YOUR GUIDE TO AMERICA’S FIRST NATIONAL PARK
YELLOWSTONE TALES PARK MAP KIDS' PAGES BUSINESS DIRECTORY explorebigsky.com PHOTO BY ETHAN CONFER
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Bears oh my! Learn how you can support Yellowstone National Park at forthepark.org PHOTO BY TOM MURPHY
Join us - Proud members of Gateway Businesses for the Park Alpha Graphics • Big Horn Radio • Big Sky Resort • Big Sky Town Center • Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport City of Red Lodge TBID • East Slope Outdoors • Gallatin Alpine Sports • Granite Peak Publishing • Hungry Moose Market L&K Real Estate • Montana Living Big Sky Real Estate • Phasmid Adventure Rentals • Xanterra Parks and Resorts Yellowstone Alpen Guides • Yellowstone Country Montana • Yellowstone Park Travellodge • Yellowstone Wildlife Sanctuary A program of the Yellowstone Park Foundation | forthepark.org 2 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
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EXPLORE AMERICA’S FIRST NATIONAL PARK FROM BIG SKY’S FIRST GUEST RANCH.
Today’s itinerary: hike or bike out of your cabin, see the wonders of Yellowstone National Park, dine on farm-to-table cuisine and enjoy live music in Big Sky’s Town Center. Tomorrow: fly fish on blue ribbon trout streams. With lodging and recreation packages, top-quality guides, and 100 years of Montana heritage, Lone Mountain Ranch is the ideal headquarters for your Yellowstone vacation.
LONEMOUNTAINRANCH.COM OFFICIAL LIVESTOCK SPONSOR OF THE 2015 BIG SKY PBR JULY 30-AUG. 1 explorebigsky.com
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NOTEWORTHY WINE LIST SPECIALTY COCKTAILS LONE MOUNTAIN VIEWS PATIO SEATING
A continental bistro serving lunch and dinner, Monday-Saturday Meadow Village Center, 151 Center Lane #2, Big Sky | Reservations: (406) 995-3355 or olivebsbigsky.com 4 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
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Owned and published in Big Sky, Montana PUBLISHER Eric Ladd EDITORIAL MANAGING EDITOR Joseph T. O’Connor
CREATIVE CREATIVE DIRECTOR Kelsey Dzintars
SENIOR EDITOR / DISTRIBUTION DIRECTOR Tyler Allen
GRAPHIC DESIGNER Taylor-Ann Smith
ASSOCIATE EDITOR Maria Wyllie
VIDEO DIRECTOR Brian Niles PHOTOGRAPHER/VIDEOGRAPHER Wes Overvold
SALES AND OPERATIONS CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER Megan Paulson DIRECTOR OF SALES E.J. Daws ACCOUNT MANAGER Katie Morrison ACCOUNT COORDINATOR Maria Wyllie
Ride the back roads and trails of the Gallatin National Forest in West Yellowstone. View the Tetons from Two Top Mountain, come explore our backyard. ALLEY D
MEDIA AND EVENTS DIRECTOR Ersin Ozer ACCOUNTANT Alexis Deaton
CONTRIBUTORS Ethan Confer, Abbie Digel, Felicia Ennis, Jim Harris, John Layshock, Forrest McCarthy, Jim Peaco, Hunter Rothwell, Joe Shaw, Pat Straub, Walter Wiese
TO ADVERTISE: contact E.J. Daws at firstname.lastname@example.org or Ersin Ozer at email@example.com. OUTLAW PARTNERS P.O. Box 160250, Big Sky, MT 59716 (406) 995-2055 • firstname.lastname@example.org © 2015 Outlaw Partners Unauthorized reproduction prohibited
406.646.7735 or 800.231.5991
131 Dunraven St | West Yellowstone MT 59758
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Table of Contents PARK NEWS - Yellowstone Geyser App.........................10 - Gardiner Gateway Project.......................11 DAY TRIPS - Yellowstone in a Day................................14 - Climbing Electric Peak...........................16 - Mt. Washburn: The best seat in the house......................19 WILDLIFE - Yellowstone Cougar Project....................21 - A guide to viewing Yellowstone Wildlife.................................24 - Yellowstone Wildlife Infographic...............27 KIDS - Activity page.............................................28 FISHING - A Place of Angling Wonders.....................30 ADVENTURE - Wilderness Paddling: The Thorofare..........................................34
From the Editor: Experience Yellowstone The first day I visited Yellowstone National Park, I hit a traffic jam. Not the kind you see in Manhattan at, well, anytime of day. It was the kind you’ll only experience in America’s first national park. We couldn’t drive further because a 2,000-pound bison was standing on the double-yellow line and staring at us through the windshield. It was a reminder that humanity relinquishes control to nature in this public land holding, measuring nearly 3,500 square miles. It’s something you rarely see. It’s the reason you visit the park. Following this bison encounter we explored Slough Creek’s meandering flow approximately 25 miles east of the Cooke City entrance. We hiked in and cast flies to hungry summer brown trout and breathed in the cleanest air I’ve ever filled my lungs with. En route to our West Yellowstone exit, we drove by massive Yellowstone Lake and stopped by to see the park’s crown jewel: Old Faithful. The intermittent charges of water and steam shoot as high as 185 feet in the air, and this time did not disappoint. These are the experiences that Yellowstone National Park offers. It’s a wild and protected place that is as special as any I’ve seen. We hope you enjoy this guide and are mesmerized as you explore Yellowstone.
SCIENCE - Colors of the geysers..............................38 PARK HISTORY - Old Faithful Haynes Photo Shop.................40
Joseph T. O’Connor Explore Yellowstone Managing Editor
- The Dudes of Yellowstone: Early tourism in the park........................43 DIRECTORY................................................45 ON THE COVER: Castle Geyser is in the Upper Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park. The cone geyser is shown erupting a vertical column of hot water that reaches a height of 90 feet. PHOTO BY ETHAN CONFER/ ETHANCONFER.COM
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5% of ad sales generated by this publication were donated to Yellowstone Park Foundation.
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Fountain Paint Pots Great Fountain Geyser
xim pro Ap at e C ald e r a Boun dary
March 1, 1872 2010 Visitation:
Eagle Peak (11,358 ft.) Avg. Winter Temp:
Avg. Summer Temp: 74ยบ F
TETON NATIONA L PA R K
IDAHO * This map is to act as a visual representation of Yellowstone National Park. Locations are approximate.
Buffalo Lake Patrol Cabin
Ri ve r Fir eh ole
M a d i son R iver
GARDINER North Entrance Boiling River
PA R K
G A L L A T I N N A T I O N A L F O R E S T
Canyon Village Grand Canyon of Yellowstone
r ive ar R Lam
E N G R A
Gardiner Riv er
Norris Geyser Basin
Mammoth Hot Springs
NATI O NA L
Yellowstone BI G
WEST YELLOWSTONE Madison Junction
‘YELLOWSTONE GEYSER’ | App for your smartphone or tablet YELLOWSTONE PARK FOUNDATION
If you’re planning a visit to the Old Faithful area, or you just can’t get enough of Yellowstone’s geysers, the free National Park Service “Yellowstone Geysers” app is a must. Not only does it predict eruptions for Old Faithful, the park’s most famous geyser, the app helps predict when five other geysers – Grand, Castle, Great Fountain, Daisy, and Riverside – in the area may erupt. There are also plenty of other functions you can enjoy when you’re not in Yellowstone. A link to a webcam is at your fingertips to view geyser eruptions in real time; fascinating facts give you the scientific lowdown on how geyser eruptions are
predicted; and a photo gallery reveals their spectacular beauty. As an added bonus, the app gives you one-stop browsing of the park’s Twitter, YouTube and Flickr sites so you can stay on top of happenings in Yellowstone. The NPS Yellowstone Geysers app was developed in partnership with Washington State University, University of Hawaii, Yellowstone National Park and West Virginia’s Harpers Ferry Center. It was made possible in part by a generous donation from Canon USA, Inc. to the Yellowstone Park Foundation. The app is available in the Google Play and Apple iTunes stores.
