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Old 07-19-2009, 12:25 PM   #1
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2000 25' Excella
Statesboro , Georgia
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Route planning - Atlanta to Yellowstone

We're new Airstreamers with a 25' 2000 Excella planning a trip to Mt. Rushmore, Yellowstone and Jackson, WY beginning around Aug. 5. Has anyone made this trip from Georgia or Florida? If so, any ideas on the best route. Also, are we starting too late, considering the weather "up north?"

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Old 07-19-2009, 05:05 PM   #2
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A hearty welcome from Marietta, and welcome to the world of Airstreamin'! There are a bunch of us here in the southeast - you can find a group of us if you search out the thread with Falluminum or Springstream.

I will start by saying I have no specific experience re your route - jealous. The first question I would ask is how much time do you have? My single contribution would be, if you have the time, is to take a route that avoids the highways. Several years ago we traveled from Atlanta to Death Valley and we avoided, as much as was reasonable, the highways in favor of excellent two lane roads. Spectacular.

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Old 07-19-2009, 06:51 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum!

I just returned two weeks ago from a 4700 mile 'tour' of Idaho, Wyoming and Montana. Doing my absolute best to stay off of the beaten path. I really like alpine environments and any road that does not have more than one lane in each direction. I camped in USFS and BLM campgrounds and did not do any camping with services. If you wish, I could give you some information on what I saw and discovered along my path.

A readers digest version is, now I have to think on doing this from the East side. We did not see Rushmore, but did Devils Tower NM, Big Horn Mountains, a short jaunt into Montana inorder to drive the Bear Tooth Hwy and show my daughter a 10900' mountain pass, Yellowstone NP, Grand Teton NP, Jackson WY. We had crossed from Idaho to Wyoming at Alpine WY, at the head of Palisades Reservoir.

I think August would be fine to take a Northern route, of course keeping an eye on the weather. I often camp high until November, of course often getting snowed on.

Any help I can be just let me know, and again, welcome to the forum and to Airstreams!

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Old 07-21-2009, 01:24 PM   #4
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There is a great road to take from Georgia all the way to Amarillo Texas. it is route 84. The great point of taking this road is few semis and no billboards. It goes just north of Dallas so you miss that headache. this route #84 is probably 35-40 % 4 lane divided highway. Traffic is not a problem. You go through little towns and can stop at mom and pop resturants instead of fast food places. Once in Amarillo it is a short jaunt through New Mexico and then into Colorado where your western adventure will begin. Lots of Pronghorn sheep outside of Amarillo headed into New Mexico.
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Old 07-21-2009, 01:27 PM   #5
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Also I might mention that Bill Cody museum in Cody Wyoming is something to see. It has the largest collection of western fire arms and a great art museum and gift store.
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Old 07-21-2009, 01:37 PM   #6
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I agree with the effort to avoid the interstate. We did a similar loop last year from Mississippi, taking I-20 to Lousiana then jumped up to hwy84 and over to Amarillo. A small streach of I-40/RT 66 over to Santa Fe then the state hwys all the way thru the plains of CO and into WY.
From Yellowstone to Mississippi we almost completely avoided the interstate until we hit Monroe Lousiana.
The western roads are nothing like we are used to in the south, few stops, straight and its possible to make pretty good time.

We plan on doing it again next year!
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Old 07-21-2009, 03:24 PM   #7
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How long (timewise) of a trip are you planning?

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Old 08-03-2009, 11:35 PM   #8
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I have made the trip many times --- Atlanta to Nashville, Paducah,KY, StLouis, Kansas City, Lincoln, NE, Ogallala, NE. At Ogallala take hwy 26 to hwy 385. That takes you to Hot Springs, SD and from there to the Black Hills. Interstate 90 takes you past Devils Tower and on into Wyoming. From Cody, WY to the east entrance of Yellowstone is about 50 miles, and Sylvan pass is a steep climb, but not impossible. Out the south entrance toward Jackson is easy. Altanta to Cody in an auto takes 3 days, on a motorcycle 5 days, and at the speed I tow the Airstream, about 5 days.

Once past Kansas City the traffic isn't so bad and the roads (interstates) are better. Going through Texas is the long way, unless you know friends there.
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Old 08-03-2009, 11:43 PM   #9
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Has anyone stayed in the Desert View campground at Grand Canyon NP? It is dry camping with one or two water stations. Any positives (view or the like), any negatives?
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:14 AM   #10
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If you don't mind going a little bit off your route, Flaming Gorge Reservoir in Utah/Wyoming is one of my all time favorite places to visit. There's lots of campgrounds around the lake and the scenery is breathtaking plus it's not as congested as Yellowstone.
"If you come to a fork in the road, take it."
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:32 AM   #11
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After leaving the Rapid City area, going west on I90, you can go to Sheridan WY. The Custer Battlefield is north of Sheridan a little way and if you are a history buff it is well worth the time to drive up and visit. I've been twice and am moved every time I go there. From Sheridan, the road across the Big Horn Mountains is steep, but very beautiful. I have never pulled a trailer over the so can't offer advise there. The Pryor Mountain Wild Mustang preserve is close to Lovell, on the way from Sheridan to Cody (Pryor Mustangs : Hours & Location : Lovell, Wyoming), really interestingl to see the wild horses. Finally, I"ll second the motion on the Buffalo Bill Museum in Cody. It is wonderful. That is alway a must stop for us when we are in the west.

Around the Yellowstone area, I like West Yellowstone when staying on the north side of the park and the Colter Bay area on Lake Jackson on the south. Jackson Hole is too busy and too much traffic for my liking.

Have a good trip.

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georgia, route, winter, yellowstone, jackson rancheria

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