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Open Roads Forum  >  RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions

 > Yellowstone in October

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enblethen

Moses Lake, WA

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Posted: 07/01/20 07:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Snow, heavy snow! Park straddles the Continental Divide.


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narcodog

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Posted: 07/01/20 07:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ed C wrote:

Do you have an idea why they close? SNOW!!!!!!

There are several factors, snow, cold and the lack of volunteers. All of the water systems need to be drained and winterized. West Yellowstone sits at about 7K feet. Shops and restaurants close until the Park reopens for the snowmobiles.

eldel

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Posted: 07/01/20 08:02am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We frequently visit the area in mid-October (it's my birthday 'outing') and yes - the shops are largely shut and all the tourist trap facilities are closed. But the scenery and wildlife are still there and you can actually see them without thousands of other people desperately trying to "do" the whole park in a day.

If you can deal with a couple of road closures for maintenance and you don't need "Disney with animals" it's the best time to go. IMO.

memtb

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Posted: 07/01/20 08:38am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

September and October are great times to visit the area.....though snows and cool temperatures could provide some issues. If you “do not” have to have full hook-ups ( boondocking)..... there are numerous National Forest campgrounds outside of the East Gate of Yellowstone that remain open late into the fall. Though, you may have to share the campgrounds with a few hunters. We’re not hunting that area this year......so we won’t be neighbors! [emoticon] memtb


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ReneeG

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Posted: 07/01/20 09:11am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We've often gone late September to early October and yes, a lot closes, but we found that as long as it doesn't snow, some FS campgrounds stay open - weather permitting. We've stayed at Gros Ventre in the Tetons early October. Also stayed at Falls CG on Togwotee Pass before going to Gros Ventre and Baker's Hole and Grizzly RV. Also have seen Madison CG in Yellowstone open at this time of year and Mammoth is open year around, on the north end of the park.


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GravelRider

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Posted: 07/02/20 08:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the replies everyone. We're excited to go when the crowds have diminished. However, it's looking like the downside is that there aren't as many camping opportunities, especially this year with construction on one campground and most of the others closed for the season, presumably due to Covid. According to the Yellowstone website, only four campgrounds are open right now, and in October, it will be down to only one. We're not concerned with shops and facilities being closed, as we're trying to social distance anyhow.

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Posted: 07/02/20 08:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We're thinking about heading south into Colorado and visiting the Rocky Mountain National Park on the way home from the Grand Tetons. This is obviously even higher elevation. Hopefully campgrounds will be open there and weather will cooperate!

wapiticountry

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Posted: 07/02/20 08:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You have taken all the actual issues that come with "Closed" into account I hope. The only campground open will be Mammoth. There will be no water, no showers, no dump station. The commercial RV parks in Gardiner will also be closed, so no water, no dump. Maybe you could get those services in Livingston, which is 55 miles away, but maybe not. Dunraven Pass will be closed, so will the Beartooth highway. Snow will likely close other roads intermittently. If there is significant snow, the park service does not respond to clear the roads like Denver does to clear the interstates. They will be on a skeleton crew and the road may stay snow-packed for many hours. Lots of risk to take on a long expensive journey away from home. And this year COVID may restrict you even further. Wouldn't be out of the question for the park to completely close September 30 or even if case rise. And when I say completely close, I mean shut down the gates and you cannot get in. Something more to consider.

eldel

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Posted: 07/02/20 08:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

RMNP - the lower elevations will generally be open but trail ridge (the road that goes across the park) will, almost certainly, be closed by mid-October. I'd be surprised if the park campgrounds were open then - they're only 50% open now.

We don't camp there - it's only a 45 minute drive from the house.

There might be campgrounds open in Estes Park though. Not as pretty (obviously) but only 15 minutes to the National Park. Early through mid October you'll still get the elk rutting and bugling - which is pretty spectacular.

zb39

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Posted: 07/02/20 09:30am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Is YS having crowds right now? The few pics and video I see show it is empty compared to most years.

Why not go now?


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