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Old Faithful Lodge

There are only two ways to get to Yellowstone in Winter. You fly into Bozeman and take a two step shuttle to the park. Or you fly into Jackson Hole, spend one night, and take the two step shuttle to Old Faithful Snow Lodge the next day. Delta, American and United fly into Bozeman and Jackson from most major airports. You should make your reservation early, preferably in September, to get the best possible rate. If you wait until December or January to make the reservation you'll pay two or three times as much. We find that airfares are usually cheapest in February as long as you stay away from Presidents Weekend. If your Bozeman flight arrives after 2 pm, as most do, you will have to stay overnight at the Bozeman Holiday Inn and catch the shuttle to Mammoth the next day at 1:45 pm. The vans and snow coaches impose limits of two reasonable size bags per passenger, plus skiis or snowshoes.

Bozeman Airport
Snotrax van Your adventure begins when you catch that shuttle from the Bozeman Airport or Holiday Inn.. Just getting to Old Faithful Snow Lodge is a unique experience. Unless you've lived in the High Rockies, you've never seen anything like this. First you have to get from Bozeman to the Yellowstone Park entrance. For this, you may use a snow van equipped with minitreads as shown here. These snow vans cannot travel as fast as a regular van on bare pavement, and it's a harsher ride. But they have heavy duty heaters and all the modern amenities, so you'll have a comfortable trip. Keep your camera handy. You'll see lots of scenery and wildlife. Shuttles depart daily from Bozeman airport and the Bozeman Holiday Inn at 1:45 pm and arrive at Mammoth at 4 pm. Notice this means you must stay overnight at Mammoth and catch the morning Snowcoach on to Old Faithful Snow Lodge.
Some Winters are snowier than others. But you are likely to see more snow on this one trip than you've seen in your entire life combined. Road crews work round the clock. High winds and drifting are a problem. You may get caught in a whiteout and slow down or stop to wait it out. As you travel from Bozeman up to the park and on to the lodge, temperatures will drop steadily and snow depth will increase. If you get lucky (or unlucky according to your idea of fun), you'll arrive between major snows and the road crews will have the snow cleared down to bare pavement, and the first half of your trip will be via regular van with tires on the road. road plowing
Yellowstone snocoach At Mammoth, you'll change from the minitread vans to the snow coaches the park is famous for. These bizarre vehicles feature skiis in front and tank treads behind. The ride is bouncy and rough as you crest snowdrifts and churn through deep powder. You may stop as herds of Buffalo or Elk cross in front of you, and you'll definitely stop at certain sightseeing points. The complete trip takes four hours. Snow coaches leave Mammoth at 8 am and 2 pm daily for the Snow Lodge, and leave the Snow Lodge at 8 am and 2 pm daily on the way back to Mammoth. You may have to stay overnight at Mammoth Lodge, but there's a fine restaurant, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, wildlife watching and the Mammoth Hot Springs to keep you occupied while you're there. In fact, many visitors only come as far as Mammoth, staying there for a week, and just taking a one day round trip to Old Faithful.

The Jackson Hole entry avoids the problem of multiple days trying to match up shuttle schedules. You fly into Jackson Hole Airport, stay in Jackson, they pick you up at your lodging at about 7 am, bring you to Flagg Ranch, then board the snow coach for the ride into the park. Coming in from jackson Hole, according to snow conditions, you may use a Mercedes SnowVan with tank treads instead of the famous Snow Coaches shown here.

For Jackson Hole shuttle arrangements, call Scenic Safari at 1-307-734-8898. For Bozeman shuttle arrangements, call Xanterra at 1-307-344-7311.

During the 2016-2017 Winter, Mammoth Hotel will be closed for renovation and NO transportation will be available into Yellowstone.. For that year, ONLY the Jackson Hole shuttle will operate. Mammoth Hotel will reopen for the 2017-2018 Winter and a much streamlined Bozeman - Mammoth - Old Faithful shuttle system will open.

snow coach
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