On my husband and I’s most recent trip to Yellowstone National Park we made our first stop at Mammoth Hot Springs.
These iconic hot springs are located about 20 minutes after entering the North entrance of Yellowstone National Park.
In this article, I am going to let you in on a little secret about how to enjoy Mammoth Hot Springs all to yourself.
But first, let’s talk a little bit about what the Mammoth Hot Springs are.
History of Mammoth Hot Springs
The area around Mammoth Hot Springs is actually called Mammoth District. Some of the oldest buildings in the park are located in this district.
The Mammoth Hot Springs are like no other place in the park. These hot springs are travertine formations. Hot water rises up through the limestone and the rock is dissolved by the hot water causing a white chalky mineral to be deposited on the surface.
The spectacular thing about these hot springs is that they are constantly changing. So, when you visit you may not see the same formations I saw.
How to get to Mammoth Hot Springs
By car: The closest and easiest way to access the hot springs is from the North side entrance coming from Bozeman, Montana.
By RV: Do it like us and rent an RV from Outdoorsy to drive all around Yellowstone. We parked the RV right outside of the National Park. We had planned to stay at Eagle’s Creek Campground but it was full. So, there is free land to camp on just past Eagle’s Creek.
Book through this link and you will get 25% on your Outdoorsy RV rental.
By plane: If you are wanting to visit Mammoth Hot Springs soon after landing then fly into Bozeman, Montana airport.
No trip is a trip without coffee as fuel right?
So, before entering Yellowstone grab some coffee from Wonderland Cafe and take a photo by the entrance sign. FYI cheapest coffee ever. We got 2 iced coffees and a banana for $6.
How to get Mammoth Hot Springs all to yourself
Ok ok I may be exaggerating a little bit here, but we were actually the second car to arrive in the parking lot. So, to say it felt like we had the place to ourselves is definitely true!
Even though we practically got this place to ourselves I still would plan on exploring the area for 1.5- 2 hours. As you can see in the map below, the hot springs are huge.
There are tons of terraces for you to walk around and see the different hot springs.
I wanted to give you guys some tips and tricks to avoid the crowds in the most popular areas.
WAKE UP BEFORE THE SUN
No seriously, this is how we get most places to ourselves. We woke up at 550am and left our camping area by 610am to arrive at the hot springs for sunrise at 0700am.
GO IN THE OFF SEASON
Visiting National Parks during the off-season will usually allow for less crowds. We visited in September and although there were definitely still people there, it was much less crowded than summertime.
If you do plan to go in off season, make sure to check whether or not the park is open.
WAIT YOUR TURN
Sometimes you will have to be patient. If you really want the place to yourself just wait it out. The crowds come and go and eventually, you will get the place to yourself, even if it is for a brief moment of time.
What to do around Mammoth Hot Springs
There is a parking lot with a restroom nearby the hot springs.
At the base of the hotsprings you will find the trailheads for:
-Beaver Creek Trail 8.3 miles
-Bunsen Peak Trail 4.4 miles
-Lava Creek Trail 8.7 miles
-Wraith Falls Trail 0.9 miles
-You can stop at the Visitor’s center in the little town right before the hot springs for a wealth of information.
***Plan to see a lot of Elk roaming around the city center if you are there early in the morning!
-If you have a car that is less than 25ft you can drive down the Upper Terrace Drive Road and see the overlooks of Mammoth Hot Springs.
Final thoughts from your outdoor-loving girl
Have you ever been to Mammoth Hot Springs or Yellowstone? This park is so unique and I would highly recommend making a stop here if you have time.
Let me know in the comments your favorite place in Yellowstone or your favorite National Park!
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