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  1. Default June Trip - Seattle, Glacier, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Salt Lake City

    Hi,

    My husband and I are looking to do a road trip next June. A suggested itinerary we've seen would be:

    Seattle 2 nights

    Wenatchee 1 night

    Coeur d'Alene 1 night

    Glacier NP 3 nights

    Whitefish 1 night

    Yellowstone NP 3 nights

    Grand Teton NP 2 nights

    Salt Lake City 1 night

    Be great to get some inside information on this - input on route, places to stay etc.

    We want to see Seattle but our main interests will be the NP's, landscape and hiking. We have a max of 2.5 weeks and a budget up to £3k pp for flights, car hire & accommodation. We love staying in lodges/cabins rather than motels/chains and would like to be as central in the NP's as possible so we can just go out and enjoy it all without driving in and out of the parks and getting stuck in traffic. We'd be flying from London and hiring a car. Drives of about 4 hours between locations is about right for us.

    Any ideas much appreciated!

    Many thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    5,474

    Default

    It looks,like you will have a nice trip. A couple of things should be noted, though.

    You didn't state how late in June that your trip will be. In Glacier National Park, the main attraction, Going to the Sun Road, doesn't usually open until late in June each year. When it is open, it is a gorgeous drive and there are plenty of small trails to take as well as longer ones. I would recommend that you be on that road by 7 am, as it will seem like you're driving in LA for all the traffic, later in the day.

    In Coeur d'Alene, there is a nice hike with Great Lake views, on Tubbs Hill. It is about two miles long, but nothing strenuous. Bring cash to pay the parking meter, ugh.

    In Yellowstone, the set of boardwalks around the Old Faithful area will keep your feet moving. Straying off the beaten track in other areas of the park mean that you should carry bear spray, which the park concessionaires sell.

    Glacier's lodges are all on the outskirts of the park. Yellowstone has a number of lodges. In that park, Start NOW to get your dates lined up and get your reservations as they will fill quickly. If you don't get the same lodge for all three nights, not to worry.

    Donna

  3. Default

    Thank you for your reply!

    We had planned the early part of June but sounds like it might be better to go at the end of the month as we don't want to miss that road!

    I'd appreciate any thoughts from anyone on the part of the trip between Seattle and Glacier as this is an area we know nothing about! Do we need/is it worth two 1 night stops there or can we push on through? Same with Whitefish? Just trying to work out where we could save stop overs and maybe have extra nights in the NP's.

    Any particular lodges anyone would recommend? That traditional wooden lodge/cabin look is what we love!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    7,160

    Default Add other smaller parks and attractions.

    When you say a suggested itinerary, is this the itinerary you yourself would have chosen? The best part of a roadtrip is that it takes you to the places you want to see and explore.

    Firstly I suggest that you reverse the trip so that you get to Glacier NP as late as possible. It is not unknown for the Going to the Sun Road to be still closed in early July. It all depends on the weather. One of those things you take as you find it. I drove it on my third visit there.

    Besides the NPs you have listed, there are many other attractions along the route which will take you to those parks. Do you have any good detailed maps of the area? If not, I suggest that you get yourself a Rand McNally road atlas. The maps have many details of attractions, natural touristy and historical. If maps are not available locally, I suggest you get an atlas from the RTA store via the link at the bottom of tbis page. Order it now and you will have it in a couple of weeks.

    One place which comes to mind, and which is well worth checking out is a self guided tour through the Earthquake Area along highway US-287 in south western Montana, on your way to Yellowstone.

    Lifey
    Last edited by Lifemagician; 08-07-2017 at 06:03 PM. Reason: typo

  5. Default

    We were looking at UK travel companies that specialise in US road trips for inspiration and that was a route that took our fancy and took in places we wanted to see - we've based the idea around that route as we don't have any local knowledge and of course now we're doing some research and reaching out to you lovely guys for help so we can make sure we change the route to suit us properly.

    Good idea about reversing the trip so we get to Glacier late as possible and i hadn't heard of the Earthquake Area so thank you for those tips!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    11,532

    Default The loop.

    Have you considered driving a complete loop rather than ending in SLC ? It will likely cost you more in flights and a one way car rental. Either city would do if you have no real interest in them so one may work better than the other. One example would be going through Twin Falls from the Tetons and on to Portland along the Historic Columbia river Gorge before returning to Seattle. Mt Rainier is between Portland and Seattle which is another wonderful National park. You would have to adjust your drive times a bit to fit in more but sometimes it's worth it and driving is much more of a pleasure than it is in England.

  7. Default

    Yes we'd be happy to do a loop, however just thought we'd need more time to loop that distance back and therefore miss time in the NP's we are travelling there to visit. Really want to see Seattle, not worried about SLC.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    11,532

    Default

    If you have up to 2.5 weeks, say 12 to13 days on the road after flight days and a couple in Seattle then you should be able to do the trip quite comfortably, but as Lifemagician mentioned, it's your trip so it's a case of what works for you. Have you done plenty of research and looked at a decent map ? That's the way to get the best from your trip and we can certainly help tweak it and make suggestions. For example you could travel to Whitefish (or Kalispell) from Seattle in one long day on the road, but just one overnight would still be comfortable. If you want to spend a night in Whitefish after 3 nights in Glacier then that's fine, but you could actually get near Yellowstone in around 6 hours, Big Sky for example. S o time can be 'gained' but it's at what cost to you as what works for me maybe totally different.

    These are just ideas for you to think about and encourage you to research and once you are more settled in your mind we can help with any questions or 'fine tuning'.

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