March 1, 1872
$25 per vehicle per week
5,282 feet at Gardner River
11,358 feet on Eagle Peak
Lowest Average Temp
1°F in January
Record Low Temp
-66°F in 1933
Highest Average Temp
78°F in July
Record High Temp
97°F in 1936
Park Creation Timeline
On March 1, 1872, Congress and President Lincoln pass and sign the legislation making Yellowstone the world's first national park.
International Biosphere Reserve status is given to the park by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization).
The park is named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization).
Animals and Plants
Yellowstone is frequently referred to as the "American Serengetti" for good reason. Every native large mammal survives here today. This includes bison, elk, mule deer, wolves, coyotes, pronghorn, black bears, grizzly bears, moose, mountain lions, bighorn sheep, and mountain goats. Many of these are frequently seen from park roads.
The park has a much smaller variety of reptiles and amphibians. Reptiles include the western rattlesnake and the painted turtle. There are four species of amphibians including the Boreal Chorus Frog.
Over 300 species of birds have been sighted in the park. These include bald eagles and the extremely rare whooping crane. Other species include the common loon, harlequin duck, osprey, and peregrine falcon.
Over 1,700 species of plants are within the park. Lodgepole Pine covers over 80% of the forested area. Douglas Fir and Whitebark Pine are also present in smaller groves. Aspen and Willow are the most common non-conifers. There are a large variety of wildflowers, which typically bloom between May and September. One of the more unique forms of plant life common in Yellowstone are its many forms of bacteria and algae in the thermal areas. These variants, called thermophiles, thrive in warm to hot water, and are responsible for many of the colors seen in the thermal areas.