Visiting Yellowstone National Park in the winter can be an incredible experience, giving those who make the journey memories that will last a lifetime. For most who visit the park in the winter, the trip is spent mostly indoors, more often than not in the heated comfort of their vehicle or bundled up at a pullout, looking at wildlife.
While this in itself is truly incredible, there is a next level to visiting Yellowstone in the winter that rewards those who make the effort with a deeper understanding of the region during the colder months. What is it, you ask? Taking a snowshoe tour with me in Yellowstone National Park.
This winter, I am offering nine snowshoe tours, both to classic destinations and overlooked gems. From frozen waterfalls and scenic overlooks to stunning locations known for world-class wildlife watching, these tours are sure to be full of memories you look back on fondly for years to come. Give them a look and consider booking a snowshoe tour with me this winter.
A quick note: the snowshoe tours I offer are located in the north section of the park, which everyone can reach with their own vehicles. I do not offer snowshoe tours in the interior of the park. Those tours can only be reached by taking a snow coach.
Mammoth Hot Springs History and Thermal Features Snowshoe Adventure
Full of steam, snow, and potential for wildlife, this snowshoe adventure is a classic. Wandering the snowed-over Upper Terrace Drive, located above the infrastructure of Mammoth, a snowshoe adventure here rewards you with stunning scenery and a slice of history. This adventure is perfect for beginners with minimal snowshoeing experience and those hoping for a unique way to wander beyond the boardwalks of Mammoth Hot Springs.
The Yellowstone River Overlook Trail Wildlife and Scenery Trek
This winter adventure is a hidden gem in the Northern Range of Yellowstone, giving those who wander it an exceptional experience. After walking up the Specimen Ridge Trail, the trail reaches the rim of a canyon overlooking the Yellowstone River. Sweeping views of mountains, thermal areas, and incredible geology await as we wander along the canyon rim. Along this trail, wildlife also abounds, with bighorn sheep and bison commonly spotted. This adventure is not for beginner snowshoers.
Frozen Waterfalls, Wildlife Tracks and Stunning Views on the Lava Creek Trail
This snowshoe adventure is another unique gem for experienced snowshoers hoping for something off the beaten path and rarely traversed. Along this adventure, the path leads to the top of a frozen waterfall and along a scenic canyon rim before dropping down to the Gardner River. The path is often used by wildlife, giving snowshoers a chance to spot footprints in the snow and scan for animals both near and far.
Hellroaring Suspension Bridge and Wildlife Watching Adventure
This winter adventure is found at one of the more consistent spots to see wolves over the last decade, giving those with snowshoe experience a chance to see wolves while out on an adventure. After descending a hill and crossing a scenic suspension bridge, the route darts through a small forest before emerging onto a hill that overlooks the entire Hellroaring region. Bison, elk, coyotes, and even wolves may be spotted in the distance, with their tracks visible in the snow. This is an adventure for those with snowshoe experience.
Frozen Lost Lake and Frozen Lost Creek Waterfall Scenic Trek
Tucked behind the infrastructure of Roosevelt, a fun winter wonderland awaits. Starting near the Petrified Tree pullout, this adventure will take snowshoers along the shores of a frozen lake, and then around a hidden canyon where views of a frozen waterfall can be spotted. Wildlife does hang out in the region, with bison, elk, and coyotes seen quite often. This experience is a good choice for those who have some snowshoe experience but are looking to get away from well-traveled trails.
Winter Wildlife Watching and Animal Tracking Slough Creek Snowshoe
Known for wildlife watching and fantastic views, the Slough Creek snowshoe adventure is a great introduction to the Northern Range of Yellowstone. Known for bison, coyote, eagle, and wolf sightings, a trek along this closed road is sure to whet your appetite for further adventures. Since the area is frequented by wildlife, there will be plenty of tracks and scat to spot, helping all learn about the animals in the area. Advanced snowshoers have the option to add some distance and elevation to this tour and head out to the first meadow, where very few humans travel in the winter.
Lamar Valley Winter Wildlife Watching and Animal Tracking Adventure
Known worldwide as one of the best places to watch wildlife, Lamar Valley is even more incredible when wandering on foot. On the snowshoe tour, you’ll cross over Soda Butte Creek and emerge into Lamar Valley. Bison, coyotes, elk, moose, and wolves may all be spotted on this adventure, as well as the mountains and winter scenes of the landscape. Because this area is so well traveled, snowshoers will be able to see the movement of animals, helping bring a better understanding of just how trodden this place is.
Winter Wildlife Watching and Landscape Views Around Beaver Ponds
Located near Mammoth Hot Springs, the Beaver Ponds Loop Trail is yet another overlooked and underrated gem in the winter. This adventure is for experienced snowshoers, heading beyond the boardwalks of Mammoth and into an area that feels remote and wild. Along the route, which starts with a steep hill, and then rolls the rest of the way, views of snowy mountains, frozen ponds and lakes, and wildlife will all occur. Snowshoers should see bison, elk, and more.
Tower Fall and Calcite Springs Winter Trek
One can never go wrong snowshoeing up the snow-covered road from Roosevelt Junction up to Calcite Springs and the Tower Fall Overlook. The route frequently has bison, coyote, and bighorn sheep sightings, making it a great trail to watch wildlife. While wildlife will be viewed from afar, snowshoers will get up close and personal with the region’s geology, showcased at numerous overlooks and sections of the route. Few snowshoe experiences have the payoffs consistently found on this adventure.