Visiting Yellowstone in November: Things to Do

Yellowstone in November is a great time to visit.

The summer and fall crowds have all but disappeared, so you can enjoy the park’s scenery in solitude.

There are many benefits to visiting Yellowstone in November, but there are also some drawbacks as well.

Use this guide to determine if November is the best time for you to visit Yellowstone in the fall.

Be sure to check out all our Yellowstone vacation ideas for visiting the park any time of the year!

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What to Pack for Yellowstone in the Fall

DOWNLOAD: Yellowstone Packing List

Cold Weather Clothing & Gear List


The top reason we enjoy visiting in November is the lack of crowds.

The solitude you experience at Yellowstone in November is so rewarding.

Enjoy the trails in the north to explore Yellowstone by foot. And you’ll probably have the trail all to yourself!


The biggest drawback to visiting Yellowstone in November is that most of the roads close the first of the month. Be sure to read the fall and winter road closure dates for the most updated year-to-year information.

From the beginning of November to mid-April, all roads except from the north entrance in Gardiner to the northeast entrance in Cooke City are closed.

Snow coach transportation is usually only available when visiting Yellowstone in the winter around mid-December when there’s enough snow.

For the entire month of November, you are limited to the one single road.

This is why we LOVE to visit Yellowstone in October!


The weather in November in Yellowstone is typically chilly, with the possibility of light snow.

Average temperatures for Mammoth Hot Springs are a high of 39, and a low of 20 degrees Fahrenheit (4/ -6 degrees Celsius). On average, it snows or rains 8 days in November.

Layers are key when exploring Yellowstone in November. Reference our winter clothing guide so you can enjoy the outdoors, even when it’s cold!


Although most of the roads are closed in November, the road from Gardiner to Cooke City is arguably the most scenic road in the park, so there is still plenty to see.

Driving and hiking through Lamar Valley is an awesome place to see herds of bison, and if you’re lucky, you’ll see wolves and bears. Check out the fun wildlife tours available this time of year!

The Albright Visitor Center in Mammoth remains open year-round and is a great resource for information about the park. There is a great museum in the lower level of the Visitor Center, and rangers are available to answer any questions about closures that you may have.


There are fun day hiking trails in the Mammoth area, as well as Lamar Valley.

You can check the Backcountry Situation Report for all pertinent information about the backcountry.

Hiking is fantastic in November because the crowds have thinned and you may have the trail entirely to yourself.

Be sure to carry bear spray – bears are still active in November!!


Experiencing and photographing the various Yellowstone waterfalls is always at the top of our must-do list.

There are 3 waterfalls in the park you’ll find on the northern road:

  • Undine Falls
  • Wraith Falls
  • Lost Falls

The waterfalls in Yellowstone in November aren’t as full as they are in the spring, but they are still amazing nonetheless.

Yellowstone Waterfalls You MUST See


The wildlife possibilities are always present along the northern road from Gardiner to Cooke City. It’s important to know the parameters to keep you and the animals safe!

  • Never approach animals. The animals in Yellowstone are wild and unpredictable, no matter how calm they appear to be.

  • The safest (and often best) view of wildlife is from inside a car. Always stay at least 100 yards (91 m) away from bears and wolves, and at least 25 yards (23 m) away from all other animals, including bison and elk.

  • Never feed wildlife. Animals that become dependent on human food may become aggressive toward people and have to be killed. Keep all food, garbage, or other smelly items packed away when not in use.

  • Never park in the road or block traffic. Use pullouts to watch wildlife and let other cars pass. Stay with your vehicle if you encounter a wildlife jam.


Our number one photo tip is: be prepared for anything so you can capture the moment when it happens.

In November the weather can change from day to day. The rain, clouds, fog, and frost are fun elements when taking pictures of Yellowstone.

And we always have our camera ready to go because the wildlife you may see won’t wait for you to find the camera in your car.

Places to Stay at Yellowstone

Places to Stay at Yellowstone National Park

Hotels and Vacation Rentals in West Yellowstone that we recommend:

Holiday Inn, West Yellowstone

ClubHouse Inn, West Yellowstone

Kelly Inn, West Yellowstone

→ CHECK OUT more West Yellowstone hotels!

Hotels and Vacation Rentals in Gardiner that we recommend:

Yellowstone Gateway Inn, Gardiner – full kitchen and comfy bed, one of our favorite places to stay!

Park Hotel Yellowstone, Gardiner – charming place to stay and loved by guests!

Absaroka Lodge, Gardiner – beautiful location with river views!

→ CHECK OUT more Gardiner hotels!

Hotels and Vacation Rentals in Cooke City or Silver Gate that we recommend:

Sunny Log Home on the Creek, Silver Gate (VRBO) – the most AMAZING location with an awesome fireplace and comfy bed!

Mountain View Cabin, Cooke City – great views and we enjoyed having a washer and dryer!

High Country Motel and Cabins – local owners who love what they do, and make you feel so welcome!


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One Comment

  1. I visited Yellowstone as a teenager, many years ago. I look forward to going back some day and sharing how amazing that park is with my children. Truly a place worth visiting!

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