Winter Wolf Retreat II

Feb. 15-20, 2019
Places left:
Deposit required:
$1,000.00 per person

*Cost is per person based on double occupancy. $100.00 additional for single room supplement. Plus tax when applicable.

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Watch wild wolves with the experts in Yellowstone's premier wildlife haven Lamar Valley. Your hosts are Nathan Varley, a native of Yellowstone who has studied wolf ecology, and Linda Thurston, a wolf researcher and conservation advocate.

Guests stay in the heart of wolf country, the famous Buffalo Ranch of Lamar Valley. Meals are catered by chef Zac Kellerman. Extensive search and observation times takes place in the morning with optional snowshoe excursions in the afternoon. Private cabins are rustic and comfortable with common bath. Past special guests have included Doug Smith, Dan Stahler, Dan Hartman, and Bob Landis.

Yellowstone Wolf Tracker (The Wild Side, LLC) is an authorized tour and transportation provider (CUA 13-133) in Yellowstone National Park. We partner with Yellowstone Forever for educational programs at the historic Lamar Buffalo Ranch facility.


February 15, 2019

The program begins in Bozeman, Montana. The city is served by Bozeman-Yellowstone Airport at Gallatin Field (BZN). Travel to Bozeman is on your own.

Check in after 3 PM under your name as traveling with The Wild Side at the Best Western Grantree Inn, Bozeman. A free airport shuttle is provided by the Best Western GranTree Inn from the airport. The hotel stay is included as part of the package; however, dinner is on your own that evening.

February 16, 2019

Guests will receive a voucher for breakfast upon check-in the day before. After check-out, rendezvous with our staff at the Best Western Grantree at 11 AM. All paperwork, waivers & releases, will need to be signed at or before this time. Once convened the group will ride the 75 miles to Yellowstone Park through the picturesque Paradise Valley. On the way to the park we will watch for mule deer, pronghorn antelope, and bighorn sheep. A lunch stop is planned at the north entrance to the park at Gardiner, Montana. After lunch we will drive over the Blacktail Plateau and cross the Yellowstone River to reach the Buffalo Ranch in Lamar Valley. After arrival we will get settled into our cabins before discussions on the history of the ranch and preparations for the coming days along with a gourmet dinner prepared by our excellent chef, Zac Kellerman of Zac's Montana Kitchen.

February 17, 2019

We will rise early for a full breakfast before departing for the field shortly after first light. Early morning is the best time to catch the wolves while they are active. The incredible Lamar Valley will be the backdrop for sightings of bison, elk, and coyotes while searching for wolves in 2-3 wolf pack territories. We will return to the ranch for an indoor hot lunch each day. After lunch, group members have the option to take a snowshoe hike to a scenic location or relaxing at the ranch. Wine and cheese will proceed Zac's gourmet dinner. Guests will be treated to an evening presentation by one of our special guest naturalists/scientists.

February 18, 2019

The following days will run a similar course with a hot breakfast served prior to an early morning departure for wildlife sightings. After lunch, the option for a snowshoe adventure, followed by dinner and a guest speaker. Past snowshoe destinations have included the historic Rose Creek acclimation pen where wolves were first released in Yellowstone, a previously used wolf den, and a carcass site of a wolf-killed elk or bison.

February 19, 2019

Experience suggests giving a third day will give the best opportunity to watch wolves or with some luck, more activity, different packs, and different behaviors. A chance to really enjoy these unique experiences. Format similar to day before.

February 20, 2019

Our last morning will require early departures after breakfast to go to the airport to catch flights. The drive is 3+ hours, so PLEASE plan to arrive at the Bozeman airport no earlier than 11 AM to make flights no earlier than NOON.

NOTE: Best-laid plans are always subject to change pending weather, guest speakers' schedules, wildlife sighting opportunities, and/or any unforeseen circumstances. Please remain flexible to better enjoy the Yellowstone Winter Wolf Retreat experience. If you have any questions concerning the itinerary, do not hesitate to contact us.

Terms and conditions

Cancellations: To book a package, multi-day group program, a per person deposit is required up front to reserve a space. The balance will be due prior to the beginning of the program, usually 30-60 days out, depending on the specific program. A full refund minus $45 processing fee will be given for all cancellations more than 45 days before the trip. For cancellations less than 45 days prior to departure, the deposit is non-refundable. We accept personal and/or cashier's checks made to THE WILD SIDE, LLC, and mailed to PO BOX 769, Gardiner MT 59030, or you may also sign up here at the Yellowstone Wolf Guides web pages.

Health and Safety: The trip requires good physical fitness and mobility, or the ability to walk up to 1 mile over uneven terrain. The trip is suitable for people of all ages, though children below the age of 14 must receive prior approval. If you have health questions, consult your doctor for more information. The tour leaders must be advised in advance of any special health needs. Weather conditions can change without notice and it is the responsibility of the traveler to have proper clothing and equipment. We will provide a list for the clothing and gear recommended for the trip.

Responsibilities and Conditions: We act only in the capacity of agent in all matters of transportation and tour operation. We are not responsible for delays, inconveniences, accidents, expense or mishap of any kind whatsoever resulting entirely, or in part, from the negligence of others or from causes beyond our control. We can accept no responsibility for losses or additional expenses due to delay or changes in air or other services, sickness, weather, strike, war, quarantine, or other causes. All such losses or expenses will have to be borne by the participant, as tour rates provide for arrangements only for the time stated. The right is reserved to substitute accommodations or modes of transportation and to make any changes in the itinerary where deemed necessary or caused by changes in transportation schedules. We take no responsibility for special arrangements or problems incurred by persons physically unable to participate in the planned activities. No refund can be made for absence from the tour unless arrangements are made at the time of the booking. The right is reserved to decline, to accept or to retain any person as a tour member for any reason which affects the operation of the tour or the rights and welfare or enjoyment of the other tour members. We will not discriminate against any individual because of race, sex, creed or nationality.

Cancelled Trips: We reserve the right to cancel any trip if conditions arise that are beyond our control and adversely affects the well-being of the trip members. In such a case, a full refund of the trip cost is given, but we are not responsible for additional expenses incurred by members in preparing for the trip including flights and other travel expenses.

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