Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Yellowstone / Old Faithful area
Open Roads Forum Already a member? Login here.   If not, Register Today!  |  Help

Newest  |  Active  |  Popular  |  RVing FAQ Forum Rules  |  Forum Posting Help and Support  |  Contact  

Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attr...

Open Roads Forum  >  RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions

 > Yellowstone / Old Faithful area

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 4  
Prev  |  Next
Veebyes

Bermuda & Maryland Eastern Shore

Senior Member

Joined: 11/24/2003

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/26/19 06:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yellowstone is a big park. West Yellowstone is a 1/2 hour easy to just get to Old Faithful. Add wait times at the gate, traffic in general & don't let an animal be seen by somebody way up in front creating a buffalo jam & that 1/2 hour can more than double easy.

Better off staying inside the park, mostly dry camping, & being ahead of the crowds in the morning.


Boat: 32' 1996 Albin 32+2, single Cummins 315hp
40+ night per year overnighter

2007 Alpenlite 34RLR
2006 Chevy 3500 LT, CC,LB 6.6L Diesel

Ham Radio: VP9KL, IRLP node 7995

bikendan

Camano Island, Wash.

Senior Member

Joined: 11/21/2005

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 12/27/19 02:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Personally, if i drove all the way to Yellowstone, to visit, there's no way i'd camp in a town and not in the Park itself.
there's so much to see and hear and experience by camping in one of YNP's great campgrounds. instead of a sanitized concrete commercial campground in W. Yellowstone.


Dan- Firefighter, Retired">, Shawn- Musician/Entrepreneur">, Zoe- Faithful Golden Retriever(RIP">), 2014 Ford F150 3.5 EcoboostMax Tow pkg, 2016 PrimeTime TracerAIR 255 w/4pt Equalizer and 5 Mtn. bikes and 2 Road bikes


richardcoxid

Idaho Falls, ID

Senior Member

Joined: 07/11/2003

View Profile





Offline
Posted: 12/27/19 04:35pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Some helpful information about YSNP (some general items apply to GTNP also)

YNP is BIG!, about 45 miles E/W and about 65 miles N/S (2.2 mil. Acres total). The “figure 8 grand loop” road inside the park is about 140 miles around. The lower loop is 96 miles and the upper loop is 70 miles around and yes, it is bigger than the states of Rhode Island and Delaware combined.

Whatever time that you think you will need to see YNP you better double it, or to say it another way is that you will see one half as much as you planned on in the allotted time. The Bison think that they own the road (they do!) and will slow down the traffic to walking speed or stop all traffic for 1/4 mile or more blocking both directions of travel, the thermal attractions also tie up traffic and with a 5 month long summer tourist season that coincides with a 5 month long road construction season and a 45 MPH radar controlled speed limit it will take about a full day to see each loop and then you will only see the main attractions. In addition to the occasional construction delays they will also sometimes close whole sections of road (for uninterrupted night construction) between 10 PM and 8 AM in the morning, if you are running late and get caught at night in the wrong area it CAN be a LONG way around to your CG! (The entrance stations will have current construction information or go on line to check it out)

Then there is the elevation- YNP ranges from a low at Mammoth- 6239 ft to 7784 ft at Fishing Bridge or higher if you go hiking and there are passes on the grand loop road that are close to 8000 ft or so! Drink plenty of liquids and pace yourself when walking.

I recommend that you get up EARLY, leave the CG and be back by 4 or 6 PM have dinner and be sitting in your recliner drinking a cool one when your neighbor drags himself back to the CG at 8-10 PM. Remember that from mid May to mid July in YNP the sun doesn't set until about 9:00- 9:15 PM then there is a long and bright twilight.

Cell Phone Service- Only at the major visitor centers, otherwise non-existent!

Clothing- Especially in the early or late season it is not unusual to have a 30 or even the occasional 40 degree temperature change throughout the day. Dress with easily shed layers of clothing. Also dress in bright easily seen clothing. I am sure that we all have been to a sporting event, parade or Disney World etc. and we blink our eyes and our partner/child has disappeared. My DIL was born and raised in HI, you guessed it, every Xmas, b-day or Father's Day I receive a Hawaiian shirt. One of them is shiny black with 4-5 inch dia. bright flowers. Not many of them in Wyoming and in YSNP, that is what I wear. If your partner has on a Violet blouse and a Orange scarf with a Pink hat I guarantee that she will be the only one within the boundaries of either NP. It can save you a few anxious moments.

