As I sit here writing this afternoon, the hope of spring is in the air. It is a beautiful, sunny day with just a touch of wind and a temperature of 54 degrees. It is just a tease because we have a 50% chance of snow tomorrow! The unexpected is typical for March’s weather as winter comes to a close. With spring around the corner, I can’t help but think about weekend get-a-ways and spring break trips. My family loves to take a trip over spring break before it gets too hot.
There is something to be said for traveling in the “off-season.” No crowds, travel deals and experiencing a destination as it wakes up from winter! We often try to take a major vacation in the spring. I loved being able to take my kids to an attraction and they could get up close and personal without fighting throngs of people. My kids have the same great vacation memories, it was just cooler. We have also returned to many destinations during the peak season because we went in the off season.
Before our family moved to Cody, we visited in January and in April. Many of the “major” attractions were not open but there was plenty to do and see. I remember how friendly the shop keepers were. All asked where we were from and what brought us to Cody. As a traveler, I love visiting with the local’s. You can often learn a lot more about the area and find hidden treasures! There are also great sales going on in Cody in the Spring as merchants prepare for the summer season.
The Buffalo Bill Historical Center is a major highlight in Cody and is open year round. The five museums within the center offer everything from a western art gallery, a Plains Indian section, the Bill Cody museum, a Yellowstone ecosystem section and the largest firearms collection in the country. You can easily spend a full day at the Center exploring each of these museums. The Draper Museum is my kid’s favorite part of the center! There are lots of hands-on exhibits on the animals of Yellowstone.
Cody is home to Sleeping Giant Ski Area. Located in the Northfork area outside of Cody, you will be amazed at the scenic views as you ski your way down the mountain. In addition to the main runs, the area offers a great terrain park as well as the bunny hill with a Magic Carpet. The ski area’s lessons, equipment and lift tickets are very well priced. Sleeping Giant is open through Easter.
Heart Mountain Interpretive Learning Center is located just outside of Cody and is open Wednesday to Saturday. The Center is an important site of American history where 14,000 Japanese-Americans were interned during WWII. The Center houses exhibits and artifacts that capture a sense of life for the internees. The Center is a great place for all ages to experience a part of history that they may not have learned in school. It is definitely a must-see.
If you have not experienced springtime in the mountains, it should be on your “bucket list!” I love watching the mountains come to life with vibrant colors. Spring also means wildlife and babies! There is nothing cuter than a newborn bison! The East Entrance of Yellowstone National Park opens on May 4th and there are usually a lot of newborn bison roaming in the herds. We always go into the Park on that weekend. It is cool and crisp and amazing wildlife viewing. We have definitely seen the most wildlife on our May trips. We pack a picnic lunch and make sure to hit Old Faithful, the Upper Geyser Basin and the Hayden Valley. It is beautiful! There are only a few lodging options that are open in May but they have great deals.
Think spring and make plans to visit Cody/Yellowstone Country!
Until next time, I’ll be lovin’ life in Buffalo Bill’s Country!