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Old 01-21-2016, 08:03 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Ted S. View Post
On our way home from WY to MA we drove for a day and made just 400 miles. We both said, "We gotta get home!!!!"

So from eastern WY to MA we made it in two 1000 mile days, back to back, driving 2 shifts. Crazy. But so are we.
Was there a 5 year old with you?
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Old 01-21-2016, 09:24 PM   #44
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Was there a 5 year old with you?
Nope. I flew my wife and girls (ages 18, 9 and 4) from Jackson Hole to Boston, then me and the 22 year old boy gunned it and I actually lied, we didn't do 2000 miles in two days, we did 1954 miles in two days (just googled it) from Vedauwoo Campground, Buford, WY to Ayer, MA.

The funny thing is, we actually enjoyed it. You haven't lived until you've had a drop of whiskey camped out in a Cracker Barrel parking lot while driving across the country.

Boys will be boys.
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Old 01-21-2016, 09:41 PM   #45
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We can offer a different perspective. Haul tail out there and make a day trip thru Yellowstone and see the mud pots, geysers and other thermal stuff that is specific to that area, then get the heck out. No disrespect intended but there are way to many people in the park. Head south to the Tetons where there are more wildlife viewing chances, stunning views, open camp sites and less people. Hiking is great also.

Then decide an interesting route home for drive-thru scenery.

We do this every other year (except the Yellowstone day trip, been there, done that) and its a 16 day, 4200 mile adventure.
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Old 01-21-2016, 09:50 PM   #46
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I agree, see Yellowstone but the Tetons are more fun, if you are outdoorsy...

We did pack into Yellowstone for 4 days, that was spectacular. Didn't see a soul.

When we do it again, I would spend more time in the Bighorns and do a good hike through Wind River.
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Old 01-21-2016, 11:42 PM   #47
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OK - if you are travelers, you may be able to pull it off with careful planning. You will be tired when you get home.

Note, 3 weeks is not 21 days, it is 23 days and if you are ready to leave, you can put in a good 8 hours after work on Friday, which makes your run 24 days. At 500 miles a day, that is 6000 miles in 12 days. With another 12 days to have fun.

The Grand Canyon takes a day. Utah and Zion takes 2 days. Yellowstone takes 3 days. Glacier takes a day. Mt Rushmore takes a day. And 4 days for other destinations.

We want to see lots of pictures, but if you get too tired, cut off part of the trip and come home. Safe Travels. Pat
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Old 01-22-2016, 12:29 AM   #48
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The time required to "do" a park depends upon what you like to do-- or can do. The only way to breeze through a big park like Glacier in a day is to hardly get out of your vehicle, and hardly get your vehicle off the main road. You cannot take trailers over Going-to-the-Sun road, so you have to allow time to take just your tow vehicle or, even better, one of the free park shuttle buses or concession (fee) "red cars." We really like the area around Bowman and Kintla Lakes, which is easily a one-day trip in itself. Ditto for the Many Glaciers and Two Medicine lake areas.

Then even short walks allow you to experience so much more. We take our canoe to parks with lakes like Glacier, Tetons, and Yellowstone-- there is some wonderful scenic paddling for people with small boats.

There are also scenic boat tours on some of the lakes for an interesting and different way to explore the park, not to mention horseback riding concessions for the adventuresome. All of the parks have short naturalist-guided walks and evening programs. It is also fun to have a meal at one of the grand old national park lodges.

You pretty much have to walk on paths and board walks at Yellowstone to see the main thermal and other scenic features. They are not all adjacent to the parking lots. (Old Faithful doesn't require much of a walk, but then you can take some interesting short trails that lead from it.)

During our 2015 visit to Yellowstone, we stopped for a picnic near Yellowstone Lake, and were greeted by several nearly-tame female elks with calves walking through the picnic area. This was not an experience to end quickly merely to get to the next overlook.

Understandably people with limited mobility have to stay closer to the roads, but simply pulling over to a scenic overlook for a snapshot of a place you did not really experience is not the ideal way to visit the parks.
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Old 01-22-2016, 06:53 AM   #49
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I have a contrary opinion of Teton vs Yellowstone.


Tetons are lovely to be sure. Beautiful views.
But
Yellowstone is like no place else on earth.

There are lots of lovely mountains and lakes and meadows around.

But only 1 place I have ever been to with mud pots and geysers and black sand and buffalo and thermal pools and on and on.

