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Best Things to see in Yellowstone National Park Include Wildlife, Geysers, and Waterfalls
Yellowstone National Park became the first national park in America in 1872. Most of the park is located in the state of Wyoming, but its borders stretch into parts of Montana and Idaho. The entrance fee to the park in a car is $25 for a seven-day pass, which also includes access to Grand Teton National Park. Yellowstone is a beautiful place to visit and has something for everyone to see and enjoy, whether you like spectacular waterfalls, abundant wild life, hot springs, geysers, or mountain vistas. My family and I really enjoyed our vacation in Yellowstone National Park. Remember to bring a good camera and a pair of high-powered binoculars on your trip to Yellowstone.
Planning Your Yellowstone Vacation
Some things to keep in mind when visiting Yellowstone are that the park is huge and it is very remote. Cell phone reception in much of the park is spotty, though there is decent reception near most of the visitor centers. Also, it is a good idea to make sure that you have at least half of tank of gas when driving through Yellowstone. Most of the visitor centers have gas stations, but not all of them do. The weather can change at a moments notice, so dress in layers and have rain gear with you at all times. It is vital to stay on the marked paths in the geothermal areas, as the ground may be very thin and fragile. For more safety tips, follow this link to the national parks safety page. Also, remember to drive slowly so that you do not miss anything on the side of the roadway and because of the large amount of wildlife in the park. You really do not want to hit an elk or especially a bison.
Waterfalls in Yellowstone
The waterfalls in Yellowstone National Park are amazing. There are three falls in particular that stand out from the rest: Upper Yellowstone Falls, Lower Yellowstone Falls, and Tower Falls. They are easily accessible and well worth a stop at. I highly recommend Lower Yellowstone Falls because it is over 300 feet tall and it is spectacular.
Wildlife at Yellowstone
You cannot help but to see a lot of wildlife during your visit to Yellowstone National Park. The park is full of wildlife living in their natural habitat. Bison, elk, moose, grizzly bears, black bears, mule deer, bighorn sheep, and gray wolves are just some of the animals that call Yellowstone home. The best places to view wildlife in the park are Lamar Valley and Hayden Valley. The best tips that I can give you are to drive slowly and be alert because you never know when or where you will see an animal. Also, wildlife is most active during the early morning and late evening hours. Remember not to approach any animals in the park and be sure to leave some distance between you and the animal, especially the larger animals in the park.
Geysers and Hot Springs
The geysers in Yellowstone National Park make up 60 percent of the geysers in the world. The most famous geyser is Old Faithful. It erupts every 35 minutes to 2 hours depending on the length of the last eruption. Be sure to ask at the visitor center when the next eruption is projected. Make sure to arrive a few minutes early to get a good spot to watch. It can easily be seen on any side of the geyser. Old Faithful erupts anywhere from 90 to 184 feet high. Many other geysers are located in this area. Take a brief stroll along the board walks and you will see various hot springs and smaller geysers. The coloring of the hot springs is amazing. Four other geysers are also predicted daily and they are Castle, Grand, Daisy, and Riverside. When you are in the geyser basin or around hot springs in general, a strong sulfur odor will be present. I also recommend stopping by the Artist Paint Pots. They look like bubbling paint in different colors.
Other Things to See in Yellowstone
I recommend checking out Yellowstone Lake, which is the largest lake in North America at a high elevation. It is surrounded with white-capped mountains to the south and offers some nice areas to have a picnic lunch. You will see several steam vents near the Lake and it is a very beautiful drive. Mammoth Hot Springs is worth a trip as well. It is a terrace spring that has been stained by the minerals over the years. Mammoth is best seen during the cool hours in order to see the steam rising off of the terrace. I would also advise a trip down the east entrance road, which is mountainous, and offers some stunning views.
Yellowstone National Park has many wonderful things to see and this is an incomplete list of everything it has to offer. Check out the Yellowstone National Park website for more information. My advice is not to rush but to take time to take in the beautiful scenery, take lots of pictures, and enjoy yourself. Feel free to contact me with any questions or comments.