Corrie n. Cody's Travel Blog Dividing image

March Makes Me Think of our First National...

March 5th, 2018 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

When the beginning of March rolls around a lot of people I know start talking about Major League Baseball’s spring training or the pro football draft or the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

Not me.

Instead I am reminded how fortunate I am to live in a place where people from all over the world make their way to enjoy the world’s largest concentration of geysers and the valley featuring the finest wolf watching in the Lower 48 states. In addition to natural features, people take in tours of the coolest log structure ever built – the Old Faithful Inn – and stop for photos next to a stone arch named after a U.S. president with the foresight and commitment to set aside public lands.

That’s right. I am talking about the World’s First National Park. On March 1, 1872, President Ulysses S. Grant signed the bill setting aside 3,468.4 square miles (close to 2.2 million acres) to create Yellowstone National Park. Now, I know a few people in California who argue that the other “Y” park has a legitimate claim to being the first national park, but these Yosemite Sams lose me with their convoluted explanations about land grants and such.

Here are a few of my favorite facts about Yellowstone.

Yellowstone has the Read More

Why Didn’t I think of “National Plan...

January 16th, 2018 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Whether they are ranchers, cowboy singers, hotel housekeepers, foodservice employees or are involved in the myriad jobs around here, people in Cody/Yellowstone Country work hard.

Some of us pretty go at it non-stop during the peak tourist season (and no, you don’t want to see the grindstone when we’re done with it) and then take time off during the shoulder season. Others work closer to traditional 40-hour weeks and play on weekends and vacations.

Whatever suits you best is my belief.

What I don’t like, however, are the people who think they are indispensable and leave vacation time on the table every year. You know who you are or you know the type.

Some are worried that the boss will think less of them if they are out of the office, store or restaurant instead of producing. Others cannot imagine the business surviving without them, and still more are worried about that ambitious young 20-something taking their jobs if they aren’t there to do it themselves.

I got some news for you. You aren’t doing anybody any favors by refusing your time off. We all need to get away from work, relax and recharge our batteries.

So when I heard about the U.S. Travel Association’s Project: Read More

For the Best Yellowstone Vacation, Start...

March 14th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

As winter gives way to spring, I start to hear from old friends who are thinking about their summer vacations. Invariably, they ask for my counsel on planning a summer vacation to my slice of paradise. Specifically, they usually want my help visiting Yellowstone National Park and our area.

I am always happy to share my knowledge as well as my recommendations about what to do, where to stay and which cowboy musician is telephone number-worthy.

While each vacation will be different, there are several things I always recommend.

First of all, the best way to appreciate a Yellowstone vacation is to start it in Cody, Wyo., the wildest way in to the world’s first national park.

The first stop I recommend is to go to the Buffalo Bill Center of the West and head to the Draper Natural History Museum. At the Draper’s top level, you can look at a floor map of the region that helps you get your bearings and see where Cody, Park County, the park and the whole Yellowstone ecosystem fit together. From that top level are ramps that go down in a counter clockwise pattern with interpretive displays on specific topics such as the area’s wildlife, how forest Read More

Comparing Notes With Other Tourism Folks

February 28th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

I don’t know about you, but I can always tell what time of year it is here in Cody without even looking at the calendar. Colorful lights means Christmas is approaching. The first day I see that huge car with the loudspeakers bolted on the roof and longhorns attached to the hood means the start of June and the Cody Nite Rodeo. Dan Miller walking down the street in a cupid outfit must mean that it’s Valentine’s Day.

Okay, I made that last one up. But I can hope…

Cody, the wildest way into Yellowstone.

If it’s late in February, it must mean that I have just gotten home from the Wyoming Governor’s Conference on Tourism. We all know that Wyoming is a big state, and I am reminded of our glorious open spaces, soaring mountain ranges and stunning beauty when I make my annual drive to our state capital of Cheyenne every year for the conference.

I lived in the big city where there are more people crammed into 10 square miles than we have in our whole state of almost 100,000 square miles (97,818 to be exact), and I am reminded of one of the main reasons I came home and Read More

Goodbye Summer, Hello Fall

September 28th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Fall has finally arrived here in Cody after an absolutely breathtaking and busy summer. In some ways it seems like yesterday that I was putting my flag up to celebrate Memorial Day weekend, but it also seems like a long time ago when I start thinking of everything I did and the people I met in a little over three months.

The biggest obstacle I face in summer is overextending myself. When someone suggests to me on a quiet Monday morning that we grab our cameras and head up the Wapiti Valley on Tuesday afternoon because several moose and grizzlies have been spotted near Sleeping Giant ski area, I immediately say yes.

Historic yellow buses are a great way to tour Yellowstone in the summer.

An early morning run to my favorite trout stream before the sun is too high? I’m there.

Taking an out-of-town visitor on a whirlwind tour of Yellowstone National Park is one of my favorite things in the world.

Next thing I know I’m booked solid and in danger of missing my favorite cowboy musician for the week. And I get grumpy if I go too long without hearing “It Takes a Whole Lotta Liquor to Like Her.”