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Gardiner Gateway Project to coincide with NPS centennial Walk into a business on Park Street in Gardiner, and you’re in Park County, Montana. Step out onto the sidewalk, and you’re in Yellowstone National Park. Gardiner’s historic downtown literally straddles the park boundary. The iconic Roosevelt Arch, too, is split between national park service and county property. That’s why a broad group of stakeholders from the region, including federal, state, local and nonprofit groups, are working together on the planning, design and construction of new infrastructure along the “Gardiner Gateway” to Yellowstone National Park. Phase 1 of the Gardiner Gateway Project kicked off on April 17, and the project’s total cost is more than $20 million, most of which is covered by the Federal Land Access Program. New amenities like walkways, restrooms and a welcome center will
address visitor safety and services, and improved traffic circulation. The updates are designed to enhance the visitor experience, while promoting Montana tourism and local economic development. It all started because the north entrance station to the park wasn’t functioning efficiently enough, said the project’s park spokesman Joe Regula. In the past few years as park visitor numbers skyrocketed, the station has caused traffic jams with vehicles backed up several miles – under the arch, down Park Street, past the bridge on Main Street and down to U.S. Highway 89. In June of 2012, a group of leaders involved with the project held a ceremony at Arch Park, the original entrance to Yellowstone. They signed a Memorandum of Understanding as a call to action in anticipation of the 2016 centennial of the National Park Service. Together, the Greater Gardiner
Community Council and the Gardiner Chamber of Commerce made plans to leverage the project to benefit civic and business interests. According to the Gardiner Chamber’s board president Daniel Bierschwale, the chamber is also looking to use the project as a platform to tell the town’s story through a historic walking tour that would tell the community’s ranching, railroad, mining and tourism history. “It’s the original gateway to Yellowstone National Park,” Bierschwale said, noting the goal is to make Gardiner the premiere entrance to the park. While the boundary is physical, Regula said, the functionality of how the area operates is very universal and requires all the players to talk and work together to make improvements.
YELLOWSTONE & GRAND TETON NP ENTRANCE FEES: Vehicles $30 per vehicle to visit each individual park or $50 for a two-park vehicle pass, for one to seven days.
Annual passes $60 for each individual park. An $80 Interagency Pass is valid for entry to all fee areas on federal lands.
Military Annual Pass A free annual pass available for active duty military personnel, and their dependents, with proper identification.
Motorcycles $25 for each park or $40 for both parks, for one to seven days
Interagency Senior Pass $10 lifetime pass available to U.S. citizens or permanent residents age 62 and older.
Free Entrance Days Aug. 25 (National Park Service’s birthday); Sept. 26 (National Public Lands Day); Nov. 11 (Veteran’s Day)
Foot/bicycle $15 for each park or $20 for both parks, for one to seven days
Interagency Access Pass A free lifetime pass available to citizens or permanent residents of the U.S. who are blind or permanently disabled.
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TYRANNICAL Announcing a new permanent exhibit at MOR.
TYRANT Kings featuring MONTANA’S T. rex.
Tyrannosaurus rex, or “tyrant lizard king,” roamed the earth 65 million years ago. Now T. rex will roam the earth again in our Siebel Dinosaur Complex, making MOR one of only a few museums in the world to display an actual fossilized T. rex skeleton. The exhibit presents a spectacular specimen called Montana’s T. rex that stands 12-feet high and nearly 40-feet long. Skulls from our collections will also be on exhibit, displaying the growth of T. rex – from juvenile to the largest T. rex skull ever discovered. MOR’s The Tyrant Kings reveals the science and research of Tyrannosaurus rex in a very, very big way. Don’t miss it! Sponsored in part by:
To become a member or to donate, visit museumoftherockies.org.
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OUTLAW PARTNERS PHOTO
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1. Stock up in Gardiner 2. Mammoth Hot Springs NPS PHOTO 3. Tapas at Café Madriz 4. Keep an eye out for wildlife throughout your day NPS PHOTO
YELLOWSTONE IN A DAY FROM BOZEMAN OR BIG SKY |
BY ABBIE DIGEL
Don’t have time to spend a week exploring Yellowstone, the nation’s first national park? It’s easy to take a day and see all of the hot spots, get off the beaten track, and make it back in time for dinner. This itinerary involves long hours in the car, but a visit to the park is well worth it, and there’s always something to see. Itinerary: Livingston Gardiner Boiling River Mammoth Hot Springs Canyon Area Old Faithful Area West Yellowstone
Choose travel days wisely: Travel on a weekday – there will be fewer crowds. If a weekend jaunt is in the plan, sometimes the eclectic crowds are sights to enjoy in and of themselves.
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What to pack: Bathing Suit Waterproof shoes Sturdy walking shoes Snacks Binoculars Camera
Plan ahead: Book hotel rooms and campsites months in advance. They sell out fast, especially in West Yellowstone, and especially in the summer. Don’t forget to check out the guest ranches along Highway 191 and in Big Sky.
MORNING From Bozeman, drive east on I-90 toward Livingston. Want to encounter a griz the safe way? Stop briefly at the Montana Grizzly Bear Encounter, a bear rescue center. On the Jackson Creek exit, just a few miles from Bozeman off of I-90, you can’t miss the huge sign. Stay a while and watch the bears play, then chat with one of the caretakers; it’s a great way to learn the animals’ habits and take in their size. Stop in Livingston for an early lunch at Mark’s In and Out at the corner of 8th and Park streets. They serve cheap, old-fashioned burgers, fries and shakes that will hold you over until dinner. There are two large supermarkets (Town and Country, Albertson’s) if you need to stock up on snacks.
MAMMOTH AREA Onward to Yellowstone. Take a right on 89 South, which hugs the Yellowstone River, toward Gardiner. In Gardiner, refuel at one of the many coffee shops at the edge of the entrance to the park. Also, stop by the chamber of commerce for information and literature about the park. Time to hit the road. Pay the entrance fee ($30, good for seven days), and just past the entrance find the parking lot for the Boiling River, an off-the-map and favorite destination for locals. Take time to soak in this unique spot, and then get back on the road and drive 5 miles south to Mammoth Hot Springs. There is plenty to do and see here. Head into the Albright Visitor Center and Museum, which has undergone renovation and will have its grand reopening celebration on June 14. Spend some time talking to a ranger and visiting the exhibits, then check out the
OLD FAITHFUL AREA BOZEMAN
GARDINER BOILING RIVER MAMMOTH HOT SPRINGS WEST YELLOWSTONE
CANYON VILLAGE FOUNTAIN PAINT POTS OLD FAITHFUL
It’s best to check at Canyon Village Visitor Education Center for Old Faithful eruption times (approximately every 90 minutes). From the Canyon Village center, it’s about 45 minutes to Old Faithful by car. Arrive early and score a good seat. Check out the new Old Faithful Visitor Education Center—the interactive exhibits are great for the kids, and a nice break from the car. Plan accordingly, and you’ll be able to make stops along the way to see the world’s highest concentration of active geysers.
FOUNTAIN PAINT POTS
park’s most dynamic hydrothermal areas, with features that change constantly. Still have time to spare? Hit the trail. The easy-to-moderate hike to Bunsen Peak is 4.2 miles, and the top provides panoramic views of other park destinations and the Gallatin Range. Find the trailhead at the entrance of the Old Bunsen Peak Road, five miles south of Mammoth toward Norris.
CANYON VILLAGE This is a must-see, but make it a quick trip in order to take in Yellowstone’s most iconic geyser, Old Faithful. The fastest way to see the canyon is to drive approximately five minutes from Canyon Village to North Rim Drive and walk along the paved paths to Red Rock Point, Lookout Point or Grand View. From here you can catch a glimpse of the expanse of the canyon, see the waterfall and look northeast down the Yellowstone River.
After Old Faithful stop at the Fountain Paint Pots, a favorite feature among Yellowstone guides. It’s best to park and walk the boardwalk to view these geothermal features, but there is also an option to drive along the Firehole Lake Drive, a one-way side road that yields great views. The paint pot is located among other features, including the Great Fountain Geyser, another erupting geyser that reaches up to 200 feet.
WEST YELLOWSTONE Exit the park through the west entrance and enter West Yellowstone. The local shop owners here are friendly and informative. Stop for reasonably priced Spanish tapas at a favorite spot, Cafe Madriz, located at the north end of town, then stash the car and walk to the Playmill to catch community theater at its best. The small stage and interactive performances are a relaxing and fun way to end the evening.
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YELLOWSTONE SUMMIT ELECTRIC PEAK
Looking to summit this summer? Electric Peak is one of my favorites. It’s a great all-day run/hike, and there’s also a mountain bike/ hike option. This massive mountain rises nearly 5,800 vertical feet above the Yellowstone River. It has two summits and two trailheads; reason to summit twice. The easternmost summit is the highest at 10,969 feet.
