The town of West Yellowstone (a.k.a. "West") is located in the southern tip of Southwest Montana.
It has a population of 1,177 year-round residents, but hosts millions of visitors every year.
It’s no wonder so many people visit every year. Sitting at an elevation of 6,666 feet, the town is surrounded by beauty. On the north, west and south,
the Gallatin and Targhee National Forests surrounds West Yellowstone. On the east is Yellowstone National Park, America’s first and oldest national park.
The Town of West Yellowstone is by far the “busiest” gate into Yellowstone National Park in both summer and winter. In 2009, a record 3.3 million visitors
toured through the park including a visit by the First Family. President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, and their two children, Sasha and Melia,
visited the Park in August 2009. Air Force One landed at the West Yellowstone airport. The First Family, along with about 1.65 million other visitors in
2009 (half of the total visitors), entered Yellowstone National Park via the West Yellowstone gate.
The West gate’s popularity as an entry point to the Park has deep roots. Starting in 1898, stagecoaches from Monida, Montana, 100 miles to the west,
brought visitors to the area as they entered Yellowstone through the West gate. In June of 1908, the first Union Pacific passenger train arrived in town as an
improved means of travel to the world’s first national park. As the number of visitors increased, the community of West started to grow as it provided
services to these visitors. In November 1966, the town of West Yellowstone became formally incorporated. Today, West Yellowstone’s economy remains strongly
centered on tourism as nearly two million visitors travel to our town each year.
West Yellowstone is the most convenient hub to see Yellowstone
National Park and the surrounding areas. For example, the town is just 30 miles from Old Faithful, by far the most popular destination within the Park. It is also a
bedroom community for many of the people who work in the Park. The town has sufficient hotel rooms and restaurants to cater to the millions of Park visitors and the
hundreds of employees that serve these visitors. West Yellowstone also has movie theaters, live theater, outdoor concerts in the summer, ice skating rinks in the winter,
and a variety of options for conventions, conferences, trainings, and family reunions. West is not just the busiest gate into the Park. It is also open for business for other clients.
Visitors and locals continue to enjoy incomparable summer and winter outdoor recreational activities based in West. Summer activities include hiking and camping, wildlife viewing,
fishing, hunting, boating, rodeo, old west cookouts and horseback riding. Winter brings cross-country skiing on the world-class Rendezvous Trail System, snowshoeing and snowmobiling
on over 400 miles of groomed trails throughout the surrounding national forests. Daily guided snow coach and snowmobile tours of Yellowstone’s winter wonderland also depart from West.
For more relaxed fun, West Yellowstone offers an opportunity to see an IMAX movie, visit the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center, learn about our local history at the Yellowstone Historic
Center or take an enjoyable walking tour through the old historic district of West Yellowstone.
The town of West Yellowstone offers a full range of commercial and municipal services designed to make living here and visiting West an enjoyable experience for everyone.
West Yellowstone is proud to be serviced by Sky West Airlines as well as bus/van shuttle service from Salt Lake City, Utah. West has recognized the importance of economic
diversification and is currently in the process of strengthening itself through the creation of additional avenues of commercial growth and economic development. West Yellowstone
has evolved into a destination of its own and is much more than just a stopover on the way to or from Yellowstone National Park.
Come and see us soon!
For information on hotels, restaurants, and other tourism activities and contacts, log onto the West Yellowstone Chamber website at
West Yellowstone Job Services
(Click on the
'Personnel & Recruitment' link)
West Yellowstone News Classifieds
Montana Jobs System