National Park Service Areas
ID, MT, WY
On March 1, 1872, Yellowstone became the first national park for all to enjoy the unique hydrothermal and geologic wonders. Today, the park hosts millions of visitors annually, from winter visitors exploring wintery snowscapes to summer visitors observing wildlife in an intact ecosystem and watching those same hydrothermal wonders. What are some of your favorite Yellowstone memories?
The vast, wild landscape of Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area offers visitors unparalleled opportunities to immerse themselves in the natural world, and experience the wonders of this extraordinary place. With over 120,000 acres, one can find an astounding diversity in ecosystems, wildlife, and more than 10,000 years of human history to explore.
The Tower is an astounding geologic feature that protrudes out of the prairie surrounding the Black Hills. It is considered sacred by Northern Plains Indians and indigenous people. Hundreds of parallel cracks make it one of the finest crack climbing areas in North America. Devils Tower entices us to learn more, explore more and define our place in the natural and cultural world.
Originally established as a private fur trading fort in 1834, Fort Laramie evolved into the largest and best known military post on the Northern Plains before its abandonment in 1890. This “grand old post” witnessed the entire sweeping saga of America’s western expansion and Indian resistance to encroachment on their territories.
Some of the world's best preserved fossils are found in the flat-topped ridges of southwestern Wyoming's cold sagebrush desert. Fossilized fishes, insects, plants, reptiles, birds, and mammals are exceptional for their abundance, variety, and detail of preservation. Most remarkable is the story they tell of ancient life in a subtropical landscape.
Follow in the footsteps of over 250,000 emigrants who traveled to the gold fields and rich farmlands of California during the 1840s and 1850s: the greatest mass migration in American history. The California National Historic Trail is over 5,000 miles long and covers portions of 10 states. Step into history along more than 1,000 miles of ruts and traces from travelers and their overland wagons.
The Continental Divide National Scenic Trail is a United States National Scenic Trail running 3,100 miles between Mexico and Canada. It follows the Continental Divide of the Americas along the Rocky Mountains and traverses five U.S. states — Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico.
Explore the Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail across five states to see the 1,300-mile route traveled by Mormons who fled Nauvoo, Illinois, to the Great Salt Lake Valley in 1846-1847.
Imagine yourself an emigrant headed for Oregon: would promises of lush farmlands and a new beginning lure you to leave home and walk for weeks? More than 2,000 miles of trail ruts and traces can still be seen along the Oregon National Historic Trail in six states and serve as reminders of the sacrifices, struggles, and triumphs of early American settlers.
It is hard to believe that young men once rode horses to carry mail from Missouri to California in the unprecedented time of only 10 days. This relay system along the Pony Express National Historic Trail in eight states was the most direct and practical means of east-west communications before the telegraph.
Attractions in Jackson Hole
The National Elk Refuge provides, preserves, restores, and manages winter habitat for the nationally significant Jackson Elk Herd as well as habitat for endangered species, birds, fish, and other mammals.
The National Museum of Wildlife Art, founded in 1987, is a Jackson Hole museum holding more than 5,000 artworks representing wild animals from around the world. Featuring work by prominent artists such as Georgia O’Keeffe, Andy Warhol, Robert Kuhn, John James Audubon, and Carl Rungius, the Museum’s unsurpassed permanent collection chronicles much of the history of wildlife in art, from 2500 B.C. to the present.
Founded in 1958 by avocational archaeologist and western history enthusiast Slim Lawrence, Jackson Hole Historical Society and Museum plays a critical role in the Jackson Hole community and Greater Yellowstone. In addition to collecting, preserving and exploring the past, the museum supports educational programs and research that focuses on archaeology and the history of the Native American presence in the Intermountain West. The fur trade, homestead, ranching and dude ranch eras, development of tourism, mountaineering, skiing and other outdoor recreation, are also part of our mission, as well as the importance of the region’s role in the history of the country’s national and international conservation movements.
Located in Western Wyoming, the Bridger-Teton offers more than 3.4 million acres of public land for your outdoor recreation enjoyment. With its pristine watersheds, abundant wildlife and immense wildlands, the Bridger-Teton National Forest comprises a large part of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem - the largest intact ecosystem in the lower 48 United States. Offering nearly 1.2 million acres of designated Wilderness, over 3,000 miles of road and trail and thousands of miles of unspoiled rivers and streams, the Bridger-Teton offers something for everyone.
The Caribou-Targhee National Forest occupies over 3 million acres and stretches across southeastern Idaho, from the Montana, Utah, and Wyoming borders. This Forest is also home to the Curlew National Grassland. The spectacular scenery of the Forest is easily reached from highways, byways and back doors. The bond between forest and community spans generations through family activities such as camping, hiking, hunting, fishing and riding off-highway vehicles. During the winter, the forest offers vast expanses of untracked powder.
Local Partners & Information Resources
Last updated: April 11, 2020