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Old 06-19-2018, 05:28 PM   #1
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West Yellowstone

We just got back home after 4 days in Yellowstone National Park. We stayed at the KOA in West Yellowstone. The traffic delays getting into the part where horrific from West Yellowstone. We either needed to go very early or late to avoid 2 hours of sitting in traffic.

This was our 4th visit to YNP - a great place but it is very crowded. We will either stay in the park next time or stay closer to another park entrance.
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Old 06-19-2018, 05:41 PM   #2
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Sorry to hear about this.

For the help of others who may have reservations in place already, can you be more specific.

How "early" is early, or what time is "later"?
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Old 06-19-2018, 07:22 PM   #3
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I was in West Yellowstone a couple of weeks ago. From observation at that time the problem was people partially pulling off the road to look at bison. The road was down to one lane which caused the problem. There were no traffic jams when I entered the park at about 7:00 am. Traffic in the park is probably worse now.

Hopefully the mosquitoes are gone in West Yellowstone. They were terrible earlier this month.
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Old 06-19-2018, 08:15 PM   #4
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Unfortunately, Yellowstone Park traffic jams are becoming more common. One reason is simply the popularity of the park and any sort of holiday or special day adds to the popularity. This causes traffic jams that back up from the entrance station well into West Yellowstone itself. Getting to the station before 8:00 am or after 11:00 am can help.

And then there are the "buffalo jams," those wonders of nature. They may be due to people stopping to view bison or elk or other wildlife. During times that the bison migrate, they love to use the road between Madison Junction and West Yellowstone, often going back and forth across the road to, perhaps, munch a bit of grass at the roadside. Then you get to drive at the walking speed of the bison!

Since buying our trailer new, we have spent considerable time in West Yellowstone and love the Park. Some aspects can be frustrating, but Yellowstone National Park remains, for us, wondrous and well worth visiting.

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Old 06-19-2018, 09:37 PM   #5
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Early, early, early is the secret to YNP. At all costs stay out of the quarter of the Park between Madison and West Thumb Junction between 1000 and 1600 -- every bus tour in the tri-state area heads to Old Faithful then because the are lots of bathrooms stalls and restaurant seats.

Wildlife watching, 0600 to 0900 and 1700 to dark. Waterfalls, hiking -- midday. Geysers early or late.

Stay in the park if you can find reservations and can afford it -- the commute can be a bear...
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Old 06-25-2018, 08:30 PM   #6
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Been going to the Park for years. Yes, there's traffic. But I have NEVER seen a 2-hour jam to get through the West entrance. That sounds like an exaggeration, but I wasn't there a week ago, though I was just there Sat and Sun and saw no such thing. I spent two weekend days traversing, repeatedly, the Firehole and Gibbon Rivers. It was not particularly bad, IMO. A few slowdowns when people stopped to look at animals, but overall, traffic conditions were excellent for summer.
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Old 06-25-2018, 10:09 PM   #7
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Camp inside the park. Short of getting up with the sun, it's the only way to avoid the bison / bear / elk / moose jams getting into the park from West Yellowstone. This is likely because the road passes between the Firehole River and a steep "cliff," with nowhere else for the critters to go. So, the bison walk on the road. Most likely, many other animals do the same.
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Old 06-26-2018, 07:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocinante View Post
This is likely because the road passes between the Firehole River and a steep "cliff," with nowhere else for the critters to go. So, the bison walk on the road.
It's the Madison River.

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Old 06-26-2018, 08:22 PM   #9
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Whatever, it’s a river. Wet. Full of water. Bison prefer the road to the river.
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Old 07-14-2018, 08:51 PM   #10
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We always stay inside the park and dry camp. We have been there 7 times.
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Old 07-14-2018, 10:10 PM   #11
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Caution .... shiny silver trailer + big bison who sees an image moving past gets enraged, excited or at a minimum ... interested. Wife said - go faster. We went faster. Niece says we were lucky. Never heard of a shiny getting injured, but it all sounded possible. Take care. Pat
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