Yellowstone National Park
A Yellowstone National Park bike tour is a otherworldly experience especially if you like wildlife, geysers and monster climbs such as Day 6’s Bear Tooth Pass! Join the local experts at Lizard Head Cycling Guides as we explore the Yellowstone Country together and are challenged by some of North America’s most amazing cycling terrain.
(Our group) completed the Yellowstone ride last week, it was a typical Lizard Head tour, pretty tough but doable, with some outstanding majestic scenery. (I wish) to comment on the outstanding team that lead our tour, DeAnn and Emily were such great guides, both pitched in to make sure that everything went smoothly, they are very professional and I did not hear one complaint from the group about the support. And it also helps to ride behind one of them after 5,000 plus feet of climbing. – Bill
Click here to read a daily journal by Edward, a guest on a recent Yellowstone National Park Bike Tour.
Yellowstone National Park Bike Tour: Highlights
On the last day of this tour we will tackle the incredible Beartooth Highway which has been proclaimed by some to be the most scenic 68 miles of mountain road to be found in America. Here’s part of the 27 mile descent from Beartooth Pass into Red Lodge, Montana.
Here are just a few of the amazing places that we will visit on this tour.
- Gallatin River Canyon
- Yellowstone National Park
- Old Faithful and Upper Geyser Basin
- Yellowstone Lake
- The old west town of Cody, Wyoming
- Chief Joseph Highway
- Beartooth Highway
Yellowstone National Park Bike Tour: Dates
Potential tour dates are listed below and not all tour dates will run. Lock in your preferred tour date early as unopened tour dates will be closed. Please see the Spring/Autumn Tour Calendar and the Summer Tour Calendar for confirmed departures. Any unopened date can be a Custom Week (9 riders required). Please contact us via email or call 970.728.5891
2017 Summer Tour Dates:
- August 27 to September 1, 2017 – TOUR FULL
- September 3 to 8, 2017 (Book Now!) – TOUR A GO!
NOTE: Custom Summer Tour Dates are also available. Please contact us via email or call 970.728.5891.
Yellowstone National Park Bike Tour: Overview
Tour Length: 6-Days | 5-Nights Lodging
Starting/Ending Town: Belgrade, MT/Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN), La Quinta Inn & Suites Belgrade / Bozeman Airport (not included in tour cost)
Total Miles: 284-387. (Can I keep up on this tour?)
Mileage Range: 35-115
Ability Level: 3/4 (Intermediate to Advanced)
Tour Includes: 5 nights of lodging, 6-days of meals, guide service, entrance fees, daily lunch en route, energy food, liquid refreshments, shuttles and mechanical support. Alcoholic beverages, massage & bike rental are additional.
Tour Cost: $2,700 per person. Group discount of $200 per person for groups of 4 or more.
Please see our Tour Discounts Policy.
Single Room Supplement: $495 for a private room each night of the tour.
Road Bike Rental: Lizard Head Cycling Guides is proud to rent Scott CR-1 Pro and Scott Solace carbon road bikes with full Shimano Ultegra components for only $250/week, or $150 for 3 or 4 day tours. Both the CR-1 and Solace models are sub- 17 lb comfortable, high performance bicycles geared for climbing hills. In addition we also have electric bikes available for rental at $375/week. And finally we have a selection of straight bar road bikes and kids bikes in our rental fleet. Just let us know what you need and we can probably find it.
Please also see this blog post for more information on bike rentals.
Electric Bike Rental: We now have a limited selection of SCOTT electric bikes that can be reserved for our tours. These are road bikes with straight bars that make the slowest rider the fastest rider in the group. Rental Price is $375/week.
Couples Bike Rental Discount: Sign up as a couple and receive one free bike high performance rental per couple ($250 value).
Tandems and Recumbents: Lizard Head Cycling Guides happily accommodates both tandem and recumbent bikes on its tours.
Lodging for 5 nights:
- Days 1, 2 & 3: Old Faithful Snow Lodge – Yellowstone National Park
- Day 4: Buffalo Bill’s Irma Hotel – Cody, WY
- Day 5: Soda Butte Lodge – Cooke City, MT
Meals On Tour
Lizard Head Cycling sources our favorite restaurants in each town that we visit. Our guides focus on establishments that offer fresh and local ingredients. Guests choose whatever they desire to eat off the menu: including appetizer, salad, entree and of course dessert... yum! Also, while on tour if a guest wants to dine early before the group and go to bed, this is fine. We understand that on some days sleep is the most important post ride element.
