We use AARP for some discounts and for vehicle insurance but little else. In fact, if it weren't for the insurance and some lodging discount, I would not be a member of AARP as I don't believe the managers of AARP listen to their members, opting to go their own way regardless of the feelings of their members.
A few years ago, first week of June, we took a couple of our grandsons to Jackson Lake for a week and traveled to Yellowstone one day for sightseeing. While we were there it did snow on us, but not a great deal and we only had on light coats as the weather was fine overall. By the way, it also snowed at Jackson Lake as well, getting up one morning with an inch or two on the ground. Not a big deal as it soon melted off and we went fishing and had a great time. Don't let the threat of a little bad weather deter you from taking a trip that you will remember for a lifetime.
People that are around Old Faithful in the winter don't drive there. They either come in from West Yellowstone or the South entrance by snow coach or snowmobile, or some of them come in on cross country skis or snowshoes. No driving of vehicles in that part of the Park during the winter. We have taken snowmobile trips into the Park twice, once to Canyon and once to Old Faithful and it certainly is worth the price of admission. Just spectacular!!!!
I see no reason that you can't use the View. My crew-cab pickup is over 22' long and we have never had a real problem finding a place to park it when sightseeing in Yellowstone, even during the busy parts of the summer like July. Go for it. But, you simply cannot boondock.
We looked at a used Highlander and drove it a year ago. It wasn't set up for towing and was not a higher end one. I then drove a used VW V-6 Touareg and really liked it. It is rated to tow about 7,700 pounds, has an eight-speed automatic. We hooked it up to our 3,500 boat and towed it to the lake about 75 miles each way and the vehicle didn't even breath hard there and back. Towed the boat as if it wasn't there and had no trouble pulling the boat and trailer out of the lake up a pretty steep ramp. On top of that, it registered 14 mpg on the console, which I know can be a bit off but I was impressed with the towing capability of this vehicle. If you can find a good used gas one around, you might consider taking a look at it to see what you think.
The Snowy Range road is a beautiful trip and one well worth taking. Shouldn't be any problem with a trailer as the road is pretty good and the scenery is beautiful. Make sure you stop near the top at Mirror Lake and take a hike.
We stayed at Yosemite Lakes, about five miles from the Park entrance. Not the greatest park, but full hook-up and the price was fairly reasonable for a full hook-up. I don't remember what the rating was.
I noticed that nobody talked about this, but if you are planning on going from Yellowstone/Grand Teton to northern Colorado, you might consider going out the south entrance of Grand Teton down to Dubois, there's a nice FS campground about 20 miles out of Dubois toward Grand Teton where you could park for a night. Then a trip down to Lander to Sleeping Bear RV Park. Stop for the night and take in Sinks Canyon where the river goes into a cavern and then re-surfaces about 1/4 mile downstream. Then up over the switchbacks and over to the South Pass highway, No. 28 and over to South Pass and Atlantic City (the towns) and then on down past Red Canyon with its beautiful red walls and contrasting greenery and views of over 100 miles toward the north. You can also go to see the Mormon, Pony Express and Oregon Trails in a very historic part of the Westward expansion. After that, it's a short hop down to Rawlins and into northern Colorado.
Acampingwewillgo, Colter Bay campground has some electric-only sites that are primarily reserved for folks with disabilities, but we were able to get one a few years ago when we had family visiting us there and last summer a friend with a motor home was able to get a site even though no disability. I think there are about 10 of these sites in the loop and I'll bet you'll be able to get one in August.
From the South Entrance of Yellowstone to the Moran entrance to Grand Teton is about 45 miles and about an hour. However, it is about 15 minutes to the entrance to Grand Teton, but it takes a while longer to get to Jackson Lake, Leeks Marina and around the corner to Colter Bay with its general store, grocery store, restaurants and marina where you can get a cruise on the lake for a wondrous trip. We go to Colter Bay, usually three times each summer to fish Jackson and sightsee both Grand Teton and Yellowstone. If a person were to stay at Colter Bay, it's about 45 minutes to the South entrance to Yellowstone so we just get up a little earlier than usual and drive to Yellowstone for the day. Usually see a lot of what we want and then get back to our Fifth Wheel for a late dinner. I know most of the folks say that Yellowstone is too big to take a trip that way, but it works for us as the Colter Bay campground is a very nice place to stay while we fish the lake.
