On our first western trip July-Sept., we are going from Black Hills to Yellowstone, where some family will join us there and at Glacier NP and then we'll head to Banff NP and west to Vancouver. DH wants us to at least get into Idaho. So, it appears we could go to Tetons and across to Idaho Falls and then north and into Yellowstone from western side to at least get a little Idaho for a day or so. Any suggestions??
The trip you mention is certainly possible but it's VERY tame country compared to going through Yellowstone. Mostly just rolling hills up until you're almost to West Yellowstone Montana. Not Unpleasant scenery but nothing at all like on the Wyoming side of the range. I believe much of the way is through part of the Snake River Plane.
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I would visit Tetons first, then up to Yellowstone. Leave Yellowstone through West Yellowstone, MT. This is the West Entrance. A few miles down that highway will take you to Island Park, ID. This is a nice place to visit! http://www.islandparkidaho.com Mesa Falls is beautiful, and we saw a black bear on the road that takes you there. You can also visit the mouth of the Snake River at Big Springs. Then you could head up north via 191 or 287 up to 90 and on to Glacier. The road from idaho falls to west yellowstone is pretty uneventful. If staying overnight, Red Rock RV is a nice place with reasonable rates and well off the hwy down a rock road in part. There are more convenient parks right on hwy20 for an overnight.
about 15 miles south of West Yellowstone, there is an Idaho State Park called Henry's Lake State Park, sitting on the lake with mountains all around it.
the park is clean and the facilities very good. Elec hookups are available. There's a good laundrymat nearby.
We use this campground as our base for viewing Yellowstone, but we've taken some day trip drives in the area.
For the Tetons, you need to get over there and stay in the Teton valley area, either down by Jackson at Gros Ventre campground in the park or up the valley at Colter Bay campground. At Colter Bay there is also an rv park with hookups if you need it.
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I agree with Kaarsti's route. The drive from Jackson WY north to Yellowstone is beautiful, with great views of the Tetons.
At Island Park, there's a road going west that climbs to the top of Sawtell Mountain for a great view of the surroundings. The road is paved for a half mile or so, then gravel for the remaining 2 or 3 miles.
North into Montana, if you take US 287, watch along the north shore of Hebgen Lake for a small diner/bar nestled among some newer condos; I had the best mushroom swiss burger ever at that place last summer. Wish I could recall the name of the place. Tell 'em it's your first time, and walk out onto the deck for a good view of the lake; they'll make your visit memorable.
You're giving me more to think about--just as I hoped. Thanks. Will re-look at the map and do some more deciding. What decisions we have to make on this trip--so much to see and how to choose? Appreciate these and any other suggestions.
After Yellowstone and the Tetons, everything is going to seem plain. Craters of the Moon is a good idea. Mesa Falls, near Ashton, ID is nice. Another scenic route is along the backside of the Tetons, through Tetonia and Swan Valley. All very tame after Yellowstone though.
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