Water- Now I will have to contradict myself, at the altitude of YNP yes, drink lots of water! HOWEVER, be aware that the flush toilet restrooms are in the major tourist areas- Mammoth, Canyon, Fishing Bridge, Lake Hotel, Bridge Bay, Grant Village, Old Faithful, Madison Junction etc. The geyser basins and other thermal attractions areas only have pit toilets. I have seen the pit toilet line at the lower Geyser Basin (2 R/Rs) 25 or more feet long (bless the tour buses) So be smart about drinking your water and use the major tourist area R/Rs before leaving the area! I.e. “Never pass up a flush toilet!”

Sun- At YSNP altitude the Sun is intense (uv) have and apply sunscreen, wear that old floppy wide brim sun hat, wear Sunglasses!

If your luck is like mine Old Faithful will have just erupted when you get there and you will have up to a hour and 10 to 15 minutes wait for the next one. Tour the O/F Geyser basin while waiting. O/F INN is a must see, reportedly the largest LOG building in the U.S. (Meals in the O/F Inn dinning room are “A OK” also.

We have lived about 110 miles from West Yellowstone, MT since 1964, go to YSNP 3-4 times a summer (normally before Memorial Day and after Labor Day) and haven't seen it all yet! So don’t be discouraged that you didn’t have the time to see all of it. Just plan on coming back another time!

I honestly don’t mean to scare or discourage you but to give you a heads up as to what to expect! After all there was 4.1 million visitors in 2015! As far as I know we didn’t lose one of them. Except those who by their own stupidity step off the board walks into BOILING HOT water and ignoring the warnings about the WILD ANIMALS! That is called purifying the gene pool!

Now, for the early spring/late fall visitors, YSNP is closed to ALL wheeled traffic from mid November to mid March (Snow Machines, Snow Coach’s, Snowshoes, X-country Skiing etc only as of mid Dec to mid March) the first road to be plowed open in mid April is from West Y’stone, MT to Old Faithful. The last roads to be plowed is Norris to Canyon to Fishing Bridge, West Thumb south to GTNP. Other tourist venues are open AS the shelves are stocked, beds are made, winter debris cleaned up etc. All tourist venues are open by Memorial Day weekend the official opening.

Note I have seen on this blog and others about folks “day tripping” from YSNP to GTNP, it is done all the time (myself included) however remember this is BIG country and with the speed limits, animals and thermal attractions you will be doing a LOT of slow driving. From Grant Village Visitor Center (extreme S/E corner of the lower loop road) to Jackson, WY is about 80 miles with Coulter Bay being about 1/2 way, then from Grant Village you have to add the distance to your CG it will be a Long days trip!

A point of Coulter Bay (GTNP) clarification- there are two (2) CG’s at Coulter Bay, One the “Coulter Bay RV Park” a full service “RV Park” with FHU’S that takes reservations. The other is the “Coulter Bay Campground “ (FS CG) has no hookups and doesn’t take reservations. Both have about 300 sites and are basically across the road from each other.

The Gros Ventre FS CG in GTNP (about 5 miles north of Jackson and about 4 miles n/e toward the town of Kelly, on the right side of the road) is about 300 sites (including about 30 sites that are electric only) has no hookups and doesn’t take reservations.

When in the Jackson area I highly recommend seeing the Bar J Chuckwagon dinner show! If you go, MAKE RESERVATIONS and BE THERE EARLY TO PICK UP YOUR MEAL TICKETS/ TABLE SEATING ASSIGNMENTS! They seat you by when you show up to get your tickets NOT by your reservation number. Tim, their fiddle player has won the "Idaho state old time fiddle contest 9 times and the US open fiddle championship twice". If you decide to go you will sit at picnic type of bench seats/table, they get pretty hard, I recommend that you take along a blanket/pads to sit on. We day trip it there 2-4 times every summer just to see them! Disclaimer- We have no financial or other interest in the Bar J only that it will be the best $$ value for your money on your trip! Check out their website.

http://www.barjchuckwagon.com

Also in Jackson check out the “COWBOY” bar, the bar stools are saddles and the # of Silver Dollars imbedded in the bar. The Wort Hotel Bar (just around the corner from the Cowboy Bar) also has Silver Dollars imbedded in the Bar.


2017 GMC Denali 3500 4x4 Duramax
2019 Outdoor RV (ORV) Timber Ridge 24RKS

RickLight

Washington

Full Member

Joined: 01/22/2017

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 12/27/19 05:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

A guide book for free!

