Yellowstone & Yosemite Winter Magic
Experience Yellowstone winter magic aboard a luxurious Krystal Snow Yacht!
Spend a day viewing the spectacular scenery of the Colorado Rockies between Denver and Grand Junction as our train eases between towering mountains. In Salt Lake City we’ll discover major attractions such as the Mormon Temple, recent Winter Olympic sites and several gardens. Attend a live radio broadcast of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. No mountain range is more impressive than the Grand Teton Range. Peaks rise abruptly with no foothills. Yellowstone National Park is a two-million acre natural “jewel.” Yosemite National Park is one of America’s most popular destinations. You’ll see its winter splendor as few people do. Travel first-class for 4600 miles on the California Zephyr, Chicago to Salt Lake City and Sacramento, to Chicago on the Southwest Chief.
Highlights and Inclusions
- Round trip transportation by rail and deluxe motorcoach.
- Private Roomette sleeping accommodations on the train for four nights.
- First-class hotel accommodations for seven nights.
- 25 meals.
- Sightseeing tours and admission to all included attractions.
- Baggage handling, taxes & tips.
- Services of a professional
- Rail Tour Director
Day 1 - Depart Chicago
Yellowstone / Yosemite Winter Magic tour members will meet the Tour Director in Chicago's Union Station. At 1:15 we'll prepare to board the famous California Zephyr. Departure is at 2:00. The Zephyr features the double-decker Superliner equipment. Relax in your comfortable private Roomette sleeping accommodations. Bedrooms are available at an additional cost. After settling in, you may want to go to the glasswalled Sightseer Lounge car to view the winter scenery. All meals on the train are included beginning with dinner tonight. (D)
Day 2 - En Route
When you awaken this morning you may look out your window toward the West to experience the sight of the towering, majestic Colorado Rockies in the distance. Plan to get up early, have a piping hot breakfast in the dining car, and find a seat in the glass-walled lounge car for the spectacular winter scenery that will unfold before you today. The Zephyr will pull out of Denver at 7:15 a.m. and begin its climb over the Front Range toward the Continental Divide. Throughout the day the train will wind around sharp mountain curves and through numerous tunnels. Thrill to the awesome ice and snow-covered streams hundreds of feet below. We'll arrive in Salt Lake City around 11:05 p.m. Upon arrival, we'll transfer to the DoubleTree Suites, our attractive hotel for the next two nights. (B, L, D)
Day 3 - Salt Lake City
Following an included hot breakfast buffet, an expert local guide will join us to tour the beautiful Salt Lake City area. The city was founded in 1847 by Mormon pioneers led by Brigham Young. View the Mormon Temple, the Utah State Capitol, and some of the sites used for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.Travelers will also visit the Utah Olympic Park, a training center for the USA Winter Olympic Team. There will be time for an “on-your-own” lunch. We'll return to our hotel in Salt Lake City. Tonight we will enjoy an included welcome dinner. (B, D)
Day 4 - Salt Lake City / Trail Center / Jackson Hole
Our day will begin with a live broadcast by the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Following the broadcast, we'll board our deluxe motorcoach and travel into Wyoming, passing through farming and range lands. At the National Oregon/California Trail Center, we learn about this historic pioneer route and what life was like traveling by wagon train! Lunch today is included. We continue to the ranching and resort center of Jackson, Wyoming. Our comfortable lodging is at the Lodge at Jackson Hole. (B, L)
Day 5 - Grand Teton Range
After an included full breakfast this morning, we'll visit the National Elk Reserve. Enjoy a horse-drawn sleigh ride through the scenic Reserve. No mountain skyline is more impressive than that of the Grand Teton Range where peaks rise abruptly with no foothills. We'll continue to beautiful West Yellowstone where we'll check into the Kelly Inn, our home for the next two nights. Dinner tonight is included.(B, D)
Day 6 - Yellowstone
We'll enjoy a highlight of our trip today as we set off in a 30 passenger,luxury “Krystal Snow Yacht” to explore Yellowstone National Park. This fully narrated and guided tour travels to Old Faithful and back. Time permitting, stops can be made at Madison Junction, Fountain Paint Pot, Fountain Flat Rock, Biscuit Bason and wildlife stops. A boxed lunch is provided for our stop at Old Faithful. We will return to our hotel for the evening. Dinner is included tonight.(B, L, D)
Day 7 - En Route
Following an included breakfast we will board our deluxe motorcoach for Salt Lake City. We'll continue traveling south to Salt Lake City. An included dinner stop will be made.We'll board the westbound California Zephyr for Sacramento, scheduled to depart at 11:30 p.m. Relax in your private Superliner sleeping accommodations. (B, D)
Day 8 - En Route / Sacramento
Enjoy a full-course dining car breakfast and lunch. At 10:30 a.m. we'll depart Reno and begin our scenic ascent of the snow covered Sierra Nevada Mountains through the famous Donner Pass. From snowy rugged terrain and pine trees to lush greenery and palm trees, our arrival in California's capitol city, Sacramento, is scheduled for 2:13 p.m. Upon arrival, we'll board a deluxe motorcoach and transfer to the Holiday Inn Capitol Plaza, our hotel for this evening. There are numerous restaurants close to our hotel for an “on your own” dinner this evening. (B, L)
Day 9 - En Route / Yosemite
After a free morning we'll board our deluxe motorcoach and continue to Yosemite National Park. Later this afternoon we'll check into the Yosemite Lodge at the Falls. (Once or twice during the winter months, the road to Yosemite may be closed due to snow accumulations. In the unlikely event our group should encounter such a condition, we will again overnight in Sacramento and tomorrow visit the California State Railroad Museum, the country's most extensive collection of rail equipment and memorabilia.)
Day 10 - Yosemite
Enjoy your morning exploring the beautiful winter scenery within walking distance of our hotel. You'll see these breathtakingly beautiful sites with their coating of ice and snow. This afternoon we'll take a two-hour narrated sightseeing tour of the park. El Capitan, Bridalveil Falls, Yosemite Falls, and Half Dome are some of the most popular attractions. Upon the completion of our Yosemite tour, we'll travel to Merced where we'll enjoy an included dinner and then transfer to the Merced Amtrak station. At 7:06 p.m. we'll board a San Joaquin train for Bakersfield; arrival is scheduled for 10:07 p.m. and we'll transfer to the Hilton Garden Inn. (D)
Day 11 - En Route
Following a Continental breakfast, we'll depart Bakersfield by motorcoach and travel over I-5 to Los Angeles. Our first stop will be the famed Farmers Market for an “on-your-own” lunch. Our tour members will then embark on an extended tour of Los Angeles. The famous sites we'll visit include Chinatown, Griffith Park, Exposition Park, and Grauman's Chinese Theatre where the hand and footprints of many stars are imprinted in concrete. Later this afternoon we'll arrive at Los Angeles Union Station where we'll board Amtrak's Southwest Chief for Chicago. You'll again enjoy private-room sleeping accommodations, all the train meals and other amenities experienced on your westbound train. Count on a full-course dining car dinner upon departure.
Day 12 - En Route
You'll want to take advantage of the fascinating scenery of Arizona and New Mexico we will pass by during the day. The Sightseer Lounge is the best vantage point. (B, L, D)
Day 13 - En Route to Chicago
Our Southwest Chief will arrive in Chicago late this afternoon. Some members will change to trains bound for Midwest, Eastern, and Southern home cities. Others will stay overnight and fly home tomorrow. (B, L)