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“Luxury Van Tour of Grand Teton National Park”
Review of Scenic Safaris

Scenic Safaris
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Grand Teton Wildlife Tour
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Teton Vista ATV Tour
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Grand Canyon of Yellowstone Trail Hike
Certificate of Excellence
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Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Join us during summer months for a guided tour of Grand Teton or Yellowstone National Park. Grand Teton National Park is home to many spectacular wild animals including bison, moose, bears, bald eagles, and more, not to mention amazing landscapes. Yellowstone is an area of unrivaled geothermal wonders and fantastic scenery. We also offer hiking as part of our Yellowstone trips. Fly-fishing on the Snake or riding ATVs in the National Forest are other excellent options. During winter, choose a guided snowmobile tour into the fabulous Teton back country or Yellowstone National Park. Our tours offer the opportunity to enjoy wildlife and scenery or powder and off trail riding. If snow machines are not for you, we also offer snowcoach tours into Yellowstone National Park.
Reviewed January 7, 2014

We went on a cloudy day (December 23, 2013) and so we didn't see a lot of tops of mountains, but our guide was able to be flexible and give us a great tour anyway and saved us from paying park fees. We had a ridiculous woman on our trip who insisted we return to Jackson Hole to get more sets of binoculars. Our guide worked hard to make this happen even though our family didn't care about the binoculars. Who wants to develop pink eye or worse while on vacation. Then after we got them, she didn't ever use them. She only wanted to give the guide a hard time.

Then the nice binocular lady wouldn't let us get our own refreshments out of the cooler, she had to control who gets what. There were only 5 people on the tour, my family of 3 and she and her husband. She enjoyed peeing in the snow which she got out and did 3 times even though we had a restroom break half way through the trip in Jackson Hole on the binocular pick up event.m This is a 4 hour tour! She also enjoyed telling the guide what she knew instead of learning from him what he knew and what he wanted to share. God Bless Him!

When I give this company an excellent review it is becasue I do this kind of work in my home town and I know there are always people who like to control tours and give guides a hard time. So I am really giving the guide a great review because of how he handled himself. We loved his knowledge of ASPEN trees and how they have roots connected under ground. The trees are like a family. I mean what a great storyteller he was. We also got to see long horn sheep up close. I got to see the mother sheep nurse her baby. When I tried to tell everyone, binocular woman wouldn't shut her yap so I am the only one who got to see this, but it was special just the same.

The true strength of our guide surfaced the next day, however when I was on tour with Jackson Hole Snowmobiles to Old Faithful and he was there with his scenic safari group. He knew I was getting my but kicked as I looked horrible and he assisted me because our guide on the other tour was giving me a real hard time because I couldn't go 55 miles per hour or whatever on my snowmobile. Consequently he gave me some words of encouragement that may have saved my life later in the day.

Unfortunatley, I was injured later that day on the snowmobile trip and my husband had to cancel his next trip with scenic safari due to this accident. Scenic Safaris was very nice and when we canceled refunded the money to my card the same day. In canceling with Jackson Hole Snowmobiles I was told I could have to wait up to 14 business days for a refund and I had to pay for damages done to the snowmobile as well.

Nature may influence what kind of tour you get with scenic safaris and you can have irrational people on tour with you in any company because we did. I feel that scenic safaris will protect you and I feel that they are more about safety and integrity than say, Jackson Hole Snowmobiles. My guide certainly was, so choose safety first. I only went with JH snowmobiles because they had a higher weight limit on the machines and my husband is a big guy. Now I wish we had just had a few more salads in 2013!

Thank Shannon1752
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Allison W, Manager at Scenic Safaris, responded to this reviewResponded February 5, 2014

Thanks so much for your review! I'm glad you all had a great time on your tour of Grand Teton National Park, despite some negative variables. I'm sorry you all had to cancel your other trip with us, and hopefully we'll be able to take you out another time!

