What Gear Should I Pack for Yellowstone National Park?

What Gear Should I Pack for Yellowstone National Park?

Taking the family to Yellowstone is a right of passage. Visited by millions every year, it's most known for its unique geological wonders and stately wildlife species. Camping in the park is a real treat for all involved, let's be sure to pack the right gear for a memorable trip.


1. Snacks & Food

DinnerOutside of the obvious of breakfast, lunch, dinners and liquids. Make sure to pack an overwhelming amount of snacks for the whole family. After sightseeing natural attraction favorites like Old Faithful, The Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Mammoth Hot Springs, Grand Prasmatic Spring, and Yellowstone Lake you're bound to be wiped out. We know better than most that the power of snack can give a second wind to even the crankiest of kids.

2. First Aid Kit

With nearly 1,000 miles of hiking trails, there are no shortage of off the beaten path adventures. Longer day hikes within the park will require a more comprehensive pack of basic necessities (like the 'Extra Layers' stated below.) Don't forget to pack a First Aid Kit for the journey. From bug bites and minor scratches to sprains and fractures, make sure to pick up a kit that'll cover all the bases. Even moderate hikes like the one to Fairy Falls and less strenuous family-friendly walks around the more populated attractions can result in unplanned injury.

3. Extra Layers + Other Weather Add-Ons

Pack clothing for all weather conditions. Cold fronts and inclement weather can happen anytime of the year. Like most parts of the United States, the park may experience large temperature fluctuations between morning and night. Sunscreen, bug spray, sun hat, winter hat, raincoat, winter coat--the whole 9 yards. Keep an eye on the forecast of course, but be prepared for all situations.

4. Bear Spray

BearSprayjpgDon't skip on this one. Yellowstone is home to both Black Bears and Grizzly Bears. Even if you don't plan to venture into the thick of it, Bear Spray is a must year-round.

5. Big Gas Grill 3X

There are 12 campsites within Yellowstone National Park. Many in which can be booked out in advance. Both Grant Village and Canyon Campground offer family friendly amenities as well as reservations. Be sure to purchase a cooking system fit for feeding the entire family. The Big Gas Grill 3X is cook ready within minutes (yes, it even includes a 2-burner grill box!) It's the type of set-up that'll make your campsite neighbors jealous. Don't forget the propane tank!

6. 1-Burner Griddle

Since you're packing a Big Gas Grill 3X with an included 2-burner grill box, why not add a little versatility with that last burner? Bringing along a 1-burner griddle will make morning pancakes a breeze.

7. Collapsible Garbage Can

We think a little housekeeping is in order. Not only is it a basic requirement to clean up after yourself, it's also prudent considering the wildlife that call Yellowstone home.

8. All-Purpose Chef Set

You won't get very far behind the grill without a trusty 5-Piece All-Purpose Chef Set, built for outdoor cookery. You'll get a serving spoon, a knife, spatula, and a pair of tongs all wrapped up in a weather-proof pouch.

9. Portable Fire Pit

Many campsites come equipped with a fire pit ring. However, park-wide fire bans aren't unheard of, especially during the summer months as you move your way west.

10. Binoculars for Wildlife Viewing in Yellowstone

BushnellBinosYellowstone is filled with wildlife--bison, elk, grizzly bears, moose, birds and more all claim the park as their home. While there aren't specific locations dedicated to viewing the wildlife, there are a number of vehicle pull-offs while snaking through the park. Bank on early mornings and evenings being the best times for animal sightings due to their feeding schedules. It is important to note that different animals will inhabit different areas of the park during various times of the year. Viewing them is often chalked up to luck. Your best bet is to stop by the Visitor's Center and ask a Ranger if/where wildlife has been seen recently. A pair of Bushnell Prime, 8x42 Binoculars will assist you in viewing the wildlife from a safe distance (The National Park Service suggests that park goers remain at a minimum of 100 yards for bears and wolves and 25 yards from all other wildlife.) These viewers offer a superior blend of magnification and field of view, ideal for birds and other moving wildlife in any weather situation. Plus, the all-new Exclusive EXO Barrier Protection is rugged enough for any camping trip, protecting your binoculars against scratches while repelling water, oil, dust, and other debris.
Don't forget to brush up on How to Camp with Kids (Without Going Insane.)We've enjoyed packing with you for your trip to Yellowstone National Park. For more information on the park and current conditions please visit: https://www.nps.gov/yell/index.htm .