4 Best Places to Gaze at Starry Night Skies in Yellowstone

The greater Yellowstone region is known for big skies, clean air and sunny days. What this means is that nighttime skies in the summer are filled with brilliant stars.
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The greater Yellowstone region is known for big skies, clean air and sunny days. What this means is that nighttime skies in the summer are filled with brilliant stars.
Milky Way over Mammoth Hot Springs. Photo by NPS Neal Herbert

The Milky Way over Mammoth Hot Springs. Photo by NPS Neal Herbert

The greater region of Yellowstone National Park is known for big skies and clean (although sulfured) air. Untainted by light pollution, the park provides the perfect opportunity to view all the brilliant stars and constellations. Bring a star chart and don't forget your telescope. Also, remember it's grizzly country, so take the same precautions you would during the day.

The Milky Way over Castle Geyser in the Upper Geyser Basin. Photo by NPS Neal Herbert

The Milky Way over Castle Geyser in the Upper Geyser Basin. Photo by NPS Neal Herbert

Try These Favorite Gazing Spots

Stargazing Map for Yellowstone

1. Mount Washburn

Yellowstone National Park's best-known mountain is an excellent spot to stargaze. Access the hiking trails up the 10,243-foot peak from Dunraven Pass on Grand Loop Road or Chittenden Road.

2. Upper Geyser Basin (includes Old Faithful and Castle Geyser)

Stargazing near Old Faithfull Visitor Education Center is a safe and convenient location for families. Follow the bike path from Old Faithful to Castle Geyser for solitude under the stars.

3. Mammoth Hot Springs

The boardwalks to the upper terraces at Mammoth Hot Springs gives you a high vantage point for those who don't want to climb a peak.

4. Madison Amphitheater Astronomy Program

Check out the Stars Over Yellowstone summer astronomy programs, where you'll learn from some of the top astronomers from around the country. Find the Milky Way, Saturn, craters on the Moon, the center of the Galaxy, star clusters, and nebula. Telescopes available. Bring a flashlight. Visit www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/calendar.htm for the schedule.

On the Way to Yellowstone... Salt Lake City

You can visit the Universe at Clark Planetarium, with its 3D IMAX Theatre and more.

Related

Old Fashioned Yellowstone Tour Bus

Van Tours of Yellowstone National Park

Let someone else do the driving so you can simply see the sights. Interpretive Tours in Yellowstone are available through All Yellowstone Sports, See Yellowstone Summer Van Tour, Grand Teton Lodge Company, and yLoop Road Trips.