Lunches on Tour: Lizard Head Cycling Guides prepares healthy lunches to keep you going. We will serve you fresh organic fruits and veggies, salads, hummus, sandwich fixings, nuts, gourmet cheeses and of course plenty of salty/sweet snacks such as chips and cookies. We pride ourselves on being able to cater to specific dietary requests, so rest assured that you will be able to get the nutrition that works for you during the week. Gluten Free, Dairy Free or a someone who loves it all – we will keep you well fed during the tour!
Ability Level: Can I Ride This Tour?
Do the Bump!
Daily mileage options allow cyclists of varying abilities to enjoy this tour. One of our favorite options is to give cyclists a “bump” via the support vehicle, or a 10 to 20 mile lift down the road representing an hour of pedal time. After the bump the rider is “off the front” and riding at his or her own pace without feeling they are being left behind the group. They’ll then have time to linger and take in the spectacular scenery. All cyclists come together in time for lunch. Afterwards, cyclists can take another bump and/or continue riding.
Seamless Mileage Options
Lizard Head Cycling Guides designs multiple mileage options for each tour – something we’re well known for in our business. Daily shuttle options allow cyclists of varying abilities to enjoy our tours through mileage customization.
Slow or Fast?
PLEASE don’t be scared away from this tour. Many cyclists who sign up for our tours have worried themselves silly about not being able to keep up, but then they’re surprised to find that all the worrying was about nothing. They do just fine! Slow and Fast only exist as relative terms to other people. Speed does not matter as long as you are moving on the bike.
Like we say to even the most reluctant cyclists: “You will be ready for a Lizard Head Cycling tour when you are finished with a Lizard Head Cycling tour”.
If you have questions about your ability to ride this tour, please contact our office via email or call us at 970.728.5891 - we'll more than happy to guide you!
Please also see this blog post for more information.
Yellowstone National Park Bike Tour: Itinerary*
*Tour itineraries are subject to change and modification based on the group, available accommodations and other unforeseen circumstances including weather, wildfires, flooding, hurricanes, landslides and/or other acts of nature. Please view this itinerary as an outline as to what to expect on this tour.
Day 0: Arrival in Bozeman
Riders either drive to the meeting hotel (La Quinta Inn & Suites Belgrade / Bozeman Airport) in Belgrade, MT, or fly into Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN) and find their own shuttle to the meeting hotel.
Day 1: West Yellowstone to Yellowstone Lake
45-60 miles with up to 3,300 feet of climbing
After a morning shuttle from Belgrade to West Yellowstone, MT through the picturesque Gallatin River Canyon (‘A River Runs Through It’ was filmed here!), we start our ride from the West Entrance of Yellowstone National Park and begin our journey into the park, but keep a look out for the commonly sighted bison and elk, often right in the middle of the road! Also keep a keen eye for the more elusive grizzly bear, or perhaps even some wolves! This is wild and rugged terrain where wildlife abounds amid the beauty of Mother Nature and her geothermal wonders. We also urge you to stop at the many pullouts to take in the wonders of this magnificent place.
Day 2: Lake Lodge to Old Faithful/Firehole Lake
75-95 miles with up to 4,500 feet of climbing
Departing from our lodge, we ride along Yellowstone Lake and stop at West Thumb Geyser Basin for a short hike and break. Climbing over the Continental Divide, we then stop at the Old Faithful area for an aid station and hopefully to catch the Old Faithful geyser in action! Departing Old Faithful, we will enjoy lunch along the very scenic Firehole Lake Drive. We again climb back over the Continental Divide to end our ride back at West Thumb and a shuttle back to Lake Lodge. Those looking for additional miles can pedal back along Yellowstone Lake for a total of 95 miles.
Day 3: Layover Day – Hiking in Yellowstone National Park
Today is a layover day at Lake Lodge and guests will have a number of hiking options within Yellowstone National Park. Of course you can also ride by taking a spin along the shores around Yellowstone Lake, or simply take a day off the bike to relax at the lodge. The choice is up to you, but we highly recommend some hiking to keep the legs loose and also to see some sights you simply will not see from the saddle.
Day 4: Yellowstone Lake to Cody, WY
80 miles with up to 2,400 feet of climbing
After your guides prepare a hearty breakfast for the long day ahead, riders depart from the lodge, pedal around Yellowstone Lake and exit Yellowstone National Park via the East Entrance. After some moderate climbing for the first 20 miles, riders will enjoy a nearly 60 mile descent as we make our way along the North Fork of the Shoshone River, through the scenic Wapiti Valley, along The Buffalo Bill Cody Scenic Byway, past Buffalo Bill Reservoir to eventually make our way into the rustic western cowboy town of Cody, Wyoming.
