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Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

Lake City, Florida
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Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

We have business in Idaho Falls area in Mid November 2013. Wanting to Visit Yellowstone, Grand Teton National Park and Jackson Hole in mid Nov 2013. We know that's not a great time....but, we can't change the date. Any suggestions would be great! ( Unless, someone has a much better suggestion:). Most info tells us it is too early for snowmobiling and all entrances are closed to automobiles....except the North Entrance. We would really like to enjoy the area while we are there! Thanks in advance for any suggestions!!!

Mount Washburn
Mountains, National Parks
Gibbon Falls
Waterfalls, Nature & Wildlife Areas, Geologic Formations, National Parks
N. Idaho
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1. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

You are correct, Yellowstone closes on November 4. It reopens mid-Dec for over-the-snow traffic. There is one road that is open all year and it is from Mammoth to Cooke City across the Northern Range of the park. That will not be terribly convenient to access from Idaho Falls. You would need to go up to Bozeman, east to Livingston and south to Mammoth. You would be able to see the hot spring terraces at Mammoth and drive out in to the Lamar Valley to look for wildlife. You would not be able to see the big geyser basins, waterfalls, canyon or lake areas. It is a pretty roundabout trip to try and get from Mammoth/Gardiner down to Jackson as you will need to go around the park, not thru it.

BTW, Mid-November can be wintery in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. You will need to check weather reports carefully before setting out and might encounter snow or icy conditions.

Pam

Lake City, Florida
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2. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

Pam,

Thank you so much!!!! We may need to rething Yellowstone. Any suggestions for other things to do in the area ....we will have 5 days.

N. Idaho
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3. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

Jackson is still a possibility, but that area is not my strong point! Hopefully one of the Jackson/GTNP folks will see your post today and respond.

Pam

(Go Gators...I remember Lake City *back in the day*, lol!)

Moose, Wyoming
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4. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

Mid-November is in the off-season and pretty quiet around here. There are neither summer nor winter activities available. But GTNP is open, but many visitors centers are closed:

www.nps.gov/grte/planyourvisit/hours.htm

as are Moose-Wilson Rd and the Teton Park Rd north of the Taggart Lake parking area.

But hiking is still available, and the National Museum of Wildlife Art is open, as are most shops and restaurants.

Edited: 03 September 2013, 16:10
Moose, Wyoming
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5. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

I should also mention that around that time of year there are 7,000 elk passing through this valley on their way to the National Elk Refuge.

Lake City, Florida
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6. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

Teton Bill,

Thank you for the info:)

We also received this message.....so maybe our hopes of Yellowstone shouldn't be completely dashed??? What do you think? Also what valley are you referring to regarding the Elk migration??? That is absolutely incredible!!! Thanks again. If you need any pointers on Florida...we it:)

On September 3, 2013 10:11 AM MagMinn wrote:

I visited Montana/Yellowstone late last November and had a fabulous time! We stayed near the North entrance of Yellowstone in Paradise Valley. The North entrance was the only part of the Park open when we were there so we wanted to stay near it. There is a lot going on in Yellowstone that time of year at the North entrance!

We found a great place to stay which provided great access to Yellowstone.. You might want to check it out for your trip. I think they have a 2 night minimum. The weather was fabulous when we were there and the crowds were not bad at all. The wildlife were really plentiful, too! We also had great fishing from the house.

As I said, we stayed near the North entrance of Yellowstone in what is called 'Paradise Valley' at a house called Yellowstone Lookout. . The North entrance/area is fabulous for animal watching, etc., hiking, soaking in mineral waters, etc. In fact, it is the only entrance which stays open year around. We found it offered great access to Yellowstone and hiking in the nearby Absaroka Beartooth wilderness area mountains.

The best 'deals' we have found in terms of lodging have been at vacation rental homes. As I said above, the one we stayed at recently is called Yellowstone Lookout. They have 3 homes to choose from and both are new and right on the Yellowstone River (you can fish from the house) with hot tubs, wifi, etc. and fabulous views. It was near Chico Hot Spring and the fun towns of Livingston and Bozeman.

The fishing from the house was fabulous and the views from the riverside hot tub were something. And, we found it offered easy access to Yellowstone, hiking, hot springs, night life and more. The house even had a cooler there for us to pack lunches for our day trips into the Park.

Moose, Wyoming
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7. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

Sorry for not being clear. The valley I referred to is the valley of Jackson Hole. After the first snows, the elk in southern Yellowstone and in GTNP migrate to lower elevation and most find their way into the Elk Refuge, which is 25,000 acres just north of Jackson. November is generally a migration month for elk, and thousands move south through our valley here.

If you stay in Gardiner or thereabouts, you'll be in the Paradise Valley, which stretches from Livingston south to just north of Gardiner. In the fall, a lot of animals, such as elk and deer, move from Yellowstone into the lower elevations of that valley. In fact, that route from Yellowstone into Paradise Valley is the largest animal migration corridor in the Lower 48.

Since you have a great interest in seeing Yellowstone, I suggest that you plan to drive the road from Gardiner to Cooke City and at least get a gander at the northern part of the park. Then if you have any time left, head down to Jackson.

N. Idaho
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8. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

Before you make any plans, I suggest you take a look at a map and see how much driving you are wanting to do. Idaho Falls -> Bozeman -> Gardiner is 276 miles per googlemaps, and they give a drive time of 4:46. That is in good weather with no stops. Is it possible for you to change your departure airport from Idaho Falls to Bozeman? That would cut out some of the drive on the way back.

Pam

Lake City, Florida
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9. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

Pam,

You all have been so helpful!! Thank you!! After all of your thoughts....we are thinking AFTER our trip near Idaho Falls....we will base out of Jackson Hole and explore Grand Teton National Park.....we don't want to spend all of our time driving. Then just plan a trip back specifically for Yellowstone during the Spring. Does this sound more reasonable? That would give us 3-4 days to really explore Grand Teton National Park and Jackson Hole:)

Moose, Wyoming
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10. Re: Visit to Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton in Nov

>Does this sound more reasonable?

Yep.