Explore in Winter

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Learn how to #PlanLikeAParkRanger by following our top 10 tips for a winter visit to Yellowstone! Restricted vehicle access and limited services make winter visits far different than a summer experience. So, plan ahead, recreate responsibly, and help ensure this iconic landscape may be enjoyed by future generations.


Top Things to Know in Winter

1. Most Park Roads Closed to Automobiles
Roads statuses can change quickly due to weather conditions and certain restrictions may apply, so check the road status map before you leave.

  • The road between the North and the Northeast entrances is open to automobiles year-round.
  • Most park roads are open to limited snowmobile and snowcoach travel from mid-December to mid-March.

2. Anticipate Icy and Snowy Conditions
Drive cautiously and watch out for snow plows. Do not stop, stand, or walk in the road—use a pullout if you need to stop for any reason. Boardwalks can also be slippery, especially near thermal areas. Wear traction aids over your footwear and navigate carefully.

3. Want to See Old Faithful?
Park partners, concessioners, and authorized businesses offer a variety of guided tours throughout the park during the winter months.

4. Services are Limited
Most facilities are closed during winter. Check winter operating dates to see which visitor centers, stores, restaurants, campgrounds, lodges, and warming huts are open.

5. Camping and Lodging
Old Faithful Snow Lodge and Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel are open during winter. Make reservations as far in advance as possible. Lodging is also available in nearby communities.

There are currently no campgrounds open for the winter.

6. Prepare for Winter Conditions
Winter temperatures range from zero to 20°F (-20°C to -5°C) throughout the day. Sub-zero temperatures are common, especially at night and at higher elevations. Check the current weather conditions, pack proper clothing and equipment, and review winter safety tips!

7. Do Not Approach or Feed Wildlife
Animals always have the right of way. Expect to encounter bison and other wildlife on park roads. Slow down or pull over until they pass or move off the road. Be aware that in some areas, ravens have learned to unzip packs and scatter the contents.

8. Stay on Boardwalks
People have been severely injured or killed by breaking through the thin ground in thermal basins or falling into hot springs. Exercise caution and wear traction aids when navigating snowy or icy boardwalks.

9. Enhance Your Experience
Download the free National Park Service app (and offline content) before you arrive.

10. Connectivity is Limited
You will likely not receive calls or texts, even in the few areas you have cell reception.


Warming Huts

Shelter for skiers, snowshoers, and snowmobilers.

Warming Hut Staff Food Water Restroom Hours First Day Last Day
Canyon Visitor Education Center Lobby Yes Yes1 Yes Yes 9 am–3 pm December 15 March 10
Fishing Bridge No No No Yes 24 hours December 15 March 15
Indian Creek No No No Yes 24 hours December 15 March 5
Madison No Yes1,2 Yes Yes 24 hours December 15 March 15
Mammoth Hot Springs3 No Yes1 No No Daylight hours December 16 March 3
Old Faithful Yurts No No No No Daylight hours December 15 March 15
West Thumb No No No Yes 24 hours December 15 March 15

1 - Vending machine snacks available 24 hours a day
2 - Light snacks and hot drinks sold during the day
3 - Snowmobile fuel available

A pair of skiers on the Barronette Trail.
Winter Safety

Prepare for cold air, deep snow, and slippery boardwalks.

People bundled up while waiting for an eruption of a geyser.
Winter Clothing and Equipment

Review tips for staying comfortable in the cold.

Two skiers explore the mountains of Yellowstone.
Ski & Snowshoe

Make tracks in a winter wonderland.

Snowmobiles and a snowcoach ride by a small group of bison
Ride a Snowmobile or Snowcoach

Take a guided tour of wintry Yellowstone.

Snowmobile rider taking photo
Snowmobile Access Program

Learn about our non-commercially guided snowmobile program.

A group of people gather during sunrise
Join a Guided Tour

Professional guides can help you make the most of your visit.

Photo of people waiting at an eruption of Old Faithful
Plan Your Visit

Yellowstone is seasonal. Plan your visit by learning about current conditions, seasons, road conditions, services, activities, and more.

Fog fills a river valley in a landscape

Explore Yellowstone's seasons.

People line the boardwalk, looking out and taking pictures of a steaming hot spring.
Explore in Summer

Planning is crucial to a good summer visit, as this is the time when most people come to the park.

Last updated: December 1, 2023

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

PO Box 168
Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190-0168



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