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  1. Default family road trip from so cal to Yellowstone National Park

    I would be grateful for any advice: my family -my husband and myself and our 9 children (ages 15-2) are driving an RV from Los Angeles area to Yellowstone Nat'l Park. We have 10 days. We would like to head straight to Yellowstone for about 4 days and on way home, visit national parks in Utah, Grand Canyon, and Hoover Dam. We would appreciate any advice on what to see in Yellowstone or other places. Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Welcome to RTA!

    When is this trip? I ask because Yellowstone starts going into winter mode in about 2 weeks from now. The roads will be open, but many of the facilities (restaurants, shops) will be closed by Sept. 20th. By early October, Most of the facilities will be closed and the roads will start to close. Yellowstone is at high elevation, so the passes (like Dunraven Pass) will close first and make access difficult. Yellowstone itself is open year-round, but only if you have a snowmobile pass after mid-October. The only road open year round is the northern road that goes from Gardiner MT over to Cooke City, which happens to go through the Lamar Valley (but that's not where the thermal features are; that's where the wolves and bison are.) Also, because Yellowstone is a popular park, you will still need campground reservations/Fishing Bridge RV park reservations.

    Now -- LA to West Yellowstone, MT (the west entrance to YNP), by the shortest route, is 1000 miles. In an RV, that is a good 2-1/2 day drive (400 miles a day). Then your 4 days in the park. So there is 6-1/2 days of your 10. You could go from Yellowstone to Moab in one day, but it would be a VERY long day on the road, then leave a day for Arches: there's 8-1/2 days. It will take you two days to go home from Moab. Either you need more time, or to cut back your trip a little.

    If your trip is in October, you might want to focus on the Utah parks and save Yellowstone for a summer trip.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    I have to ask - how can you legally and safely drive a RV with 11 people? All passengers must be in seats with seat belts or for the younger ones, approved carriers.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Safety first.

    Following on from glc, do you own the RV, or will you be renting?

    Mo reputable rental company would allow you to take passengers for which the RV does not have a seat and seatbelt.

    Contrary to what some believe, children cannot be allowed to play, nor sleep while the RV is moving. This is the law in every State. But even if it were not the law, would you risk the life and wellbeing of your children in an unforeseen moment. Even hard braking could see them thrown about in the RV, and sustain life threatening injuries


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