Here is an early heads-up for the days in 2012 when entrance to Yellowstone and all other National Parks will be free. The usual $25.00 fee per carload good for one week will be waived on these dates:
- January 14 to 16 (Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend). A great time for seeing wildlife and the beautiful ice-crusted trees around the geyser basins.
- April 21-29 (National Park Week). Not everything is open yet, but bison are giving birth to their little orange calves and crowds are nonexistent.
- June 9 (Get Outdoors Day). The full Yellowstone season is gradually getting underway.
- September 29 (National Public Lands Day). A good time for avoiding crowds and hearing the bugling of elk.
- November 10 to 12 (Veterans Day Weekend). Most facilities are closed by now, but you can still travel the Gardiner to Cooke City northern road to visit Mammoth Hot Springs and the wildlife-rich Lamar Valley.