The Wolves of Yellowstone

Head to Yellowstone National Park for a very special seven-day wildlife expedition from January 21 - 28, 2018.

YSTONEThis winter, head to Yellowstone National Park for a very special seven-day wildlife expedition. Amidst crisp air, bare trees, frosted earth, and brilliant thermal features of Yellowstone National Park, the wildlife viewing in winter is better than any other time of year. Search for wolves, travel in safari vehicles and interpret tell-tale signs with the help of an Orbridge Expedition Leader. Don’t miss this extraordinary experience in the “Serengeti of North America.”

Shared with travelers from cosponsoring associations, space is limited, so please contact the Alumni Travel Study Program at (866) 325-8664 or email to travelstudy@columbia.edu for more information and to reserve your place today.

Dates & Prices

Trip Dates: January 21 - 28, 2018

Price: from $3,995 per person based upon double occupancy

Single space is  limited. If available, the single rate is $4,995. Please contact us to check single availability prior to sending your reservation, or to inquire about possible roommate options.

Itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive in Jackson, WY
Welcome to Jackson! This evening, during a welcome reception, get to know your traveling companions and Orbridge Expedition Leader as you discuss and anticipate your upcoming adventure.
Overnight: Rustic Inn at Jackson Hole Creekside Resort & Spa (R)

Day 2: Jackson / Old Faithful
Today, depart for Old Faithful, traveling through the Grand Teton National Park to Yellowstone's South Entrance where we change vehicles for a specially equipped snow coach. This afternoon, watch Old Faithful erupt, then enjoy a nature walk to the Castle Geyser and Upper Geyser Basin.
Overnight: Old Faithful Snow Lodge (B,L,D)

Day 3: Old Faithful / Mammoth Hot Springs / Gardiner, MT
Head to Mammoth Hot Springs, a unique area of the park where colorful travertine terraces create mesmerizing, intricate landscapes. During a stop at the Lower Geyser Basin, discover the four geothermal features of the park: hot springs, mud pots, geysers, and fumaroles. Next, visit Yellowstone's Grand Canyon and its incredible Upper and Lower Falls, both encased in ice and snow as if frozen in time. This afternoon, a walk through historic Fort Yellowstone or along the boardwalk of the nearby hot springs will introduce us to this section of the park.
Overnight: Yellowstone Gateway Inn (B,L,D)

Day 4: Lamar Valley / Gardiner
After breakfast, an early departure brings us to prime wolf habitat, Lamar Valley. Aboard a heated van, venture into a winter wonderland where wolves and other wildlife play, hunt, and survive. Dusted with snow, bison stand majestically within this protected area, and elk gather in the river valleys. Wolves stay in range of the movements of their prey, and with the season's bare trees and frosty backdrops, conditions are better than any other time of year to spot the elusive predators. During this full-day safari, our driver and guide will share a wealth of knowledge, stories, and a trained eye to spot wildlife.
Overnight: Yellowstone Gateway Inn (B,L,D)

Day 5: Lamar Valley / Gardiner
Another full-day safari in Lamar Valley gives us the opportunity to reach viewing points where wolf sightings have been reported. Learn about the wolves' evolving family tree, the packs currently roaming the park, and the dynamics between individuals and families. Dramatic stories and perspectives about the saga of the wolves' demise and comeback over the last several decades add to this second day of scouting.
Overnight: Yellowstone Gateway Inn (B,L,D)

Day 6: Gardiner / Bozeman
This morning we make our final excursion to Lamar Valley. After lunch we say our goodbyes to Yellowstone National Park, passing the iconic Roosevelt Arch at the North Entrance on our way to Bozeman for a special evening. At the Museum of the Rockies, we finish our adventure with a festive farewell dinner amidst one of the most important collections of dinosaur fossils in the world. Learn about the discoveries made in this area from a knowledgeable guide—an exclusive after-hours tour that will set the scene for a fond farewell to the wolves, the park, and your traveling companions.
Overnight: Homewood Suites by Hilton Bozeman (B,L,D)

Day 7: Depart Bozeman
After breakfast, depart for the airport. Complimentary transfers are available for flights departing during the suggested times. (B)

R = Reception, B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner
Due to the nature of winter explorations, itineraries are guidelines and may change in order to maximize wildlife and natural encounters and weather conditions.

*Itinerary subject to change


Activity Level: Moderate
The majority of the program’s activities will take place outdoors and a fair amount of walking on varying terrain is to be expected. Many of the dirt trails and boardwalks in Yellowstone are not routinely shoveled in the winter. It is our expectation that guests on this program can manage cold temperatures; walk on uneven, frozen, or snow-covered terrain; as well as have the ability to get in and out of all-terrain vehicles and manage stairs without assistance. There are opportunities for differing abilities to enjoy Yellowstone National Park. Also keep in mind that you will experience varying altitudes, from 5,282 to 8,391 feet.

Maximum elevation: 8,391 feet at the Continental Divide.



Program Highlights:

  • Immerse yourself in the unspoiled natural beauty, diverse wildlife, and dramatic tales of this unique ecosystem during this exclusive small group expedition to Yellowstone in winter.
    Scout for wolves from the warmth of a heated vehicle—Yellowstone is considered the best wolf-watching habitat in the country.
    Joined by an expert Expedition Leader and professional naturalist guides, learn informed perspectives and first-person accounts of the wolves’ setbacks, survival, and victories.
    Keep binoculars close at hand: this is the “Serengeti of North America,” ranged by resident bison, elk, pronghorn, bighorn sheep, moose, and other wildlife.
    Experience Yellowstone in its winter incarnation: a world with frozen “geyser rain,” ghost trees with a frosty glaze, surprising winter wildflowers, and dynamic geothermal features set in snow and ice.
    Enjoy a private, after-hours visit at the Museum of the Rockies, where the area’s natural history is highlighted by one of the most important collections of dinosaur fossils in the world.

What's included:

  • 1 night at Rustic Inn at Jackson Hole Creekside Resort & Spa in Jackson, WY; 1 night at Old Faithful Snow Lodge in West Thumb, WY; 3 nights at Yellowstone Gateway Inn in Gardiner, MT; and 1 night at the Homewood Suites by Hilton Bozeman, MT (subject to change)
  • A welcome reception in Jackson, 6 breakfasts, 5 deli, boxed or picnic-style lunches while outdoors on safari, and 5 dinners including a special farewell dinner in Bozeman
  • A fully-guided program with an Expedition Leader as well as expert local guides and naturalists
  • In-field lectures and presentations including an overview of the wolf packs and family trees led by a local researcher, a naturalist's summary of the science and research on the biological impact of the repopulation of the wolves in the Yellowstone ecosystem, and a discussion of the political history of the wolves' reintroduction
  • Admission to Yellowstone National Park and all activities as described in program itinerary
  • Airport transfers for guests arriving and departing during the suggested times
  • Luggage porterage upon arrival at airport, and in and out of hotels
  • Gratuities to  Expedition Leader, local guides, hotel housekeeping staff, drivers, porters, and wait staff for included meals

What’s not included:
Airfare; Taxes; passport, visas and associated fees if required; personal expenses such as laundry and telephone calls; accident/sickness, trip cancellation, and baggage insurance; excess baggage charges on aircraft; transfers and baggage handling to/from hotel on day of arrival and/or departure if you  if you are arriving earlier or later than and/or departing earlier or later than the scheduled group transfer(s); any overnight on land due to flight schedule(s); meals, alcoholic or other beverages and all other services not specifically mentioned in the “Included Features” section of the program brochure.

Please call us toll-free at (866) 325-8664 or email us at travelstudy@columbia.edu for more details.