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November 18, 2009

Notes from the Field: Winter Adventures in Yellowstone National Park

Gray wolf on the prowl in Yellowstone National Park (Corel)

It's no secret that winter in Yellowstone National Park is a magical season; think silent, snow-filled meadows and slopes, packs of wolves hustling across the valley floor, plus an absolute dearth of tourists. No, the secret here lies in the fact that many visitors—in winter or summer—fail to spend enough time here to appreciate the full diversity of the country's oldest park. Which is where the Yellowstone Association Institute (YAI), and more specifically its annual Field Seminar programs, comes in.

This non-profit offers a number of well-regarded winter programs, including an overnight "Wilderness First Aid" session ($230) and a two-night "Yellowstone's Winter Serengeti" seminar ($300) that tracks resident wildlife including bison, wolves, foxes, bighorn sheep, and river otters. Participants will spend their nights out in the field in YAI's Lamar Buffalo Field Campus in shared, rustic cabins, dining on self-provided food prepared in a communal kitchen. Spots are still available for these and other 2009-10 winter programs. Other YAI options include Lodging & Learning programs in partnership with parks concessionaire Xanterra Parks & Resorts, as well as one-day private tours that can be organized for families and other small groups.

See a photo gallery of the wolves of Yellowstone National Park, first reintroduced back into the park in 1995.

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Related Topics: National Parks · Outdoor Adventures · Trip Ideas


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