FEATURED

Yellowstone visitation up sharply so far this year

Visitation to Yellowstone National Park for January through May is up more than 24 percent compared to the same time period in 2014. Although some of that increase could be attributed to a new after-hours counter at the West Entrance, a mild winter and early spring also played a role in drawing people to the park. Visitation to the world’s first national park begins to pick up in May as weather improves and interior roads and visitor facilities open to the public.

Natural Atlas offers digital access to open spaces of greater Yellowstone

A sample entry from Natural Atlas offers topographical maps showing the location of Old Faithful Geyser in Yellowstone National Park.

Visitors to the greater Yellowstone area can use any number of apps, websites and other digital tools to find a great hotel or restaurant, relying on reviews and tips from locals and other tourists to decide which one is right for them. A few more clicks can yield turn-by-turn directions and detailed street maps. But what about the great outdoors? Wouldn't it be great if you could search through detailed topographical maps for natural features the same way you use Google maps to find a coffee shop? Or what if your fellow hikers, anglers, climbers and others could add comments and photos to points of interest like waterfalls or campgrounds—with all of that data easily found through a quick online search? It seems like an impossible fantasy for outdoor enthusiasts, but Natural Atlas is a newly launched online platform that aims to accomplish all that and more. Continue Reading →

Planners aim to attract Obama to Yellowstone for 2016 visit

President Barack Obama awaits the eruption of Old Faithful with First Lady Micelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia during a 2009 visit to Yellowstone National Park.

President Barack Obama had a busy week, making headlines and sparking discussions on a wide range of issues in what may well turn out to be the most defining few days of his presidency. The week's events showed that even a lame duck president with 45 percent approval ratings who has long since lost once-solid majorities in Congress can still command the nation's attention. It also explains why many in the Yellowstone National Park gateway town of Gardiner, Mont. are working hard to attract Obama as a featured guest for next summer's celebration of the National Park Service centennial. Continue Reading →

Grizzly bear trapping scheduled for west of Yellowstone Park

A tranquilized grizzly bear lies in a trap similar to those used for research studies or for capturing and relocating problem bears around the greater Yellowstone area.

Idaho wildlife biologists will be trapping grizzly bears in areas near Yellowstone National Park as part of ongoing research efforts required under the Endangered Species Act. The Idaho Department of Fish & Game is advising the public that scientific trapping operations are once again about to begin in the Upper Snake Region. Biologists working on behalf of the larger Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team will begin to work mainly in that portion of the Caribou-Targhee National Forest inside of the caldera in Island Park, along with sites to the west along the Centennial Mountain Range. Continue Reading →

Grand Teton celebrates John Colter Day June 29

Illustration "Old Bill Williams" by Alfred Jacob Miller.

The annual John Colter Day celebration will be held Monday, June 29, at Colter Bay Visitor Center in Grand Teton National Park. Colter explored the vast Yellowstone country during the winter of 1807-08, and was likely the first European-American to travel the region. This marks the eighth year that Grand Teton has offered special presentations to highlight the life of John Colter and the mountain men of the 1800s. Continue Reading →

Few visitors troubled by higher Yellowstone and Grand Teton entry fees

Candice Phipps, a worker at the East Gate to Yellowstone National Park, checks passes of visitors arriving from Cody in this 2012 file photo.

Plenty of people will tell you that a visit to a national park like Yellowstone or Grand Teton is something you can't put a price on. But entry fees for both parks went up June 1, and despite some initial concerns, early indications are that most visitors either haven't noticed or don't seem to mind. National parks across the country are raising entry fees and other charges after National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis asked park superintendents last summer to assess public opinion and determine if higher rates would be supported. While it may be too soon to tell what most summer visitors to Yellowstone National Park think of the increased entry fees, there have been hardly any complaints after the first 10 days under the new rate structure, said park spokeswoman Traci Weaver. Continue Reading →

Injured climber in Grand Teton rescued by helicopter

Grand Teton National Park rangers rescued an injured climber Tuesday after he slipped and slid 150 feet on a rock slab. Charlie Emerson, 31, of Marietta, Ga. was climbing alone when he slipped and slid approximately 150-200 feet before coming to rest in a snowfield at the base of the rock feature, just above the Meadows area of Garnet Canyon in the heart of the Teton Range. Continue Reading →

Yellowstone road at Craig Pass opens Thursday

Auto travel will resume June 11 across Isa Lake atop Craig Pass, between West Thumb and Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park.

Yellowstone National Park visitors will be able to travel between West Thumb Junction and Old Faithful when the last stretch of park road over Craig Pass opens for the season at 7 a.m. Thursday. Construction crews removed an almost 75-year-old bridge over Isa Lake on Craig Pass, replacing it with a new bridge and widening the road to handle the current volume of traffic. Continue Reading →

Crowdfunding campaign aims to send regional schoolkids to Yellowstone

Middle school students visiting Yellowstone Park from Utah board their bus after stopping at Artist Point in this 2012 file photo.

Children in Montana, Wyoming, and Idaho are fortunate that they have the opportunity to visit Yellowstone frequently. But how many of them do? According to information from the Yellowstone Park Foundation, many school children from the states surrounding the world's first national park have never visited Yellowstone. The Foundation is working to change that with its new crowdfunding effort designed to help kids participate in Expedition Yellowstone. Continue Reading →

Idaho schoolkids treated to Grand Teton visit

Sixty-five fourth graders from Donald Stalker Elementary School of Blackfoot, Idaho got a firsthand and fun-filled introduction to Grand Teton National Park on May 20-22 thanks to the generous support of Grand Teton Lodge Company, an authorized park concessioner. The school children and their parents spent two days and two nights learning about nature and wildlife, while being treated to a full lodging experience at Jackson Lake Lodge, one of the park’s principal concession facilities. Continue Reading →

Global photo contest focuses on Yellowstone Park

Bighorn sheep and other wildlife are likely to be subjects in a newly announced photography contest focused on Yellowstone National Park.

The Yellowstone Park Foundation and Nature’s Best Photography magazine are launching the Yellowstone Forever Photo Contest, created to celebrate the world’s first national park through photography and public participation. Designed as a run-up to the National Park Service’s Centennial Anniversary in 2016, the Yellowstone Forever Photo Contest is one of several Yellowstone Park Foundation activities planned to observe the Centennial. It is also the first global photo competition to be focused on Yellowstone. Continue Reading →