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Yellowstone


colddog15

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Planning a trip thru what I call the Northwest States. Plan is to leave Portland Or then make a geat loop thru Washington, Idaho, Montana, North and South Dakoda maybe drop down as far a Uath then back to Oregon. We'd like to see as many National Parks as we can. Any tips or routes would be very welcome.

 

Glen

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US-89 and US-191 will take you to or close to lots of National Parks and National Monuments in Montana, Wyoming, and Utah starting in Montana with Glacier and Yellowstone.

 

UT-12 and UT-24 between these two routes offer a lot of places to see and things to do. Further South in Southern Utah/Northern Arizona, US-160, US-163 and AZ-98 connect US-89 and US-191 passing a lot of great places. Utah alone can take a whole summer to see. Here are some links to places in Utah that we liked:

 

Utah 12-24 area:

UT-12 Scenic Byway

Fishlake Scenic Byway

Burr Trail

Cedar Breaks National Monument

Escalante Petrified Forest State Park

Kodachrome Basin State Park

Anasazi State Park

Calf Creek Falls

Hells Backbone

Capitol Reef National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park

Goblin Valley State Park

 

Moab area:

Kane Creek Road

Potash Lower Colorado Byway

Upper Colorado River UT-128 Scenic Byway

Sago Canyon

Dead Horse Point State Park

Arches National Park

Canyonlands National Park

Needles District

Newspaper Rock

 

US-89 area:

Zion National Park

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park

 

Monument Valley, Bluff, Blanding Area:

Monument Valley

UT-261 Muley Point and the Moki Dugway

Goosenecks State Park

Hovenweep National Monument

Natural Bridges National Monument

Bluff Fort

South Fork of Mule Canyon and House on Fire

The Valley of The Gods

Edge of the Cedars State Park

Dinosaur Museum

 

If you do choose to go East from Yellowstone to South Dakota, the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument and Devils Tower are worth visiting. If you take the more Northern route from Glacier East, Theodore Roosevelt National Park is worth a visit.

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Thank you all. Our time frame is flexible - from 4 to 8 weeks or more if we feel like it. We have a 24 Ft Class C Lazy Daze. Dry camping is our preferred method. We know we can't see it all. We are retired therefore no rush. Frankly Yellowstone is the only must see all the rest is if we get there we get there. We'd like to spend maybe four five days in Yellowstone then move on for the rest of the trip.

 

Glen

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The official Yellowstone site has lots of good information including info on all the park's campgrounds. Note that some are reservable and some of first come. If you plan on a first-come plan to be at the campground early morning when folks are leaving. We stay outside the park but nearby the previous night so we can do this.

 

There's also a nice forest service camping a few miles north of West Yellowstone called "Baker's Hole". It doesn't accept reservations either. There are some electric sites but most are dry camping. We enjoy the dry ones along the Madison River. Have a great trip!

 

http://www.nps.gov/yell/index.htm

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...We have a 24 Ft Class C Lazy Daze. Dry camping is our preferred method...Frankly Yellowstone is the only must see all the rest is if we get there we get there...We'd like to spend maybe four five days in Yellowstone...

Here is a link to information about the campgrounds inside Yellowstone. With your size RV, you have more options than those with larger RV's. Slough Creek is my favorite campground, but is not very friendly for larger RV's. Take note that of the first come first serve campgrounds, only Mammoth and Norris allow any generator use. No generators are allowed at any time in the other first come first serve campgrounds. There is a small Forest Service campground, Eagle Creek, just outside the town of Gardiner and the North entrance that is well suited to smaller RVs. There are other Forest Service campgrounds besides Baker's Hole not all that far from the West Entrance.

 

Yellowstone is huge. You will be hard pressed to see much other than from inside the vehicle if you only stay in one location. Moving may take most of a day between slow traffic and waiting for a campsite to open. I have been to Yellowstone more tha a dozen times over the last 45 years and have always stayed at least a week. I would recommend staying at least 3-4 days in different areas of the park.

 

Hope you enjoy your trip!!

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I agree that 4 days in YNP is a quick trip. Madison CG is relatively close to the Old Faithful area and lots of geyser basins. Norris too. Then move to Canyon and spend a few days exploring the eastern side of the park, such as the falls, Grand Cyn of Yellowstone and go north to Mammoth. That should take about 7-10 days. Note that all the first come basis CG's in YNP usually fill by 9:30 AM. Then go out the south entrance of the park into Grand Teton NP. At the south end is a primative C with water and dump called Gros Ventre, use that as a base camp to explore GT for 3-4 days.

 

After that I'd go to the Moab area for Arches and Canyonlands. From there there's tons of things to see. See the very good list in post #2.

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The ranger led hikes are worth doing. Even though it is more likely to be a student nowadays.

 

I always will remember finding out that the ranger taking us round the volcanic region was a tenured professor of volcanology from a top university just doing what he loved as a summer volunteer.

 

4 -5 days will be just enough for a taste of Yellowstone's wonders.

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I highly recommend Madison CG inside Yellowstone, if you can get in. I'm not sure if they have any first come first serve sites. If not you can check the reservation web site as often as possible (several times a day is good) to see if there are any cancellations. You don't say, but with a 24' MH I assume you are not towing a car/truck, so staying inside the park if by far the best option.

 

As others have mentioned, there is lots to see in Yellowstone, so only spending 4-5 days you will only get an overview.

 

Grand Teton NP is only a few miles south of Yellowstone, and will worth spending a few days there.

 

With the limited time of a max of only 8 weeks I would head directly to Bryce & Zion and possibly the Canyonlands NP & Arches NP near Moab. Also consider Capitol Reef NP.

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Slough Creek and Lewis Lake are pretty much limited to 25' or less total length so a 24' Class C would be a good fit. We drove down to Lewis Lake to look at it and really liked it. No one was there when Fishing Bridge was packed. However, we had a 28' TT and although we might have been able to fit the TT into a site, the tow vehicle would not. If you have a kayaks, this can be a great place to spend time. There are back country camp sites that are accessible by canoe/kayak from there.

Reed and Elaine

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Yellowstone is a great park but can get very crowded. If you have the time check out Custer State Park in the Black Hills of So Dakota. I volunteer there. We have a large herd of Bision, and we are close to Mt Rushmore as well.

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Thank you all for the ideas. <smile> time is not an issue. If we like that area we'll stay longer. If not we'll move on. We got the smaller RV just so we could 'camp' deeper in National Parks and National Forests. Life is always full of trade offs. Sometimes you just roll the dice and live will what comes your way.

Again thank you all for the helpful guidance.

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I highly recommend Madison CG inside Yellowstone, if you can get in. I'm not sure if they have any first come first serve sites. If not you can check the reservation web site as often as possible (several times a day is good) to see if there are any cancellations. You don't say, but with a 24' MH I assume you are not towing a car/truck, so staying inside the park if by far the best option.

 

As others have mentioned, there is lots to see in Yellowstone, so only spending 4-5 days you will only get an overview.

 

Grand Teton NP is only a few miles south of Yellowstone, and will worth spending a few days there.

 

With the limited time of a max of only 8 weeks I would head directly to Bryce & Zion and possibly the Canyonlands NP & Arches NP near Moab. Also consider Capitol Reef NP.

2X on spending some time at Tetons. Drive out to Mormon Row for a view of the barns with the mountains behind them - Beautiful!

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