“In May 2022 my boyfriend and I drove through Yellowstone on our way home to Montana. We got out at Old Faithful, and that’s when we saw this lady standing right next to it! I started filming and captured the park ranger catching her in the act.”

So often we see tourists doing dumb stuff in National Parks with no repercussions so it’s pretty satisfying to see one get busted. The woman didn’t walk away in handcuffs but she did get a solid chewing out by a park ranger. Remember folks, traveling off Yellowstone’s boardwalks in geothermal areas is not only detrimental to the fragile ecology, it’s extremely dangerous and as hot springs have injured or killed more people in Yellowstone than any other natural feature. 

Protect Your Park; Protect Yourself

Yellowstone’s scenic wonders are sure to take your breath away: don’t let them take your life. From boiling hot springs to thousands of wild animals, some of the hazards in Yellowstone will be new to you. Protect yourself and the sights you plan to enjoy by following a few simple rules:

  • Never approach wildlife
    The animals in Yellowstone are wild and unpredictable, no matter how calm they appear to be. The safest (and often best) view of wildlife is from inside a car. Always stay at least 100 yards (91 m) away from bears and wolves, and at least 25 yards (23 m) away from all other animals, including bison and elk.
  • Stay on boardwalks and trails in thermal areas
    Hot springs have injured or killed more people in Yellowstone than any other natural feature. Keep your children close and don’t let them run.
  • Never feed wildlife
    Animals that become dependent on human food may become aggressive toward people and have to be killed. Keep all food, garbage, or other smelly items packed away when not in use.
  • Never park in the road or block traffic
    Use pullouts to watch wildlife and let other cars pass. Stay with your vehicle if you encounter a wildlife jam.

We can’t guarantee your safety in Yellowstone, but these concepts will help you avoid the most common accidents. See below for more great advice, and be sure to review our Rules & RegulationsLaws & Policies, and tips for backcountry travel.

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