Expedition Overview

Expedition Overview

  • From vast canyons to alpine lakes, explore Yellowstone National Park and the Grand Tetons with a National Geographic expert, on the lookout for grizzlies, bison, bighorn sheep, and elusive gray wolves.
  • Meet a renowned wildlife photographer at his home studio.
  • Discover Yellowstone’s geothermal landscape of bubbling mud pots, brilliantly colored hot springs, and erupting geysers—including legendary Old Faithful.
  • Float on the Snake River beneath the peaks of the Teton Range.

Itinerary

Itinerary

Explore two of America’s greatest natural wonders: Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. On a variety of excursions designed for families, discover Yellowstone’s mud pots, geysers, and colorful pools, and look for bison, bears, elk, eagles, and coyotes. Hike along the edge of the spectacular Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, and witness iconic Old Faithful’s thrilling eruption. Embark on a scavenger hunt in search of wildlife and wildflowers, then head south to the jagged peaks of the Teton Range. Explore the vast collections of the Murie Museum, and descend the rapids of the Snake River.

Days 1-2: Bozeman, Montana/Mammoth Hot Springs, Wyoming

Welcome to Bozeman, Montana—the launching point for our adventure through Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Take a shuttle to your hotel where the remainder of the day is free. The next morning, our expedition leader will share with kids the materials for a wildlife scavenger hunt this week. The day continues with a visit to the Montana Grizzly Encounter—a grizzly bear rescue and education sanctuary, founded and run by Casey Anderson, host of the Nat Geo WILD television series Expedition Wild. Families will have the opportunity to view and learn about these incredible creatures up close in a safe environment. After a picnic lunch, arrive at Yellowstone National Park—the world’s first national park. The rest of the day is spent exploring the steaming travertine terraces of Mammoth Hot Springs. Later, gather for a welcome reception and dinner.

Meals Included:Day 2 (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Accommodations:

Hilton Garden Inn Bozeman; Best Western Gardiner

Day 3: Lamar Valley

Rise early and head to the wildlife-rich Lamar Valley, where gray wolves were first restored to Yellowstone in 1995. Be on the lookout for bison, bears, elk, eagles, and elusive gray wolves in this sweeping glacial valley. After lunch, we meet with a renowned wildlife photographer in his home studio and learn about his experiences photographing for National Geographic. Enjoy hikes and wildlife sightings on the way back to Mammoth Hot Springs later this afternoon.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Best Western Gardiner
Day 4: Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone/Hayden Valley

This morning, head south to the dramatic Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, where two staggered falls spill water twice the height of Niagara. Walk along the rim to view the cascading waterfalls set against a dazzling red and gold palette. In Hayden Valley, look for bison, coyotes, elk, and perhaps even a grizzly. This afternoon, choose between a kayak outing on Yellowstone Lake, paddling among the fumaroles, geysers, and hot springs of the West Thumb geothermal area, or a local hike that leads to spectacular vistas. Continue up and over the Continental Divide to Upper Geyser Basin, home to Yellowstone’s most famous geyser, Old Faithful.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Old Faithful Snow Lodge or Old Faithful Inn

Day 5: Old Faithful/Upper Geyser Basin

Today we discover and learn about the otherworldly geothermal landscape of the Upper Geyser Basin. Numbering more than 300, Yellowstone’s geysers make up two-thirds of all those found in the world. Explore the area with our expert, and marvel at steaming fumaroles, belching mud pots, and gem-colored mineral pools. Tonight, listen to a fascinating presentation from our expert, who will introduce the next destination on the trip. Then enjoy a private dinner at the lodge.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Old Faithful Snow Lodge or Old Faithful Inn

Day 6: Yellowstone/Grand Teton National Park

Enjoy a final stroll in the Upper Geyser Basin before we continue south to Grand Teton National Park, where saw-toothed, snowy peaks rise from the valley floor. After enjoying the spectacular scenery and a picnic lunch, visit the Teton Science Schools' Kelly Campus. Here, kids explore the Murie Museum, home to the Murie Collection, which houses more than 600 bird study skins, more than 1,000 mammal study skins, skulls from almost every family of North American mammals, and hundreds of plant specimens. Our expedition leader will tie our scavenger hunt finds together with the items in the collection. Meanwhile, adults can enjoy one of the many hiking trails on the campus, which offer impressive views across the Teton valley. This afternoon, check in to Jackson Lake Lodge inside the park.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodations:

Jackson Lake Lodge

Day 7: Grand Teton National Park/Jackson, Wyoming

The day begins with a drive to Jackson, where we enjoy a fun morning of white-water rafting on the Snake River. Later, visit the National Museum of Wildlife Art, or explore downtown Jackson. Then gather for a farewell dinner this evening.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Jackson Lake Lodge

Day 8: Snake River/Jackson

This morning, ride a tram to the top of Rendezvous Peak before transferring to the airport for your return flight home.

Meals Included:Breakfast