Winter in Yellowstone

January 10-16, 2019
January 24-30, 2019

Winter is magical in Yellowstone, when visitors are few and wildlife viewing is outstanding. In the chilled air, see bubbling mud pots and gushing geysers eerily veiled in steam. With expert guidance, this seven-day journey, with insight provided by a New York Times-selected expert, puts one of our greatest ecosystems on full display.

Yellowstone is America’s first national park, and one of its busiest, but not in winter. Journey deep into Yellowstone over snow-packed roads, stopping often to explore the wilderness. See the dramatic iced-over Upper Falls at the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River, and watch Old Faithful’s dramatic eruptions. Hike the boardwalks and trails around the Upper Geyser Basin to see colorful thermal pools and steaming fumaroles. Drive through Grand Teton National Park and take a horse-drawn sleigh through the National Elk Refuge in Jackson Hole, where over 7,500 elk spend each winter. This is your chance to feel at one with nature.

travel deeper:

guide expert

Jim Robbins
Jim Robbins has written for the New York Times for more than 35 years, primarily on science and environmental issues. He has also written five books. His first, about Yellowstone National Park and the West, wasLast Refuge; Environmental Showdown in the American West. He has just completed a sixth book about the future of birds in a changing world. He has lived in Helena, Mont. for forty years.



Bozeman, Montana: Welcome to Montana

After arriving in Bozeman, Mont., and meeting your fellow Times travelers, drive through Paradise Valley to the small town of Gardiner, Mont., Yellowstone National Park’s North Entrance. Check into the Best Western by Mammoth Hot Spring and gather for a welcome reception and dinner.


Yellowstone National Park: The Lamar Valley

Depart before dawn for an unforgettable day of wildlife viewing deep in the northern range and Lamar Valley. Using spotting scopes, observe the resident herds in the valley. Wolves were reintroduced in 1995 and have flourished here, creating a new dynamic in the valley.

 DAY 3

Yellowstone National Park: Yellowstone and Old Faithful

This morning, board snow coaches for a spectacular trip through Yellowstone. Stop at several geyser basins and at the stunning Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River to see the dramatic, iced-over Upper and Lower Falls. Yellowstone sits on one of the world’s largest supervolcanoes, though nothing has erupted for more than 600,000 years. This constant activity creates the hot springs, geysers and other unique features of the park. Check into the hotel, then stroll the short distance to Old Faithful to watch its spectacular eruptions, wreathed in steam. Old Faithful was named by members of the Washburn Expedition that charted the area in 1870, who reported that it erupted “nearly hourly.” The truth is that the eruption interval can be anywhere from 35 minutes to two hours.

 DAY 4

Yellowstone National Park: Upper Geyser Basin

Hike the boardwalks and trails of the Upper Geyser Basin, which contains the largest concentration of geysers in the world. See a fascinating array of geothermal features, including the amazing colors of the Morning Glory Pool, bubbling mud pots and steaming fumaroles. Spend the afternoon at leisure, taking advantage of the nearby trails, traveling to the more distant geyser basins, or simply relaxing in front of the fire at the Snow Lodge.


Grand Teton National Park, WY: Across the Continental Divide

Travel by snow coach to Flagg Ranch, Yellowstone’s South Entrance. Cross the Continental Divide and drive through Grand Teton National Park. Protected through the efforts of John D. Rockefeller, among other conservationists, the Grand Tetons are among the country’s youngest mountain ranges, as seen by the sharp peaks of its three iconic mountains. Visit the National Museum of Wildlife Art, where a stunning collection of works is housed in a building that appears to emerge from the earth like a natural outcropping of rock. Continue to Jackson Hole and enjoy a free evening.


Jackson Hole, WY: National Elk Refuge

Explore Jackson during a free morning. This afternoon, visit the National Elk Refuge, which was established in 1912 to protect habitat and provide sanctuary for the country’s largest elk herd. Take a horse-drawn sleigh ride through the refuge where over 7,500 elk and as many as 48 other mammal species spend the winter. Celebrate your Western adventure at a festive farewell dinner this evening.


Homeward Bound

Depart Jackson this morning on individual flights home.

trip details

Best Western by Mammoth Hot Springs 
Located near the north entrance of Yellowstone National Park, the Best Western by Mammoth Hot Springs is a rustic property that features modern amenities and is an ideal jumping-off platform from which to explore the park.

Old Faithful Snow Lodge
Yellowstone’s newest hotel features heavy timber construction, with creative wildlife and park themes inside.

Rustic Inn Creekside Resort and Spa
Located on 12 lush acres adjacent to the National Elk Refuge and just a few blocks from Jackson’s lively town square, the Rustic Inn Creekside Resort & Spa in Jackson Hole welcomes guests with warm Western hospitality.

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