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How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

Portland, OR
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How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

Hi everyone, my wife and I were able to get everything booked last Saturday when reservations opened for the winter 2015 schedule. Background, I am 28 my wife is 48 and my daughter is 10. We enjoyed Glacier for almost two and a half weeks last year (we went over mothers day weekend, and on the drive back to Portland, we canceled all our 4th of July plans and went back for a long week). We enjoy lots of hiking and outdoor activity.

So here is the game plan thus far.

Friday Jan. 9th 2015 - Fly out of Portland to Bozeman and pick up rental car (SUV) drive to Mammoth.

Saturday - Full Day Canyon Tour via Snowcoach staying at Mammoth

Sunday - Open staying at Mammoth

Sunday - Open staying at Mammoth

Monday - Open staying at Mammoth

Tuesday - Taking Snowcoach to Old Faithful and staying in a Frontier Cabin, also have the night star tour planned

Wednesday - Open staying at OF

Thursday - Lower Loop Snowmobile Tour staying at OF

Friday - Open staying at OF

Saturday - Snowcoach back to Mammoth for the night

Sunday - Drive back to Bozeman for a late afternoon flight home.

Couple questions,

From Mammoth how far is it to Lamar Valley? As a photographer I want to hit the valley each morning and evening.

Would like to do a trip into Tower Falls one of the days since we will be out that way. Is it better to snowshoe or ski into that area (we are novice at both, but we tried shoes last weekend and plan to do some xcountry skiing soon).

Suggestions for places around Mammoth to get out and about that would yeild good vistas for pictures.

N. Idaho
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for Yellowstone National Park
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1. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

This is one of my very favorite pictures of Mammoth, taken by a visitor during the summer. It is at Canary Spring which is on the Upper Terrace Loop. That area is open to cars in the summer but not driveable in winter. I expect you can walk, snowshoe or ski around here, but you would need to check on driving up to the parking area for this feature.

flickr.com/photos/…set-72157630272390954

Here is a link to the official Yellowstone map. www.nps.gov/yell Scroll down and click on the view park map link. You will see Lamar listed on the map east of the Tower Roosevelt Junction. You would want to go at least to the mid point of the valley so I would guess it would be ~30 miles or so. We do not recommend driving in Yellowstone in the dark, either AM or PM because of the large animals on the road. This is especially important in winter as many animals use the plowed roads to conserve energy in this harsh environment. Here is a link to sunrise and sunset times. www.sunrisesunset.com

Pam

USA
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2. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

SandS20, Thbergs has a fantastic 8-pt winter trip report with photos in a link under. There is also another photo journal by another winter visitor. Go to the Trip Archive & down to January 2013.

What date did Winter 2015 open up for Xanterra reservations?

What a marvelous trip you've planned! We need more winter trip reports hint hint.

Portland, OR
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3. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

Thank you D0bby, I think I have just about every map and winter trail printed and in my binder, along with sunrise and sunset times :) guess I should have mentioned that. I am a over planner with every trip, this one is proving to be a bit harder as 95% of the info that comes up on searches is summer related.

USA
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4. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

Also go to the only 2014 trip report of Winter in Lamar, snowshoe to Tower Fall & snow coach to Mammoth Hot Springs.

Portland, OR
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5. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

Winter reservations opened on the 15th of March at 8am Mountain time. I called at 2 seconds after 8 and had a 20 min hold lol. But got everything we wanted. And dont worry about the TR I always write them. I feel like its the best way to give back to all those who help plan each trip, and help future planners. I found the archived reports and have read them a couple times now, but need to find time to do so at home so I can view the images as well (my work blocks 99% of the images on the internet).

Portland, OR
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6. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

Ok one more question after reading the 2014 TR I went and looked at the hotel in Gardiner they stayed in, and its nice and a good amount cheaper. We could get a kitchenet unit for about $40 a night less then staying in a shared bathroom unit at Mammoth. Google Maps says its 6 miles about 12-15min from Gardiner to Mammoth. Whats peoples opinions on staying in Gardiner vs Mammoth in the winter.