Maybe we should have a sticky of posts like that for the Major sights.


Rick,

2019 Grand Design Reflection 150 273MK
2015 Ford F350 CC SB Lariat Powerstroke
PullRite Superglide

suprz

rhode island

Senior Member

Joined: 01/04/2007

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/28/19 04:46am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ed C wrote:

The best is Grizzly in West Yellowstone; there are other nice ones in West Yellowstone. It's about a 30 minute drive depending on what animals show up along the way.


X2


Proud father of a US Marine


richardcoxid

Idaho Falls, ID

Senior Member

Joined: 07/11/2003

View Profile





Offline
Posted: 12/28/19 02:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am assuming that the OP wants a FHU CG that he should go to his closest Camping World and purchase a copy of “Good Sams RV Travel and Savings Guide” the campers “Bible” long before the I’net. Then lookup CGs in West Yellowstone, MT and Island Park,ID there is a wealth of information there. Yes, I am not a fan of CW except for the Bible, it lists over 12,000 campgrounds and services, phone #s, # of sites, directions etc.

The ONLY FHU Reservable CG in YSNP is Fishing Bridge however it it closed for the 2020 season for “Renovation” The other CGs- Grant Village, Bridge Bay, Canyon, Mammoth, Madison (the closest CG to Old Faithful) are non reservable “dry” CGs.There are some other smaller CGs that are suitable for tents etc. only. To get a site in any of the non reservable CGs be there EARLY get in line and the Ranger will assign you a site as the previous campers leave.

The town of West Yellowstone, MT is about 3 blocks from the West Entrance to Yellowstone NP then 14 miles to Madison and then 16 miles to O/F with 4 or 5 thermal basins and the one way Firehole Canyon Drive along the way.

Pangaea Ron

Anacortes, WA, USA

Senior Member

Joined: 12/20/2004

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/28/19 07:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you have not reserved YNP campground sites yet, they will probably not be available. We love them, and try to stay in them when available, but they are often small, without services, and often not available. Do Grizzly, and leave early to explore the park. It is easy to escape the asphalt of Grizzly, especially when you hear the wolves howling from the Grizzly Recovery Center next door.


2008 Itasca SunCruiser 35L
2014 Honda AWD CR-V EX-L


enblethen

Moses Lake, WA

Senior Member

Joined: 01/05/2005

View Profile






Posted: 12/28/19 08:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Grizzly RV park is not next to the Grizzly Recovery Center. The one next door to the Recovery center is Buffalo Crossing.


Bud
USAF Retired
Pace Arrow

2003 Chev Ice Road Tracker


bikendan

Camano Island, Wash.

Senior Member

Joined: 11/21/2005

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 12/29/19 02:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

richardcoxid wrote:



The ONLY FHU Reservable CG in YSNP is Fishing Bridge however it it closed for the 2020 season for “Renovation” The other CGs- Grant Village, Bridge Bay, Canyon, Mammoth, Madison (the closest CG to Old Faithful) are non reservable “dry” CGs.There are some other smaller CGs that are suitable for tents etc. only. To get a site in any of the non reservable CGs be there EARLY get in line and the Ranger will assign you a site as the previous campers leave.


you can reserve a campsite at Madison, Grant and Canyon since we did but not a specific campsite.
And FB is closed in 2020 until mid-September:

CLOSED FOR 2020 SEASON UNTIL MID-SEPTEMBER

Fishing Bridge RV Park—elevation 7,800 feet (2377 m)—is located near the Yellowstone River where it exits Yellowstone Lake on its way north toward the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. This is the only campground in Yellowstone to offer water, sewer, and electrical hookups for RVs. Because grizzly bears frequent the area, no tents or tent campers are allowed. Campfires are prohibited in the Fishing Bridge RV Park, including the use of portable fire pits.

Pangaea Ron

Anacortes, WA, USA

Senior Member

Joined: 12/20/2004

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/29/19 05:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

enblethen

You're correct, the Grizzly Recovery Center is about 1-1/2 blocks to the WSW from Grizzly RV Park, but you can certainly hear the wolves howl from there.

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 4  
Prev  |  Next

Open Roads Forum  >  RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions

 > Yellowstone / Old Faithful area
Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attr...


New posts No new posts
Closed, new posts Closed, no new posts
Moved, new posts Moved, no new posts

Adjust text size:




© 2020 CWI, Inc. © 2020 Good Sam Enterprises, LLC. All Rights Reserved.