Footwear

I'm going on this trip in February 2018. I plan to bring shearling-lined boots for snow. I noted the Tauck recommendation for walking shoes with ankle protection, which essentially means bringing my hiking boots. As both pairs of boots are very bulky and I don't like wearing them on planes, I would like to do without the hiking boots in favor of a comfortable pair of hiking/walking shoes (which I will wear on the plane). Is there any reason that this trip will be especially hard on ankles thus requiring that I ditch the shoes and bring hiking boots? Also, can I assume Tauck's recommendation for "casual elegant" clothing for dinners does not apply on this trip?

Comments

  • You want winter boots that are warm and suitable for walking on uneven snowy or icy surfaces. Traction devices that strap on to your boots such as Yaktrax are a big help. You'll want chemical foot warmers too. Standard hiking boots would not be warm enough. There is not a lot of walking on this trip but when you are outside it is cold. Indoor dress is definitely casual; think sweaters instead of sport jackets.

    Yellowstone in winter is a fantastic place, very different from being there in the summer. Have a great time and keep warm.
  • Thank you. I do plan to bring my shearling-lined boots and Yaktrax. I take it from your response that there isn't reason to also bring "walking shoes with ankle protection" as suggested in Tauck's "what to bring" list. I'd wear my warm boots whenever outside in the snow and cold.
  • I took this trip in February 2016 and it was wonderful. I live in Hawaii so didn't have anything for cold weather. I got a good deal on Sorel SnowLion boots on Amazon.com and packed them in the suitcase. For the plane and wearing when we wouldn't be doing the daily tour walking I had a Macy's Style & Company UGG knock off. I also had the Yaktrax and used them once or twice. They were very handy at the Old Faithful lookout as the walkways can be very icy. I took foot warmers and hand warmers, but never used them. I had really warm socks and warm gloves, but my friend did make use of the hand warmers. To make use of all the cold weather gear, I am taking the Polar Bear Adventure in November 2018.

    As for dinner wear, I only had jeans and twill pants, long sleeve t-shirts and sweaters with me, nothing dressy. Even when we went out on our own in Jackson Hole, it was casual.

    Enjoy the trip. It is one I would like to do again if I get the chance.

    Linda
  • edited November 2017
    This will be my second time on this trip. I have a friend who has never been to Yellowstone in winter or summer and I have been there in the summer over a dozen times and once on this tour in Winter. If you've never been to Yellowstone in winter, you've not been there. It is a great trip...you'll love it.

    Weather: Unpredictable, at best. Late in February it might be starting the spring thaw, or still hanging on to winter. When I was there in 2015, the temps were from the teens to almost 40. A week afterwards it was -15. Go figure.

    Clothing: Layers, layers, layers. The vehicles can be warm or cold. It is nice to be ready for either. A nice pair of ski gloves worked well. I took thin layer gloves to use under the ski gloves and they worked well. If you are taking pictures you can find gloves where the index finger can be taken out of the glove to make handling the camera easier.

    Footwear: It sounds like you have already made up your mind about what you want to wear. I'm wondering why you are even asking. However, since you did, here goes: I wore hiking boots and found them comfortable on the uneven, icy, snowing, wet, indoor, in vehicles, etc. On the plane, I just wore tennis shoes. I could also wear them to dinner. More important than the shoes was the socks. I used Possum Socks (Google) with a thin layer sock under them and they handled every condition well. I did not use Yaktax, and probably won't again. The traction from my hiking boots was fine. It is your choice, so pick your poison.

    Vehicles: In the beginning they are comfortable and roomy. Later you switch to small, loud, hot vehicles. You are provided with ear plugs...take extras. There isn't a lot of walking on the tour, unless you want to. There are a couple of extra hikes that are worthwhile.

    Enjoy the trip.
  • edited November 2017
    I agree with ndvb, i.e. I have been to Yellowstone many times but only once in the winter with Tauck on this trip in February 2012. The weather can be unpredictable but gorgeous! I skipped the last day of the Tauck tour to join with 7 other folks and snowmobile 100 miles throughout Yellowstone all day long part of the time in a blizzard (we each had our own snowmobiles and this was the first time I had been on a snowmobile. A terrific lifetime experience for me!). One just has to dress in layers and it is fine. :-). Yellowstone is unique and wonderful all of the time, but quiet crowded with fewer animals being seen (except the bison, of course). However, in the wintertime, fewer people, more quiet, more animals to be seen, and almost a mystical experience. :-)

  • I just returned from this trip. Temperature ranged from teens to twenties. Snowed most days with some beautiful sun breaks. Sorrels are a great boot for nearly all activities, including snow shoeing. The snow coach vehicles were very comfortable and not at all noisy. One recommendation: the 'extra' activities (e.g. evening outings in Yellowstone or dog-sledding in Jackson Hole) were all sold out in advance of arriving. If you are interested, make your reservations asap.
  • edited January 2018
    I totally agree with Margaret P. If one really wants to go snowmobiling in Yellowstone or Jackson Hole, Wyoming one needs to make reservations a few months in advance of going on the Tauck tour. There was one couple who waited until the day the Tauck tour began and asked our TD to make a reservation for them. However, most of those snowmobile companies require at least 4 people before they will set up a snowmobile tour and that couple could not find any other folks on our Tauck tour who wanted to do so (I had already made my reservations several months in advance with the concierge at the Wort hotel in Jackson Hole who luckily found several other folks in a group that I could join and snowmobile throughout Yellowstone on the last day of the Tauck tour). Snowmobiling, especially in January and February , is extremely popular there.
  • We are going in 2020. What is the best footwear (boots)? My husband is excited about the snowmobiling but doesn't think it would be comfortable for me since my knees are not the greatest. (Had a replacement 2 yrs ago) Are the snowmobiles for individuals or can 2 go on one?
    What was the dogsledding like?

  • Lindsey, 12:12PM. We are going in 2020. What is the best footwear (boots)? My husband is excited about the snowmobiling but doesn't think it would be comfortable for me since my knees are not the greatest. (Had a replacement 2 yrs ago) Are the snowmobiles for individuals or can 2 go on one? What was the dogsledding like?

    This thread is an old one and some folks no longer stop by (ndvb doesn't). Have you read all posts in the archives for this trip? I think there may have been a discussion or two about boots other recommended clothing. I'm sure you realize that neither dogsledding nor snowmobiling are provide as part of the itinerary- you must book these on your own with a commercial provider in your free time. You get a demonstration and briefing about dog sled racing only at the Chico Hot Springs on Day 2.

    Something, else you may or may not know- the provider of dogsledding at the Chico, is "no longer recommended to our guest" by the hotel management. I'm not sure what is going on, but the hotel recommended I check with the providers in Yellowstone or Jackson Hole. I sure would have liked to do it at the Chico Hot Springs on Day 1 before the Welcome Dinner. Tauck operations does not know who the hotel will schedule for the demo and lecture.

    Snowmobiling can be tough on your knees, depending on trail and snow conditions. Most providers will let you select driver or passenger. The cost is slightly less for a passenger with some providers.

    FYI, four of us are going in Feb 2020. Make sure you read the reviews (TripAdvisor, etc. for any activities you book) and also make sure there is enough time in your schedule.

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