Even though Yellowstone National Park’s West entrance is closed to vehicle traffic until April 15, 2011 national park enthusiasts can still sign up for tours to some of its unique attractions. Yellowstone Tour Guides features early spring tours that depart from Bozeman and use the North entrance, near Red Lodge.
Those who want to go it alone by car can also use the park’s historic North Entrance. The Beartooth Highway, which links Red Lodge (near Red Lodge Ski Area) with Yellowstone and Cooke City, affords some of Montana’s most spectacular views.
While you are in Red Lodge, we suggest you take time to visit the Beartooth Wildlife Center, which is open from 10 to 2 during the winters and spring.
Red Lodge is also the place to be if you enjoy triathlons. The Grizzly Peak Adventure Race (April 16) starts at the top of Red Mountain Peak and leads a grueling ski/board-mountain bike-run competition to the Red Lodge Ales Brewing Company (which some would say might be a fitting stop after a race like this). For those competitors who either missed the race or are still pumped, the following day (April 17), there is the 8.8-mile Peaks to Prairie Adventure Race.
And for those who aren’t into races, Red Lodge still has lots to offer, from galleries to brewpubs, and is an ideal stop on the way to taking in Yellowstone’s springtime beauty