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Reviewed January 7, 2014

Let me just start with this: WE LOVE MIKEY!! LOVE HIM! He was the best guide and made the trip so much fun. He was calm and patient with questions and cranky people, informative about the whole Jackson Hole area, Yellowstone, and various animals. He's so good at his job because he's interesting, smart, funny, and just an overall great guy (should I be writing this review to his parents?!). We were just so impressed with him. I'm pretty sure my husband started a bromance with him. Anyway, you get the picture. It's important to have a great guide, because this trip will be a LONG day. We got picked up at 6:30 am and returned around 6:30 pm. It's about an hour and a half drive out to the park and an hour and a half back. We didn't know much about what to expect and when we asked around town, not too many people had done the winter trips to the park. I was a little nervous, because I'm about the most UN-outdoorsy person you will meet. With all of that said, here's what to expect:

1) It will be cold. YOU will be cold. You will be driving or riding on a snowmobile going around 35-45 mph. Snow from the snowmobile in front of you, falling from the sky, or blowing around will be hitting you. You WILL be colder riding on the back. BE PREPARED! Bring/wear extra socks, hand/toe warmers, etc. I had my own snowmobile and my husband and his daughter rode on his snowmobile. Having your own snowmobile means the engine is keeping your legs and feet warm, the handlebars were heated and my hands were warm, and I had a windshield to deflect most snow. I wasn't uncomfortable at all during the trip. Luckily it was only cloudy a little bit of the day and the sun was out the rest of the time. Most of the people on the back of snowmobiles were freezing and switched places at least once during the trip. I wore running tights, smart wool, jeans, two pair of socks, an Under Armour tank, smart wool top, a running/cold weather 1/2 zip, a fleece, a neck gaiter, and hat. They give you the snowsuit, boots, helmet, glove liners, ski gloves, and hooded/face mask thing. Also, I'd never driven a snowmobile and was a little anxious about it. It turned out not to be a big deal.

2) If you don't like cold, I wouldn't recommend this trip. You know who you are! This is a group trip (5-6 snowmobiles/10-12 people). 90% of our group was awesome. If you spend the trip freaking out because you are freezing, not wanting to listen to instructions about the trip, pouting, whining, dressed incorrectly, wanting your feet rubbed at every stop we make, refusing to get off the snowmobile at stops, and griping at your boyfriend the whole time, you should probably have skipped the trip. Granted, those people don't usually realize they are THAT PERSON, but seriously, this is a trip in the middle of winter in the mountains. Take the trip in a snowcat or snowcoach. Personally, I wouldn't take anyone under 8-10 years old on this trip. If you draw the short straw on the day you go and it's 5 degrees and 40 mph winds, they will be miserable. At times you can ride 7-10 miles without stopping. There aren't a lot of restrooms. Maybe there will be a last minute cancellation to get on a snowcat, but probably not. Save yourself and everyone else the trouble and just get a reservation on a snowcat. We saw them everywhere and they were at the same stops when we stopped. Let your husband go on the snowmobile and you and the kids ride the snowcat. You can all meet up at the end. Trust me. I evaluate children for a living. A 5 year old on this trip is not a good idea.

3) This is a total bucket list experience. It is BEAUTIFUL. We actually met some people that were doing the 3 day trip as their bucket list trip. After hearing how busy and crowded the park is in the summer, I'm glad we came in the winter. We took the one day/90 mile trip. We saw a small sliver of the park (still awesome). It was incredible. Probably one of the top 5 things I've ever done on vacation. If you can do any version of this trip (snowcat, one day, 2-3 day, etc), you should do it. Our 14 year old was amazed. I got incredible pictures and had a great experience. I highly recommend it.

So, to recap: Yes, I was cold, but not uncomfortably cold or freezing to death. It IS a dream trip. DO NOT go on this trip if you know you can't deal with seriously cold weather and conditions. I'm SO HAPPY that I did this trip and had this experience.

3  Thank TripVbarS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Allison W, Manager at Scenic Safaris, responded to this reviewResponded February 5, 2014

Thank you so much for your review! I'm glad you all had a great day with Mikey, and this is excellent information for potential guests to know beforehand. Thanks again!

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Reviewed January 3, 2014 via mobile

This is a gorgeous scenic trip. If you love nature and vistas that are surreal like Old Faithful erupting amidst the snow and snowy mountains - then you will love this trip.

We posted several pictures to give you an idea of what all you may see.

