Backup lodging at Yellowstone

Jul 28th, 2010, 04:58 AM
  #1  
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Backup lodging at Yellowstone

Heading to Yellowstone in mid-September for three full days. On advice, called a couple of in- park lodges that I'm told are unique, only to find that they are long sold out. (They mentioned about calling re: cancellations which I will do.. to a point.) Any thoughts on a B&B or a nice motel? Is there a problem with just "winging it" and getting a run-of the mill decent Holiday Inn type? Thank you in advance! Carol
CarolRob is offline  
Jul 28th, 2010, 06:06 AM
  #2  
 
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Look at a map and find the gateway town from which you would approach Yellowstone (Jackson or Cody WY, West Yellowstone or Gardiner MT?). Then start your lodging search.
kayd is offline  
Jul 28th, 2010, 06:55 AM
  #3  
 
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It is very important to keep checking back for cancellations. Many people make a reservation and then cancel at the last minute. Last year 3 days before our trip to the Grand Canyon we got a cancellation at El Tovar. Staying there was wonderful.
Ringerdog is offline  
Jul 28th, 2010, 07:14 AM
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Most of the lodging in Yellowstone books up a year in advance, especially for July and August. Definitely keep calling Xanterra and see if there is a cancellation. What entrance do you plan on using? I really wouldn't wing it for Yellowstone although my guess is you will have the most luck in West Yellowstone. There are just a few motels in Cooke City, more in Gardiner. There are quite a few in Cody but you are a long way from the entrance. The same with Jackson.

Good luck and have a great trip.
taitai is offline  
Jul 28th, 2010, 08:43 AM
  #5  
 
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Hello CarolRob

Cancellations for in-park lodging thru xanterra.com can be made as late as 48 hours in advance of the reservation.

So if you have a back-up plan, just be sure to make note of its cancellation policy.

We've enjoyed the Holiday Inn Sunspree in West Yellowstone, but there are many other choices in this area as well.

Happy travels!
swisshiker is offline  
Jul 29th, 2010, 07:15 AM
  #6  
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Good advice reanterra; I had no idea. We will be approaching from the east (Badlands-Mt. Rushmore) but it seems logical to try for inside the Park lodging(I'm going to put my husband on that) and have a back-up at the closest outside motel.I feel I'm going at this backwards as I should first identify what we want to see and then figure out where to sleep.If West Yellowstone is closer to the action and has abundant motels we could drive through the Park (taking in the Lake, Fishing Bridge, West Thumb, Old Faithful etc.) and continue on to the western side.Cody and Jackson appear to be too far out and Gardiner too north.
Our plans are to hit the Tetons after Yellowstone. Thank you everybody for your responses, I don't know what I'd do without Fodor's chat! I laugh when I remember saying to my husband, "let's take a couple of weeks and go out West"and he said, going out the door with his golf clubs,"you plan it honey and I'll go!" So, anybody out there with the perfect 3 day Yellowstone plan?
CarolRob is offline  
Jul 29th, 2010, 08:10 AM
  #7  
 
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There is also the Cooke City entrance which drop you into the park closer to the Lamar Valley and that area. The downside is that there are only 7 motels in all of Cooke City so snagging a reservation might be tricky. But, you could try that. Otherwise, I like your West Yellowstone back up and just keep calling (not website) Xanterra.

As for your 3 day plan...it is really dependent on what you want to do...wildlife viewing, thermal features, hiking, photography, etc. Provide a bit more information there.

We are going to Yellowstone the middle of next month and I have found that I am getting the most robust information for our trip from tripadvisor's Yellowstone National Park forum. The people here are wonderful but the people over there just live and breathe Yellowstone. Ynet is another great resource if you want to drill down even further.

Have a great trip.
taitai is offline  
Jul 30th, 2010, 05:04 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
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Cooke City Lodgings.

http://www.colorado-west.com/cooke/
RedRock is offline  
Jul 30th, 2010, 06:10 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: May 2003
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Hi CarolRob, just wanted to reiterate the "keep calling" advice; yesterday, I was able to improve my Yellowstone reservations for the second week of August because of cancellations. Again, don't do it through the web, just call, they are very helpful on the phone.

Mary
marymarra is offline  
Jul 31st, 2010, 07:45 AM
  #10  
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Thanks Mary, that's the 866-256-9046 number, correct? Our friends, who have worked at YSNP thought that Canyon Lodge would be a good location to explore the park from. They know it stays open in Sept. Looking at the map, Lake Yellowstone and Grant Village appear to be back-ups for us (centrally located) if they are not closed in September. Is it wise to give them 2 or 3 locations or do you simply ask for any cancellations on a specific date(s)that exist in the park and be knowledgable enough to make an informed decision if they come up with one? In our travels we love to wing it and make our own schedule. Yellowstone appears otherwise!
CarolRob is offline  
Jul 31st, 2010, 08:03 AM
  #11  
 
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If something -- anything -- comes up for your dates, grab it. If it's not the perfect location or accommodation for you, keep calling to try to change. But at least you'd be in the park somewhere.
swisshiker is offline  
Jul 31st, 2010, 10:34 AM
  #12  
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Yeah! You sound like my husband...grab anything. No private bath...ugh!!!! I get the point, tho.
CarolRob is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2010, 07:57 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: May 2003
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Carol--that's the number--find something to do while you wait on hold , but then once you are on they will spend all the time you want.

It is so funny that you mentioned "winging it;" someone this weekend just asked me if we were winging it and I said you really can't because so many people book so far in advance.
Good luck!

Mary
marymarra is offline  
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