National Parks?

Old Jun 17th, 2013, 02:35 PM
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If you go to Yellowstone, you also must visit Grand Teton NP which is adjacent to it on it's southern border. It would be a shame to miss the Tetons. The town of Jackson is fun to explore too.
Grand Teton, Glacier, Katmai and Bryce Canyon are my favorite National Parks.
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 04:44 AM
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A visit to Yellowstone and Tetons is a fantastic trip. We spent 8 days on our visit, flying in and out of Salt Lake. The drive from Salt Lake to Jackson WY was about 5 hrs. If you can get a flight into Bozeman MT, do that instead. You'll save at least 3 hrs.

We spent 6 nights in Yellowstone - 2 at Old Faithful at Snow Lodge, 2 at Mammoth in a cabin, 2 at Canyon in a cabin. Then 2 nights in Tetons at Signal Mountain. It's important to stay in a few locations in YNP - its a BIG park and there is so much to see. And you should dedicate a few days to the Tetons - beautiful and filled with moose!

We went in mid Sept and it was beautiful! 70's daytime, 40-50's at night. Elk rut is incredible! They were all over the grounds at Mammoth and staying there put us close to the north side of the park and the Lamar Valley, which is spectacular. Saw every type of mammal and bird you can imagine - grizzly and black bear, herds of pronghorn and bison, big horn sheep, coyote and fox everywhere, tons of elk, wolves (made me cry, I was so happy!) Eagles, osprey, trumpeter swans, grouse. Crazy!

And the park's thermal features are unlike anything else you will see. Norris and Old Faithful geyser basins are a must see. Walk as many of the boardwalks as you can - Grand Prismatic, Artist Paint pots, Black Sand Basin - all kinds of different thermal features that will blow you away.

I fell in love with Yellowstone. You will enjoy every minute of your time there.
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 09:56 AM
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Thanks for all this good info. I'm having fun exploring all the different hotels.

Are there organized tours you can take out to see the wildlife and thermal features, or does everyone just do it on their own? Any tours to recommend?
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 11:46 AM
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There are tours offered by Xanterra, the park service concessionaire http://www.yellowstonenationalparklo...o-do-7168.html and the Yellowstone Association https://www.yellowstoneassociation.org/experience and a number of other tour operators. We mostly went on our own except for the snow coach ride to/from Old Faithful which is required to get there in winter. Our wolf finding strategy was to look for a row of spotting scopes
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 12:12 PM
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there really is only one....the Boundary Waters Canoe Area.

http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/superi...telprdb5202169
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 01:40 PM
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"there is really only one"
This just isn't true at all

There are many many tours and many tour operators in Yellowstone

http://www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/concessn.htm.
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 01:46 PM
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yes, it certainly is true as that is my opinion. do not ever tell me what my opinion is.
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 03:44 PM
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Then state that it is your opinion when you post it and it would be much less misleading to people that do not know how many tour providiers there are. Very commonly people put IMOP or IMHOP. There are at least 40 concessionaires. Many of which are very good or even exceptional
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 03:50 PM
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I know you are deciding on Yellowstone, but for future reference, IMHO there is no prettier place on earth than the High Sierras in Yosemite in late July. Tuolumne Meadows is a far cry the Valley, is another world that a faction of Yosemite visitors ever get to see. This is a very special place.
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 03:58 PM
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Katzgar's post wasn't about tour operators but another wilderness area (which isn't a national park).

Tuolumne Meadows is great for getting away from the crowds but IME offers far fewer wildlife sightings compared to Yellowstone.
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 04:00 PM
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In no particular order, and for the same reasons listed above, these are my favorites:
Bryce (because it was different from anything I'd ever seen)
Yellowstone (for the wildlife)
Glacier
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 04:02 PM
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Oops! Didn't mean to hit "send". I meant to add that Glacier gets my vote for excellent hiking.
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Old Jun 18th, 2013, 08:09 PM
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Patty, in my post I acknowledged that the OP had picked Yellowstone. I was merely offering an opinion on an option for a future trip, not this current one. When many people hear of Yosemite, they aren't aware of the High Sierra part.
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Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 04:47 PM
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Thanks for continuing to add to this thread. I really appreciate all the info. I think Yellowstone would be our first choice due to the great wildlife, but I like reading about all the other parks as well for future trips.
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Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 07:58 PM
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Katzgar and Spirobulldog: you two are being sent to your room for a "timeout". You may come back when you think you can behave.

What else would one post on this forum but one's opinion?
One wouldn't post someone else's opinion.

We went to Yellowstone/Tetons 3 years ago. Both on the bucket list. We stayed in 1 night in each of 3 different lodges in Yellowstone, so as to have less travel time (Sept.). Worked well. Yellowstone's springs and geysers are. to me, "oddities"; great to see them, but once is enough. Fortunately, there's ample meadowlands, mountains and wildlife as well. Tetons are beautiful; lake view, mountain view; good hiking.
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Old Jun 24th, 2013, 06:17 AM
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Looks like you are set on Yellowstone, a great choice. BUT, at the top of your list for next trip should be Alaska. The entire state is like a national park. To paint a picture for you, take the one mountain range that is Grand Teton NP, multiply it over and over again for as far as the eye can see and beyond, and make those ranges that meet ocean drop straight into the bluest water you have ever seen.
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Old Jun 24th, 2013, 08:34 AM
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Tomboy,
I thought Katzgar was commenting on the previous post not the original post at the top of the page. I didn't bother clicking on the link. I thought he/she meant there was really only one concessionaire at Yellowstone. Having an opinion and having facts are two different things. I guess that he/she was referring to a particular unit with the NPS system. The link provided isn't to a National Parks but a National Forest(which I don't know if it is operated by BLM or what)
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Old Jun 24th, 2013, 09:46 AM
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Barb, we are very interested in Alaska too. What places would you recommend that we visit there? I know the wildlife sightings would be great. Any favorite places to stay?
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Old Jun 24th, 2013, 10:27 AM
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We have only been to Kenai Fjords/Seward, Alyeska/Girdwood, and Lake Clark/floatplane trip to fish. All fantastic for us.
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Old Jun 24th, 2013, 10:30 AM
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We have only been to Kenai Fjords/Seward, Alyeska/Girdwood, and Lake Clark/floatplane trip to fish. All fantastic for us.
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