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2009 Yellowstone Three Day Tour
A new tour has taken the place of this one. Please check it out here!
Day Pre Tour
| ||You will need to fly into Salt Lake City by at least the evening before. We pick up at all downtown Salt Lake hotels, and our preferred property is the Crystal Inn (http://www.crystalinnsaltlake.com/).|
Day 1 - Salt Lake City to West Yellowstone - 321 mi / 516.49 km - 5 hours
|This is Bundu Bashers' longest running, most popular Yellowstone tour, and like all of them, this one is smaller and more intimate, designed with a personal touch. Most will have only four to 10 people on them. The tour departs every Sunday and Tuesday from mid May through September.|
You will be picked up at your downtown Salt Lake City hotel at about 7 a.m., and head off for West Yellowstone, Montana. The initial route out of Salt Lake touches on the Great Salt Lake, at Willard Bay, before crossing over into Idaho. There is some great scenery along the way, especially as you climb up into the skies, through the Targhee National Forest into Montana. There will be opportunities for you to stop, admire the view, stretch your legs and buy a bite to eat.
When we get to West Yellowstone we will stop at our Cafe to pick up sack lunches before heading into the park.
Day 1 - Yellowstone lower loop - Three to 3 1/2 hours
| ||The roads that run through Yellowstone make a massive figure of eight, and we will start to explore the circle that makes up the lower loop of the park. |
From West Yellowstone we will head east, and follow the Madison River, past a nest with a pair of breeding Bald Eagles, towards Madison Junction. Depending on the time of the year, there is often a lot of wildlife in this area. At the Junction we will turn right, or south.
| ||The first major area at which we will stop is the Lower Geyser Basin, home to Fountain Paint Pots. There is a boardwalk system running around and through the basin, and it is a great place to go for a stroll, if the bison haven't got there first! Apart from the paint pots, there is also a selection of other thermal features in the area, including a number of geysers, one or other of which is inevitably erupting.|
| ||From there we will travel a short distance to the Midway Geyser Basin. Midway is home to two of the largest hot springs to be found anywhere in the world, as well as Excelsior Geyser, now dormant, but discharging thousands of gallons of water every minute. One of the springs, Grand Prismatic, is an amazing sights, with its incredible array of colors.|
Day 1 - High meadows outside West Yellowstone - About 3 hours
| ||It is now time to return to West Yellowstone and prepare to go horseback riding. Those of you who prefer not to do so will be dropped off at your motel, Al's Westward Ho (http://www.yellowstonelodging.biz/west_yellowstone_motel.htm), and you can get a jump on exploring the town. Al's is the closest motel to Yellowstone, with the park being literally right across the road!|
The horse ranch is located in a beautifully high mountain valley (or hole, as old timers called it) just outside West Yellowstone.
Depending on what the group decides, there are a variety of trail options. You can take a steep, high trail through the rugged mountain terrain, traversing the streams that flow down from the nearby Continental Divide, or you stay lower down in the wide, expansive meadows.
In the summer, cattle are often moved from one area to another, and you may have the opportunity to play cowboy!
Please note that if this day happens to fall on a Sunday it may be necessary to do the horseback riding at a different time.
After riding you are on your own for dinner.
Day 2 - Yellowstone National Park - All Day
|Your guide will pick up box breakfasts for you from our Cafe, and then you will return to the park to explore the upper loop. |
This will be a full and fun day! The route we take will depend on possible road closures in the park, but it will be something like the following.
There is going to be a lot to see and do. We'll head out of West Yellowstone towards Madison Junction, where the Madison, Gibbon and Firehole Rivers meet. Turning left (north) we'll make for Norris Geyser Basin. Along the way we'll stop briefly at Gibbon Falls.
Although not as well known as the other geyser basins, Norris is the most thermally active part of Yellowstone. It is divided into two separate areas: Porcelain Basin and Back Basin. You will have the opportunity to stroll around both, enjoying the pristine beauty. Back Basin is home to Steamboat Geyser, the highest geyser in the world.
|The next stop is Mammoth Hot Springs, headquarters of the park, and home to a fascinating array of weird rock shapes, bright colors and sizzling hot springs. Elk are generally plentiful in this area, wandering around the old park buildings, and, if you're lucky, you might even see a whole herd.|
You can stroll down the ever changing terraces at Mammoth, admiring the travertine creations and hot springs. Your guide will be waiting at the bottom with a sack lunch.
|Everyone wants to see a bear in the wild at Yellowstone, and the trip from Mammoth to Tower Falls is one of the best places to do so. The spring can be a great time to go looking for bears, as you have the opportunity of seeing mothers with their new born cubs. Tower Falls is an impressive water fall.|
|There is much wildlife to be found in the Lamar Valley, which follows the road from Tower Junction to the north east entrance of the park. This is where the keen wolf watchers are to be found, and we will drive past their spotting locations and ask what they may have seen recently. Grizzly bears also frequent the Lamar area.|
|Assuming that it is open, the road from Tower Falls to Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone towers up into the sky as it crosses the Dunraven Pass at almost 9000 feet. We then drop down to Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. |
The Yellowstone River has carved an impressive canyon through the rocks, over which two falls drop. The Lower Falls is over twice the size of Niagara Falls! It is in this area that you can catch a glimpse of the yellowish tinge to the rocks, from which the Yellowstone River got its name, but at a different location. We'll check out the canyon and falls from a number of different locations. You get so close to the Upper Falls that you almost feel like you can reach out and touch the thundering water. Don't!