BY FELICIA ENNIS
According to Thomas Turiano’s book, “Select Peaks of Greater Yellowstone,” Electric was likely first climbed by Native American bighorn sheep hunters, and the first known ascent was made in an electrical storm on July 26, 1872 from Mammoth, by Hayden geological surveyors Henry Gannett, Albert C. Peale and Alexander E. Brown.
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PHOTO BY JIM PEACO/NPS PHOTO
HOW TO GET TO THERE: Option A: The hike/run option begins in the park, 5 miles south of Mammoth at the Glen Creek trailhead. Option B: The bike/hike begins at the Beattie Gulch trailhead, 4.5 miles northwest on Old Yellowstone Highway. Look for Beattie Gulch trailhead on the left side of road. Ride your bike up the road for 2,600 vertical feet to the peak’s north ridge. This doesn’t require a fancy bike, although a few gears will be welcome.
THE NUMBERS: Both options are about 10 miles from the trailhead to the summit. Gain 3,689 feet of elevation from the Beattie Gulch trailhead, and 5,767 feet from Glen Creek parking. This is a big day. Get an early start
and bring lots of food and water, good footwear for 20 trail miles, appropriate clothing and bear spray.
THE GOODS: Either way you go, keep your eyes peeled for large ungulates and small wildflowers. On a clear day from Electric’s summit, you’ll see mountain ranges including the Madisons, the Beartooths, the Absarokas, the Crazies, the Bridgers and the Tetons. See “Select Peaks of Greater Yellowstone” for complete details. Montana native Felicia Ennis lives in Livingston. Through her travel company, Bella Treks, she designs customized travel plans to Antarctica, Alaska, the Arctic, Argentina, Chile, the Galapagos, Morocco, Peru and around Montana. explorebigsky.com
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THE BEST SEAT IN THE HOUSE BY HUNTER ROTHWELL
Reports from the famed Washburn-Langford-Doane Expedition of 1870 include the first recorded experience of traveling to Mt. Washburn. Named in honor of expedition leader Henry D. Washburn, the peak is one of the most rewarding day hikes in Yellowstone. Thanks to the foresight of those who established the park, Lt. Gustavus Doane’s description of the hike from 145 years ago could have been written this year. With more than 3 million annual visitors, Yellowstone is very busy during the summer, yet few explore the first national park beyond the main thoroughfares. A majority of the park, which is larger than Rhode Island and Delaware combined, is left to solitude and is truly an undis-
turbed ecosystem of natural wonder. With a little initiative and a taste for adventure, visitors can summit the 10,223-foot Mt. Washburn, which is perhaps Yellowstone’s crown jewel for sightseeing. The Washburn Range is one of only two mountain ranges that are completely within the boundaries of the park (the Red Mountains being the other). Although not the park’s highest peak, Mt. Washburn is special for its location: barely north of the absolute center of Yellowstone. From its summit, the 360 degree, birds-eye view shows the entirety of Yellowstone National Park, from horizon to horizon. From the Dunraven Pass Trailhead, Washburn is a relatively moderate 3-mile hike with a subtle 1400-foot
elevation gain. One of the park’s three active fire lookout towers is located on the summit. There is a small visitor center and restrooms on the first floor, an observation deck on the second, and ranger’s residence on the top floor. The spectacular Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone is directly below, to the southeast. If it’s a clear day, you can view the Tetons 50 miles south. Hikers can expect gentle switchbacks and wildflowers in the summer. There is always a chance of spotting an elk, bighorn sheep and even a grizzly. This is an extremely accessible destination for hikers of all experience levels. Don’t miss the opportunity to see the whole park in one glance. Mt. Washburn is the best seat in the house.
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A cougar peers from a tree during research capture and radio collaring operations in Yellowstone National Park. PHOTO BY DANIEL STAHLER
YELLOWSTONE COUGAR PROJECT YELLOWSTONE PARK FOUNDATION When you hear the phrase “Yellowstone predator,” what animal first comes to mind? A wolf? A bear? You may not think of the elusive cougar, which is rarely seen by visitors, but a new study is uncovering some of its secrets. Cougars, along with wolves, were killed throughout the U.S. as part of predator-removal campaigns in the early 1900s. Wolves were completely eradicated from Yellowstone National Park, and although cougars were likely eliminated from the park, the species survived in the West. The large cat’s secretive nature and preference for rocky terrain – where they are difficult to track – worked in their favor. Sometime in the 1980s, the survivors re-established themselves in the northern portion of Yellowstone and nearby areas of Montana. In 1995, human intervention restored wolves to their native habitat in Yellowstone. Since then, the Greater Yellowstone has been a nearly complete ecosystem, with all of its historic predator populations intact. So what does that mean for the park and surrounding area, with wolves, cougars, bears, and several smaller
carnivores potentially competing for territory and prey? How might this predator diversity affect the entire food chain? These are some of the questions the Yellowstone Cougar Project is hoping to answer. Following an eight-year gap in research on cougars in Yellowstone, the project was initiated in January 2014 to study cougar ecology and population dynamics on Yellowstone’s Northern Range. The planned five-year study is funded by Yellowstone Park Foundation, National Park Service, and National Science Foundation. ON THE TRAIL OF THE COUGAR There are many ways to monitor and study wildlife. For the first phase of the project, researchers chose noninvasive DNA sampling as the primary method, which involves collecting and analyzing hair, scat and urine samples. The DNA samples provide researchers with a window into the lives of cougars. They can determine species and sex, and identify individual animals. From these data, they can estimate abundance, population growth rates, explorebigsky.com
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distribution, home range size, individual habitat preferences, and even some forms of social interactions. From January through March of 2014, the scientists walked 10 primary survey routes on a weekly basis and six secondary routes at various times throughout the season. When cougar tracks were detected, researchers followed them until they discovered hair, scat, or urine. Hair was primarily collected from bed sites or caught on natural hair snags like thorns or branches. Also noted along each route were signs of bears and wolves, as well as deer and elk. When a kill site was discovered, researchers collected evidence to determine which predator was the likely culprit. In addition, cameras mounted at 27 locations over an 800mile survey route captured more data, with 144 videos and 234 photos showing cougars either traveling past the cameras, bedding, or scent marking. Initial findings from the 2014 field season indicate that northern Yellowstone still serves as important habitat to a seemingly robust population of cougars and their offspring. Data from the 2015 field season had not been released as of Explore Yellowstone press time on May 21. However,
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DID YOU KNOW?
Mountain lion, puma, catamount, and panther are four other names for cougars.Â Unlike lions and tigers, cougars are unable to roar, but they do communicate using a diverse array of vocalizations including growls, screams and chirps.
according to YNP wildlife biologist Daniel Stahler who heads the study, this winter produced poor tracking conditions due to a lack of snow, which made sample collection challenging. Stahler expects a full report will be released after genetic results from the study are returned in late June. In the coming years, biologists will use this information to estimate population parameters for cougars. Additionally, a small number of GPS collars will be deployed to study more detailed aspects of cougar predation, habitat use and energetics. While elk make up the primary food source for Yellowstone cougars, they also feed on other species such as mule deer, bighorn sheep, pronghorn, and even smaller prey such as porcupines, marmots and grouse. As a top predator in Yellowstone along with wolves, cougars are believed to play an important role in ecosystem processes.Â
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YELLOWSTONE WILDLIFE: A guide to viewing STORY AND PHOTOS BY JOHN LAYSHOCK
anything at anytime, and in any part of Yellowstone. All you need is time and luck. Many eager locals and professionals are out there, and I highly recommend talking to them. Most are friendly and excited to share information with you, and they’re easy to find. Just look for expensive spotting equipment and cameras, local license plates, and vehicle stickers depicting wolves or bears. Here are some specific animals to look for, and where you’re likely to see them:
A gray wolf crosses up some tourists in Yellowstone.
June is an exciting and dynamic month in Yellowstone National Park, and this season is no exception. Wildlife viewers with a keen eye can witness numerous sightings including bear, wolf, raptors, bighorn sheep, otter, antelope and bison, among others. Bears were active in early spring this year. The light snowpack and subsequent warm weather has made good food readily available, and there have been multiple bear sightings throughout the park. While avid animal viewers – especially wolf watchers – are usually up in the morning before first light, wildlife activity really gets going around 3 p.m. and
viewing opportunities last until it’s too dark to see. Wildlife are producing offspring regularly. Raptors, including peregrine falcon and osprey, are hatching eggs. Newly born bison – called “red dogs” due to their red appearance before they turn brown in August – are everywhere. On past June trips I’ve guided, we’ve seen pronghorn antelope twins that were only hours old.
