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  1. Default Driving son to college Minneapolis to Portland

    Want this to be a trip to remember for my son.
    Any tips, points of interest or must see or do is welcomed.
    I have only driven east, first time going west.
    Would love to hit Glacier National Park but it appears to be too far off our route.
    Traveling with my mother (72), the kid (18) and yours truly (50) oh and my little dog too (6).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default That Depends on the Route

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    It is amazingly easy when planning a cross-country route, especially when using computer-based mapping routines, to think that the only or even the best routes stick to the Interstates. That's not always the case and a drive across the northern plains is a good case in point. Even the two-lane roads have relatively high speed limits, are flat and straight for the most part, have excellent sight lines for passing, and go through few small towns that seriously slow you down. MT-200 through central Montana and US-2 across northern Montana are two great examples of such under-appreciated through roads. And either would bring you a lot closer to Glacier NP. My own recommendation would be to take I-94 to Glendive MT and from there use MT-200S/MT-13 up to US-2 west to Glacier. But use Going to the Sun Road through the park rather than US-2. Then drop back down to I-90 using US-2/US-93/MT-28/MT-200(east!)/MT-135. That only adds about 120 miles and two hours to the shortest possible all-Interstate route, takes you through the heart of Glacier NP, and lets you see some of the 'real' Big Sky Country.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Best way from I-90 to Portland is US-395 south to I-82 EAST to I-84 west.

    Your only issue with taking Buck's recommended route is finding reasonably priced lodging in western ND or eastern MT due to the oil boom. This drive can be done in 4 days, including most of a day at Glacier. I'd probably plan on the first day being a bit short, stopping in Bismarck, or a bit long, stopping in Glendive. East of Glacier, I'd stay in Shelby, west of Glacier I'd stay in Kalispell.

  4. #4


    My wife and I just completed a trip to Glacier NP. You might have a problem with Going To The Sun Road, as there are wildfires on the east end near St Mary. If so, use the US-2 bypass and go up from West Glacier to Logan Pass and back. That is what we did and the drive was great.

    On the way from Glacier NP to Missoula, where you pick up I-90, stop along Flathead Lake and look at the largest clearwater lake in America - and I mean "clear" all the way to the bottom!

    Don't miss the Columbia River Gorge near Portland, one of the most scenic 40-mile drives in America. It includes at least a dozen waterfalls, including Multnomah Falls, my favorite. Start that day trip at Vista House on Crown Point, and don't miss the drive up nearby Larch Mountain Road to the wonderful overlook at the top that on a clear day features five mountain views, Mount Rainier, Mount St Helens, Mount Adams, Mount Hood and Mount Jefferson.

    Be sure to check out the Map Wizard on this website for roadtrip attractions along your route, too. There are several that are worth a short detour along the way.

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