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Touring West Yellowstone

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Touring West Yellowstone

We're touring Yellowstone and staying in Big Sky. How many miles/minutes should we plan on from Big Sky to the West Yellowstone entrance? What other activities in the park (i.e., Old Faithful) are reasonable day trips for us? Thanks.

Belgrade, MT
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1. Re: Touring West Yellowstone

It is about 58 miles from BS (Mountain Village) to West, but about 18 miles from BS you technically enter the park, and speed limit is 55mph (stricly enforced!). Plan on at least an hour for this portion of the trip. The park is mosly 45mph, and there can be bison on the road, which really slows things down. Old Faithful is less than an hour (30 miles) from West; was just there 8/2/05, it was erupting about every 75 minutes. I would recommend you do some of the walking tours, we just did the Fountain Paint Pots on this last trip. Most of the hikes are easy, well maintained wooden trails. Now if you want to spend the whole day, I would suggest coming in at West, heading NE to the Canyon Village- that is where you can see the Upper and Lower Falls; then south along the Yellowstone River to Lake Village/Bay Bridge and on down to the West Thumb of Yellowstone Lake. There are lots of opportunities to stop and explore geysers and mudpots along the way, if you chose. From there head west to Old Faithful, then up to Madison junction and back out at West Yellowstone. The whole trip is about 125 miles(in the park), but can easily take all day with stops. You would get to see most of the park, and certainly the most photograghed spots. Enjoy your trip!

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2. Re: Touring West Yellowstone

I would think that Old Faithful, Canyon, the Lake and West Thumb would all be fairly short drives and great to see, also!

Big Sky, MT
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3. Re: Touring West Yellowstone

I'd plan on at least two days to see the park, or relegate yourself to see half of it. You can hit all the major locations (Old Faithful, Lake, Canyon, Mammoth) in one day, but it is a long, long day, and doesn't leave much time for getting out of the car, which I would highly suggest. I've done the one-day trip with visiting family, and all that time in the car took some of the fun out of it for them. I would definitely suggest spending some time in the northeast part of the park. I think it's the best scenery, and is a little less hectic than the rest.