Spot falcons in nests high on the basalt cliffs and bighorn sheep in the canyon at Tower Falls, while osprey nest on the north canyon overlook; keep an eye out for harlequin ducks on rocks in the Lehardy Rapids between Yellowstone Lake and Hayden Valley, and moose and bear on the
My rule for sighting animals is to keep your eyes open: You can see Looking at me looking at you. A frolicking pair of otters in the park.
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Blacktail Plateau and Petrified Tree area. Otter and spawning trout are right under your nose at Trout Lake. Also find otter – as well as wolves – along the Gibbon River from Madison Junction to Norris Junction. In the Lamar and Hayden valleys you’re likely to see grizzly bear, elk, antelope and maybe a badger. The northern bison herd has produced hundreds of red dogs this year. Moose and mountain goats can be found from Pebble Creek to Barronette Mountain in the northeast section of the park. While wildlife viewers are lucky to see wolves, it does happen regularly. In more than 100 days of guiding each year, I see wolves on average a dozen different times. With the right information on current activities, it’s possible to see a wolf one in four days, but be prepared for long hours: To see wolves, most viewers arrive in the park before first light, and remain there after dark. There are many wolf watchers in Yellowstone who are friendly and willing to share beta. Remember to follow the rules and etiquette of our national park. Respect the animals’ space and the visitor experience. Don’t feed or whistle at the wildlife; don’t park in the road; don’t throw objects into thermal features; and stay on the boardwalks! John Layshock is a professional tour/ photography guide with seven years of experience with Yellowstone Alpen Guides in West Yellowstone. Book trips or ask him questions by calling (406) 646-9591 or visiting yellowstoneguides.com. YAG runs daily public and private tours of Yellowstone National Park year round.
Bison graze in front of Mammoth Hot Springs.
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MOST LIKELY PLACES TO FIND MAMMALS IN THE PARK
(COUNTED INSIDE THE PARK IN 2014)
197 BIGHORN SHEEP 104 WOLVES
NORTH ENTRANCE LAMAR VALLEY
150 GRIZZLY BEARS CANYON VILLAGE
EAST ENTRANCE OLD FAITHFUL WEST THUMB GRANT VILLAGE
YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK HAS THE LARGEST CONCENTRATION OF WILDLIFE IN THE LOWER 48 STATES.
THREATENED SPECIES: GRIZZLY BEAR, LYNX ENDANGERED SPECIES: GRAY WOLF
IF YOU SPOT AN ANIMAL: STAY AT LEAST 100 YARDS AWAY FROM BEARS AND WOLVES
STAY AT LEAST 25 YARDS AWAY FROM ALL OTHER ANIMALS - INCLUDING BISON, ELK, BIGHORN SHEEP, DEER, MOOSE, WOLVES AND COYOTES
BISON CAN SPRINT GRIZZLY BEARS CAN RUN UP TO
3X FASTER THAN A HUMAN CAN RUN
BISON CAUSE MORE HUMAN INJURIES THAN BEARS IN THE PARK EACH YEAR
1995-1997: 41 WILD WOLVES WERE REINTRODUCED IN YELLOWSTONE
Sources: yellowstonepark.com/MoreToKnow/WildlifeGuide.aspx, yellowstonenationalpark.com/wildlife.htm, nps.gov/yell
What animals have you seen today?
• Males weigh 200–700lbs females weigh 200–400lbs
• Males weigh 100–130lbs, females weigh 80–110lbs
• Can run up to 45 mph
• Males (bulls) weigh up to 2,000lbs and females (cows weigh up to 1,000lbs • Can live 12-15 years
• Elk is their favorite winter meal
• Males (bulls) weigh about 700lbs and females (cows) weigh about 500lbs • 10,000–20,000 elk live in the park
• Usually travel alone or in small groups • Fewer than 200 live in the park
• Ram skulls have two layers of bone above the brain that function as a shock absorber • The horn size of bighorn sheep rams can influence dominance and rank
28 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
color in the bison and his Friends!
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L K R E A L EExplore S TATYellowstone E . C O M 29 explorebigsky.com
A place of ANGLING WONDERS
BY PATRICK STRAUB
Right place at the right time. Summer fishing in Yellowstone is all about knowing where and when to be. The Firehole, Gibbon, and Madison rivers are the best options from late May through June, and again in September and October. After July 1, the waters in the Yellowstone River drainage – the Lamar, Slough Creek, Soda Butte, and the Yellowstone itself – have longer periods of high water due to snowmelt, which means they fish better later in summer.
The Yellowstone cutthroat trout is the only trout native to Yellowstone National Park and is a subspecies unique to the Yellowstone River drainage. Catching one in the park is a treat.
If you throw a dart, blindfolded, at a map of Yellowstone National Park and draw a circle in a 10-mile radius from wherever it landed, you’ll find a number of places to wet a line. Extend that radius 10 more miles and there is arguably a lifetime of fishable waters. The Firehole, Slough Creek, Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, and plenty of smaller creeks and lakes are the target of anglers venturing into the park to fish. For those of us who live in or near Yellowstone, we’re able to fish these waters regularly, and fish them when they’re at their best. For visiting anglers, the abundance of water and easy access may boggle the mind. Sometimes it’s nice to have a little nudge in the right direction, so here’s some help. Even longtime Yellowstone Park anglers might learn something.
30 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
Like to hike. If you’re willing to invest a little sweat equity and hoof it, your fishing action will be rewarded. My rookie year of guiding was spent in Yellowstone and whenever I had clients willing to hike, the day was full of smiles and good-sized trout. Two favorite treks of mine: second meadow of Slough Creek and the Seven Mile Hole in the Grand Canyon. Bring plenty of water, bear spray, a spool of 4X tippet and lots of big-ass dry flies. Lakes are always good. Most fly fishers prefer moving water, but Yellowstone is dotted with many quality lakes. The most obvious is Yellowstone Lake, and thanks to the efforts of many, the population of Yellowstone cutthroat trout is increasing from a downturn after predatory, invasive lake trout were illegally introduced. Shoreline fishing can be good on Yellowstone Lake, but the best lake options require a hike. Grebe Lake near Canyon Village is an easy day trip. The trail is flat and fishing is often on the surface. It’s also one of the best places in the area to catch a grayling on a fly. Trout Lake near the northeast entrance is full of fat cutthroat trout that cruise the shorelines; armed with a good cast and small flies, you might entice a few. Backcountry Black Canyon trout. If strapping on an overnight pack, sleeping under the stars, and cooking your meals by camp stove sound appealing, consider fishing the Black Canyon of the Yellowstone. Beginning near Tower Junction, this rugged section of
The Black Canyon of the Yellowstone River is big country: big water, big boulders, and big adventure. PHOTOS BY WALTER WIESE, PARKS’ FLY SHOP
the Yellowstone River is best accessed beginning in mid-July. A trail provides access to the river and several backcountry campsites offer a good base for fishing-centric overnights. My favorite trip is to hike into the canyon at the Blacktail Deer Creek Trailhead, spend two nights, then hike out to the town of Gardiner. Sturdy hiking shoes and strong ankles are key as the bankside boulders make ideal perches on which to fish, but are also slippery. Part of the food chain. The adventure of fishing in Yellowstone is always heightened the moment you step off the road. Sure there
are geysers and changing weather and river conditions, but it’s the wild, free-roaming animals that heighten awareness, including grizzly bears, bison and moose. Yet this is an enjoyable wonder of fishing in the park: Was that noise in the bushes a curious bear or just the wind? Carry bear spray and inquire locally about bear activity. And stay well clear of bison and moose. Fishing is a great venue for creating memories. One of my most vivid occurred more than 20 years ago when I was fishing the Yellowstone River near Tower Falls. Fat cutthroat were hanging
themselves on my size 6 Yellow Stimulator. I rounded a bend and across the big water of the Yellowstone, a grizzly was feeding on a fresh carcass. It was me, my flies, the trout, and one damned big bear. I made one last cast, caught a trout, turned around and called it a day. Pat Straub is the author of six books, including “The Frugal Fly Fisher,” “Montana On The Fly,” and “Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Fly Fishing.” Along with his wife, he owns Gallatin River Guides in Big Sky and co-owns a guide service on the Missouri River.
