Cross-Country Skiing in Yellowstone National Park with VBT

Cross-country skier on Old Faithful Trail.
With four departures throughout January and February of 2014, there are plenty of chances to take this one- of-a-kind winter vacation—Yellowstone in the Winter: Skiing America’s First National Park—to one of the most spectacular geological regions on earth.

 Image Courtesy of the US Forest Service

Image Courtesy of the US Forest Service

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.

Picture10If 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 Buffalo wintering in the Upper Geyser Basin.  Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.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.

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.

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Meet Barbara B: VBT’s Traveler of the Month for September 2013

Iconic Rome
One of our favorite things about providing excellent active vacations all over the world is hearing about all the different places our guests have traveled with us. We’d like to introduce you to September’s VBT Traveler of the Month, Barbara from Kansas City, who recently returned from her 6th VBT vacation! Barbara and her husband Ken traveled on our Amalfi Coast & Capri Walking Vacation where they  had another fabulous vacation. We had a chance to talk with Barbara about her VBT experiences over the years.

You recently returned from the Amalfi Coast, have you been anywhere else in Italy with VBT?
This was our first VBT trip to Italy. We chose the Amalfi Coast because we knew it would be beautiful and we chose VBTBeautiful vista crop because of our past experiences with the company. VBT trips always featured great rides and walks, spectacular scenery, fabulous hotels and inns, delicious meals, interesting and fun fellow travelers AND knowledgeable, attentive, caring, competent leaders. We needed these leadership qualities this trip because I stepped in a hole on Capri and broke my ankle! I’m grateful that I was in good hands with our Trip Leader Marcello, who guided my husband to a pharmacy where they were able to get crutches and medicine. Marcello helped Ken talk with the trip insurance company and also made intricate arrangements to get me to the next hotel.

Oh no! What about the vacation was so special for you considering your unfortunate immobility?
Touring the pasta factory
Our Trip Leaders Vincenzo and Marcello were amazing. They arranged hotel rooms with magnificent views.   Marcello always made sure I had an office chair with wheels so that I could easily get around the hotel. My husband was so sure that I was well taken care of that he was able to continue on the walks. He brought back lots of photos. So I had a vicarious experience!!  Our leaders made sure I had the opportunity to participate in activities. They even arranged a chair with wheels and the use of a tiny elevator so I could tour the pasta factory and have lunch there.

You’ve been on six vacations with VBT, where else did you go? What was your favorite place to travel?
We started going on trips long before cell phones were in everyone’s hands!!  Our first trip Ken and I ready for a wonderful hikeeditwas in Vermont where we were going to a wedding and wanted to do a bicycle trip. Our next and so far, our favorite was in Provence, we did a Bordeaux trip and the Cape Cod trip. The most exotic was the Vietnam trip. All trips were exceptional. 

So you’ve been on both bicycling and walking vacations. Was there anything different about the two?
All of our previous trips have been on a bicycle and this was our first walking trip. I don’t think there is much difference between a bicycling or walking trip.  To me, the difference is feet on the ground versus feet on the pedals. Same great leaders. Same exciting tours, lodging, food and fellow travelers.

That’s good to hear. So, where are you off to next?
 Ummm.  Where shall we go next??  Bike and Barge sounds like our next VBT adventure.