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  1. Default Minneapolis-Rushmore-Colorado Rockies-Omaha-Minneapolis Loop

    Here is the rough plan of my summer roadtrip. As you can see, this is a tight schedule, covering a pretty long distance. I'd like to know if this is a feasible plan. I have never done a trip this long.

    Day 1: Minneapolis to Chamberlain (Overnight in Chamberlain)
    Day 2: Chamberlain-Badlands-Wall Drug-Mt Rushmore-Rapid City (Overnight in Rapid City)
    Just want to stop and linger in the Badlands but won't spend that much time. Stop briefly in Wall Drug. I know this day looks quite tight.

    Day 3: Rapid City-Needles Highway (if not done in Day 2)-Loveland, CO (overnight in or near Loveland)
    Day 4: Loveland-Rocky Mountain National Park (Overnight near Grand Lake or somewhere inside the park)
    Day 5: Rocky Mountain National Park-Georgetown-Pikes Peak (if too late in the day that the Peak is closed, then visit in Day 6) (overnight in Colorado Springs)
    Day 6: Colorado Springs-Denver (stop and linger) -North Platte, NE (overnight in North Platte)
    Day 7: North Platte-Des Moines (overnight in Des Moines)
    On this day, probably stop briefly in Lincoln and Omaha and see a few things
    Day 8: Des Moines-Minneapolis
    On this day, see Des Moines for about 2 hours before heading back.

    Are there too many long days of driving?
    Does the plan accommodate enough time for Mt. Rushmore, Badlands, and the Rocky Mountain National Park, the three most important destinations of this trip?
    I'm most interested in mountains and lakes, so the Colorado part is the most important. Should I spend more days in the Rocky Mountain National Park?
    Are there any scenic train journeys I'm missing here?

    Thanks. Really appreciated it!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Not Bad at All

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    None of our driving days is too long, maybe eight hours at most. That certainly leaves plenty of time for as couple of fairly short stops at places of interest along the way. You could always spend more time in the Rocky Mountain Park area, but a full day will do it justice. Taking time away from the rest of your trip is simply robbing Peter to pay Paul. However, the drive to the top of Pikes Peak may be a bit of a problem. You may want to consider taking the cog railway to the top rather than driving. Although not far in miles, it will be slow going both up and down, If you don't manage to fit it in on Day 5, I don't think you can fit it in on Day 6 and still get to North Platte, especially since you'll want to stop at a few of the many unique rock formations (Chimney Rock, Court House Rock, etc. that mark the old Oregon Trail.


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