Why Yellowstone in September?
1. The elk start to bugle.
Hearing the challenge of one bull elk to a contender is one of the most thrilling and haunting strands of sound you can experience in the wild. Humans since the dawn of time have been obsessed with the call of wild animals and knowing which belongs to what, and elk are no different. September is the beginning of the Rocky Mountain elk rut. The “rut” is the elk’s mating season so that new calves can be born in the spring so that they have enough time to grow and survive their first winter. Bull elk (males) will “bugle” to one another as means to challenge the dominant male for breeding rights. Two bulls will fight by clashing and wrestling with their antlers. The bugle is loud and starts as a low guttural bellow which quickly climbs into a high-pitched squeal followed by a series of grunts. Words and letters cannot describe this heart racing sound. It looks like you’ll just have to go to Yellowstone and listen to it yourself!
2. It’s no longer hot!
With fall approaching the weather begins to drop off. Days are a little shorter, nights are little cooler. While even in the peak summer the park can reach the high 80s but we prefer a nice 70 through the day along with low 40s in the dark of night. So if it’s cooler summer temps that you seek then Yellowstone is perfect. Make sure to pack a good coat though because mountain weather can change rapidly.
3. The colors of Autumn.
Yellowstone may not be the first place you think of when it comes to fall foliage but we have some impressive colors of our own. The end of September offers some of the most impressive alterations. The Aspens transition to miner’s gold, grass fields are now a sunny yellow, all while red leaf shrubs speckle the landscape. One might think, “Where does the land end and the sunset begin?”
4. Shops in the local communities have sales.
While Yellowstone offers the creation of mother nature, the surrounding communities offer sales. Towns like Jackson Hole, West Yellowstone, Cody, and Cooke City have plenty of local shops looking to move merchandise. Peak summer visitation is in July and August so many local shops are looking to sell their goods and services before the parks official closure. These sales continually enrich their communities and way of life and provide more experiences for travelers.
5. There are fewer people!
Like we mentioned before, peak summer visitation is in July and August so there are literally fewer people! Most children have returned to school and many folks are getting ready for fall. Smaller crowds mean that you have more time to enjoy the sites and sounds of Yellowstone all to yourself! It also means less traffic through the park so you can truly go at your own pace. So what are you waiting for?! September is the best month to visit!