Getting to Yellowstone
Yellowstone National Park is accessible from a number of gateway communities, including Jackson & Moran WY (from the south), West Yellowstone MT (from the west), Bozeman, Livingston & Gardiner MT (from the north), Cody WY (from the east), and Red Lodge & Cooke City/Silver Gate MT (from the northeast). Many of these towns have regional airports and car rentals, as well as a number of businesses offering sightseeing, wildlife, and winter specific tours of the national park.
What is the best route for driving into Yellowstone?
- North Entrance - Near the gateway community of Gardiner, MT, the North Entrance is the only park entrance open to wheeled vehicles all year. November through April, the North Entrance provides the only access to Silver Gate and Cooke City, MT. Beyond Cooke City the road is closed to wheeled vehicles November through April. The road from Mammoth Hot Springs to Norris is open to wheeled vehicles from the third Friday in April through the first Sunday in November, and to track over snow vehicles from the third Wednesday in December to Monday of the first full week in March. Services are available year around.
- West Entrance - Adjacent to the town of West Yellowstone, MT, the West Entrance is open to wheeled vehicles from the third Friday in April through the first Sunday in November, and to track over snow vehicles from the third Wednesday in December to Monday of the second full week in March. Services are available year around.
- South & East Entrances - Open to wheeled vehicles from the first Friday of May through the first Sunday in November, and to track over snow vehicles from the third Wednesday in December to Monday of the second full week in March. Limited services are available near the South & East Entrances.
- Northeast Entrance - Near the gateway community of Cooke City, MT, this entrance is open year round for wheeled vehicle access to Cooke City through Gardiner, MT and the North Entrance. Opening dates for roads east of Cooke City vary from year to year, depending on the weather. The Beartooth Highway is open from Friday of Memorial Weekend to 8:00 am on the day following Columbus Day. Storms occasionally (temporarily) close the Beartooth Highway during this "open" period. Services are available year around.
What Airports can I fly into?
- Bozeman, Montana – Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport / Gallatin Field, the busiest airport around the Park, provides service for five airlines (Delta, United, Horizon, Frontier, and Allegiant). Daily flights are offered to Salt Lake City, Denver, Minneapolis-St. Paul, San Francisco, and Seattle. Seasonaly or weekly flights are offered to Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit, LaGuardia (NY/NJ), Houston, and Las Vegas. Bozeman is located approximately 90 miles from both the north and west entrances to the Park.
- Cody, Wyoming – Yellowstone Regional Airport is located just two minutes from downtown Cody, Wyoming, approximately 52 miles from the east gate of Yellowstone National Park. The Yellowstone Regional Airport in Cody is served year round by a Delta Connection operated by SkyWest Airlines through Salt Lake City, Utah. The airport is also served by United Express and Mesa Airlines through Denver International Airport.
- Jackson, Wyoming – Jackson Hole Airport is located ten miles north of the town of Jackson and approximately 40 miles south of the south entrance to Yellowstone National Park. The Jackson Hole Airport has service provided by American Airlines, Delta, Northwest, SkyWest, United and United Express. Direct flights are available to many major US cities
- Billings, Montana - Billings Logan International Airport, is the regional hub for three major airlines, Delta, Northwest and United. Billings can be found 3 hours north of the northeast entrance to the Park. However, Beartooth Pass, which is located along the way, is closed during the winter months, making this route impassable during that time.
- Idaho Falls, Idaho – Fanning Field is located nearly 100 miles to the southwest of the southern entrance to the Park. Service to this airport is provided by Horizon, Allegiant Air, Delta, SkyWest, and United Express.
- West Yellowstone, MT airport is serviced only in the months of June to early September.
Getting Around Yellowstone
All major national car rental companies have offices in the neighboring communities, some in town and some at the airports, plus a number of local independents. If you want to be able to enjoy Yellowstone National Park at your own pace, it is wise to plan ahead to rent a car.
During the summer season, commercial businesses offer tours originating from Bozeman & West Yellowstone, MT, and Jackson Hole & Cody, WY.
During the winter season, some businesses provide snow coach tours over most park roads, or bus transportation on the Mammoth Hot Springs to Cooke City road.
Park Concessionaires also provide bus tours within the park during the summer season.