Top three things to see/do in Yellowstone--be specific

8:31 p.m. on March 29, 2009 (EDT)
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Okay, gang, I'm planning a trip for a small group of people to Yellowstone this summer. None have been to Yellowstone Nat. Park, and all are highly looking forward to same.

During five days there, the group would like to do some hiking, camping, etc., of course. Abilities of all are moderately skilled to highly skilled. No physical limitations to speak of.

For those of you with knowledge of and/or experience with YNP, what would be, say, your top three specific recommendations for trails to hike, things to do/see, etc.? In researching the trip, it's almost overwhelming to see the list of possibilities, so any and all suggestions are welcome.

Also, any suggestions for how to best interact with, handle, etc., the local park administration, reserving campsites, etc. would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

9:33 a.m. on April 1, 2009 (EDT)
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Okay, so nobody's got a list of their own top-three must-dos in YNP. Hard to believe, but there we have it. Or here we don't have it. <sigh>

12:20 p.m. on April 6, 2009 (EDT)
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I guess this place needs a good trip report about a backcountry trip in YNP. I shall prepare myself.

10:26 p.m. on April 18, 2009 (EDT)
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We didn't camp at Yellowstone but some of the highlights from our visit 2 1/2 years ago were Yellowstone Falls, Mammouth Springs, Fountain Geyser, and the some of the walks near Old Faithful. But the real treat was the wildlife, which you can see in many differnt places. We saw lots of Bison in Lamar Valley and a lot of Elk in Mammouth Springs. I came upon a wolf while on a 12 mile run near the Morning Glory Pool. That was a thrill.

Have fun, Perry. Post a trip report later.

10:47 p.m. on April 18, 2009 (EDT)
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I'm planning on it, Jerry. I think one of the things I'm looking forward to most is seeing Mammoth Springs, and then also the numerous geysers. It's so easy to be overwhelmed with all the stuff there is to do and see there. I'm already wishing I had longer.

7:57 p.m. on April 19, 2009 (EDT)
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I would plan on spending some time around the geyser basin near (Norris if I remember correctly . . no map handy . . in the NW part of the park. The Lamar Valley is also nice and that ridge above it is supposed to be awesome although I haven't hiked it yet.


Be aware you are in Grizzley country. Be very careful of getting food smells on your tent and sleeping bags and sleeping clothes. Don't cook in your sleeping area, no food in tents etc. etc. And pay careful attention to what is going on around you.


And while you will be lucky to even see one, it is best to do some homework and figure out what to do before you meet a Griz. There is no single correct response. A young adult trying to find it's place in the world will behave VERY differently then the mama with two cubs you can't see.

Avoid eye contact and don't run whatever you do.

It's a fantastic destination. Have fun out there.

9:05 p.m. on April 19, 2009 (EDT)
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Thanks for the input. So far I'm leaning toward the Lamar River Valley and the Black Canyon of the Yellowstone areas for hiking/camping, with a day hike or two elsewhere in the park. (It sounds like a geyser day hike might be a good idea.)

As for the bears, well, I plan on taking the usual precautions. I've been in grizzly country before, but never where it seems to get as much airplay (so to speak) as it does for YNP. It makes it hard to tell if the risk is actually higher in Yellowstone (versus, say, the Bob Marshall Wilderness and Glacier Park to the North) or there are simply more relative neophytes that need the warnings and advice, or both of the above situations.

At any rate, between being in a group, keeping the food, etc. properly secured and away from the camp, making a bit of noise now and again, having pepper spray close to hand, and so forth, there's not much more can be done. I do plan on hiking with a group in which I will ensure at least one person is slower than I am, though..... (Just a joke, gang, just a joke!)

10:54 p.m. on April 21, 2009 (EDT)
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Reply Griz , risk,and Top three things Yellowstone

. It makes it hard to tell if the risk is actually higher in Yellowstone (versus, say, the Bob Marshall Wilderness and Glacier Park to the North) or there are simply more relative neophytes that need the warnings and advice, or both of the above situations.

Good point. I think it comes down two factors, both of dubious relevance

1st, I think more hardcore hikers go to places like the Bob vs a lot of people who go to National Parks like Glacier or Yellowstone who think they are in a city park or a petting zoo or someplace. Hopefully nobody in this forum, but those folks are out there.

2nd, National Parks are generally not open to hunting and casual possession of firearms. Places like the Bob have hunters during season and firearms are not specifically prohibited. So, the argument goes, those bears have more likely been shot at.

Maybe, maybe not. I think if someone commits a major breach of etiquette or common sense in front of a Grizzly Bear, all bets are off and those factors are largely irrelevant, at least in my opinion.

And my thoughts were more for newbie hikers looking for info on hiking Yellowstone that I just felt somebody needed to say, than you or anyone specifically. And buffalo hurt a lot more hikers than bears in Yellowstone while were at this. Who knows who will read this post?

I would loiter in Norris. Those geysers do not erupt predictably like Old Faithful. You never know. And you should see wildlife

Be safe, have fun, and don't get hurt. Fantastic destination. Let me know how it goes


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