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  1. Default Include Seattle in a Montana trip?

    My daughter and I are spending a week near Helena at a Yoga camp and we would like to spend about another week do other fun things. I'd like to go to Glacier National Park. She would also like to see Seattle. I am wondering if it would make sense to drive from Seattle to Helena and/or to take the train from West Glacier to Seattle. If it is very scenic and not hard driving it could be fun. My current thought is to fly to Seattle; spend a day or so there; fly to Helena where we spend a week; then rent a car a drive up to Glacier. Drive or take the train back to Seattle for a couple of days and then fly home. A multi-city ticket would make more sense, but it is alot more expensive!

    Thanks for all advie.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Have It All

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    It is, I believe, just possible to do almost everything you've asked for. The one exception would be taking the train between Glacier and Seattle. There is AMTRAK service, but it would be $362 for you and your daughter for coach seats and the trip would take nearly a full day (16 and a half hours) even assuming it runs on time. I think you might be far better served by a plan that goes something like the following. I'm going to assume that your Yoga camp is Sunday through Saturday or thereabouts. So - Fly into Seattle on an early flight on Day 1, which will be mid-week before the camp. Spend that evening seeing the city and sampling some night life. Spend all of Day 2 exploring the city and surroundings, maybe take a ferry ride over to the Olympic Peninsula. On Day 3 see any last things you want in Seattle and start the drive east on I-90, maybe spending the night in Spokane (281 miles from Seattle) or Coeur D'Alene (311 miles). On Day 4 (the day before your Yoga camp starts) finish up the drive to Helena - another 300 miles or so.

    After camp, spend Day 5 driving up to Glacier (205 miles to St. Mary) and spend the evening. On the morning of Day 6 continue exploring Glacier and then get a lunchtime start on the drive west, again using either Coeur D'Alene or Spokane as your overnight stop. On Day 7 you end up back in Seattle. So you have 7 days to cover everything both you and your daughter want. If the camp is 5 or 6 days, then you have used a total of only 14 days, including a final day to fly from Seattle to home.

    There are several advantages to this plan. Flights into Seattle will generally be cheaper than into a smaller airport like Helena. You get to return the car to the city where you picked it up, avoiding one-way drop-off charges. No day's driving is much more than 300 miles, mostly on Interstates or US highways, the one exception being one of the most beautiful roads in the world - Going To The Sun Road through Glacier. And you get to see both Seattle and Glacier, not to mention all the gorgeous country in between.


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