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in park Restaurant hours? any signts visible after dark?

West Michigan
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503 posts
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in park Restaurant hours? any signts visible after dark?

couple questions... still trying to finalize our days at yellowstone during our HUGE road trip. I now have reservations at Lake lodge, Canyon village cabins and Old faithful lodge for our first night. will be driving the long haul from Custer,sd to one of these places the first night..just havent decided which one yet...will depend on if anything opens up the second night. Right now, I only have the available room at Canyon village for the second night. So ideally, would like to stay at lake or canyon first night (as its closer to east entrance) and old faithful second, but have not been able to secure that yet. Regardless, while maintaining a PG rated forum (lol), is there anything to do at night after dark in any of these areas since at most, there is no TV? Is it safe to walk around after dark (becuase of animals, not crime) and is there anywhere that you could see anything? like at old faithful--is there any lighting at all?

Also, I have researched and found how late in the SEASON the restaurants in each area are open, but not their HOURS of operation. If im up at the break of dawn (or before), how early can I walk (or drive) somewhere to get coffee?

Spery, Iowa
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1. Re: in park Restaurant hours? any signts visible after dark?

well, I personally spend little time in the room or cabin. there is not lighting, but depending on the moon, OF after dark can be amazing. Even just the sound is wonderful- like nothing you experience during the day. So if you end up staying there, be sure to experience it. Also, an evening in the Inn, often with music, is a great way to end the day. I would not walk farther in the geyser basin after dark unless you are with a group or have bear spray and of course a flashlight.

At Lake, there is a wonderful lobby area at the Hotel, a great lobby and front porch with rockers at the Lodge, and you can sit lakeside and listen to the night.

At Canyon, depending on when you are there, they have an evening Ranger program that is highly recommended. Outside, so take jacket and flashlight.

You can find Xanterra Menu and hours at this link: yellowstonenationalparklodges.com/Dining-76.…

General Stores Grills run by Delaware North have different hours, I personally have not found menu or hours on-line.

Most areas have coffee available pretty early, sometimes that means pots available in the lobby before dining opens. Some lodging has Kureig coffee makers and a few cups provided.

Keep looking for that OF on the second night. It is farther from the entrance as you said. If you do have it the first night, be sure to go directly there and not take in the stops on the east side, as you can get them from Canyon and need to arrive before dark. If not, I personally would not move from Lake to Canyon for one night at each, as they are close, so I guess I would say Canyon 2 nights in the event you give up OF the first night.

We most often eat at off times- so after dark is our evening meal. By the time we clean up, we are bushed and hit the bed- to sleep of course (PG)

Edited: 2:19 pm, August 15, 2013
N. Idaho
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for Yellowstone National Park
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2. Re: in park Restaurant hours? any signts visible after dark?

The Lower General Store at Old Faithful closes at 830PM. I do not know if this changes after Labor Day or not.

Things in the park (and gateway cities) don't open as early as I think they should, lol. I am usually ready for breakfast at 530 or 6AM, but things don't get going til later than that. I am not sure what time the coffee cart opens on the 2nd floor of the OFI. I was there about 7ish and I was not the first customer.

Pam

Albany, New York
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3. Re: in park Restaurant hours? any signts visible after dark?

For us it was easier to just get a 10 dollar coffee pot in walmart so we knew for sure that we could have it when we were up each day at 430!!!! We got the pot and some travel mugs and then before we left we gave all of our items to some college kids in Bozeman who were thrilled to take it off our hands!!!!

West Michigan
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4. Re: in park Restaurant hours? any signts visible after dark?

thanks for the info so far! I think bringing a cheap coffee maker would be a good idea. We are driving the whole trip (not flying) so to throw things in like that is no big deal. I'm also releived to see that most of the restaurants are open until at least 9 pm. That way we can sit on the porch or in the lobby and take in the sights and eat dinner at our leisure. thanks!

New York City, New...
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5. Re: in park Restaurant hours? any signts visible after dark?

You can check to see if they have evening programs (usually slideshow presentations) at the Lake Hotel and Old Faithful Visitor Center the nights you're going to be there. Other than that, you could spring for the Sunset Tour at Lake Butte out of the Lake Hotel. Lake Butte is generally agreed to have the best sunset in Yellowstone, and that's the best way to see it.

Generally speaking, I think people tend to rise early (really early if you want to get dawn wildlife viewing in) and turn in somewhat early in Yellowstone after spending some time in the lobbies and reading/looking at pictures etc. in their room for a while.

Definitely go out to see an after-dark eruption of Old Faithful at some point that evening from either the Inn balcony or benches around the geyser. Totally different from seeing it in daylight!

6. Re: in park Restaurant hours? any signts visible after dark?

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