A Guide to Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is located primarily in Wyoming USA and receives approximately 2 million visitors annually
Yellowstone National Park is located primarily in Wyoming USA and receives approximately 2 million visitors annually

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is one of the best known places to camp and experience the great outdoors in the world. Yellowstone is often credited as being the first nationally protected park on Earth. Founded March 1, 1872 by President Ulysses S. Grant, Yellowstone Park is widely recognized not only for pristine beauty but for it's very unique geothermal activity and abundance of wildlife.

Yellowstone National Park is located mostly in the State of Wyoming in the United States of America with some portions located in the States of Montana and Idaho. The park covers an area of almost 3, 468 square miles (8983 square kilometers). Over two million people visit the park every year with July being the busiest month for tourists. The park is open all year, however some of the roads in the park are closed from November to April for maintenance and reconstruction. Yellowstone is also designated a UNESCO world heritage site.

Bison roam freely around Yellowstone National Park.  All animals are wild so do not approach or try to feed them
Bison roam freely around Yellowstone National Park. All animals are wild so do not approach or try to feed them

Terrain and Wildlife

Yellowstone contains many lakes, rivers, plains, canyons and mountain ranges along with many geysers and hot springs. Yellowstone Lake is one of the largest of the high-altitude lakes in North America, and the park sits on the Yellowstone Caldera which is the largest supervolcano in North America. The Yellowstone Caldera is considered an active volcano whose eruptions have had devastating effects on North America several times in the past two million years.

Several hundred different species of animals can be found in the park. Some of the best known are the park's herd of bison, elk, wolves, and of course bears. There are other animals such as birds, mammals, and reptiles that can be found in the park too, many of them are listed as endangered or threatened underscoring the need to keep this area protected. All animals found in Yellowstone National Park are wild and must not be fed or approached.

The majority of trees found in the park are conifer trees such as the Lodgepole Pines. Willow and Quaking Aspen are also prevalent in the park. As an example of how an ecosystem works together, the Aspen trees are making a comeback in the park because as wolves are reintroduced to the area, the elk change their grazing locations which allows the trees to grow. There are many different species of wild flowers in the park which mainly bloom from May to September.

Old Faithful was the first named of the 300 geysers in the park and now erupts every 91 minutes
Old Faithful was the first named of the 300 geysers in the park and now erupts every 91 minutes

Geysers and Attractions

Yellowstone National Park's best known attractions are the geothermal features which are located throughout the park. The park is located over an active volcano which heats up the ground water causing geysers to erupt and natural hot springs. There are over 300 active geysers in the park and over 10, 000 geothermal features. The Yellowstone area is home to 65% of the geysers and 50% of the geothermal features found on the planet. The best known geyser is "Old Faithful" which erupts every 91 minutes and has for centuries. The world's largest geyser the "Steamboat Geyser" is also located within the park. The Beehive Geyser is yet another popular, although smaller geyser located within the park boundries.

There are 9 visitors centers and museums in Yellowstone Park and nearly 2000 historical landmarks and buildings open to the public. There are approximately 1,100 miles of hiking trails. Visitors can reserve one of 2000 campsites in 12 campgrounds at rates of around $12 to $22 per night. Spectacular backcountry campsites require a permit and are only accessible by hiking or horseback. Hunting is not permitted in the park, however fishing is permitted with a park fishing permit. Many areas are fly fishing only and boating is restricted to non-motorized vehicles on a 5 mile (8 Kilometer) section of the Lewis River. There is a marina for park visitors on Yellowstone Lake. There is also a Medical Clinic located at Mammoth Hot Springs which can provide emergency care.

There are over 10, 000 amazing geothermal features in Yellowstone National Park, such as  these hot springs
There are over 10, 000 amazing geothermal features in Yellowstone National Park, such as these hot springs

Weather and Reservations

Dress for the conditions in Yellowstone. Summer month temperatures range from 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 28 degrees Celsius) during the day and down to 32 degrees Fahrenheit (0 degrees Celsius) at night. During the winter, temperatures range from 0-20 degrees Fahrenheit (-20 to -5 degrees Celsius) in the day to below 0 degrees Fahrenheit (-20 degrees Celsius) at night. Snow is possible during any month of the year.

If your family is looking to experience the marvels of mother nature this year, take a camping or day trip to view the ancient wonder of Yellowstone National Park.
For more information visit the website: http://www.nps.gov/yell/

Comments 6 comments

Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

Truly beautful and one to bookmark in my 'Armchair travelling' slot.

Take care and have a great weekend.

Eddy.


Mike Outdoors profile image

Mike Outdoors 4 years ago from Somewhere in Canada Author

It is a beatuiful place.

Thanks for your comment and have a great weekend yourself.

Mike


Sherry Hewins profile image

Sherry Hewins 4 years ago from Sierra Foothills, CA

I have seen part of Yellowstone, we rode through it on our way to Sturgis, stopped and saw Old Faithful, but someday we'll have to go back and really give it it's due. Thanks for a great hub.Voted up and beautiful.


Mike Outdoors profile image

Mike Outdoors 4 years ago from Somewhere in Canada Author

Yellowstone is very beautiful-and Sturgis is something to see too. I hope you are able to get back to Yellowstone someday and enjoy all it has to offer :)


mary615 profile image

mary615 4 years ago from Florida

This is a place I have always wanted to go; one of these days.....

Thanks for all the good info on Yellowstone National Park.

I voted this UP, etc. and will share.


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

I shall keep this park in mind. Not sure when I will get to that part of the United States but if I do, I will make a stop in Yellowstone for sure. I heard lots about it previously and your writing is encouraging, in terms of putting in the effort to get there.

Thank You for sharing all this information. I like the photos too!

Cheers!

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