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  1. Default Advice on Seattle/Vancouver to Yellowstone/Banff in July - thank you!

    Hello all, thank you in advance for any comments/suggestions.

    My wife and I are from London and looking to visit Seattle/Vancouver and the Rockies in July. We've booked accommodation in the key places (i.e. Vancouver, Seattle, Yellowstone, Banff, Jasper), but that accommodation is currently refundable so we can change our plans if they are unrealistic. We like driving as long as the roads are decent and there aren't too many narrow, winding mountain passes - happy to drive for up to 8 hours a day. We fly in and out of Vancouver, want to be in Seattle for the 4th of July celebrations, have 2 weeks total and ideally would like to see Yellowstone as well as the Canadian Rockies, because we are unlikely to come back to the region just to see Yellowstone.

    I put the trip below together based on a number of other threads, but the main thing I'm not sure about is the driving distance. Some people think that 2 days for Seattle-Yellowstone and 2 days for Yellowstone-Banff is fine; also, some people think that the amount of time we will spend in Yellowstone, Banff and Jasper is OK as a minimum for visiting these regions - however, other people say that 2 days for these legs is not enough and that you should focus more days on each park. If this trip could work then it would be great as it would mean that we could visit Yellowstone and Banff/Jasper - however, if it is unrealistic then it would be good to know in advance!

    Finally, any tips for stopping places on the Seattle-Yellowstone and Yellowstone-Banff drive would be appreciated - we were thinking Missoula or Butte on the Seattle-Yellowstone drive and Great Falls on the Yellowstone-Banff drive.

    ˇ Friday 3rd July land in Vancouver (PM)
    ˇ Sa 4 drive to Seattle
    ˇ Su 5 Seattle
    ˇ M 6 drive to Missoula(?)
    ˇ Tu 7 drive to Yellowstone
    ˇ W 8 Yellowstone
    ˇ Th 9 morning in Yellowstone and drive to Great Falls(?)
    ˇ F 10 drive to Banff
    ˇ Sa 11 Banff
    ˇ Su 12 drive to Jasper via Lake Louise
    ˇ M 13 Jasper
    ˇ Tu 14 drive towards Vancouver (perhaps stop in Clearwater)?
    ˇ W 15 arrive Vancouver (PM) and stay before flight out on Saturday morning

    Thanks again,
    Karl and Hannah

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Realistic.

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    You will get differing opinions from people as it's 'different strokes for different folks' and thats the beauty of the road trip, getting to do what works for you ! The first thing to remember is that the US is huge and distances are great, although generally easier to cover than in the UK. An example of this is when you say " visiting Yellowstone while in the region" when it is 750 miles from Seattle and nearly 650 to Banff. It's fine as long as you know what you are getting yourself into, and Yellowstone is a place that really needs 3 or 4 days just to get around and see the highlights, so you haven't got a heck of a lot of time there for the investment in mileage. You certainly have time to do what you have planned and it will be an amazing trip, it's about 4 days dedicated to driving which isn't bad at all over 2 weeks. Your stops look reasonable to me, you could even push a little further than Missoula, perhaps Deer lodge to put you closer to Yellowstone. Although that would put you 'in the saddle' for around 10 hours with stops.

    Book Yellowstone lodgings asap, you may already have a few problems getting a good choice.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default The Icefields Parkway

    The distance from Banff to Jasper is relatively short, and easily driven in a day.... but you will miss a lot. There are side trips to watewfalls and scenic viewpoints. The first time I drove it in a couple of hours. The second time did it over two days. I don't know what accommodation there is along the way, other than camping, but it is so wonderful driving through the Rockies there, that it would be a pity to rush it.

    Stop of at Atabasca Glacier and the visitor centre. Don't miss the lovely little walk to Atabasca Falls.


  4. Default

    Thank you both for your replies! They were extremely helpful - we really appreciate it.

    Karl and Hannah

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