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  1. Default Planning a trip to Grand Tetons and either UT or CO 9/2016

    Hi Everyone,

    My husband and I are planning a trip out West this upcoming September for 10 days. We are planning on spending the first 3 days in the Grand Tetons. I am debating whether to go along the western part of Colorado and ending our trip in Mesa Verde or going into Utah and ending our trip in Zion National Park. Does anyone have any recommendations on which route would be best? I would love to hike in the San Juan National Park on Colorado, but Zion also looks beautiful.. Thanks for the help!

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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    There really is no right or wrong when it comes to this kind of question. It really depends upon what you're looking for - and you're probably best off spending some quality time looking at the National Parks website comparing the parks (although note, San Juan is a National Forest, not a National Park, and there is some difference there).

    What are the logistics of your plan? I'm guessing you're flying out west from somewhere? Ending in Zion would put you closer to Vegas, which would probably mean cheaper and easier flight options than Mesa Verde, where your closest large airport is Albuquerque.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Win win !

    Michael is right that there are no right or wrong answers and it's your decision to make, but if it were me I would head to Zion without doubt. Depending on the pace you want to travel at and how long you want to spend in Zion, you could also visit a number of other parks, choosing another one such as Bryce canyon which isn't far away, or heading south through Rock Springs past Flaming Gorge to Vernal and on to Arches NP near Moab UT. Then you could drive UT24/scenic 12 through Capital Reef NP to Bryce and Zion. Don't get me wrong, the Colorado option is amazing as well and the drive on the 'San Juan skyway' through mountain towns like Telluride, Ouray and Silverton is amazing, plus you have the Durango-Silverton railroad which is a spectacular train journey.

    Ooops, I now realise that hasn't made the decision any easier !

  4. Default

    Hey guys, Thanks for the feedback! We are thinking of flying into Jackson hole and starting the trip in the tetons. I am kinda bummed about how much it costs to fly into that airport, but it seems that is the closest to fly into. I am thinking of then going down through Utah and hiking in the parks there with the main objective of making it to zion. I would really like to hike subway canyon there. Has anyone done that hike before? I have a decent amount of hiking experience, but the only rappelling experience I have is from an indoor rock climbing place by my house. Do you think I'd be able to handle the hike? I am than thinking of flying out of Las Vegas. How do you guys think that sounds? I am looking for a route that would provide the best opportunity for hiking. Thanks for your help!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Have You Considered?

    I can't say for sure since I don't know where you're starting from or what your dates of travel are, but you should probably look at buying round-trip plane tickets into Las Vegas. From there you can buy a one-way ticket on Allegiant Air to Idaho Falls ID for somewhere around $100 or less. They don't fly every day of the week and their pricing structure is 'unbundled' which means that you pay for 'extras' like seat assignment and baggage (even carry-on) but the base fares start as low as $38. Idaho Falls is only 100 miles from Jackson Hole Airport via some very scenic roads.


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