After a long, fun-filled day, it is time to return to West Yellowstone.
Day 2 - West Yellowstone
| ||The night is again spent at Al's Westward Ho.|
Day 3 - West Yellowstone to Jackson, through Yellowstone and Grand Teton - 140 mi / 225.26 km - Half day
| ||Box breakfasts are once again provided today, as are sack lunches. Leaving West Yellowstone we will be traveling over the lower loop once again, on our way to Grand Teton National Park and Jackson Hole. The Upper Geyser Basin, home to the legendary Old Faithful, is our first major stop, and we will visit there, and wait for the world's most famous geyser to erupt. There will also be time to check out Old Faithful Inn, and maybe even some of the other geysers in the area.|
| ||Depending on how long we had to wait for Old Faithful to erupt, there may possibly be an opportunity for a short walk around the Upper Geyser Basin. Apart from Old Faithful, there are a host of other geysers and springs there, like Riverside Geyser and Morning Glory Pool.|
| ||The road from Old Faithful to West Thumb, the next geyser basin, crosses over the Continental Divide twice, as it climbs through the forests. West Thumb is located along the shore of the incredibly blue Yellowstone Lake. This stop is a brief one, to enable you to admire the view over the lake.|
|From West Thumb it's time to drop south through the bottom part of Yellowstone, over the Rockefeller Parkway, and directly into Grand Teton National Park. Grand Teton does not have the amazing spectacles that Yellowstone does, but it is a beautiful area, and we'll take a leisurely drive through the park, stopping several times to take photographs and admire the views.|
The western, touristy town of Jackson is right outside Grand Teton National Park, and we will stop briefly there for you to take a quick look at the town, and eat the sack lunch that we provide today.
Day 3 - Snake River - About two hours
| ||There is now the option of going white water rafting. The Snake River has some great rafting waters, and you'll be tackling an eight mile stretch, with the put in just outside Jackson. (I don't want to go river rafting ... what do I do?) This section of the river offers some exciting white water, under the watchful eye of an experienced guide.|
Day 3 - Jackson to Salt Lake City - 303 mi / 487.53 km - 5 1/4 hours
|After the fun of the river, it is time to return to Salt Lake City and end the tour. Thanks for joining us!|
|Tour ID ||1075|
Please note the following...
- This tour is subject to a $1.00 per person fuel surcharge.
- This tour may be subject to a fuel surcharge.
- Entry fees to both Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks are included.
- River rafting may take place on day two instead of day three.
- If there are fewer than six people on the tour, or fewer than six wanting to go rafting, it may be omitted. Please contact us prior to booking if this is important to you.
- Bundu Bashers offers this tour every Sunday and Tuesday morning from May through September.
- Two nights' accommodation is included at Al's Westward Ho (http://www.yellowstonelodging.biz/west_yellowstone_motel.htm). Luxury accommodations are available at a surcharge. Prices vary depending on the month.
- Prices are based on double occupancy. A single surcharge of $88 is applicable, or we can try and match singles.
- The price includes the services of a guide/driver and transportation.
- The following meals are included: A sack lunch every day, a box breakfast on the second and third days.
- The tour itinerary may change at our discretion without notice. Factors that may cause a change include, but are not limited to, the weather, vendors and road conditions.
- Portions of this tour may, at our discretion, be sub contracted to other reputable vendors. This will in no way affect your safety, comfort or enjoyment, and there is no additional cost if this happens.
- A minimum of two people may be required for a tour to depart.
- It may be necessary to book several weeks ahead of time to ensure that there is space.
- If there are fewer than six people on this tour we may use the services of a shuttle company to take you part of the way to and from Yellowstone. Our vehicle will take you the rest of the way.
- Pick ups and drop offs take place in the downtown Salt Lake City area.
- Payment Details: While we would rather you not make a booking until you are sure you want to go, you are welcome to cancel the booking any time up until 31 days prior to the start of the tour, and you will get a full refund. After that time, we will not accept a cancellation and you will have to pay for the tour in full. Trip insurance is available. Half the cost of the tour will be charged to your card any time from 31 days prior to the start of the tour, and the balance will be charged any time from 7 days prior to the start of the tour.
Please call us at 1 800 724 7767 or (USA) 435 658 2227, or mail us for additional information.