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Red Lodge, Montana 406-446-4025 carboncountysteakhouse.com PHOTO BY DAN ARMSTRONG
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32 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
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GallatinRiverGuides.com • 406-995-2290 • TEXT 406-475-2023 explorebigsky.com Explore Pat Straub; Montana licensed outfitter #7878. Operating under a special use permit with Gallatin NationalYellowstone Forest.
THE THOROFARE BY FORREST MCCARTHY | PHOTOS BY JIM HARRIS
It’s an apt name. For American Indians and early trappers, the broad valley known today as the Thorofare provided easy passage through the otherwise inaccessible southern Absaroka Range. They followed the trails of bison, elk and bighorn sheep that for millennia have migrated through this lush mountain paradise. Located amid 2.1 million contiguous acres of roadless wilderness, the creek that flows along the valley’s bottom is arguably the most remote waterway in the Lower 48. There’s no easy way in or out. The shortest trail from its bank to a road is 25 miles long and crosses the Continental Divide. By the time it joins the Yellowstone, Thorofare Creek is the size of a small river.
34 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
Camped at its headwaters with a rag-tag crew of four trusted companions, I watch the sun descend behind the triple 11,000-foot summits of the Trident. Volcanic breccias sculpted into steep ridges and canyons by Pleistocene ice are backlit by the orange sphere. We relax on a gravel bar, warding off the evening chill and heating water for the night’s meal over a crackling driftwood fire. Earlier in the day we’d trekked 11 miles up Fall Creek and down into Bruin Creek, crossing the Absaroka Crest by way of a 11,297-foot trail-less pass. Last summer, to reach Fall Creek, we paddled the South Fork of the Shoshone River for 20 miles through the Washakie Wilderness. The day before, we hiked 15 miles over Shoshone Pass from the Du Noir near Dubois, Wyo.
Left: At Bliss Creek Meadows, Moe Witschard paddles the headwaters of the South Fork of the Shoshone River. Below: After crossing the 11,000-foot crest of the Absaroka Mountains, Andrew McLean and Forrest McCarthy descend into the Thorofare Valley.
After three strenuous days, we looked forward to a leisurely float down Thorofare Creek. The wild landscape guides our thoughts and conversation, reminding me of words written nearly a century ago. “To countless people the wilderness provides the ultimate delight because it combines the thrills of jeopardy and beauty,” wrote Bob Marshall, founder of the Wilderness Society. “It is the last stand for that glorious adventure into the physically unknown.”
“TO COUNTLESS PEOPLE THE WILDERNESS PROVIDES THE ULTIMATE DELIGHT BECAUSE IT COMBINES THE THRILLS OF JEOPARDY AND BEAUTY...”
In the morning we packed our few pounds of camping gear and provisions into lightweight, one-man inflatable packrafts and began the 17-mile paddle through the Teton Wilderness to the southeast border of Yellowstone National Park. We exited the river there, because floating on park rivers is prohibited by a 1950s-era law designed to protect against overfishing. A federal offense, it’s punishable by hefty fines, confiscated gear and possible jail time. Paddling in Wilderness areas is legal, however, and many of the architects of the 1964 Wilderness Act, including Sigurd Olson and Olaus Murie, were, in fact, paddlers. “When you go into country by pack train the streams are only for crossing, or to camp beside. To know a stream you travel on it, struggle with it, live with it hour by hour and day by day,” wrote Murie, after canoeing the Yellowstone River in the late 1930s with his two sons.
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Michael Fiebig enjoys thrilling whitewater on the South Fork of the Buffalo Fork River.
During the day we spent on Thorofare Creek, the views changed constantly. Early on, we navigated a long, braided section. The current was swift, and we piloted our packrafts into the largest channels. Through thick stands of lodgepole pine, the rocky summits of the Thorofare Buttes came in and out of view. Then, above Petrified Ridge, the glaciated peaks of Mount Overlook and Ishawooa Cone appeared. On the riverbank a bald eagle feasted on a cutthroat trout. I passed close enough to see her individual feathers. Near the confluence with Butte Creek, the channels merged and the creek bent west. We drifted through a shallow gorge of ancient lava, vertical walls of the brittle igneous rock guiding the current. The valley opened again as we met Pass Creek. In a meadow of lupine, yarrow and grass, a herd of elk grazed. Below Open Creek, a bull moose, its rack covered in dark velvet, watched as we passed. As we approached the park boundary that afternoon, the 9,761-foot Hawks Rest seemed to grow in stature. Notable as the farthest peak from a road in the contiguous U.S., it also marked the convergence of the Thorofare and Yellowstone valleys and the end of our time on Thorofare Creek. 36 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
We exited our rafts at a gravel bar, and dried our gear in the sun, resting and taking our last look up Thorofare Valley. From here, we rolled up our boats and trekked 20 miles across Two-Ocean Pass and the Continental Divide to the Buffalo Fork River, then the following day paddled 15 swift miles through a series of whitewater canyons into Jackson Hole, Wyo. Like many paddlers, I often seek the challenge and thrill of roadside whitewater. But I find that spending days in the wilderness, harmonizing my internal rhythms with the natural, hypnotic pace of free flowing water allows a much fuller understanding of a river’s riches. In the words of Bob Marshall: “Swift or smooth, broad as the Hudson or narrow enough to scrape your gunwales, every river is a world of its own, unique in pattern and personality. Each mile on a river will take you further from home than a hundred miles on a road.” Forrest McCarthy, a wilderness advocate and explorer, is a longtime student of both Bob Marshall and Olaus Murie. All of their published writings sit next to his desk.
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SCIENCE A photo of Morning Glory Pool in Yellowstone National Park from August 2012 shows the bright colors brought out by the pool’s microbial mats. PHOTO BY JOE SHAW
MSU researchers explain the optics of Yellowstone thermal springs MSU NEWS SERVICE BOZEMAN – Researchers with Montana State University’s College of Engineering used optical technology to create a simple mathematical model explaining how temperature and chemical composition in Yellowstone’s thermal springs combine to create their amazing colors. The model can be used to visually recreate how the springs appeared years ago, before decades of contamination from make-a-wish coins and other man-made detritus.
38 Explore Yellowstone
The paper, which details the new model and showcases images of the spring, was published in December 2014 in the journal “Applied Optics” and authored by Joe Shaw, an MSU professor and director of the university’s Optical Technology Center, along with doctoral student Paul Nugent and visiting German colleague Michael Vollmer. “This is a paper that showcases MSU’s strength in optical science with the locally interesting application of better understanding Yellowstone’s hot springs,” Shaw said. “MSU’s optical science and engineering researchers have
pushed the envelope of how we can measure our world with laser and thermal imaging technology.” While the basic physical phenomena that render the bright colors of Yellowstone’s geothermal features have long been scientifically understood – they arise because of a complicated interplay of underwater vents and lawns of bacteria – no mathematical model existed that showed empirically how the physical and chemical variables of a pool relate to their optical factors and coalesce. Using a relatively simple onedimensional model for light
Runoff channel of Grand Prismatic Spring. NPS PHOTO
propagation, the group reproduced the brilliant colors and optical characteristics of the park’s hot springs by accounting for each pool’s spectral reflection due to microbial mats; their optical absorption and scattering of water; and the incident solar and diffuse skylight conditions present when measurements were taken. “We didn’t start this project as experts on thermal pools,” Shaw said. “We started this project as experts on optical phenomena and imaging, so we had a lot to learn.” In summer 2012, Vollmer, on sabbatical from the Brandenburg University of Applied Sciences, travelled with Shaw and Nugent to the park. Using handheld spectrometers, digital SLR cameras for visible images and infrared thermal imaging cameras for non-contact measurement of the water temperatures, the group took measurements at a number of pools in Yellowstone, including Morning Glory Pool, Sapphire Pool and Grand Prismatic Spring. Using these data, along with previously available information about the physical dimensions of the pools, they created a simple model whose renderings of the pools were strikingly similar to actual photographs. In the case of Morning Glory Pool, they were able to simulate what the pool looked like between the 1880s and 1940s, when its temperatures were significantly higher. During this time, its waters appeared a uniform, deep blue. An accumulation of coins, trash and rocks over the intervening decades has partially obscured the underwater vent, lowering the pool’s overall temperature and shifting its appearance to a terrace of orange-yellow-green. This change from blue was demonstrated to result from the change in composition of the microbial mats, as a result of the lower water temperature. explorebigsky.com
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THE HAYNES LEGACY LIVES ON
OLD FAITHFUL HAYNES PHOTO SHOP HELPS PARK VISITORS GIVE BACK BY MARIA WYLLIE
On Jan. 5, 1887, 13 men embarked from Mammoth on an expedition through Yellowstone National Park. Five days in, their leader, Arctic explorer Frederick Schwatka, fell ill traveling along the Gibbon River from Norris to the Firehole Hotel and could go no further. While most of the group waited to see if Schwatka would recover, the expedition’s photographer, Frank J. Haynes, pressed on with a guide and two hearty outdoorsmen hired to handle equipment. The men used Canadian web snowshoes and 10-foot long, four-inch wide Norwegian skis in the deep snow, towing toboggans laden with heavy photographic equipment and chemicals to develop photos in the field. Knowing his images would constitute the first complete mid-winter portfolio of Yellowstone, Haynes was determined to photograph the Upper and Lower Geyser Basins and Yellowstone Falls.
