West Yellowstone - "Snowmobile
Capital of the World":
For Reservations, Call Toll-Free 1-866-646-0388
Our Reservation Service Works
soon as the first snowflakes begin to fall, residents of West Yellowstone can
hear the rumble of snowmobile engines echoing through the woods. Store owners
and hotel managers hurriedly prepare themselves for the arrival of snowmobiling
enthusiasts that rush to the area each winter. Tucked away in the southwest
corner of Montana, West Yellowstone has rightfully earned its reputation as the
"Snowmobiling Capital of the World." West averages over 150 inches of
powder snow each year that blankets 400-plus miles of groomed trails in the
national forests surrounding West and another 200 miles of trials within
Yellowstone National Park. From its groomed trails to its backcountry riding,
from its wildlife viewing opportunities to its majestic scenery, West
Yellowstone certainly entertains all of its winter visitors.
For the first time rider, many of the trails in and around West are ideal. The
twenty-mile Madison Arm Loop trail is a recommended starting point since it has
little elevation change. After practicing turning and steering techniques for a
few hours, you may feel comfortable to ride to the top of the world.
The famous Two Top Trail takes snowmobilers to 8,666 feet, a 2,000 foot gain
from town. Although the trail is groomed, there are many opportunities to glide
through powder fields, as well as spectacular scenery. On clear days, you can
see the Teton Mountains in Wyoming, Sawtelle Peak and the Centennial Mountains
in Idaho, Lionshead in Montana and Yellowstone National Park. Another moderate,
scenic climb starts from Horse Butte, just north of Hebgen Lake. This loop takes
riders through thick pine trees, vast meadows and along the shores of Hebgen
addition to its intermediate terrain, West has trails to challenge even the most
hardcore of riders! Rising over 10,000 feet, the Lionshead Trail follows the
east side of the Continental Divide. Although the trail is only ten miles long,
it has some of the steepest terrain, deepest snow and greatest photographic
opportunities of any of the trails, so bring a camera! To escape from the
crowds, take a ride on the South Plateau Trail. Travelling south for thirteen
miles, the trail provides spectacular views of the mountain ranges, creeks and
rivers that the trail follows.
The most reknowned of all the trails is the challanging 110-mile Big Sky Trail.
Beginning just north of West, this trail travels to Taylor Creek and provides
some of the best backcountry riding in southwest Montana. Although the first
portion of the trail is groomed, it soon turns into an ungroomed, powder-filled
winter wonderland. Fields of snow, up 28 feet deep in places, and hill climbing
opportunities abound off of this trail.
Just a few miles to the south, snowmobile enthusiasts will find Island Park’s
incredible system of trails adding another 500 miles of groomed trails, dozens
of meadows, rolling hills and some of the best hill climbing in the area to a
system of winter trails unrivaled in the world. Regarded not only for its light,
dry snow, but also for its enourmous quantity, Island Park tips the scales with
over 250 inches a year! With easy access to West Yellowstone’s system of
trails, Two Top being the most popular common destination, Island Park is the
snowmobiler’s answer to less crowds and fabulous riding.
West Yellowstone and Island Park also connect to the Continental Divide Trail, a
unique trail that travels from central Wyoming and connects to both communities
via Yellowstone National Park. The trail itself begins in Sinks Canyon near
Lander, Wyoming, moves through the Wind River system near Pinedale and Dubois,
passes through Togwotee and Moran, through Grand Teton National Park in Jackson
Hole, Wyoming, passing through the Rockefeller Parkway, and finishing at
Yellowstone’s southern entrance.
While the forests surrounding West abound with a variety of trails, it would be
nearly impossible to pass up a chance to travel through Yellowstone National
Park during your visit. The most popular destinations within the park include
Old Faithful, the Lower and Upper Falls of the Yellowstone, Yellowstone Lake,
and Mammoth Hot Springs. Elk, bison, coyotes, moose and even wolves are
frequently spotted on trips through the Park.
As you can see, no other place in the nation offers such extensive winter time
options for over snow exploring and adventuring. It’s no wonder that, with
such incredible sights, endless tracks, and bottomless snow, the readers of
"Snow Rider" have again named West Yellowstone and Island Park the
first and third best wintertime destinations in North America.
For Reservations, Call Toll-Free 1-866-646-0388