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  1. Default Driving in Nov/Dec In Yellowstone,South Dakota, Colorado please help..

    Hello first thread so hope it works..
    Im looking for help in knowing about yellowstone national park.. Whether or not you can get in to see the geyser if/when it is snowing?? I read that only certain entrances are open during those months. If we cant get to see the geyser may have to cancel or go elsewhere. Also mt Rushmore and Badlands then down to Denver then to New Mexico, Do the roads get cleared of snow? Is the weather really bad in nov/dec? Im from Australia so have limited (1yr) snow driving experience, only the driving I have done In Toronto which can be bad but the roads get cleared very well. We will only have a rental car so no 4wd. Just need to know how cold it gets for road safety and if we are better off waiting till the warmer months.??
    Thanks to anyone that is willing to help..

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


    Welcome to the RTA forum!

    Most of Yellowstone is unreachable by car at this time, and many of the other areas you are talking about, while open, will have reduced services or reduced access. It would probably be better to wait until warmer months if that's an option.

    However, if you didn't enjoy Death Valley, frankly, I'm not sure that you'd enjoy any of these places either. Yellowstone is far, far more than a geyser, but it takes a certain appreciation of nature to enjoy it. If you saw Death Valley and all you got out of it was "a long road" and some "salt" I suspect you're looking at a trip that you'd have a whole lot of trouble enjoying.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO



    From the NPS site:

    Fall Road Closures:
    October 11—Roads close to the public at Tower Fall to Canyon Jct. and Long Lake via Beartooth Pass to the Montana Stateline. (GATES CLOSE AT 8 A.M.).
    November 7—all park roads closed to the public at 8 a.m. except from the North Entrance to Upper Mammoth Terrace, and Mammoth via Tower Junction to Northeast Entrance. Cooke City via Colter Pass to the Long Lake gate is not maintained for wheeled vehicle travel.

    Fall weather is unpredictable; roads may be closed temporarily by snow or other weather conditions. Snow tires or chains may be required. Please Note: The section of the Beartooth Highway (Highway 212), between the junction of Highway 296 and Red Lodge, Montana, closes in winter on a schedule determined by amount of snowfall. Travel between Red Lodge and the Northeast Entrance is not possible on Highway 212 until it opens again in the spring.
    I would recommend you wait till the warmer months.

  4. Default

    Thanks Mike, Don't get me wrong I appreciate nature, being from Perth Australia im kinda surrounded by it. Death Valley was 50c it was very hot and arid and maybe the heat clouded my judgements. Is Mt Rushmore/Badlands/Smoky mts still accessable easily during these months? If not I may have to change my plans and stay south.. Thanks again

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Mount Rushmore is open year round, however, many of the other tourist attractions and services will be closed. Roads are maintained year round, but you can certainly good a good snowstorm from time to time. In fact, really the majority of services that remain open in the Black Hills are the ones that are catering to skiiers.

    The badlands are open year round, but certainly can and do see winter storms from time to time. I will say that I love the badlands, but one of the things I love about them is how the landscapes have similarities to Death Valley and the Desert Southwest.

    The Smoky Mountains are in the Southeastern US, so I suspect you are thinking of something else.

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