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Old 04-13-2016, 07:16 PM   #1
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Yellowstone in May

Hoping to be traveling through Yellowstone in May. Temps may be a bit dicey. Especially at night. Any thoughts about propane consumption and potential pipe freezing? No prolonged camping, just stop - sleep - move on. Batteries should stay charged, but am considering bringing generator just in case. Looking for any thoughts and recommendations. Thanks in advance.

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Old 04-13-2016, 09:06 PM   #2
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It can be below freezing at night in May. Or June, July and August... If you are in the park you will be dry camping unless you are in the Fishing Bridge RV Park. Unless you dial up a tropical environment, a 30# tank of propane will go three or four nights. You should be able to refill at Grant or Fishing Bridge.

Generator hours in most campgrounds is 0800 to 2000.

Grand Teton is lower and warmer so you might want to consider basing there.


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Old 04-13-2016, 09:12 PM   #3
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Hi...thought I would share my experience from last November in Montana. First I would definitely bring a generator because daytime use might require a small electric heater and or use of a microwave when not plugged in. Depending on your unit and where your staying, run your frig on 12volt or electric as much as possible to save on the propane.

Last November I was set up in a campground on 50amp service so my frig and electric heat were adequate for daytime usage. Temps were in the low 30's to 20's daytime and went into teens or single digits at night. My furnace was adequate and kept inside temps at about 62-68 at night. Before bed I always left my cabinets open so heat could get to the water lines in the bath and kitchen areas. The furnace also heated the holding tanks but not the freshwater tank which eventually froze over thanksgiving when the temps went below zero. The campground recommended either using a heated water line for city connection or filling the freshwater and use internally. I chose using the tank. Fortunately no frozen pipes but I had to use bottle water from the laundry room till the water tank thawed for the toilet and handwashing in the sink. Basically mine froze due to the location of the tank, on a diesel pusher its on the exterior mounted behind the fuel tank about center of the frame. Most trailers and gas motorhomes have the water tank under a bed in the rear so its protected.

My propane ran only the furnace and hot water. Its a single tank holding 105lbs which is equal to about 21 gals of propane. Always filled it when the gage got into the red and it took about 15-17 gals each time. One tank lasted about 10-12 days. Not sure how large your tanks are but I think you can use my numbers and figure out about how long yours will last from them.

Good luck in the mountains, Yellowstone is beautiful. I plan to head out to Glacier NP for a long weekend later this month if possible. Should you find yourself up near Great Falls, give a shout and I'll spring for coffee and we can share lots of Airstream stories Moving cross country with mine last year was a unique experience.
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Old 04-13-2016, 09:18 PM   #4
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Hi from AZ. . .we arrived YENP the last day of May, & it snowed the next morning ! Cool nights, great days, not too crowded yet. We also encountered a blizzard trying to drive the Beartooth Hwy to Red Lodge on June 18th. . . All an adventure, IMO. . . be safe out there, Craig
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Old 04-13-2016, 09:24 PM   #5
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Some thoughts to consider....

I live in "western Montana" and our nights can still get pretty cool. I don't believe you will have any problems with freeze ups and your LP consumption during a week of cold nights should be as noted above. However, before you leave for YS you might want to check on what's available to see. Some areas may still be "snowed in" and not "all services "up and running". My family and I visited Glacier National Park last weekend. Only one road was "open" and there were "no services" other than the "western gate" open to "take your money". Even though there was a lot of traffic in the park and the daytime temps were in the high 60's (that day)....they had just begun to plow some of the roads. The major attraction in GNP is the "Going to the Sun Road" over Logan Pass. That road is "traditionally" not cleared until "late June or early July.

Yellowstone Park has a Facebook Page and I would watch it closely as you prepared for your trek.
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Old 04-13-2016, 09:36 PM   #6
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Beartooth to Yellowstone

It may be a little premature for this route.
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Old 04-13-2016, 09:46 PM   #7
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I like the great snow plowing. Where is this place?
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Old 04-14-2016, 12:09 AM   #8
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The Bear tooth is NE out of Yellowstone toward Red Lodge. Quite interesting drive. We'll do it again when we are in the area. Recommended must do.

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Old 04-14-2016, 03:26 PM   #9
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Last time we were at YNP in May, there was enough snowfall that winter to collapse the auto shop.

Needless to say, there was still a lot of snow around...
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Old 04-24-2016, 07:27 AM   #10
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2007 Yellowstone Trip

We stayed at Fishing Bridge campground mid-May 2006 and had daily changes in weather. We did used about 1/4 of a tank of propane to run the furnace and frig for the 4 day stay. My 2006, the one in the photo, had the electric tank warmers. Fishing Bridge had/has water/electrical hook-ups. Would get up in the morning to sunshine and head out to explore the park and wind up in a heavy snowfall. Woke one morning to this view. One evening I decided I need something out of the truck, opened the door of the AS, heard a very heavy snorting, slammed the door shut and decide I really didn't need what ever was in the truck. Great place to visit.
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Old 04-24-2016, 09:24 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by mwilliamsmd View Post
Hoping to be traveling through Yellowstone in May. Temps may be a bit dicey. Especially at night. Any thoughts about propane consumption and potential pipe freezing? No prolonged camping, just stop - sleep - move on. Batteries should stay charged, but am considering bringing generator just in case. Looking for any thoughts and recommendations. Thanks in advance.
May would be a good month to go as there will be fewer people visiting,some wet and snowy weather , but it you will be fine, a tank of propane will last a good week and some of the facilities will be open , enjoy....

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