Yellowstone National Park

Last Week to Visit Yellowstone — If You Dare

Judging by some phone calls we’ve received in our office the past few weeks, folks do not realize that Yellowstone National Park actually closes for part of the year due to weather. We’re approaching one of those periods now: the end of fall and beginning of winter, when facilities shift to winter usage and anything left open is shut down. So, if you’re debating whether to hot Old Faithful Geyser or the West Thumb Geyser Basin, you’ll need to go this week. It probably will not be an easy jaunt: snow has already descended several times in the Park this month, forcing temporary road closures and the early closure of the Dunraven Pass and the Beartooth Highway. Visitors who are still considering that fall trip to see Old Faithful erupt or take that perfect picture of the Lower Falls from Artist Point better do so soon. Roads to most of the park’s popular tourist destinations close for the season at 8:00 a.m. Monday, November 7. If you go, be warned services are limited. The Old Faithful Visitor Center and the Geyser Grill Fast Food restaurant at the Snow Lodge remain open, but that’s about it in the Old Faithful complex. Everything in Canyon, Lake and Grant villages is completely shut down. Some services, including the General Store, Mammoth Campground, post office, clinic and the Albright Visitor Center, remain open year-round in Mammoth Hot Springs. In fact, the only Park road open to wheeled vehicle travel all year is the section from the North Entrance at Gardiner, Montana, through Mammoth Hot Springs, Tower Junction, and the Lamar Valley on to the park’s Northeast Entrance and the communities of Silver Gate and Cooke City, Montana. According to Park officials, visitors driving to and in Yellowstone during the fall and winter are encouraged to have flexible travel plans and be prepared for changing weather conditions. Temporary travel restrictions or closures can occur at any time without notice. Mud and snow tires or tire chains may be required. When in doubt, call the road-conditions line at 307/344-2117. —- Keep up with what’s happening in Yellowstone by signing up for the free weekly Yellowstone Insider newsletter. Subscribe today! More details here. Follow Yellowstone Insider on Facebook! Click this link to go to our Facebook page, which features story updates.   We’ve also set up a free Twitter account so you can receive updates on the device of your choice.

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