We are fortunate to be able to live and do business in a place that is special to so many throughout the world. West Yellowstone, Montana and Yellowstone National Park are a worldwide destination and many will do whatever it takes to visit and experience it's beauty.
The following article was written by our local chamber of commerce in West Yellowstone, Montana..
We would like to introduce you someone we met at the West Yellowstone Visitor Center. Touring Yellowstone in the early spring can be a bit challenging. Different sections of roads open on a staggered schedule, the weather can change as spring rain or snow showers move through, and there are limited services.
Late on a Tuesday afternoon, a visitor arrived on the shuttle bus from Salt Lake City, Utah. He had flown from around the world (possibly Taiwan) and come to Yellowstone. He did not have a driver’s license and tours into the park do not begin operating for another week or so because it was early in the spring.
He asked if he could ride a bicycle into Yellowstone. He could, and in fact many people come just to ride into the park in the spring before traffic gets heavier. It is 14 miles from the west entrance to Madison Junction along the Madison River and through a canyon. At Madison Junction you can turn south and ride another 16 miles to the Old Faithful geyser area. Or, you can turn north and ride another 14 miles to the Norris area, turn east and ride12 miles more to Canyon where you can see the beautiful Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and waterfalls. Either route is long ride round trip through scenic, but sometimes challenging terrain.
The staff at the visitor center and a Yellowstone Park ranger showed this traveler a map and explained the challenges of route, darkness, and animals, especially to someone who had never been to Yellowstone before, plus where he could find lodging and even rent a bike. We all thought that he would either hire a local shuttle/taxi service.
The next day one of our staff members and their family drove to Old Faithful after work. Later that night they were returning back to West Yellowstone, and who did they see? Our visitor from the night before doggedly riding back from Old Faithful on a bicycle. It was starting to drizzle and the family was able to coax this visitor, quickly becoming a friend, into a ride back. It was 9:00 PM.
The next day we all wondered how he had made such a ride (probably about 16 hours total) and whether he would even be able to get out of bed that morning. That same day, our same family headed in to the Canyon area of Yellowstone and who did they see? The same gentleman pedaling like mad. He was about to the Canyon Junction.
We meet lots of folks (literally over 100,000+) each summer at the Visitor Center, but this "Yellowstone Fan" has inspired us. I gotta say the guy is determined to see Yellowstone. Our staff person said it best, "He was very excited to be here and to see the Park. He spoke broken English but was quiet and kind to me at work. It is just an outstanding example of what determined people will do to accomplish their goals. He has seen Yellowstone up close and personal and I am proud of the guy." You can contact the West Yellowstone Chamber of commerce to plan a Yellowstone visit at http://www.destinationyellowstone.com/ or on Facebook at http://bit.ly/9I8U2F Plan a trip to Yellowstone today!