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  1. Default UT, CO, SD, MT, WY Road trip

    We have mapped out our road trip for 2007. We are visiting the following places....

    Livingston, MT-attraction: Yellowstone National Park

    Moab, UT-attractions: Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park, and Dead Horse State Park. We have been there before and done a Hummer tour as well as gone ATVing...would like to do something different. Ideas?

    Castlerock, CO- attractions: the Florissant fossil beds, Georgetown Railroad and the Silver Mine

    Rapid City, SD- attractions: Mount Rushmore, the Black Hills, Wind Cave, Custer State Park

    We are taking a month to travel from BC, Canada through all these areas and I'd appreciate any tips or recommendations on places to visit. We have an 11 year old pre-teen with us and we are very much 'nature' people. We enjoy ghost towns, caves, parks, dinosaur fossils, rockhounding, etc.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default So many possibilities..

    Welcome to the RTA forum!

    Have you visited Dinosaur NP or Mesa Verde yet? I think you would enjoy both of those places in Western Colorado. I also think there is a pretty decent dinosaur themed museum in Grand Junction, if you are looking for something a little low key.

    In South Dakota, in addition to Wind Cave, there is also Jewel Cave, but I haven't been to either of them. I would also check out the Badlands when you are in that area.

    I know Moab is famous for its Mountain Biking, perhaps you could try renting some bikes if you are looking for a little adventure in that area.

  3. #3

    Default Moab

    Seems to me Moab is a little like Vegas in a way. You can do pretty much anything you want to there which is related to outdoor sports. Skydiving, hiking, rafting, off roading, etc. This site has links to a lot of possibilities

    Monument Valley isn't far from Moab, either, if you've not been there yet it's a 'must-see'

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Central California

    Default Georgetown RR


    Sorry to say the Georgetown RR is not operating any more. Something to do with fees and finances caused them to shut down.

    The Durango to Silverton RR and the Cumbres & Toltec RR are both steam trains but are pretty long trips and require most of a day to ride. The Cripple Creek & Victor RR is a 45 minute ride through the old mining district. There is also the Molly Kathleen mine tour in Cripple Creek that has been there for years (though I haven't taken it).

    Another very interesting fossil site is the mammoth fossil bed in Hot Springs, SD, south of the black hills. Dozens of mammoths have been uncovered there in what must have been a huge die-off.

    Craig Sheumaker
    Co-author of America's Living History - The Early Years
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 05-28-2007 at 10:02 AM. Reason: added links to the RTA articles about these trains

  5. #5


    Sounds like a great trip planned.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Central California

    Default Florissant Fossil Beds

    Hi, again,

    I'll admit it has been some time since we visited the fossil beds, but I remember them being fossils of plants, almost exclusively. As I recall, most of the fossils are cross-sections of stems (kind of like tree rings) and maybe a few leaves. If that is what you are after, you're going to the right place, but if you want dinosaurs, look elsewhere. At least that is my recollection. Perhaps someone else has more recent information.


  7. Default UT, CO, SD, MT, and WY Trip

    Hi everyone,

    My family (two adults, 1 child) do a 3-4 week long road trip through the USA every summer. I am looking for some tips on places that we intend to visit this year, as I can't find much information way up here in Canada. We are the type of family that prefers outdoor adventures, national parks, history, trains, ghost towns, mines, hiking, ATV tours, rockhounding, Native American culture, etc. I could use some tips on places like:

    Colorado-we have plans to see the Florissant Fossil Beds, Georgetown Railroad (with the silver mine tour at the end), and Black Canyon of the Gunnison. We will be around the Castlerock/Denver area for awhile

    South Dakota-Plan to see Mount Rushmore, Custer State Park, and Wind Cave as well as the Black Hills (and catch Devil's tower somewhere along there)

    Utah-going to stay around Salt Lake City and want to see Union Station in Ogden, with the museums. We also are going to Moab and going to see Arches, Canyonlands National parks.

    Montana/Wyoming-visiting Yellowstone National Park.

    Any great out of the way places to see, eat, shop, or hike? We'd like to know. Thanks in advance!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Packed Already, But...

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    You seam to have a pretty good idea of where to go and what to wee, but I can offer a few suggestions for things to add to your already packed itinerary. While working out of Denver, take a day or two and head up to Estes Park and see Rocky Mountain National Park, perhaps with some stops at the Stanley Hotel or a stroll down Pearl Street in Boulder. You might also think about a drive to the top of Pikes Peak or a visit to the US Air Force Academy, both near Colorado Springs.

    As for South Dakota, the best recommendations I have would be culled from this report by intrepid traveller, Peter Thody. In the area of Utah you plan to be visiting, by all means make the trek to Dinosaur National Monument outside Vernal, see if you can be in Salt Lake City early on a Sunday morning and attend the weekly concert of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and try to get up into southwestern Wyoming to visit Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area.


  9. Default

    Oops, I forgot that I had already posted about the trip :P

    Thanks for all the info! The website for the Georgetown Loop Railroad says that the opening for 2007 was delayed until June 15th and they are taking reservations. Maybe I'll give them a call. We have been to Moab before so that area we have pretty well covered for information and yes, we've seen Mesa Verde (loved it!) and Monument Valley.

    We had originally planned to see Dinosaur National Monument, but the Park Services site says that the Visitor's Center is closed. So we had decided to drive through Black Canyon of the Gunnison. However, if the Georgetown loop train is no longer running we may change our route and go through Durango and do the train there, then drive up to Castle Rock that way.

    We've also decided to see the Badlands, Wind Cave, and Jewel Cave in SD.

    I'd really like all the advice you guys can give me on the Black Hills, Colorado, and Yellowstone. :)

  10. Default

    Actually the Georgetown Loop Railroad is in operation. I visited their website and e-mailed them, and made reservations today.

    We have also decided to go with Farabees in Moab and rent a jeep for a day.

    Does anyone know anything about zip line operators in any of those states? That is another thing we'd like to do.

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