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Bozeman to Yellowstone May 19 to May 25th

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Chicago, Illinois
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Bozeman to Yellowstone May 19 to May 25th

2 of us are planning on flying into Bozeman to get to Yellowstone arriving at 10 AM May 18th and departing early morning on 5/25. We have 5 days to spend and would like to see most of the YSTN park.

I am looking for recommendations for:

1. what to see in the park

2. where to stay (in park should we stay in one place or jump around based on area we visit each day or stay outside of park?)

Any suggestions to help plan the trip would be great.

N. Idaho
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for Yellowstone National Park
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1. Re: Bozeman to Yellowstone May 19 to May 25th

You are welcome to look over the posts on the Yellowstone forum and post there for specifics on the Park.


We usually recommend staying at 2 different places. Your dates are still fairly early so not all services will be open in the Park. Here is a link to what is open including lodging. If you book in-park lodging, book only thru Xanterra.com the official park concessionaire. It will likely show completely full, but if you keep checking you may be able to pick up some rooms. You will probably want to spend the night prior to departure in Bozeman if it is an early flight.


You can also stay in the Gateway cities of West Yellowstone and Gardiner.

We can help you with what to see once you get your lodging settled.


2. Re: Bozeman to Yellowstone May 19 to May 25th

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West Yellowstone...
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3. Re: Bozeman to Yellowstone May 19 to May 25th

Welcome to the forum!

I will try to answer some of your questions, but would also point out that you may have more attention from the Yellowstone regulars if you post in the Yellowstone National Park forum - tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g60999-i481-Yellow… (you have posted in the forum for the town of West Yellowstone). You will also be able to browse and search the posts and answers by many travelers who have come before you.

You have allotted a good amount of time for visiting Yellowstone. This is good. However, you may have some trouble securing the accommodations you want (assuming you are talking about next month). National park lodging books up well in advance, sometimes a year or more before arrival! The good news is that if you're flexible and willing to move around, you can likely still find lodging in the park for most of your nights. Use Xanterra to book your reservations: www.YellowstoneNationalParkLodges.com or call them directly for assistance in piecing together the availability for your dates, 866-(439-7375).

I would recommend staying in Gardiner or West Yellowstone your first night. Both are on the edge of the park border and lodging will likely be more available and less expensive, the less expensive part being good for your first night since you will only have a partial day after arrival, getting your rental car, grabbing any supplies such as food you want to have with you, etc. and driving to the park. If you enjoy creature comforts such as a television and swimming pool, or cannot obtain the reservations you'd like within the park, West Yellowstone and Gardiner are both reasonable options which many people find perfectly acceptable, even though you will do a lot more driving to get to the far reaches of the park.

The park is highly varied and highlights for visitors include the thermal areas (i.e. hot springs and geysers), waterfalls and wildlife. View this page, www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/parkroads.htm, for the map showing the park roads and when each opens for the season, noting that some roads will still be closed and covered in snow when you arrive. Also, expect your plans may have to be altered on a day-to-day basis due to inclement weather.

When you enter the park, the ranger at the gate will provide you with a color map brochure and a newspaper-type publication that will list various park sites, activities and rules (especially note the rules, please, regarding wildlife viewing for your own safety and theirs!). You can also preview much of that info by poking around on the park's very comprehensive website, www.nps.gov/yell and specifically view things to see in each area on this page: nps.gov/yell/…areatripplanners.htm

Again, please visit the Yellowstone National Park forum linked above. A lot of regulars check that forum page daily or multiple times daily, but may not check the West Yellowstone forum at all.

Atlanta, Georgia
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4. Re: Bozeman to Yellowstone May 19 to May 25th

I might add that be prepared for all types of weather and bring the appropriate clothes- been in YNP and it has been sunny and warm or cold and snowy in late May.

western WA
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5. Re: Bozeman to Yellowstone May 19 to May 25th

You will have a car, yes?

6. Re: Bozeman to Yellowstone May 19 to May 25th

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