I could stay a month in Yellowstone, but I really find the Tetons a bit boring after a few days. And to be honest I probably prefer Colorado to the Tetons.
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Old 01-22-2016, 11:55 AM   #50
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If you can make reservations at the campground at the fishing bridge in Yellowstone go ahead and do it . Will be a handy spot in the park for plenty of day trips throughout the park. They do have water and dump station there , even if the sites do not . You will not need your AC as it is relativity cool in the day and cold at night in August . If you don't stay a week in this beautiful park you will regret it . Have been going there since back in 1960 and can't get enough of it .

Be sure to take in Cody , Cooke City , and West Yellowstone !
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Old 01-22-2016, 12:33 PM   #51
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You are going places still on my list. But we learned over the past two years in trips to the Grand Canyon , Arches and Canyonlands, get those reservations done early! Enjoy.
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Old 01-22-2016, 12:34 PM   #52
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We travel west from VT almost every year. Yellowstone & Tetons are constant repeats for us. Here's the deal. Be ready for some serious drive days, preferably with 2 drivers sharing. Day 1- 670 miles (basically on I-90) VT to Ohio Turnpike Middle Ridge Travel Plaza, Amherst, OH - has RV parking w. electric for $20. Day 2 640 miles (still I-90) Ohio to Onalaska, Wisc. Walmart right off highway (free) Go WAY around Chicago on interstates - not thru. Day 3 - 580 miles (I-90) to Wall, SD, Sleepy Hollow Campground $30 w. hookups (or go to Badlands just before Wall - camp there for cheap - no hookups - spend at least a day and night there. Do ranger led programs. As a matter of fact, they are great at all the parks.) Day 4 (from Wall) 441 miles - to Cody, WY - I-90, get off in Buffalo, WY and take Rt. 16 over the Big Horns. Stock-up on supplies in Cody. Absaroka Bay Campground - $30-ish. Drain your tanks - fill your water. Day 5 - 80 miles to Yellowstone Fishing Bridge RV Park - call for reservations NOW. This is the only campground in the park w. hookups (if you like them) - Be sure to hike Mt. Washburn; do Old Faithful trails; hike and explore Lamar Valley; take your time - spend days there. NEXT - Drive south to Grand Tetons - Colter Bay RV Park has full hook-ups - reserve NOW. (Good idea to get a National Parks yearly pass at the first national park that you visit - save big bucks - or best deal if you're a senior, get a lifetime pass for $10) Spend days here if possible - hike: Cascade Canyon; Death Canyon; Phelps Lake; Rockefeller Preserve; and the list goes on. Visit Jackson Hole - touristy but fun. Raft the Snake River. On the way home do the same routes. When headed to Wall, SD stop for a few hours at Rushmore, and then stop in Wall for the night. Good luck. If you had more time then 3 weeks, I'd give you more info. Carpe Diem. Good luck.
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Old 01-22-2016, 03:42 PM   #53
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We are 6 years as Airstreamers, but are 73 yrs. old. We have been to all of these places and they are all great. First the trip must be fun and you need confidence you will have time to see them all in your life time. So do your own reasearch and pick out what does the most for you, but do not hurry. At 73 we follow the 200 2 rule. Two hundred miles and then 2 days at that location, OK you are younger, but a 400 1.5 rule would be worth considering (400 miles in a day and 1 day half the time and 2 days half the time. The Tetons are fantastic and Custer State Park is wonderful.
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Old 01-22-2016, 04:44 PM   #54
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I agreed with everyone who says too big an itinerary and too short a time. Last fall we drove from CNY to Yellowstone. 4 long days of driving I90 and I80 to get to north Yellowstone. We did break it up with 3 days in the Badlands, 3 days in the Black Hills and a nice hot day at Little Big Horn battlefield. Then spent a week in Yellowstone. Slow down. Pick one or two spots you really want to see and concentrate on them. If you have time then you can move on. Even in September and October it was near impossible to find accommodations in the NP's. August, well you better be making the reservations now. Have fun. It's a BIG beautiful country. Plan well and enjoy.
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Old 01-22-2016, 07:08 PM   #55
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The time required to "do" a park depends upon what you like to do-- snip --- but simply pulling over to a scenic overlook for a snapshot of a place you did not really experience is not the ideal way to visit the parks.
L&J are right. It depends. For us, the overlooks and pullouts work. We also get wonderful views while driving. It does not take long to see what we want to enjoy and move on to make the next fantastic memory. However, the rangers say you can not experience all of Yellowstone in a lifetime. That is likely true with most NPs. Your time is limited so make the most of it by doing what makes you smile.

Good luck with your trip planning. Pat
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Old 01-23-2016, 08:08 AM   #56
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I plan on taking at least a couple of months for my western adventure. What is the general consensus about the best time of the year for a trip to New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, etc? I have no desire or intention to reurn to California if at all possible.
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