Chance of Snow
Chance of Snow
Weather can vary during your Yellowstone vacation. Because elevations inside Yellowstone National Park range from 5,280 feet to 11,400 feet, visitors should not be surprised if the weather changes without a moment’s notice during a day spent in the world’s first national park.
For those of us who live in the high country surrounding Yellowstone, these things have become no-brainers. Because it can snow in July or reach 70 degrees in late fall, we recommend you pack for all seasons. Be sure to include a winter jacket, pants and shorts, a wool sweater and mittens no matter what time of year you’ll be touring the Yellowstone region. You know the saying – better safe than sorry.
Dynamic weather adds intrigue to your Yellowstone visit. It’s exciting to listen to a geyser gurgle and sigh on a misty morning, or to watch a bull elk bugle under soft falling snow.
In fact, any of the seasons are a glorious time to tour Yellowstone.
The crowds are larger, but Yellowstone is so big, visitors will still enjoy tremendous sights of animals, geysers and mountain vistas.
Although a visit to the famous Old Faithful geyser is in order, Yellowstone National Park is home to 60% of the world’s active geysers. There are geysers and hot springs throughout the park. Plus, given Yellowstone is home to more large and small animals than any other place in the Lower 48 states, wildlife viewing during summer is great.
Weather is most dependable during summer, although it’s been known to snow lightly in July in the park’s higher elevations. Always come prepared for all four seasons, even in summer!
low: 36.6, high: 68.5
low: 41.3, high: 78.5
low: 39, high: 76.2
During fall in Yellowstone Park, visitors can enjoy everything that they would enjoy in summer, but it begins to get colder and darker earlier in the day. Fall is a great time of year to visit because the summer crowds are gone and many of Yellowstone’s hoofed animals are in the “rut,” a time that is marked by bugling, grunting, and other interesting behaviors that only occur in the Fall.
low: 30.5, high: 64.7
low: 22.5, high: 51.8
low: 12.8, high: 34.2
In the Spring
Snow is still melting from Yellowstone’s mountains, forests and valleys. Yellowstone Lake is often frozen over until sometime in July. Some peaks have snow on them year-around. But Spring is a great time to visit Yellowstone because the crowds are few and there are wild animal babies everywhere.
Come April and May, visitors will enjoy sights of baby bison wobbling around on their frail legs, and elk calves can be seen trying to keep up with their mothers. Bear cubs and wolf pups are also entering the world in spring and can sometimes be viewed from a far distance.
Spring is the best time to view wolves and grizzly bears in Lamar Valley, as well.
Grizzlies, still hungry from their long winter snooze, are wandering around looking for winter killed ungulates and easy prey – elk or bison calves. Lamar Valley is a large expanse of land where lots of prey can be had by hungry grizzlies, black bears, wolves and coyotes.
Because much of the backcountry is still covered with snow, hiking in some areas is limited during spring.
low: 10, high: 37.2
low: 19.9, high: 45.9
low: 29.2, high: 57.9
During winter, visitors may enjoy a snowmobile or snowcoach tour of Yellowstone, or take a ski or snowshoe tour of a specific region. Like all places, winter changes the landscape. And Yellowstone is breathtaking and uniquely different in winter!
Whatever season you visit in Yellowstone National Park, you won’t be disappointed! Geysers, as well as the Lower and Upper Falls overlooks is recommended during any time of the year.
low: 1.5, high: 23.7
low: 1, high: 24
low: 3.4, high: 30.