Join a small group on a 6-day / 5-night adventure. This privately guided, wildlife focused journey takes us throughout much of the northern part of the Park in search of wolves, bears, bison, and all the majestic wildlife that call The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem home. Enjoy comfortable accommodations in picturesque settings, incredible geological features, great meals served outside, and journey to many of the locations that have made Yellowstone famous: Mammoth Hot Spring Terraces, Lamar Valley, the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, and Hayden Valley. Please see the full itinerary for more details.
Learn from the Experts:
Yellowstone Insight owner MacNeil Lyons has 20+ years of experience guiding and exploring in Yellowstone, coupled with a passion for sharing his knowledge of the natural and cultural resources found throughout the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. The focus of MacNeil and his company is rooted in the simple concept of instilling an appreciation of preserving the world’s natural resources for future generations.
Wolf Conservation Center’s Director of Operations, Spencer Wilhelm, will be your main contact from registration through trip's end. Spencer, a Wyoming native, has worked with wild canines and other large predators for almost 20 years. He is always overjoyed when returning to Yellowstone, and being able to share the experience with others is a bonus. Spencer will familiarize guests about the WCC’s mission and involvement in North American wolf recovery and reintroduction efforts.
Appropriate for anyone 16 years old or older, this trip is a great in-the field learning experience and promises to create memories that will be shared for many years to come. Minimum fitness level: Able to walk up to 2 miles over uneven terrain and up/down moderate inclines at high altitude.
Pricing and Capacity
Maximum group size: Up to 9 guests plus 3 guides:
- COUPLES & FRIENDS $2000 / person based on double occupancy. (Three rooms available)
- SINGLES $2500 (Three singles available)
Deposit of $500 per person due at time of booking. Deposits are refundable until August 1, 2019. (Full Balance due by August 15, 2019)
What's Included: All lodging, most meals, transportation to/from Bozeman/Gardiner, Yellowstone Park entry fees, four days with private professional guides, a Mercedes Sprinter to explore the park, spotting scopes and binoculars, and memories. $500 of your trip fee is tax-deductible.
What's NOT Included: Airfare to/from Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport, two dinners and extra snacks, souvenirs, gratuities for hotel staff.
NOTE: This is the general itinerary. Days 3-5 are subject to slight modifications in daily timing and travel locations due to the current wildlife viewing opportunities, weather, road closures, and guest input.
Day 1: Guests will arrive on their own schedule into Bozeman, Montana for their first night's stay. First night's accommodations provided by Best Western Plus, Gran Tree Inn. Reservations will be held under participant's name. Check in after 3pm. Dinner is on your own. The Gran Tree offers a great restaurant, casino, and an indoor pool.
Day 2: Breakfast at the hotel will be provided. A food voucher will be given to each guest at check in. WCC staff and guests will gather at 9 am in the lobby to begin our travels from Bozeman to our basecamp at the Absaroka Lodge in Gardiner, MT. On arrival into Gardiner, guests will have an opportunity to get familiar with the small town and to grab a quick snack. We will spend the later part of the day with MacNeil Lyons, founder of Yellowstone Insight (http://yellowstoneinsight.com/). We will drive to the Mammoth Hot Springs Terraces for a Geology/History tour. We will return to Gardiner around 4:30pm. The night will conclude with a group dinner around 6pm at a local restaurant.
Day 3: We will grab some coffee and tea before departing Gardiner at 6 am. MacNeil will lead our group into the Northern Range of the park in search of wolves and other wildlife. We will take a break for a delicious mid-morning brunch which may include a quick hike away from the road to Trout Lake, to a historic wolf den site, or to a different option decided upon by the group. The group will arrive back in Gardiner around 1:30 pm to conclude our 8-hour guided tour. The group will be on their own for the rest of Day 3 to explore Gardiner, to rest, and for dinner. WCC staff will provide guests an option to have a quick nap, grab a sandwich or other snack, and return into the park for a few hours and back to Gardiner in the early evening.
Day 4: Depart Gardiner at 6:00 am. Drive to Hayden Valley and visit Swan Lake along the way. Guests will be in search of wolves, bison, grizzly, moose, trumpeter swan, and more. We’ll have brunch along the Yellowstone River, walk the boardwalks of Mud Volcano, and overlook the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River. Tour the Upper & Lower Falls. Return to Gardiner around 2:30 pm. The rest of the afternoon is free. The group will meet in the evening for dinner at a local restaurant.
Day 5: Depart Gardiner between 6-6:30 am and head back in the direction of Lamar Valley with the intent to spot more wildlife. Enjoy brunch at a to be determined location. Try to return to Gardiner by 2:00-2:30. We will end the evening with a final group dinner at a local restaurant.
Day 6: 8:30-9am, Depart Gardiner to return to Bozeman for airline departures no earlier than 12pm.
Autumn begins the transition from summer to winter. And, just as the spring is a transition period with very unpredictable weather, so is autumn. The major exception is that autumn is changing from warm (summer) to cold (winter.) Snow is certainly a possibility beginning in September, however the infrequent snowstorms (more likely occurring in late September or October) usually drop only enough snow to temporarily close higher in-park roads.
In autumn, visitors should plan for fall and winter, with highs tending to run from the 40’s-50’s (5-15°C) in later fall to 60’s and low 70’s (20-25°C) in early fall. Lows will typically dip below freezing.
Clothing (Just a suggestion as weather is unpredictable)
- Insulating underwear: Something that has the ability to wick moisture away from the body.
- Mid-weight insulating layer: A light synthetic fleece or wool shirt/pullover.
- Heavyweight insulating layer: Wool, down or heavy-weight fleece jacket (especially May, June, September, and October.)
- Waterproof and windproof outer layer: Lightweight, and breathable if possible. Both jacket and pants are recommended.
- Two Hats: A brimmed one for sun protection and possibly for rain and an insulating one for cool weather (May, June, September, and October.)
- Gloves: Lightweight glove liners, and possibly even a pair of heavier wool/fleece gloves or mittens if you are visiting in May, June, September or October.
- Socks: Light wool or synthetic liner sock with a heavier wool or synthetic outer sock, the inner-outer combination helps prevent blistering, wicks moisture and reduces friction. Cotton socks are not recommended.
- Footwear: Consider insulated winter boots or hiking boots with room for proper socks. Any shoes must provide stability, traction and comfort.
- Daypack with enough capacity to carry extra clothes, water, camera, binoculars, field guides, etc.
- Water bottle: One quart/liter is the minimum recommended.
- Extra snacks: An in the field “upscale” brunch is provided days 3-5, but smart to have a little extra.
- Sunscreen/lip protector: Sun at high altitude can burn unprotected skin quickly.
- Camera, memory/film and batteries
- Binoculars are beneficial. Spotting scope will be provided for quests to share
Any prescription medications