There is a Forest Service Campground about 20 miles outside of Dubois towards Grand Teton that was recently fixed up a bit. Might consider taking a look at that one as well. It's just around the corner from the turnoff to Brooks Lake.
I second or third the idea of driving to Laramie through Fort Collins and then I-80 to Rawlins. Turn right at Rawlins and go to Lander and stop at the Sleeping Bear Campground. Then go up to the Sinks in Sinks Canyon and over to the rise to see some of the bigger trout you will ever see. Then, the next day on to Dubois, over Togwotee Pass for that first time flew of the Tetons, down to Moran Junction, through Grand Teton National Park and on to your Destination in Yellowstone. From Lander to Moran Junction is about 2 1/2 hours so you will have plenty of time to get to Yellowstone. Great scenery and a pretty easy drive all around if you take this route.
We converted our bathtub/shower to a shower only a while ago in another house. Had them take out the jet tub as we didn't use it much at all. They then put in a pan, covered with tile, tile up the walls and then a glass brick wall from the shower head to about 1 1/2 feet from the entry area. That way we didn't have to have doors or curtains. Worked great and didn't miss the tub at all.
If you drop down to the Colter Bay campground fairly early, 9:30 to 10:30 in the morning, you will generally have your pick of good spots. They have water at two places as you pull into the campground and do have some sites with electricity, though mostly for folks who are disadvantaged and need electricity. Some of those spots are available for non-disadvantaged folks as well. We come up to Colter Bay from our home three hours away and have, with one exception, always gotten a spot. Sometimes, we are assigned a spot but drive around and find something we like better. If you are willing to camp dry, the Colter Bay campground is a great place, we usually stay there for a week at a time, three times during the summer so we can fish Jackson Lake. Great place to eat is Leeks Pizza at the Leeks Marina. Great pizza, beer and views to die for. If you can't get into Colter Bay, Gros Ventre is about 45 minutes away, much closer to Jackson and very easy to find a spot. On to of that, since you would be close to Jackson, drop in to Jackson one evening and take in the Bar J Wranglers dinner and show. It's worth the trip every time. You would need to call them to reserve tickets, but not a big deal. Very fair price for a decent dinner and a two-hour show of music and comedy.
I noticed a couple of folks complained about the "animal jams" in the Park. While Yellowstone itself is spectacular, the animals are very intriguing as well. If it is so important that a person "scream" through the park and not take the time to look at as many of the features, including animals, why do they even go to Yellowstone? I have never been in a two hour "animal jam" but in plenty of 15-30 minutes one and I wouldn't trade one of them for the ability to get through the Park as fast as possible. Go to the Park and enjoy all that it has to offer, which is a lot.
Don't want to hijack this thread, but when putting the two 6-volt batteries in a FW, does a person have to worry about changing out the converter to accommodate the 6-volt batteries? Just wondering because my 12-volts are, I think, nearing the end of their lives and am wondering what to replace them with.
We "cut the cable" about eight months ago and haven't really regretted it that much. We were paying about $210 per month for tv, phone and internet. We bought four in-house antennas, two Roku 4's, a blu-ray player and a smart tv. The Roku's will play 4HD, but that's wasted on the tvs that we have them on as they are older and don't get 4HD but we really like them. The blu-ray player is on one set and it turns the set into a semi-smart tv as well. The only real problem is that, where we live, we only get two networks, CBS and ABC, and two PBS channels. So, NBC and Fox are out, but you can get them on the Rokus, etc., usually with a one-day delay. We already were subscribed to Netflix and Prime from Amazon so when figuring out what I am now paying for cutting the cable, I don't consider those. Our bill is not about $74 per month, tack on the Hulu subscription and we are up to $83 per month. A pretty goodly amount of savings per month and with that savings, we paid for the hardware, Roku, blu-ray and antennas in about three months. Just looked the entertainment cost of the cable compared to our current set-up and so far we have dropped our entertainment bill by half this year. As I said, almost no regrets, other than football not on CBS or ABC, but I subscribed to a live feed called livetvweb.net for $30 for the year and can get any football game I want to watch, most of the time. Good luck with your search and don't be afraid to do it. I went Roku, but I think the other are good as well, Amazon Fire Stick, Apple TV, etc. Didn't go with those due to some of the streaming limitations that I thought they might have.