Welcome to week three in our five-part series about the great cross-country skiing vacations that VBT is offering this winter. Two weeks ago we told you about the epic 3km sled ride in San Candido, strudel cooking class and the world-renowned Passo Lavaze ski center that are part of our Italy: Cross-Country Skiing the Dolomites vacation. If you tuned in last time, be sure to check out the answer to the trivia question at the end of this blog. But first let’s discuss our new Yellowstone in the Winter: Skiing America’s First National Park vacation. With five departures throughout January and February of 2014, there are plenty of chances to take this one- of-a-kind winter vacation to one of the most spectacular geological regions on earth.
On this vacation, recently featured in the Travel section of the LA Times, travelers can experience Yellowstone’s snow-covered splendor in the hush of winter. Few wilderness experiences match it and this winter wonderland is perfect for exploration by cross-country ski. Although a few brave souls began visiting the park in the winter in the late 1800’s, it wasn’t until 1948 that and wingless “snow planes” on skis—think winter versions of air boats found in the Everglades—first brought groups of travelers into the park. Eventually the snow planes gave way to the snow coaches of today and by 1971 the Park Service began packing down and smoothing the winter routes to Old Faithful and Mammoth Hot Springs.
If you’ve never been to Yellowstone—or even if you just visited in the summer—you’ll love the solitude a winter trip to the park offers in stark contrast to the busier summer season. With VBT you’ll spend your days skiing along the spectacular Yellowstone River to Tower Falls and take in enthralling winter viewings of some of the park’s different geothermal features with visits to the Geyser Basin and the Paint Pots. Geysers such as Old Faithful and Lone Star shine even more so in the winter, as the combination of colder temperatures, ice and snow, coupled with hot water and steam, offer the very best viewing. At night you can relax by the fire or take a rejuvenating soak in the hot tub after a hearty meal of Bison short ribs or wild Alaskan salmon at comfortable, amenity-filled Park lodges.
You’re also in for a special treat on the final full day of the 6-day vacation as you’ll go on a sunrise visit to the Lamar Valley, known locally as the “American Serengeti”, which hosts a vast range of wildlife including wolves, elk, bison, antelope and bighorn sheep—fortunately, there won’t be any worrisome bear encounters thanks to hibernation! And the snow-covered winter landscape makes spotting wildlife much easier.
Thanks for checking in again this week and we hope to see you out on the trails with us in some of the world’s most fascinating winter destinations. Remember, on a VBT vacation you’ll enjoy world-class cross-country skiing combined with local Trip Leaders, comfortable accommodations and plenty of wonderful interactions with the locals. For more information on the Yellowstone in the Winter: Skiing America’s First National Park vacation you can visit us online at www.vbt.com or request a catalog here. See you next week as the series continues with a blog about our A New England Winter: Cross-Country Skiing in Vermont vacation!
TRIVIA: The first person to answer the following question correctly in a reply will win a “VBT Ski Pack” complete with a VBT winter hat, ski ties & poster – Good luck!
From the fire and ice of Yellowstone, next week we’ll take you to Vermont, home to poet Robert Frost who wrote the poem, ‘Fire & Ice.’ What cross-country ski center is home to Frost’s writing cabin?
PS: The answer to last week’s trivia question— How often, on average, does Old Faithful erupt?— is 90 minutes. Congrats to Gary from Colorado for winning the VBT Ski Prize pack!