Making the Most of Yellowstone: our Top 3 Yellowstone Experiences beyond the typical Top 3

A fellow roadschooler is heading to Yellowstone and asked about our top three tips or tricks for experiencing the park – beyond the amazing Top Three.

Typical (and not-to-miss) Top Three at Yellowstone

  1. Old Faithful (of course! – CROWDS)
  2. Grand Canyon of Yellowstone (yes, seeing this in person – what inspired Congress to make the area a National Park is a must – especially with the Ranger Talk!)
  3. Mammoth Hot Springs (This was pretty awesome – give yourself time to walk it and look out for elk!)

Our “Beyond the Typical” Top Three

1. Geyser Hill

Geyser Hill is behind Old Faithful: There is a “Young Scientist” program where you can borrow a backpack and solve a mystery (it was ‘Are Geysers Alive?’ when we were there). In the backpack they have all kinds of tools – the coolest was an infrared thermometer that you can shoot in the hot springs and pools! You can time it to walk the short loop in between Old Faithful eruptions! We walked it twice – once doing the Young Scientist book and then again when Joe got off work because it was so cool. We happened to be there with the Lion’s Head erupted!

More info: https://www.nps.gov/yell/learn/kidsyouth/young-scientist.htm

2. Dragon’s Mouth

We loved “dragon’s mouth” – a hotspring that is bubbling out of a cage and sounds like a growling dragon. We happened to hit it right around dusk, so there were bison right by the walkway! 

More here: https://www.nps.gov/yell/blogs/dragons-in-yellowstone.htm

3. Prepare for the Drives – including Bear Tooth Highway

There is a LOT of driving and, depending on season probably, a lot of waiting for bison to get off the road or for people to move slowly by bears/bison. (Here are my podcast and book suggestions for Yellowstone!)

IF YOU ARE DIGGING THE DRIVING – we loved driving Bear Tooth Pass into the snow! It’s on the east side of the park. You can drive up and back or take a looong loop through Cody WY (we stopped there and had dinner and watched the nightly shootout) before coming back through the East entrance of the park.

Beartooth map: http://beartoothhighway.com/beartooth-highway-maps/

What about you? What would you suggest people make sure they visit in and around this amazing park?

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