Frank J. Haynes during the 1887 expedition through Yellowstone National Park NPS PHOTO
the weather cleared, they skied roughly 12 miles to Yancey’s Pleasant Valley Hotel just north of the Tower-Roosevelt junction, and rested before making the trek back to Mammoth. The group returned with 42 photographs documenting their 29-day, 200-mile journey.
After reaching Canyon Hotel on Jan. 20, where Haynes captured photos of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and the Lower Falls on fragile, photographic plates, he was hungry for more. Haynes decided to lead his party northeast along the edge of the Grand Canyon so he could photograph new, winter sites. They left Canyon on Jan. 23 and began climbing 10,243-foot Mt. Washburn. After only a few hours, a blinding snowstorm obscured all landmarks, trapping them for 72 hours. With little food and no extra clothing, they almost died. Finding a stand of small fir trees, they used their skis to dig a snow pit for shelter and built a fire. When
This collection of images from the harrowing winter journey of 1887 is only part of the Haynes legacy. Haynes first visited Yellowstone in 1881 while working as a photographer for the Northern Pacific Railroad. Falling in love with the park, he returned every summer thereafter to photograph its wonders. In 1884, he secured the first commercial concessions in the park, and for the next 84 years, his family operated 13 photo shops in the park under the name Haynes, Inc. In 1900, they began selling “penny postals,” cards depicting iconic Yellowstone scenes that cost only a penny.
Old Faithful Geyser, 1913. The Haynes family published more than 55 million YNP postcards from 1900 to 1966. These postcards were hand-colored and helped shape the perception of YNP around the world. NPS PHOTO
40 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
“The Haynes Family in Yellowstone National Park: 1881-1968” by Susan and Jack Davis explains that the postcards had a broad impact, introducing Yellowstone’s natural wonders and beauty to America – and the rest of the world – during a time when few had visited the park.
Its mission is twofold: honoring the Haynes family and helping fundraise for the park. A modern, interactive exhibit offers an interpretive history, telling the Haynes’ story and the role photography played in establishing the park and promoting tourism there. Another informs visitors about YPF, the park’s official fundraising partner since 1995. In this exhibit, whimsical 19th century aesthetics juxtapose 21st century technology to explain YPF’s strategic initiatives heard through vintage phone receivers and seen on modern video screens. By mixing technology with a vintage look and feel, the space invites tourists to step back in time and imagine Yellowstone in the early 1900s. The welcome desk is a Haynes original, and reproductions of Frank Haynes’ photography equipment are displayed alongside antique souvenirs, such as the “Haynes Guides,” which were the first Yellowstone guidebooks to use photographs.
The National Park Service preserved the historic Old Faithful Photo Shop and in 2011 moved it from its original location at the Old Faithful Auto Camp to a spot near the Old Faithful Visitor Education Center. YPF paid to restore the interior through a $4 million fundraising campaign. PHOTOS COURTESY OF YPF
It was Frank Haynes’ son Jack who was responsible for the postcards’ popularity. He developed the idea of the “Haynes 100 Series,” a collection of postcards arranged by number that followed the “grand loop tour” around the park. After assuming ownership of Haynes, Inc. in 1916, Jack managed the business until his death in 1962. He earned the nickname “Mr. Yellowstone” for his longtime commitment to the park – from business to conservation and education. “He took a strong interest in preserving its natural wonders and quality of its character,” wrote the Davises. The National Park Service, through a partnership with the Yellowstone Park Foundation, restored one of the Haynes’ operations, the Old Faithful Haynes Photo Shop, in the summer of 2013. Originally built by Jack in 1927, the historic structure is now LEED-certified.
A digital darkroom allows guests to upload their Yellowstone photos in real time, email them or temporarily become part of the exhibit by displaying their photos on the electronic entry wall. Whether visitors have their picture taken in the Haynes photo op, which uses a vintage postcard image for the background, or watch Old Faithful erupt through vintage cameras, they will play a role in both preserving and continuing the park’s photographic history – one that was nearly buried on the steeps of Mt. Washburn 128 years ago. Find more about the Old Faithful Haynes Photo Shop at ypf.org. The shop is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., June through September.
More information on the Haynes family: “At the Greatest Personal Peril to the Photographer,” by William Lang, Montana: The Magazine of Western History, 1983 winter edition. “The Haynes Family in Yellowstone National Park: 1881-1968”, by Susan and Jack Davis, 2013.
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JUNE 25 • MIDNIGHT RIVER CHOIR JULY 2 • SONS OF BILL JULY 4 • THE TINY BAND JULY 9 • INCENDIO JULY 16 • THE SUFFERS JULY 23 • THE WHISKEY GENTRY AUGUST 2 • SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARKS AUGUST 6 • CORB LUND AUGUST 7-9 • BIG SKY CLASSICAL MUSIC FESTIVAL AUGUST 13 • ROYAL SOUTHERN BROTHERHOOD AUGUST 20 • THE BROTHERS COMATOSE 42 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com AUGUST 27 • EUFORQUESTRA
FREE ADMISSION • ALL AGES WELCOME PARK OPENS AT 6PM, MUSIC STARTS AT 7PM Some events have different start times, please check website for details Food and beverage (including alcohol) vendors will be present at the park. No glass containers and no pets are allowed into the park for the concerts.
Stagecoach near the Upper Falls of the Yellowstone River, by Frank J Haynes, circa 1887 YNP ARCHIVE
THE “DUDES” IN YELLOWSTONE:
EARLY TOURISM IN THE PARK BY HUNTER ROTHWELL
In 1915, a Model T Ford was the first automobile to pass through the gates of Yellowstone National Park. Prior to automobiles being legally allowed to tour the park, the tourist experience was something quite unique. As the first cars were entering Yellowstone, one old-timer wrote: “The old Yellowstone – the Yellowstone of the pioneer and the explorer – is a thing of the past.” Recreational tourism in Yellowstone began in summer 1872, the same year it became the world’s first national park, when a group of 50 ventured to Mammoth Hot Springs where the only accommodations were a log shack and a ramshackle bathhouse. Many of the earliest tourists came primarily to bathe in the hot springs and for the waters’ supposed restorative powers. The only other human presence during those days were small bands of American Indians and regiments of the U.S. military who were often accompanied by scientists, photographers, painters, and an occasional newspaper reporter. A total of 300 people visited the park in 1872.
Before the railroad reached Livingston in 1882, and later Gardiner just north of the park, visitation remained light due to the remoteness of the Western states, the difficulty in accessing Yellowstone’s attractions, and the primitive accommodations. Tourists were either wealthy, well-outfitted aristocrats who toured the park in grand style (known as “dudes” by the locals), or frontier people accustomed to roughing it in the wild. Once the railroads were built, Union Pacific became the marketing department for Yellowstone, aggressively soliciting easterners and Europeans to buy passage to the region. One of the most popular campaigns of the late 19th century was promoting the park as “Wonderland.” However, rail travel was still expensive and only the wealthy “dudes” could afford the cost of the excursion. The “Grand Tour” consisted of a five-day park tour. Upon arriving at Mammoth Hot Springs, visitors would spend a day exploring the springs, “which some lurid hotel keeper had christened Cleopatra’s Pitcher or Mark Anthony’s Whiskey Jug, or something as equally poetical,” recounted one female visitor in her diary. continued on pg. 44 explorebigsky.com
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Have An Experience
Make A Memory
One of the most popular campaigns of the late 19th century promoted the park as “Wonderland.”
