Especially because you'll need four places...

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Posted by Granite Head ( on 13:42:38 02/16/16

In Reply to: Chills posted by Erin K

The ranger-led talks and walks do not accept reservations, they're almost all outdoors, so there's plenty of room :-)

However, I would agree that it's a good idea to book organized programs well in advance; Xanterra usually requires a deposit (except I think for the Roosevelt Cookout, which you don't pay for until you get there, and it's not a tour, just a fun alternative to eating dinner in a restaurant), but check the rules as to the cancellation policies. I think within a certain time frame everything is refundable except perhaps for a small handling fee.

Dinner reservations are harder to contemplate in advance, especially if you're there early in June when some facilities may not be open yet. There are a couple of places that are fun to eat dinner that do require reservations, like Old Faithful Inn and Lake Hotel, both of which will be open by the time you're there, but also some fun ones that don't take reservations, including Roosevelt Lodge (my favorite) that opens June 10. So you just sit on the porch with your feet up and watch the scenery and the coming and going until your little beeper goes off when your table is ready. Not sure if that's practical with the kids, though if you eat early, your chances of being seated soon are better, and you can go back out to watch for wolves and bears for a couple more hours before the light is gone for the day.

Eating in any of the gateways - Gardiner, West Yellowstone, and Silver Gate-Cooke Cit - does not usually involve a long wait for table.

Photo is of grizzly bear mother known as "399" and one of her cubs in Grand Teton in June of 2014. Keep an eye out for her (usually between Oxbow Bend and north towards Colter Bay) and for her daughter "610" who may also be around Oxbow Bend or farther to the south with cubs that will be one year old this spring (if they survived the winter).

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