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What to wear in Yellowstone in Summer

What to wear in Yellowstone in Summer

Want to know what to wear in Yellowstone in Summer? This guide tells you EXACTLY what to pack for Yellowstone in June, July and August. From hiking clothes, best shoes to other Yellowstone essentials this is the packing list for you.

As with any national park there are better seasons to visit than others. Summer is one of the better seasons to visit Yellowstone weather wise, however you will find the crowds at their highest.

But with this packing list the one thing you won’t have to worry about is what to wear in Yellowstone. In this guide we will tell you

  • What the weather is like in Yellowstone in Summer
  • What to wear in Yellowstone in summer for hiking, driving and more and
  • other travel essentials to pack for Yellowstone in summer

Note: this packing list is not intended as a camping packing list, instead for those in lodges and hotels who spend their days in the park. If you plan to camp in the national park check out this post.

Summer Weather in Yellowstone

people watching the eruption of Old Faithful in Yellowstone in Summer
Yellowstone packing list for summer

But before we get into what to wear and travel essentials for Yellowstone in summer, it is important to know what the weather is going to be like. July and the beginning of August tend to be the warmest months in Yellowstone however 20-27C / 68-80F.

However what we found when we were at Yellowstone is that the temperatures at higher elevations and when you are heading into the park early in the mornings and evenings (which we recommend doing to beat the Summer crowds), the temperatures are much chillier.

But you will find June and the end of August and in September the temperatures are much lower so more layers are going to be needed.

Also although Yellowstone does not get a lot of long days of rain, when it comes it comes around quickly. Therefore we always recommend having a rain jacket with you.

What to wear in Yellowstone in Summer

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Woman looking at Upper FAlls Waterfall in Yellowstone in Summer with her back to the camea.
What to wear in Yellowstone in Summer

So now you know about the weather, we will tell you what to wear in Yellowstone in Summer. Normally when we put together our packing list guides we split them into men, women and children. However for Yellowstone we recommend a very practical packing list as you will be doing lots of hiking and outdoor activities. For this reason the packing list is universal.


In my opinion layers are the most important thing to add to your Yellowstone packing list. Although the temperatures during the daytime are pleasant we recommend getting into the park before sun up. That is because this way you can beat crowds and traffic as well as be in the park for the best wildlife viewing opportunities.

However at this time the temperatures are much cooler so layers are necessary.

Although you could go with a jumper, hoodie or sweater, my personal favorite top layer is a micro fiber fleece. These are lighweight and easy to pack away into your daypack as the temperatures rise, and they are also quick drying should you get caught wearing one durng a rainstorm.


Another essential is a rain jacket. Although you are unlikely to get a whole day of rain in summer, you are likely yo get storms. For this reason we recommend hvaing a packaway rain jacket that you can easily store in your day pack.

T Shirts

T shirts are my favorite base layer for Yellowstone. As the weather can be changeable it is a good idea to have a mix of short sleeve, long sleeve and tank tops with you.

Convertible Walking Trousers

Again, any trip to Yellowstone involves walking, hiking and outdoor time. And as you will be in the park early to late you need to be prepared for a range of weather conditions. For this reason we recommend wearing convertible walking trousers.

This way you can wear them as trousers in the mornings and change them into shorts for layer in the day.


Although this might not be an essential for everyone, we recommend packing swimwear. Firstly this is useful in case you are staying with a hotel in a pool or if you plan on heading to the Boiling River.


The sun can be strong in Yellowstone so we recommend having a hat with a wide brim or a baseball cap to protect your eyes.

Hiking Socks

If you plan on wearing hiking boots in the park then you will also need hiking socks.

Best Shoes to wear to Yellowstone

So now you know what to wear, we turn our attention to footwear.

Hiking Shoes

No matter the national park I am traveling to I always take hiking boots with me. Now if you plan on doing little hiking and sticking to good trails with boardwalks, these might not be necessary. However I like to have them with me for using after rain even on these trails.


Sneakers are the best comfortable walking shoes for any vacation. Sneakers are great for boardwalk trails, the lodges and in towns near Yellowstone.

Hiking Sandals

In hotter weather hiking sandals are a good pick.

What to pack for Yellowstone travel essentials

Woman with her back to the camera taking a photograph of the Grand Prismatic Springs in Yellowstone National Park in Summer
What to pack for Yellowstone in Summer

Day pack with rain cover

Days in Yellowstone are long so you will want a day pack with you. We like Columbia backpacks but this is a personal choice. However it is worth packing a rain cover for your day pack too in case you get caught in a rain storm.

Power Bank

Days are long in Yellowstone and reception is notoriously bad. So be sure to have a charged power bank with you to recharge your phone during the day.

Sun protection

The sun is strong in Yellowstone so be sure to have lots of sun protection with a high SPF with you.

Bug Spray / Insect Repellant

The mosquitos are pretty fierce in Yellowstone in summer so be sure to pack plenty of bug spray and insect repellant.

Bear Spray / Bear Bells (optional)

This one is optional depending on whether you plan to stick to boardwalk trails and popular spots or if you plan on going on some longer and more remote hikes.


Again the sun is strong so sunglasses are an essential.


The wildlife in Yellowstone is amazing from bears and wolves to bison and birds. For this reason we recommend packing a good pair of binoculars with you.

Reusable Water Bottle and Extra Water

We recommend always having a reuable water bottle and extra water with you for any naitonal park visit especially in Summer.

Coffee Thermos and Mug

Your days start early in Yellowstone and for me therefore a coffee thermos and mug is absolutely a must pack.


Although there are lodges in Yellowstone, the places to stop and grab snacks are few and far between so be sure to pack ample snacks, food and drinks.

Cooler and food containers

As the temperatures are hot and you will be taking food into the park so you will want a cooler and food containers with you.

First Aid Kit

Although no one wants to use a first aid kit on vacation, it is a good idea to pack a first aid kit with you on any national park vacation just in case.

Quick Dry Towel

Again not an essential for anyone but if you plan on doing water sports you should also pack a quick dry towel.


A camera is a necessity for any visitor to Yellowstone.

Toilet Paper, Hand Sanitizer and a She wee

The toilets in Yellowstone outside of the lodges are pretty primitive. For this reason we recommend packing toilet paper, hand sanitizer and a she wee with you.

What not to pack for Yellowstone National Park

So now you know what to pack for Yellowstone, we will turn our attention to what not to pack.


Leave the drone at home as these are banned in the park.

Elk Bugler

Another item that you are prohibited from bringing into Yellowstone is an elk bugler or anything else that replicates an elk call.

Complete Yellowstone Packing Checklist

  • Layers
  • T Shirts
  • Walking Trousers
  • Rain Jacket
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Swimwear
  • Hiking Boots
  • Shoes – either sneakers or hiking sandals
  • Backpack and rain cover
  • camera
  • binoculars
  • sun protection
  • insect repellant
  • bear spray / bear bells
  • quick dry towel
  • coffee thermos and mug
  • resuable water bottle
  • food
  • first aid kit

Further National Park Reading

And if you are planning on visiting more national parks then be sure to check our other national park packing lists