As Yellowstone National Park kicks off its summer season, it opens to a strong start. Every year, park visitation increases in May, as winter’s snows begin to recede and roadways begin to clear. During this time, more of the park’s facilities open back up after a winter-long hiatus.
Since the beginning of 2013, Yellowstone National Park has seen 392,222 visitors, of which 293,250 visited the park in May. When comparing these numbers to last year’s, the park has seen a 5.99-percent increase in visitors over a single one-year period. During this same period, Yellowstone saw an increase of 8.36-percent for RVs and automobiles entering the park. The park’s south and east entrances posted the largest gains in visitors.
The park’s summer season runs mid-April to the beginning of November, but the busiest tourists months are easily July and August. These months also post the hottest temperatures, but because Yellowstone is located at a high altitude, guests should wear several layers of clothing to accommodate chilly, moderate and high temperatures.
In the summer, most of the park’s hiking trails and all visitor service centers are open. Animal viewing opportunities in the summer months are plentiful. Animal sightings are more common in the early morning and late evening hours. Buffalo herds are plentiful in both the Lamar and Hayden Valleys. In August, buffalo are in their mating season, which means that visitors can see males vying for female attention.
Yellowstone National Park also offers several children’s programs in the summer, including Junior Range programs, Junior Range Wildlife Olympics, Stars Over Yellowstone and Young Scientist classes. Ranger-led programs are offered in several areas, including Canyon Village, Grand Village and Wet Thumb, Madison and West Yellowstone, Norris, Fishing Bridge and Lake Village, Old Faithful and Mammoth. Schedules are available online through the Yellowstone National Park website. These interpretative education sessions teach visitors about the rugged landscape, the history of Yellowstone, local ecology, geology and natural history.
For visitors that prefer to explore the nearby areas, including West Yellowstone, Yellowstone Holiday offers a perfect nearby treat. They offer affordable cabins near Yellowstone, which features excellent fishing at Hebgen Lake. They also offer RV parks in West Yellowstone. Located outside the city of West Yellowstone, Yellowstone Holiday is an ideal destination for families. For those looking at camping in Yellowstone National Park, many of the campgrounds rapidly fill up and it can be difficult locating first-come-first serve spaces.
With a convenient location just outside Yellowstone National Park, Yellowstone Holiday is also located near Montana’s Big Sky resort. With abundant wildlife roaming these vast areas, guests are sure to experience the thrill of America’s great outdoors.