The next four days, visitors toured the Greater Yellowstone in 11-passenger stagecoaches. The experience was bumpy, bouncy and dusty. They were entertained by the unsophisticated yet colorful stage drivers who cursed at their horses and narrated tremendous fictions as to how the attractions of Yellowstone came to be. When a Yellowstone wagon reached a steep grade, the passengers were unloaded and had to walk up the most difficult areas.
Cowboy Cuisine Pig Roasts Horseback Riding Wagon Rides Riverside BBQ Bonfires Learn to Fly Fish Winter Sleigh Rides Memories made at the 320 Guest Ranch 44 Exploreare Yellowstone explorebigsky.com www.320ranch.com 406-995-4283
The scenery was exquisite, and these affluent leaders of the Industrial Revolution relished in the rough conditions. Bandits held up stagecoaches on five separate occasions on one grand tour. During one of these robberies, an impressive bandit fleeced 174 passengers riding in 17 stagecoaches – one of the most impressive robberies of the age. Despite the loss of valuables, the well-heeled dudes were captivated by their outlaws – they were allegedly entertaining fellows and never seriously injured anyone. “We think we got off cheap,” one dude later remarked, “and would not sell our experience, if we could, for what it cost us.” It was all just a part of “doing Yellowstone.” Between 1872 and 1914, Yellowstone recorded 395,608 visitors, and 20,250 in the year 1914. Once the automobile was introduced in 1915, visitation doubled. And while dudes continued flocking to the park, Yellowstone was now truly available to all the people, not just the wealthy. Since 2007, the park has eclipsed 3 million annual visitors each year to date.
BUSINESS DIRECTORY * Denotes Yellowstone Park Foundation Gateway Business For The Park sponsor Gateway businesses are showing their commitment to Yellowstone National Park via a partnership with the YPF called Gateway Businesses For The Park. These businesses give back to the park by becoming bronze, silver, gold or platinum members, and provide financial support for projects funded under YPF Initiatives.
YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK LEARN GRANITE PEAK PUBLICATIONS*
(360) 474-2171 yellowstonetreasures.com Publisher of Janet Chapple's “Yellowstone Treasures,” available at park visitors centers and the Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport.
STAY & PLAY YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK LODGES*
P.O. Box 165, Yellowstone National Park, WY (866) 439-7375 & (307) 344-7311 yellowstonenationalparklodges.com The only authorized lodging concessioner inside Yellowstone. Providing accommodations, restaurants, gifts, and tours during summer and winter.
BIG SKY, MONTANA FAMILY ACTIVITIES OUTLAW CARRIAGE COMPANY
17441 Wilson Creek Road, Gallatin Gateway, MT (406) 580-1228 outlawcarriage.com Purveyor of classic horse-drawn transportation, wagon and sleigh rides for public and private affairs.
STAY & PLAY LONE MOUNTAIN RANCH
750 Lone Mountain Ranch Road, Big Sky, MT (406) 995-4644 lonemountainranch.com Where can you stay with easy park access, wilderness trails outside your door, and still be back in time for dinner and live music? Imagine yourself here.
BIG SKY RESORT*
50 Big Sky Resort Road, Big Sky, MT (800) 548-4486 bigskyresort.com Biggest Skiing in America and summer resort located between Bozeman and Yellowstone National Park.
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BUCK’S T-4 LODGE
PHOTO COURTESY OF BUCK’S T4 LODGE
46625 Gallatin Road, Big Sky, MT (800) 822-4484 buckst4.com Warm and Western accommodations with award-winning dining and genuine Montana hospitality.
BEST LOCAL FISHING OUTFITTER
WHERE TO EAT AND CAP OFF A DAY OF EXPLORING OLIVE B’S BIG SKY BISTRO
151 Center Lane #2, Big Sky, MT (406) 995-3355 olivebsbigsky.com Serving lunch and dinner Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Olive B’s offers continental cuisine, a full bar and noteworthy wine list.
GATHER SOME SOUVENIRS BIG SKY TOWN CENTER*
GALLATIN RIVER GUIDES 47430 Gallatin Road, Big Sky, MT (406) 995-2290 montanaflyfishing.com Gallatin River Guides is Big Sky's home to honest fishing info, guided fly-fishing trips and instruction on the waters of Montana and Yellowstone Park. GRG has renowned customer service and the gear for fishing trips near and far.
WHERE TO BUY GROCERIES COUNTRY MARKET OF BIG SKY
33 Lone Peak Drive, Big Sky, MT (406) 586-9629 bigskytowncenter.com The Town Center is filled with restaurants, galleries, grocery stores, a movie theater and shopping.
CONSIGNMENT CABIN OF BIG SKY
48025 Gallatin Road, Bighorn Center, Big Sky, MT (406) 993-9333 Featuring outdoor recreation equipment, clothing, and accessories. Located at the corner of Highway 191 and Lone Mountain Trail in Big Sky.
66 Market Place, in the Heart of Meadow Village Center, Big Sky, MT (406) 995-4636 firstname.lastname@example.org Full-service grocery and deli serving Big Sky for more than 40 years. Locally owned and operated.
EAST SLOPE OUTDOORS*
HUNGRY MOOSE MARKET & DELI*
FERCHO GALLERY & ELLIOTT DESIGN
Located in Town Center and Mountain Mall, Big Sky, MT (406) 995-3045 & (406) 995-3075 hungrymoose.com Made-from-scratch deli and bakery plus great selections of groceries, produce, beer and wine.
WHITEWATER ADRENALINE FIX MONTANA WHITEWATER RAFTING & ZIPLINE CO.
PHOTO COURTESY OF MONTANA WHITEWATER RAFTING AND ZIPLINE
63960 Gallatin Rd, Gallatin Gateway, MT (406) 763-4465 montanawhitewater.com Fly across the river, ride the rapids and hook a trout. Experience the magic of the Gallatin Canyon!
46 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
32B Town Center Ave., Big Sky, MT (406) 995-4369 eastslopeoutdoors.com Full-line outdoor retail shop featuring hiking experiences, guided fly fishing, and rental gear. 88 Ousel Falls Road, Big Sky, MT (406) 551-3995 ferchoelliott.com Modern impressionism painting meets Western contemporary design. Fine art, rugs and interior design.
REAL ESTATE L&K REAL ESTATE, DEVELOPMENT & CONSULTING* 11 Lone Peak Drive #201, Big Sky, MT (406) 995-2404 lkrealestate.com L&K has a personal, team-based approach, specializing in lifestyle properties in southwest Montana.
MONTANA LIVING ~ BIG SKY REAL ESTATE*
11 Lone Peak Drive #102, Big Sky, MT (406) 995-6333 bigskyrealestate.com Proud to be the leading boutique real estate and consulting firm in Big Sky.
THE LARK 122 W. Main Street, Bozeman, MT 1 (866) 464-1000 larkbozeman.com A new, 38-room downtown Bozeman hotel, with a uniquely Montana feel.
BOZEMAN, MONTANA WHERE TO EAT HEALTHY BIANKINI’S SANDWICH & SALAD MARKET 2051 Oak St. Ste. 1, Bozeman, MT (406) 587-2405 biankinis.net Fresh, house-made, and healthy sandwiches, salads and soups. Pick up a sack lunch for your adventure in the park.
WHERE TO OUTFIT YOUR ADVENTURES SPORTSMAN’S WAREHOUSE 2214 Tschache Lane, Bozeman, MT (406) 586-0100 sportsmanswarehouse.com Service-oriented, outdoor recreation outfitter for adults and kids. Featuring apparel, footwear, equipment, maps and accessories.
LOCAL LIBATIONS TO BRING ON THE TRIP WILDRYE DISTILLING 101 E. Oak St., Bozeman, MT wildryedistilling.com Wildrye specializes in producing unique spirits prepared almost entirely from Montana-grown ingredients. Come taste our latest creation in our tasting room or sample at Old Faithful Lodge inside the park.
201 E. Mendenhall St., Bozeman, MT (406) 587-4508 agbozeman.com Alphagraphics Bozeman offers high-quality specialized printing and custom-designed marketing solutions for our customers.
BOZEMAN YELLOWSTONE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT* 850 Gallatin Field Road, Belgrade, MT (406) 388-8321 bozemanairport.com Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport serves as the year-round gateway to Yellowstone National Park.
PHASMID ADVENTURE RENTALS* 32 Dollar Drive, Belgrade MT (406) 922-0179 phasmidrentals.com Car rentals and outdoor gear rentals for Montana and Yellowstone adventures.
