SPRINGS - When discussing family vacation ideas for Yellowstone, Mammoth Hot Springs certainly makes the list.The mammoth area is most notably recognized by tourist for herds of elk, terraces and history. In the early 1880’s the US Cavalry planted grass here at Fort Yellowstone. The elk seem to enjoy this grass more than the grass found on the open range. Elk can be found here all year long but they are most prevalent in the fall as this is mating season. In this area you will also be able to see amazing geological formations created by a chemical reaction of limestone. Some have said that this area of Yellowstone National Park is geology in hyperdrive! Terraces can grow as much as two feet in a year from an active spring.

4. NORRIS GEYSER BASIN - When considering the best things to see in Yellowstone you should stop at Norris Geyser Basin. It is home to the world’s tallest geyser the “Steamboat Geyser” with eruption heights of almost 400 feet. This is three times higher than Old Faithful. This geyser is a little less predictable as intervals between eruptions can range from four days to 50 years. This area is recognized as the oldest and hottest part of the park. It is also famous for colorful bright green and orange hot springs. The display of colors is the result of a type of bacteria that thrive in hot water climates known as thermophiles.

5. GRAND PRISMATIC SPRING - This spring is the largest spring in the park. It is 370 feet in diameter over 121 feet deep. This is actually the third largest hot spring in the world. The spring is filled with vibrant colors of blue, green, yellow and orange. As previously mentioned the colors are indicative of microorganisms called thermophiles that seem to flourish in extreme temperatures. I definitely recommend that you stop and see this brilliant display of nature. The spring is really easy to get to as it is on the way to Old Faithful, that is if you entered from the west gate of the park.

6. WEST THUMB GEYSER BASIN - The hot springs in this area are to say the least picturesque. The combination of hot springs and geyser with the backdrop of Lake Yellowstone is a photographer’s dreams come true. If I was writing this post ten years ago I would make sure to tell you to bring lots of film. One popular attraction here is Fishing Cone. Legend has it that fishermen would catch a fish, and then dip their catch in this boiling hot cone. The fish were cooked right on the fishing line.

7. GRAND CANYON OF YELLOWSTONE - Some would argue that this area is the most stunning 20 miles in Yellowstone and should be at the top of anyone’s family vacation ideas list. The canyon is filled with breathtaking waterfalls and steep drop-offs. The park is home to some 300 waterfalls with the most notable being the upper and lower falls found in this canyon. The rolling crashing water of the upper falls drops a total of 109 feet.

8. LAMAR VALLEY - Do you want to see a wolf? Well your best chance is in Lamar valley. This valley was the restoration site for the Gray Wolf in 1985. You might be surprise to know that as of 2008 there are 51 wolf packs that inhabit the Yellowstone National Park ecosystem. Just a tip early morning is always a great time to see wildlife. Some have said that this area is the “American Serengeti”. The area is home to some of the more popular animals in the park being grizzly bears, bison, elk and of course wolves.

9. ROOSEVELT JUNCTION - This is only a four mile stretch of road. Here you can find a petrified tree that is worth the stop. There is also a towering waterfall and some very unusual geology. Mount Washburn is one of the best places to see bighorn sheep. Some visitors try to feed the sheep and not only put themselves at risk but it can compromise the health of these animals.

10. HAYDEN VALLEY - If I were to use one word to describe this area it would be bison. You have heard the saying “Where the Buffalo Roam” that would be right here in Hayden Valley. Did you know that this is the only area where bison have survived continuously, that is at least within the lower 48 states? Be careful when taking pictures as bison have injured more visitors in the park than any other animal, even more than the almighty grizzly.
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Old 11-21-2011, 05:06 PM   #36
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Mammoth hot springs is worth a visit, especially for the Elk, but the terraces aren't what they used to be. Earthquakes have changed the underground water flow and water no longer flows over the mineral deposits. A few years back when the water flowed over the limestone it used to look like a huge mountain of ice complete with icicles.

