Life in the Northern Range

On March 1, 1872, Yellowstone became the first national park for all to enjoy the unique hydrothermal and geologic wonders. Ungulates—bison, elk, pronghorn, moose, and deer—migrate seasonally and move across the landscape following the new growth of grasses, when forage is at its most nutritious.

 
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The Northern Range is the hub of wildlife in Yellowstone National Park. Occupying just 10 percent of the park, it is winter range for the biggest elk herd in Yellowstone and is arguably the most carnivore-rich area in North America. Early management of predators caused dynamic changes to the ecosystem. The reappearance of carnivores on the landscape has had significant and sometimes unexpected impacts on the resident grazers and their habitat.

 
Grizzly bears and ravens feed on a carcass near a couple of ponds.

Cycles and Processes

Many animals migrate seasonally, following the new growth of grasses and other food sources.

Four hikers walking along a wooded hiking trail.

Hike a Trail

Lace up your boots, grab your bear spray, and explore nearly 1,000 miles of trails.

 

Experience Your Yellowstone

An amazing experience awaits you here. This summer, operations and opportunities will be limited, so please check the current conditions, operating seasons and hours, road conditions, and lodging and eating options to help plan your visit as best as possible.

 
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Watch this short video for Yellowstone visiting tips for this summer.

 
A lone person standing on a boardwalk and takes a picture of steaming hot springs.

Things To Do

Explore all the different things there are to do in the park.

Yellowstone's app running on a tablet

Digital Guide to Yellowstone

Geyser predictions, interactive maps, self-guided tours, current conditions, and more. Download the official, free app today!

View from the top of a building shows visitors standing in a wide arc around a steaming geyser.

Webcams

Watch Old Faithful erupt or see the Upper Geyser Basin, Mount Washburn, Yellowstone Lake, and some of the park entrances.

A car drives along on a winding road during a foggy morning.

Park Roads

Check the status of park roads.

A person looks through a camera with a large zoom lens at a bear in the distance

Watch Wildlife

Bring binoculars or a spotting scope and enjoy watching animals from a safe distance.

Child wearing a winter hat and coat looking out across a deep, aqua-green hot spring.

Kids & Youth

What fascinates you about Yellowstone? Personalize your online adventure of the world's first national park.

Map of Norris Geyser Basin showing a brief description and image of Steamboat Geyser.

Virtual Tours

Virtual explore different parks of the park through interactive maps.

 

Understand Yellowstone

Yellowstone is as wondrous as it is complex. The park is at the heart of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, where nature and culture abound. Here are just a few highlights for you to learn about the park.

 
A pronghorn looking directly at the camera.

Pronghorn

The surviving member of a group of animals that evolved in North America during the past 20 million years.

Bison grazing in the grassy areas around a hot spring with snow covering part of the ground.

Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem

Yellowstone is the heart of one of the largest, nearly intact temperate-zones on Earth.

A young bison calf with rust-red fur.

Wildlife

Learn about the park's abundant and diverse species—67 mammals, 330 birds, 16 fish, 5 amphibians, and 6 reptiles.

Branches and limbs cluster around a growing conifer on a windswept mountain top.

Plants

More than 1,300 plant taxa occur in Yellowstone National Park.

An osprey comes in for a landing on a nest, where its mate tends the nest.

Osprey

Osprey summer in Yellowstone, fishing and raising young.

A heartbeat graphic is superimposed over a croaking frog and a mountain valley

Yellowstone Science

Yellowstone Science shares in-depth, science-based knowledge about the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

 

Preserve Yellowstone

The National Park Service works to preserve Yellowstone for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of all people. We are not alone in this endeavor-park partners, volunteers, and visitors all help. Learn how to get involved.

 
A wildfire crew stands closely by a large pile of burning logs.

Fire Management

Balancing the benefits and threats of fire.

Photo of ranger deploying bear spray.

Bear Spray

Learn about this highly effective bear deterrent.

Photo of a park employee cleaning a boat with a power washer.

Clean, Drain, and Dry

Protect park waters by preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species.

Last updated: August 3, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 168
Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190-0168

Phone:

307-344-7381

Contact Us