So what do Read More

West Meets Midwest

August 24th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

If you see me walking around Cody next week telling stories about the town to someone who is feverishly taking notes, please don’t be concerned.

Tap your feet along to the sounds of Americana, bluegrass and songs of the American West at Dan Miller’s Cowboy Music Revue.

You see, we are hosting a conference for the Midwest Travel Writers Association (MTWA), and this group of journalists is coming for more than just Yellowstone Country’s Western brand of hospitality.Over the years there is a good chance you have read an article by one of these writers. Before the Internet turned our lives upside down, travel writers researched and wrote their stories for magazines, newspapers, newsletters and other publications. Many of those publications are now found online, and professionals supply the stories.

This conference is our opportunity to showcase our attractions. The plan is to start with a welcome reception at the Chamberlin Inn followed by a short walk over to enjoy Dan Miller’s Cowboy Music Revue. I know that Dan will promptly win over the female journalists in the crowd, but we cannot just send them home after his performance. We will take the next several days making a trip to Yellowstone, taking Read More

Moving Ground in Yellowstone Country

July 17th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

We have a lot of thermal activity here in Yellowstone Country.

Old Faithful’s eruptions varies from 51 to 120 minutes

Inside Yellowstone National Park (around here we just call it “The Park”) is the world’s largest concentration of geysers and other thermal features totaling in the 10,000 neighborhood. Everybody knows about Old Faithful, but many people are surprised to find so many other geysers as well as fumaroles, hot springs and mud pots scattered throughout the park.

Here in Cody we also have our share of thermal features, and I’m not talking about our “hot” cowboy musicians. Back in the early 1800s, John Colter was a member of the Lewis and Clark expedition who went on side trips. Colter made his way in what are now Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. He also made it to what is now our humble town of Cody, where he came upon thermal activity that became known as “Colter’s Hell.”

In 1807 John Colter discovered an active geyser district: steam mixed with sulfur fumes and shooting flames escaped through vents in the valley floor. This is now known as Colter’s Hell

Heat and the smell of sulfur lend themselves to colorful nicknames. That thermal area is Read More

They’re Called Wildlife for a Reason

May 15th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

For the past few days it seems whenever I open the newspaper, turn on the tube or connect to the Web there is one story that keeps showing up. The good news is that it has nothing to do with the Kardashian clan.

What I keep seeing is a story and video clip of tourists who got too close to a bear sow and cubs on a bridge in Yellowstone National Park. Nobody was hurt, and the bears seem to be fine.

Bears in the wild are not Teddy Bears.

In the clip I see tourists with cameras getting too close to the bears, and the mama bear starts to run to round up the cubs. That action startles the tourists who then start to run back to their cars. Some of them scream which makes the situation seem even worse.

Around here we are pretty used to seeing wildlife, and we are well-versed in how to act in bear country. The worst position you can find yourself is to be caught between a mama bear and her cubs. It’s even worse than getting between me and a sale at the cowboy music store.

Even awkward moose appear tame in the wild.

And even Read More

Cody Holidays Like No Others

May 4th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Like many of my townsfolk here in Cody, I took Friday off. At least in spirit, I did.

No, it’s not an early Cinco de Mayo, and I am not like my accountant who celebrates the end of tax season by turning out the lights, locking the doors and sneaking off for her version of Spring Break (or as I call it, “CPAs Gone Wild”).

It takes weeks for plows to clear snow and ice from the Cody/Yellowstone East Entrance Road.

I read the other day that the director of our chamber of commerce thinks May 1 should be a town holiday because the East Gate of Yellowstone National Park opened that day. Even though said gate is 52 spectacular miles up the Buffalo Bill Scenic Byway, we see a marked change in the traffic patterns as out-of-town visitors return for the season.

Let’s face it. We in Cody love our tourists, in fact many refer to them as “guests”. Several of our businesses are built upon visitors who have discovered over the years just how much there is to do on a Wyoming Vacation. The mixture of new, returning and multi-generational visitors has created an atmosphere that makes a visit to Cody Read More

Getting Ready to Spring into Yellowstone

April 2nd, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

In honor of springtime, I did what lots of people who live in Yellowstone Country do. I bought myself some new bling for around my neck. And we’re not talking about another turquoise necklace. No, I went whole hog and invested in this darling camo-colored pair of 8 x 32s with ultra-clear fluoride HD objective lenses, multi-coatings for exceptional resolution, magnesium construction that is durable but lightweight, nitrogen purged, fully sealed and abrasion resistant. Oh yeah. These babies are the bomb.

And every one of my friends – women and men – will be coveting my new binoculars when I break them in at this year’s Spring into Yellowstone Festival May 13 -17.

Happy Explorers on the Spring Into Yellowstone tour.

This is the third year of the Spring into Yellowstone Birding and Wildlife Festival. I took a peek at the festival website, to see what’s in store this year, and it looks to me like the line-up is bigger and better than ever. The festival kicks off at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West on the night of the 13th. And the next two days are jam-packed full of guided hikes, seminars, tours and workshops led by some of the Read More