Day 5: Chief Joseph Scenic Byway
60-77 miles with up to 8,300 feet of climbing
While yesterdays ride was epic, today is certainly the “queen stage” of the week and even though it’s a mere 58 miles in length, plan to climb nearly 7,000′ and to start with an HC (beyond category) 10 mile climb. While the ride this day will undoubtedly be a challenge, it will offer perhaps some of the most scenic riding of the entire week as we cruise along the Chief Joseph Scenic Byway and dip into Montana at the end of the ride.
Of course there will be plenty of opportunities to “bump” ahead for those not wanting to put in all the miles or climbs allowing those riders to literally cherry pick the best of the best along today’s route.
We will conclude the ride at Cooke City, Montana and check into the Soda Butte Lodge for the final night of our week-long adventure. It’s hard to believe that the week is almost over as we share one last dinner together in this truly wondrous place.
Day 6: Beartooth Pass to Red Lodge, MT
41-64 miles with up to 5,400 feet of climbing
It would not be a classic Lizard Head tour without a classic ending… and today is the day! With an early morning start, we’ll take on the mighty Beartooth Highway and head northeast up to Beartooth Pass maxing out at nearly 11,000′ elevation. The climb is long and gradual and the views are amazing! As we past tree line on our ascent, we’ll ride past dozens of fresh water lakes sprinkled throughout the barren landscape where there is often snow pack at these altitudes year round.
At the top of Beartooth Pass we’ll stop for lunch with 100+ mile views in all directions – it is truly spectacular! Post lunch will be a mind boggling 27 mile twisty descent to the town of Red Lodge, Montana… this is one ride you are certainly not going to forget. Upon arrival in Red Lodge, we’ll pack up and shuttle back to Bozeman to end the tour.
What an incredible week!
Yellowstone National Park Bike Tour: Logistics & FAQs
Lizard Head Cycling recommends shipping with BikeFlights.com. Bikes can be shipped either to our partner bike shop in each meeting town for professional assembly or directly to the meeting hotel for self-assembly. Bike boxes can generally be left at the meeting hotel during the tour. Bikes shipped across the continental US should be shipped 8 days prior to your tour.
Meals on the Tour
Most meals (aside from two) from lunch on the tour’s first day (Sunday) through breakfast on departure day are included. The exceptions are that guests are own their own for meals on the layover day. In total 5 dinners, 6 breakfasts and 6 lunches are included.
Breakfasts and dinners are in restaurants where clients either order off the menu or choose from a buffet. Fresh lunches that include salads, local fruit, vegetables and meats are served in roadside parks by the Lizard Head Cycling Guides. Any dietary preferences or allergies should be noted on the registration form. Each of Lizard Head Cycling’s lunches contains gluten free options.
If on any given night a guest is tired or not feeling particularly social, they can choose to eat early and retire. Lizard Head Cycling enjoys hosting its guests for meals each evening, but understands some of us may just need to lie down after a day in the saddle. A meal should not feel like marathon after a big day on the bike.
Due to the mountainous terrain, this tour is designed for upper intermediate to advanced cyclists. Each day there are additional mileage options for advanced riders.
A 15-passenger van and trailer that carries luggage, food and equipment supports Lizard Head Cycling’s tours. Cyclists keep a day bag that is accessible within the support vehicle.
The vehicle will sag and then pass riders to set up aid stations every 20 to 25 miles. This allows cyclists to linger at the back and then take a ten-mile, fifteen-mile or whatever mile “bump” forward to catch-up or get ahead of the group. Energy food, drink mixes, and fresh fruit are available throughout each stage.
The Daily Schedule
Cyclists ride their own pace. Lizard Head Cycling does its best to support riders in their varying desires and efforts. Cyclists can either use our tours to simply support their tour experience or to engage in a guided experience along the route.
Cue sheets with directions, profiles and locations of aid stations are given out for each stage.
General Tour & Cancellation Policies
Please take a moment to familiarize yourself with all of our tour and cancellation policies, which can be found by clicking here.
Lizard Head Cycling Guides teams up with Seven Corners for travel insurance. Seven Corners offers:
- Travel Medical
- Medical Evacuation
- 24/7 Assistance
- Trip Cancellation
Be sure to go to our custom Seven Corners portal by clicking this link or by clicking the the banner on the right after confirming your tour with us to get a quote on travel insurance.