YELLOWSTONE COUNTRY MONTANA TOURISM REGION* P.O. Box 3048, Bozeman, MT (800) 736-5276 visityellowstonecountry.com Yellowstone Country Montana – mountains, adventure outposts, hot springs, rivers, deep powder, art galleries, good food and endless trails!
STAY & PLAY
WHITEWATER ADRENALINE FIX
GALLATIN RIVER LODGE
MONTANA WHITEWATER RAFTING & ZIPLINE CO.
9105 Thorpe Road, Bozeman, MT (406) 388-0148 grlodge.com Bozeman's luxury lodge with fine dining, beautiful suites, private fishing access, and true Montana hospitality.
603 Scott St., Gardiner, MT (406) 848-7398 montanawhitewater.com Spectacular vistas, wild rapids and long ziplines. Montana Whitewater has something fun for everyone!
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LIVINGSTON, MONTANA WHERE TO STAY, EAT, AND FISH IN CLOSE PROXIMITY TO THE PARK YELLOWSTONE VALLEY LODGE & GRILL 3840 US Highway 89 S., Livingston, MT (406) 333-4787 yellowstonevalleylodge.com A small, upscale resort located on the Yellowstone River with a farm-to-table restaurant.
CODY, WYOMING FAMILY ACTIVITIES BIG SKY RIDES
208 Yellowstone Ave., Cody, WY (406) 861-3509 bigskyrides.net If you don't see a buffalo or moose in the park, you can have your picture taken on one at Big Sky Rides, where you can dress up in chaps, jackets and hats for unique and personal souvenir pictures featuring you in an Old West setting. The photos are processed immediately and make perfect portraits to show your friends back home, to remember your Yellowstone vacations, and also make great Christmas cards. Big Sky Rides has moved to a new location from West Yellowstone, Mont. to Cody, Wyo. Stop by and see the selection of props and animals, and have your family photos taken at Big Sky Rides. Bring this magazine in and get $1.00 off.
JACKSON, WYOMING BEST EVENT JACKSON HOLE RODEO
447 Snow King Ave., Jackson, WY (307) 733-7927 jhrodeo.com Join us for two hours of high-energy rodeo excitement. Buy tickets online and save!
FOR THE SOMMELIER WESTSIDE WINE & SPIRITS
4015 W. Lake Creek Drive, Jackson, WY (307) 733-5038 westsidewinejh.com Bringing the wagon train to Jackson Hole? Come in for a tasty beverage!
WHERE TO EAT LOTUS CAFE
BEST LOCAL FISHING OUTFITTER
145 N. Glenwood, Jackson, WY (307) 734-0882 tetonlotuscafe.com All-organic and something for everyone from meats to vegan and gluten-free options. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
NORTH FORK ANGLERS
THAI ME UP RESTAURANT & BREWERY
1107 Sheridan Ave., Cody, WY (307) 527-7274 northforkanglers.com Assisting anglers in Cody and the Greater Yellowstone area since 1984. Guide service and fully stocked fly shop.
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75 E. Pearl, Jackson, WY (307) 733-0005 thaijh.com Thai Me Up offers Thai cuisine and bar fare that pair perfectly with the in-house breweryâ€™s award-winning tap list.
WHERE TO EAT AND CAP OFF A DAY OF EXPLORING BOGART’S RESTAURANT 11 S. Broadway Ave., Red Lodge MT (406) 446-1784 redlodgerestaurants.com/bogarts Unique atmosphere, seriously good Mexican food, and legendary margaritas. Live life with a grain of salt!
RED LODGE, MONTANA BEST MOTORCYCLE SHOP BONE DADDY’S CUSTOM CYCLE
210 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT (406) 446-2022 bonedaddyscustomcycle.com Bone Daddy's is a full-service motorcycle shop at the base of the Beartooth Pass.
PHOTO COURTESY OF BOGART’S RESTAURANT
BRIDGE CREEK BACKCOUNTRY KITCHEN & WINE BAR
WHERE TO OUTFIT YOUR ADVENTURES
116 S. Broadway Ave., Red Lodge, MT (406) 446-9900 eatfooddrinkwine.com Casual lunches, legendary dinners, award-winning wines, Montana craft brews, classic cocktails, open daily.
GRIZZLY PEAK OUTDOORS
CARBON COUNTY STEAKHOUSE
24 S. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT (406) 445-0751 redlodgemountain.com/gpo Grizzly Peak Outdoors specializes in the gear that gets you outside for a day of adventure.
STAY & PLAY THE POLLARD HOTEL
2 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT (406) 446-0001 thepollard.com Beautifully renovated historic hotel located in the heart of downtown Red Lodge.
LEARN YELLOWSTONE WILDLIFE SANCTUARY*
615 Second St. E., Red Lodge, MT (406) 446-1133 yellowstonewildlife.org Educating the public about the protection and conservation of Yellowstone wildlife and their habitats.
121 S. Broadway Ave., Red Lodge, MT (406) 446-4025 redlodgerestaurants.com/carbon-county-steakhouse Hand cut steaks, enticing appetizers, decadent desserts, and an award-winning wine list. Enjoy the sights on our beautiful patio during warmer months.
NATALI’S FRONT BAR 117 S. Broadway Ave., Red Lodge, MT redlodgerestaurants.com/natalis-front-bar Slinging drinks since the 1930’s with Montana-made spirits, signature cocktails and a full dinner menu. Summer offers live music on the patio.
RED LODGE PIZZA CO. 115 S. Broadway Ave., Red Lodge, MT (406) 446-3333 redlodgerestaurants.com/red-lodge-pizza-co Pizza you can write home about! A one-of-a-kind dining experience featuring an extensive menu and full bar.
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RENT ATVS FOR A DAY OF EXPLORING YELLOWSTONE ADVENTURES INC.
131 Dunraven Street, West Yellowstone, MT (800) 231-5991 yellowstoneadventures.com We offer seasonal ATV and snowmobiles rentals for your exploring pleasure. Come experience our backyard.
GRAB LUNCH TO-GO ERNIE’S
WEST YELLOWSTONE BEST PIZZA AND LIVE MUSIC VENUE WILD WEST PIZZERIA & SALOON
14 Madison Ave., West Yellowstone, MT (406) 646-4400 wildwestpizza.com If you’re looking for the best pizza you’ve ever tasted, come on in to Wild West Pizzeria. Founded in 1999 by Aaron Hecht – with the philosophy of making the best pizza in West Yellowstone – we have held true to our promise, and our customers have voted Wild West Pizzeria the No. 1 pizza place in town year after year. In fact, the majority of our customers have said it’s the best pizza they have ever tasted and are happy to find that the experience and the product remain consistent. We believe in making a fresh product using only the best ingredients. Our dough is made with Wheat Montana flour and our sauce is a family recipe. We use only Wisconsin mozzarella and provolone cheese, which we grate off the block every day. Wild West believes great food takes time and we are not a fast food establishment.
406 Highway 20, West Yellowstone, MT (406) 646-9467 erniesbakery.com Grab a box lunch on your way to your Yellowstone National Park adventure or dine-in for breakfast and lunch.
WHERE TO EAT AND CAP OFF A DAY OF EXPLORING MADISON CROSSING LOUNGE
121 Madison Ave., West Yellowstone, MT (406) 646-7621 madisoncrossinglounge.com Join us in the most comfortable atmosphere in West Yellowstone for quality cuisine, wine, and cocktails.
BOOK YOUR TOUR YELLOWSTONE ALPEN GUIDES*
555 Yellowstone Ave., West Yellowstone, MT (406) 646-9591 yellowstoneguides.com Yellowstone Alpen Guides offers tours of Yellowstone National Park. We have summer van tours and winter snow-coach tours. We can also take you hiking or skiing in Yellowstone.
STAY & PLAY STAGE COACH INN
209 Madison Ave., West Yellowstone, MT (406) 646-7381 yellowstoneinn.com Stage Coach Inn is a treasured landmark hotel and at the same time, completely modern and up to date. It’s an ideal four-season base camp for Yellowstone explorers of every age.
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PHOTO COURTESY OF YELLOWSTONE ADVENTURES INC.
L odging • A ctivities • t ours • P AckAges
W est Y elloWstone , M ontana explorebigsky.com
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Featuring Montana Artists
Modern Impressionism meets Western Contemporary Design 52 Explore Yellowstone explorebigsky.com
88 Ousel Falls Road | Big Sky, MT | FerchoElliott.com
Your Guide to America's First National Park