Been doing some research/lurking and reading some existing posts, as we are in the process of planning a 2013 trip to Yellowstone, Tetons, etc. from the east coast.
The problem I'm having is determining the length of stay at certain places, and possibly missing some must see areas.
Tentatively, our game plan is this:
1) We want to stay off the interstates as must as possible, and do
our traveling on scenic highways.
2) Planning on going the last week of May and the first two weeks
3) First overnite stop will be in the Youngstown Ohio area (1 nite)
4) Second overnite stop in the Kankakee, Illinois area (1 nite)
5) Third overnite stop Sioux Falls, S.D. (1 nite)
6) Fourth night in Hot Springs S.D. area, see Crazy Horse, Mt.
Rushmore, Custer S. P., leave and head thru Deadwood, Devils
Tower and on to Cody Wy. (3 days?)
7) Leave Cody and get on the Bear tooth hwy on the way to YNP.
8) Planning on staying in West Yellowstone at Grizzly RV park and
using this as our home base for exploring the park. (5 days?)
9) Leave West Yellowstone and head to the Tetons. (4 days?)
10) 4 days home
Am I missing something? To many or not enough days in places?
Any ideas, comments or places to stay/boondock or see would be
What a trip report this will make!
Rick and Kim
2007 AF 1140, 2.5KW Onan, 300 watts solar, Trimetric, 2 Lifeline GPL-31T's, 1000w inverter, rear deck, Turbo/Maxx fans, all LED
2007 Dodge Ram Quad, DRW, 6.7L-CTD, EB, Air-Lifts w on board air, Hellwig,
Stable Loads, Rancho 9000's, Tork-lifts and fast-guns
You are little early. It's still pretty cool with even snow at the higher elevations and cool nights.
There are little people for much of the stretch, so most interstates are pretty scenic. It's the time of year that maintenance is done to the highways and interstates for that matter. I don't think you want to be stuck on the backroads with slow traffic and gravel to drive through.
Be very careful about where you can get supplies and fuel along the way. There are long stretches with little supplies.
'06 F350 Lariat Supercab SRW, 6.0 PSD 4x4 Long Bed, Intake Elbow, Walker Big Truck Muffler. '06 Host Rainer 950 Double Slide, Fastguns. Firestone Air Bags, Rancho 9000s, Vision 19.5s with Hankook DH-01 245s, Energy Suspension bump stops.
I toured the whole country from Mass to LA and back again while seeing a lot of what you are talking about seeing in three weeks. It can be done for sure! Wish I spent more time in Yellowstone though. Make sure if you hit route 16 at night you have had enough sleep! Along with all the deer and other creatures I saw, I was on the verge of falling asleep... i just had no idea where it was safe to stop for the night so i kept going. Coming over the mountains and down through the gorge was awesome but at some point I reached a gravel section of road going over a small mountain and on the other side all I could see were gas flares in the woods and my mind could not understand it. Kind of freaked me out. Anyways, good luck!
1) We want to stay off the interstates as must as possible, and do our traveling on scenic highways>> Makes no sense to me. You would rather spend your time driving some 2-lane across Iowa than a 2-lane thru Lamar Valley?
2) Planning on going the last week of May and the first two weeks of June >> Perfect to avoid crowds. All park roads will be open; weather will be cool with showers (mostly liquid) and thunder storms. BTH may be closed.
7) Leave Cody and get on the Bear tooth hwy on the way to YNP. >> BTH doesn’t run between Cody and the park. Chief Joseph Highway does. BTP is more of a side road you drive out, turn around and come back.
8) Planning on staying in West Yellowstone at Grizzly RV park and using this as our home base for exploring the park. (5 days?) >> that RV park is right in town. Yellowstone is a BIG place. You would be better off staying in a couple of separate locations
9) Leave West Yellowstone and head to the Tetons. (4 days10) 4 days home >> unless you are fishing, hiking, ect, you can see the Tetons in two days.
Am I missing something? To many or not enough days in places? >> you need more time in Yellowstone. Skip are the flatland back roads, hammer down in the interstate, one day to see Wall Drug, Badlands & Rushmore, 7-8 eight days at two separate locations in Yellowstone, 1 day for BTH (late in the trip for road conditions), 2 days at Tetons, 1 day thru the Snowy Range on the way back vis southern route, start planning your trip back for everthing you didn’t have time to do.
Internet forums only exist to serve their members; never the other way around.
1996 Lance 500 and 2006 F-350 PSD 4X4 DRW Our Truck Camper Photos
You're going at the best time to see wildlife. We like staying outside the park in forest service campgrounds or, boondocking. We then drive back and forth from one entrance to another to avoid backtracking. It shouldn't be too crowded inside the park as it's the beginning of the season. I don't know what your travel style is but 7 days in Yellowstone and Grand Teton would be about our limit before we start getting bored. Good luck and take lots of pictures
07.5' Dodge 3500 DRW 4x4 L/B Cummins
08 Arctic Fox 990
(2) KLX 400's and a flotilla of small boats
I have to agree with a lot of BradW's points. I've burned 3 weeks going to Yellowstone a number of times with a little sightseeing along the way. And it's only a 1000 mile trip for me.
I avoid interstates, too, and take two lanes most of the time. But where you're coming from I think I'd use a lot of freeway until I got out west to save the time for the more scenic areas.
8 or 9 days in Yellowstone-Tetons is reasonable to get a good taste of the area though I think you'll find it wasn't really long enough. Yellowstone is a big park, I put 400 miles on inside the park last trip.So it's to your advantage to stay inside the park to reduce the driving. If you can dry camp you'll have a lot of flexibility where you stay and can move if you want. If you must have hookups Fishing Bridge is your only option, it resembles a parking lot but is inside the park. Teton is the same, there's one cg with hookups.
Regardless, that will be quite a trip and I'm sure you;ll be back for more.
We did this trip from the Buffalo NY area in 2 weeks plus the weekends on both ends. We hit the interstates both ways so figure 3 days out and 3 days home. Longish days, but when you stay at Flying J's why get in early??
Things you may want to see are the bad lands - we wanted to stay at Sage Creek and boy was it worth it. I woke up at 5 in the morning to see a big bull buffalo sander down the camp road maybe 20 yards from the camper, and then rub against the camp sign.
We also had a great visit to the Minute Man Silo near the entrance to the Badlands Park.
Devil's Tower is a better stop by a long way over Crazy Horse.
Drive thru Custer Park to see the buffalo herds, and if you are in a toad you can get a view of Rushmore from the one-lane tunnels coming up to Mt Rushmore from the south.
We will be going back, but we will be spending a couple of months in the area next time around.
24'Class C TIoga Montera
1996 Jayco pop-up TC
I to am leaving next week for a 4 weeks trip in my TC. I told the lady going with me to pick out a the places she wanted to see and we would play the rest by ear. No interstate or place or time that you have to be somewhere will make a much more enjoyable trip than worring about being somewhere at a certin time.. good luck and happy traveling on your trip...
2003 Four Winds Infinity 37'
2011 Lance 855
3.5# Minpin named Darcy
Ford F250 Super Duty