Before I list out some key aspects to consider, we want to thank our guide Nate for making our trip so memorable. There were 10 of us, including a lovely family of 5 from Boston. Sam, thanks for making us all laugh. Nate was patient, a great driver, informative, engaging, personable, interesting and just genuinely a nice young man.

So, you need to know this is a very very long day. You will drive 40 miles
out and back. We went 1/2/14. You leave when it's dark (doesn't get light until 8 am in Jackson) and come home in the dark. We suggest bringing a pack with waters and light snacks and your music and headphones (more for the long drive back when everyone is tired and sleepy). Our group was so nice and everyone took turns sitting toward the back of the van. That's right. I said van.

This takes us to the one downer of the trip. The reason we did not give the trip 5 stars. Just couldn't. As others in our group observed, we wound up in a van with tracks for tires - as depicted in the brochure/on-line. The problem is we asked for and we paid for and we called directly weeks in advance and were
GUARANTEED that we would be traveling in a SNOWCAT. Oops. Someone told a little untruth. Kind of like you know who on Capitol Hill.

Nobody likes to be misled and unfortunately this company must rely in their fine print which basically says you get what you get. We all figured it was a classic case of bait and switch.

Now, to be fair and to be clear... we all had a great time. And who knows, maybe the van is a better experience than the Snowcat. Point is that for $300 EACH you expect to get what you are told you will get.

Also, we suggest you bring sunglasses and Wear warm socks and boots and wear snow pants and ski jacket. Yes, a hat too!

We saw some moose along the highway in the dark in the way out. We saw several bison at a distance. We saw a bald eagle and a beaver. And we saw ravens scavenging what was left of a moose carcass killed a
few days earlier by wolves (ranger photos in the visitors center).

If you get motion sickness, ask to sit in the front, avoid the back seats, and/or take Dramamine.

Binoculars would not be a bad idea either. A small pair will do. That's about it. Enjoy the photos. You should go on this trip. Not too many folks get to see Yellowstone in its winter Majesty. Thanks again Nate.

This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Allison W, Manager at Scenic Safaris, responded to this reviewResponded February 5, 2014

Thanks so much for your feedback, and we're glad you enjoyed your day with Nate. I'm sorry about the miscommunication on the type of vehicle you would be in. Since we do have two types of vehicles that we run as snowcoaches, we are careful to not ever guarantee a specific type will be taken on a specific day, and we do not use the term "snowcat" at all, so I am very sorry if you received different information. When the Hagglund vehicles are not on the trail, we will also try to make sure we clarify that a "snowcoach" is in fact a van on tracks, so our guests know what they are in for. Thanks again for the review!

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Reviewed December 28, 2013 via mobile

We took the full day snowmobile tour to Old Faithful and back. It's 84 miles round trip on the snowmobiles, but worth every mile. The mountains, valleys, bison, otters, hot springs and blazing across snow covered trails at 40mph was awesome. My 66 year old parents with no snowmobile experience loved it.

It IS a long day. They pick you up at the hotel at 6:30 and you return 12 hours later.

My lesson learned: wear two base layers and light clothes on top. Then you slide into a jumpsuit and snow boots and you're toasty warm all day. Bring extra socks and glove liners as well, everything else is provided. Breakfast is burritos and yogurt or oatmeal, lunch is sandwiches made to order. It's not a culinary tour - you're there to see the sights.

2  Thank WAMcCary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 23, 2013

My wife and I are from PA. and have been coming to JH for a winter vacation for the past 20 years. We started booking snowmobile trips with Scenic Safaris years ago when our daughters were much younger and have continued to come back. Now that our daughters have grown it is just my wife and I who have the time to continue to come back. We have experienced most of the trips offered. We are more on the adventurous side, and by working thru Allison; she has always hooked us up with a guide who adds a little more excitement to our trip (not just following a string of 10 snowmobiles). The equipment is top notch, although we are both on the same sled the ride is comfortable and sled is fast. The Gros Ventre tour is best for seeing wildlife and the Yellowstone Canyon tour offers the best scenic beauty and geographic diversity. We are coming out again in February and look forward to another great experience.
Anthony & Bonnie
Souderton, PA.

3  Thank Anthony Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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