Where to Snowmobile in West Yellowstone
One of the main attractions in the West Yellowstone area is the snowmobile trails in the Custer-Gallatin National Forest, which offers a variety of terrain, including groomed trails, backcountry trails, and tree-lined trails. The trails are well-marked, well-maintained, and groomed almost nightly from mid-December through March, and there are several rental companies in the area that offer guided tours and rental snowmobiles.
One of the most famous is the Two Top trail, known for its “ghost trees,” which are so covered in crystalized snow that they look like white ghosts to passing snowmobilers. When on the Two Top Mountain Trail, you literally straddle the Continental Divide, which is also the border between Montana and Idaho.
This trail provides great access for those looking to “off trail,” or head down the mountain for one of Idaho’s lunch stops accessible only by snowmobile. Be sure if you ride the Top Top Trail that you have a Montana and Idaho snowmobile permit on your sled. If you are riding a rental sled, these are already taken care of for you.
For a more complete description of popular snowmobiling locations, visit our page dedicated to the Best Snowmobile Trails in West Yellowstone.
4 Tips for Snowmobiling in West Yellowstone
Here are some tips to help you plan your trip:
- Choose the right time to go: The best time for snowmobiling in West Yellowstone depends on the amount of snowfall the area has received. Late December through early March is generally the prime time for snowmobiling, as the snowpack is typically at its deepest and most stable. Officially, winter snowmobile season tours in Yellowstone National Park runs from December 15 through March 15.
- Rent or bring your own gear: If you don’t own a snowmobile, you can rent one from a local outfitter. Make sure to book in advance, as rental equipment can be in high demand. If you do bring your own snowmobile, make sure it is in good working order and that you have all the necessary gear, such as helmets, goggles, gloves, and warm clothing.
- Plan your route: There are many trails and backcountry areas to explore in West Yellowstone, ranging from easy to challenging. Consult with a local outfitter or the Forest Service office to get an idea of the best routes for your skill level and the current snow conditions.
- Stay safe: Snowmobiling can be a fun and exciting activity, but it is also important to be aware of the risks. Make sure to follow all safety guidelines, such as staying on marked trails and not going out alone. It is also a good idea to bring a first-aid kit, a satellite phone or other communication device, a map of the area, and avalanche beacon. Also, don’t forget to check the weather and avalanche warnings.
West Yellowstone Snowmobiling – FAQs
Yes, by booking a snowmobile tour with a local outfitter.
You can expect to pay around $100-200 per person, depending on the type of snowmobile that you rent.
Snowmobile season in Yellowstone National Park is from December 15 to March 15.