If you do head north to Mammoth you might as well continue on up to the North entrance and the Roosevelt Arch for a photo opportunity.

Let me bore you with a few more photos.

This is a small part of the formations at Mammoth and you can see what looks to be icicles hanging from a few of them. When water flowed, it really looked like ice.


If you want to see Elk, head to Mammoth.


This is a small section of Hayden Valley, great for viewing Buffalo and the occasional Grizzly.


Here's a photo of an animal traffic jam. Look how far the oncoming traffic is back up.
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Old 11-21-2011, 06:15 PM   #37
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Hi John.......My sister and BIL have a 40' Class A and they already have reservations at Grizzley for the July 4th week in 2012. We have heard that they are very busy in July.
Have a great trip.
Now I have reservations Jul 1 - 6. Now all we need you guys to drive over and we can have a party. Let them know and I will have the FROG Parking sign out.
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Old 11-21-2011, 08:35 PM   #38
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I sent an email to the Grizzly campground asking about Mosquitos issues in June.

This is their reply.

Yes, this occurs every year, usually around the middle of June for a couple of weeks. The temperatures warm up and the ground thaws out and the snow leaves behind puddles that the mosquitoes live in. Once the puddles and the forest ground dries out the mosquitoes die out and are gone and the rest of the summer is fairly mosquito free. This is normal for our remote mountain location and also occurs inside Yellowstone National Park and the Gallatin National Forest, which our little town is surrounded by.

Sincerely,

Mark Crawford
Yellowstone Grizzly RV Park


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Old 11-22-2011, 01:10 AM   #39
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Iggy sounds like you have got a lot of info. Now I will add my two cents worth

Yellowstone Ques.

#1 We have been to Yellowstone In early June twice and late Aug & early Sept and as has been stated you can have snow any month in Yellowstone.
I prefer early June you might have a little snow but it will all melt off the roads mostly as it comes down. We never had any trouble getting around because of snow some traffice jams caused by wild animals but we don't mine them as the wildlife is what we enjoy.

#2 At least 7 days and more if you can

#3 Our favorite is Lamar Valley because of the wildlife However the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone is Spectacular as is Old Faithful Mammoth Hot Springs In fact the whole park is spectacular

#4 sounds about right to me

#5 We stayed about 8 miles north of West Yellowstone in a NFS Campground and drove in early each day

#6 There is lots of places to eat in the park. We perfer to bring our cooler and picnic where ever we are when we get hungry. In some areas of the park you might have to drive quite a while to find a cafe or other place to eat

Grand Teton Ques.

#1 Colter bay Campground no hookups on side that we stayed in but they have an fullhook up area. Flagg Ranch nice but very expensive for no more than you get besides in Yellowstone we stay gone all day just need a place to sleep The last time we stayed in Turbin Meadow a NfS campground about 6 miles from Moran Wyoning which is just at the north east entrance to Grand Teton no hookups but that is why I have a self contained 5th wheel and a gen.

#2 No the roads are just fine we have a 30ft 5th wheel and had no trouble

#3 No too much out of the way and the roads arn't any better than through the park

Now about campgrounds in Yellowstone we stayed at Fishing Bridge once never again sites are very small and hard to back into. Stayed at the Mammoth Hot Springs NP campground its nice on hookups but the pullthroughs were easy to park in and you can run your gen a few hours in the morning and in the evening The last time we stayed at Galatin NF Rainbow Campground 8 miles north of West Y. this NFS camp has elect hookups as anothe NFS campsite that is only about 3 miles north of west Y. I prefer to stay out side of the Nat. Parks and just drive in each day
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Old 11-22-2011, 02:14 AM   #40
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Well I hit post belore I had uploaded photos so here are a few

Continental Divide east of Moran Wyoming


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Mammoth Hot Springs Campground


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Rainbow NFS Campground with elect.


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Turbin Meadow NFS Campground we had moose is this camp but did not get pictures


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Baby Elk at the Colter Bay Campground glad the mother didn't come back while we were there


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