Moose, Wyoming
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for Wyoming, Jackson, Jackson Hole
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7. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

>Is it better to snowshoe or ski into that area (we are novice at both, but we tried shoes last weekend and plan to do some xcountry skiing soon).

From the junction, where you park, to the falls, contains quite a bit of uphill/downhill terrain. Since you're new to XC skiing, I'd suggest that you snowshoe. But be sure to stay off of any groomed trails.

Here some trail maps in case you don't have these:

www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/skiyell.htm (scroll down to Printable Ski Maps)

jackson, miss
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8. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

We did a winter trip in 2010-11. We spent 3 days at Old Faithful Snow Lodge, 3 days at Gardiner Super 8 and 3 days in the Tetons at the Rustic Inn (all in park lodging is closed in the Tetons). We have daily trip reports with photos if you are interested compiled here:

forums.yellowstone.net/viewtopic.php…

You may have to copy and paste the link, which does not appear to directly link, but will if you copy and paste. Then the actual trip reports are hyperlinked in the body of the post.

.We booked 3 nights at Old Faithful Snow Lodge, which we loved. We took a bombadier into the park from West Yellowstone--we wanted one that would stop for wildlife not an express. I understand that the snow coach did not do the West yellowstone run this year but the trip from Mammoth should be similiar. We saw a lot of animals on the trip in and the snow coach was not too uncomforatble. We booked a photography tour in a snow coach for the second full day and a trip around the southern loop the second day. We saw bunches of both beauty and animals. Then we were on a bigger snow coach to leave and go back to West Yellowstone (which I understand was not available this year). We then spent a couple of nights in Gardiner and saw wolves in Lamar. This was a great trip which I highly recommend. Then went to the Tetons and saw moose.

I have never stayed at Mammoth but the Super 8 was fine. It had internet and I enjoyed the drive into Yellowstone since we always saw Bighorns in the Sheep management area, and loved driving Boundary road. The eagles are so much easier to see in winter.

If you wait until early January, check out the Yellowstone Association discounts available on the hotels and activities. The minimum membership is only $35, which you save on the room and it is good for discounts at the YA store in Gardiner as well as the gift shops and visitor's centers.

Salt Lake City, Utah
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9. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

SandS20, Plan an hour or more for the drive from Gardiner to Lamar Valley. I know you shouldn't drive during the dark, but we were up at the crack of dawn- just as soon as we could see and still were almost too late to see the wolves. So many more people had already arrived and set up- no idea where they came from. No guarantee there will be wolves to see, but the earlier the better for sure.

The trail to Tower Falls was mostly all skiers. It is all uphill on the way in, but if you practice before hand and figure it out it will sure be nicer heading back down the hill on skis rather than walking. The road is groomed and the snowshoers can use the outside edge, leaving the skiers with the rest of the road. The snow was packed hard enough when I went that I just walked and was fine.

The road is open from Mammoth to the Upper Level Terraces. Then some paths are packed so you can walk around. We were able to walk from there to Canary Springs which was a great activity. You can also get there from Mammoth if you want to walk the boardwalks from the Lower Terraces to the upper. You can also snowshoe or ski around though as the trails are groomed though I'm not sure where the trails head to.

They also offer shuttles to ski locations further down the road like to Swan Valley I think that you might look into. Cross country skiers were all over actually and it looked like a great way to get out into the country a bit.

One trail that was pointed out to us that we were unable to take led to the wide open area just north of Gardiner where many of the animals hang out. Buffalo, antelope, deer, and elk were all there. I think it is the Rescue Creek Trail. You don't have to take the full trail just use it to get up to the little plateau area.

We had a great time, I wish we could do it every year.

10. Re: How does my trip look - Winter 2015 schedule

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