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  1. Default Need A Yellowstone Expert

    Hi All!

    I'm going through Yellowstone in June, 2009 and haven't been there since I was a kid so I need some help.

    First - see link here

    I am starting and camping for the first night at #5 - Bridge Bay Campground. I will not arrive at YNP until late afternoon, so I'm guessing I will not be able to do much except set up camp and get settled.

    My question starts with this - EXCLUDING #7, can I make a circle tour of the other 9 attractions in the park in 2 days? Also, which way do I go, clockwise or counter-clockwise? Also, with either route, haw far can I expect to make it in a given day? I need this to be able to plan where to camp, etc.

    Also, I checked the average daily temps in the park for the middle of June and it's roughly 70 degrees during the day and 40 degrees at I'm guessing that I can expect to be pretty chilly at night as I am tent camping?

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 01-04-2009 at 09:35 PM. Reason: Preferred URL format herein

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Easy to be Hard

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    The loop drive(s) around Yellowstone that you are describing would only require a couple of hundred miles total, so certainly one would expect to be able to complete them in a couple of days under normal circumstances. However, Yellowstone in June can be anything but 'ordinary'. While July and August are the busiest months, June is not really quiet, and you should be prepared for at least occasional traffic backups and crowds at the top attractions, particularly Old Faithful. I would think two days is sufficient for a once over lightly of the park, but that's no guarantee.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 01-05-2009 at 11:54 AM.

  3. Default Yeah, It will be close though

    Thanks AZ. I ran it through MS Streets and it's 143 miles from BB Campground, point to point around the loop. With an hour at each one, it's doable in an 8 hour day but if that fails, there is lodging near almost every point so I can either cut it short or skip points and resume the loop the next day. If worse comes to worse, I think just the drive will be pretty cool, the attractions are just icing on the cake.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default I Respectfully Disagree

    Quote Originally Posted by marc7976708

    I think just the drive will be pretty cool, the attractions are just icing on the cake
    While that's your call and may well be true for you, the geologist in me would totally disagree. There is much more to Yellowstone than can be viewed by just driving around. At the very least, you owe it to yourself to walk a few of the interpretive trails around and through the various hot springs and geysers, smell the smells, feel the ground rumble, listen to the mud and vapors oozing up through the earth. This is a place like no other and if at all possible, experience it without a ton of metal surrounding you and cutting you off from nature.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 01-05-2009 at 11:53 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Get out of the car!

    I agree with AZBuck -- Yellowstone is a visual treat -- but for all but a few of the places, you need to get out of your car and walk a little bit. This is not expedition-level trekking -- 1/4 of mile at many places is sufficient to start to see what is so amazing about the first national park --

    When you are cruising the roads, pop this CD into the player and let local resident Tim Cahill provide some incentives to wander a bit more -- plus, like most of his books, you will find yourself laughing out loud at some of his situations....


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia


    Quote Originally Posted by marc7976708 View Post

    My question starts with this - EXCLUDING #7, can I make a circle tour of the other 9 attractions in the park in 2 days? Also, which way do I go, clockwise or counter-clockwise? Also, with either route, haw far can I expect to make it in a given day? I need this to be able to plan where to camp, etc.
    Each time I have been to Yellowstone, at least one of those roads, and usually more than one has been closed to vehicular traffic. You may not be able to drive to all of them, even in summer.

    But I agree with others, Yellowstone needs to be experienced on foot, at least for part of the time.

    Lifey who will be back there again this year

  7. Default Clarification

    Ok, thanks for the input, but I have to mention that in my first post I was trying to get a time-line for VISITING 9 of the 10 top attractions in YNP. I never said that I wanted to drive the loop and never get out of the car - that was a tool I left open in case I didn't have enough time to do all 9.

    I would rather visit 3 of the 9 and have a quality experience than run through all 9 without seeing any of the sites except from the road.

    What I was aiming for from this post was favorites, reasons why and timelines along with June camping tips - it was never my intention to try to get the fast tour guidebook to YNP, only a quality one.

    Thanks Lifemagician - that's a big factor if all roads are not open and I will consider that but really can't do that until the Spring.


    Last edited by marc7976708; 01-05-2009 at 09:50 PM. Reason: Mis-titled

  8. #8

    Default Mammoth Hot Spring Terraces

    My family and I spent 10 days in Yellowstone two years ago, and we didn't think it was long enough. Of all the places I have visited, Yellowstone has to be my all time favorite. We did a lot of off the path activities, with fly fishing being one of our favorites. We spent hours hiking to remote fishing places to get eaten by bugs! Many fish were caught, but the only thing eaten was us!

    I have to say my favorite of all the sites in Yellowstone was the Mammoth Hot Spring Terraces. My children also enjoyed them. Mother Nature at work is an awesome sight!

    Wish I going this summer,

  9. Default Tetons vs. Glacier NP

    Ok, after Yellowstone I was planning on going South through Grand Teton NP and eventually ending up in San Diego through Colorado, New Mexico, The Grand Canyon.

    I was reading some forums and have read people raving about Glacier NP (the US one, not Canada). So, I guess my question specifically is has anyone done both Glacier and Teton and if so, which did you prefer and why?

    Also, by diverting to Glacier, I would change the route to San Diego by cutting over to Oregon and heading South along the West Coast rather than through Colorado.....Any thoughts on this? I know - everyone will have varying opinions but it looks like I can pick up Yosemite that way and that is tempting, although seeing New Mexico and Arizona is also appealing.

    All input welcome - oh, by the way, I'll be driving with a dog and tent camping along the way - I've posted in the past about the details of that and gotten some very good input from this forum and it is appreciated!
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 02-15-2009 at 05:04 PM. Reason: Merged with Exisiting Thread About this Trip

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Matters of Choice

    As with all the decisions one has to make about any RoadTrip, the ones facing you are largely a matter of personal preference. That is the beauty of being on the open road, there are no wrong choices. If you choose what you want then you have chosen wisely.

    Glacier National Park is a place of stunning vistas. The drive along St. Mary's Lake and over Going to the Sun Road will offer breathtaking views and would suit your stated preference for just driving through. It should also be noted that it is quite possible that within a decade, there will no longer be any glaciers remaining in the park due to Global Warming, so now might be your last chance to actually see the features which give the park its name. Nonetheless, your choice is not really between Glacier and Grand Tetons National Parks, but between Glacier and Yellowstone. As visually spectacular as Glacier is, I would still pick Yellowstone for all the reasons previously discussed.

    The other consequence of the choice between Glacier and Yellowstone is driving the Pacific Northwest and coast vs. Colorado and the American Southwest. To me, this is another obvious choice. Just tick off the National Parks and sights on the direct drive from Yellowstone: Grand Tetons, Great Salt Lake, Bryce Canyon, Zion, and Las Vegas. Without too much trouble, you could also add Death Valley and Yosemite, time permitting.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 02-16-2009 at 05:58 PM.

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