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  1. Default Planning April trip through Colorado,South Dakota and Wyoming

    Planning a trip for April 2013. Leaving Denver mid April and doing a loop through Rapid city, Cody, Cheyenne and back to Denver. Allowing 5-6 days. Just wondering about driving conditions at this time of the year.

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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    As with any trip, your road conditions will depend far more on the actual conditions and weather events rather than a generic "time of year." While it is certainly the start of spring by the time april rolls around, snow or ice, especially in the higher elevations is not impossible. The big thing is that if you are planning to go into Yellowstone from Cody, you'll find that many of the roads inside the national park don't open up until May.

  3. #3


    If at all possible, I would try to do mid to late May. The chances of bad weather are much less yet you still avoid the high season.

    Don't know if you've set your route yet but, if not, US 14 from Ranchester, WY. through the Bighorn National Forest is a great drive. If you happen to be around Shell, WY at meal time, there is a great little restaurant called Dirty Annie's. If you happen to have a need for lodging around Greybull, WY, there's a nice little Mom & Pop place called The Antler Motel.
    Last edited by Charlie H; 04-25-2012 at 07:45 PM.

  4. Default

    Thanks for the advice, much appreciated. Unfortunately to tie into school break we need to be over there in April. Had looked at the Bighorn area so nice to now it is a to do spot. We will probably look at coming down through there after doing aloop through Rapid city, deadwood, sheridan and cody. Thanks again.

  5. #5


    I understand about having to work around the school year. Didn't know you were traveling with kids. Beause of that, I would recommend taking the Iron Mountain Highway (US 16A) from Keystone, SD to Custer through Custer State Park. It's a great drive with several tunnels and some very unique "pigtail" bridges. The tunnels are laid out in such a way that as you look back through them, they frame Mount Rushmore. Along the way, you'll more than likely run in to some wild burros who loveto fe fed. With a little luck, you'll see a herd of buffalo in Custer St. Park.

  6. Default

    Thanks Charlie H great info to plan around.

  7. #7


    Forgot to mention that no trip to the Badlands NP/Black Hills Area would be complete with out a visit to Wall Drug in Wall, SD.

    Here's a little info on it:
    Wall is the northern gateway to the Badlands National Park, and the home of the block-long Wall Drug Store. In 1936 the owners of this small-town pharmacy, Ted and Dorothy Hustead, came up with an ingenious marketing campaign. Realizing travelers going through the hot, dusty prairie would be thirsty, they put up signs along the highway offering free ice water. Tourists have been stopping there ever since.
    Having had success with small roadside signs, the Husteads began investing in billboards. Wall Drug roadside advertisements appeared across the country. While the 1965 Highway Beautification Act forced the removal of most of these famous billboards, there are still Wall Drug signs beside South Dakota's highways and in many countries overseas. The store is now the principle industry in Wall, employing almost a third of the town's residents.

    I first visited as a small child in 1950 and have watched it progress from a fairly small tourist trap with junky souveneirs to a block long complex. It still has the junky souveneirs but now also has several shops dealing in very nice merchandise. It's also a pretty good place to get a bite to eat as well as a cup of their famous 5 cent coffee.

    I'm quite certain it will stick in the mind of the children for years to come as a high point of the trip as it has stuck in my mind for close to 60 years.

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