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The Old Faithful visitor complex is a melding of natural and man-made history. More than 100 of the geysers that populate Yellowstone can be found in Old Faithful's back yard in what is called the Upper Geyser Basin. A small number of these which includes the famous Old Faithful geyser, maintain fairly predictable activity. The rest of the Upper Basin's geological features offer a random, if not equally spectacular demonstration of Mother Nature's force in action.
The Lower Geyser Basin is well known for the Fountain Paint Pots, a multi-faceted spectacle that includes geysers, mud-pots and fumaroles. The attraction can be reached along a boardwalk, or a three-mile drive along Firehole River that includes other similar features.
The Old Faithful complex is also known for the inn of the same name, an historic landmark built in 1904. Both the inn and the nearby Old Faithful lodge date back to the early 20th century, although the lodge is now privately operated and consists mainly of guest cabins. A more modern lodge, built in 1999, provides accommodations in a contemporary hotel setting.
Old Faithful's sprawling complex is ringed by trails of varying lengths and levels of complexity. Some meander past geysers and fumaroles, others show the impact of Yellowstone's 1988 fire, which came close to engulfing many of the park's historic structures.
The Old Faithful complex is located on the park's scenic Grand Loop Road, 16 miles south of Madison Junction and 30 miles southeast of the town of West Yellowstone. It is also an easy drive to Yellowstone Lake and the popular recreational areas of West Thumb and Grant Village, known for their dining and freshwater attractions.
Visitor Center facilities
Location: Half way between Madison and West Thumb visitor centers on the southwest side of park.
Seasonal hours: late April - late October, 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. daily
Accommodations available: Inn and lodge accommodations. There are also camping and lodge facilities in Grant Village, approximately 18 miles east of Old Faithful.
Best selection of books on the Northwest.
The Concise Visitor's Guide to Yellowstone by Matt Bolton. Sized perfectly for backpacks this guide offers specifics on food, what to see, children's activities, weather, wildlife, seasonal road closures, ranger programs, visitor centers, what differentiates each section of the park and more. Filled with information, phone numbers, web sites, and detailed maps this is the tool to use when planning a trip to Yellowstone. Order now...
Yellowstone National Park Pocket Guide (Falcon Pocket Guides Series) by Ann Simpson and Rob Simpson. Yellowstone National Park Pocket Guide is an information-packed, pocket-size guide that helps visitors get the most out of their park visit in a unique, convenient, and portable package. Order now...
National Geographic Park Profiles: Yellowstone Country by Seymour L. Fishbein. Yellowstone Country tours the stunning region that includes Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, a mosaic of national forests, wilderness areas, wildlife refuges, countless waterfalls, hot springs and two-thirds of the world's active geysers. Order now...
Yellowstone Treasures by Janet Chapple. Easy-to-understand scientific explanations and diagrams complement detailed travel tips. This revised edition includes 270 pages of road logs and enhanced information for senior and disabled visitors and tips for visiting the park with children. Fully revised geological, historical, and practical information. Order now...
Insiders' Guide to Yellowstone and Grand Teton, 7th Edition by Brian Hurlbut and Seabring Davis. With this guide discover the best outdoor activities, lodging, dining, and entertainment offerings in the Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks areas. Order now...
The Rough Guide to Yellowstone & Grand Teton by Stephen Timblin. This guide is packed with full-colour photos, detailed maps, reviews on every single restaurant and lodge within Yellowstone and Grand Teton, and comprehensive looks at the Parks' various gateway towns. The guide also takes a detailed look at hiking, with two full chapters dedicated to the best hikes found in each park. Order now...
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