Yellowstone National Park
The World’s first national park, Yellowstone, is also one of its most unique. The Park arguably hosts the greatest diversity of historical, ecological and geographic significance in our country’s national park system. At over 2.2 million acres, Yellowstone is gigantic and would engulf the states of Delaware and Rhode Island combined. Even if you had the chance to travel Yellowstone’s 300 miles of paved roads, you would only lay eyes 1% of the Park’s magnificent scenery. Inside its protective borders, every large mammal that existed here before the days of Columbus, from bison to elk and even wolves, exists unencumbered by human pressures.
Yellowstone is most easily separated into three distinct districts. The West half of the Park is World renowned for its extraordinary concentration of geothermal features. Old Faithful is merely the superstar of a much greater and breathtaking network of boiling mud pots, geysers and fumaroles that remind visitors that they are standing directly on top of one Earth’s most immense volcanoes. The Northeast quadrant of Yellowstone is the least trammeled and thus gives visitors the best chances of seeing the Park’s most charismatic creatures. The Lamar Valley, which saw the first of Yellowstone’s reintroduced wolves in the 1990’s, is aptly called the American Serengeti. Finally, the Southeast corner of Yellowstone is home to the Park’s most popularized scenic beauties. The Yellowstone River, being fed by the endless Yellowstone Lake, carves out the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, revealing a breathtaking tapestry of yellow, red and orange rock.
As much hype as Yellowstone National Park receives, it still shatters expectations. This is a park that requires multiple days of travel and thoughtful planning. However, the investment more than pays off and this remote land in the Northwest corner of Wyoming must be experienced by every American. The values and ideals that created Yellowstone are the same as those that crafted the United States and the Park’s establishment serves as one of our country’s shining accomplishments to the rest of the World.
Location: Northwest Montana
Best Time to Visit: June-September, Winter on guided tours
Recreation Opportunities: Hiking, Biking, Camping, Wildlife Viewing, Rafting, Skiing, Horseback Riding, Snowshoeing
- Greater Yellowstone Area is the largest intact ecosystem in the lower 48 States and hosts amazing biodiversity and common sightings of the Continent’s largest mammals
- The World’s first national park is home to remarkable array of historical events and structures
- The Park’s incredible density and variety of geothermal features gives way to boundless educational opportunities and inspiration on a family vacation