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Old 04-18-2016, 06:21 AM   #1
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Michigan -> Tetons -> Yellowstone -> Glacier -> Michigan

My DW and I are planning a 3 week trip to see:
  • Big Horn National Forest
  • Grand Tetons Nation Park
  • Yellowstone National Park
  • Glacier National Park (ducking up into Canada for a day or so)

We love hiking and historic places. The plan is 400-550 miles a day of driving between sites and 3-4 days at each place. So that gives us 1-2 hours of hiking or visiting historic sites along the way.

So my question is what should we see on the way?

Thanks!


rough map:
https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Novi...2d42.48059!3e0
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Old 04-18-2016, 06:50 AM   #2
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Looks like a great trip! Enjoy!
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Old 04-27-2016, 06:08 PM   #3
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We are planning a similar 3 week trip from Ohio. Below is our route with some focus on the Dakotas since we have not been there. Glacier is my favorite NP so hope we make it that far but once we start we kinda go where the wind takes us. Yellowstone, especially the east side and the Tetons are great.

Some debate in other threads about whether to drive RVs on the Beartooth Highway ( http://beartoothhighway.com ) but it looks amazing so I plan to try it. Last I hope to get to Custer Little Bighorn National Battlefield. Learned about it as a kid and want to see it.

I look forward to following this thread to see what else folks recommend.

Camping on the road is such an adventure ! 120 days till we start our trip, I can't wait!

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Old 04-27-2016, 08:26 PM   #4
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Wandering,

We have reservations near/in each of the national parks, which I hate, but July will be high season.

The last time I was in Glacier was 1988, so I am really looking forward to it.
Tetons is one of my favorite parks for hiking, I have taken scouts there a few times on the Teton Crest Trail (one of the best in the world). Photos here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cdrdwd...57631073522820

I will need to look at Beartooth Highway, it looks very scenic.

We did Custer, Rushmore, Devils tower and Theodore Roosevelt last year and all were well worth while. https://www.flickr.com/photos/cdrdwd...57654837210899

When you get within 150 miles of Theodore Roosevelt stop and buy groceries when you can, not much within 50 miles of the south part of the park. We did find a great gas station with everything (frozen meats, fruits and veggies) near the North unit.

Let me know if you find any great places to stop along the way!
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Old 04-27-2016, 08:27 PM   #5
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Check this out of you can: https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sour...v2i3LvYjEjOjIQ

We stopped by this enchanted highway in 2007 when we took a trip from Michigan to Yellowstone. Oh, the only thing i suggest is find more time. We spent a week at Yellowstone and wished we could have stayed another week or two...and that was just for Yellowstone. Visited the Tetons too during the trip. Get ready to get sick of bison! They're constantly blocking your path on the roads and on trails.
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Old 04-27-2016, 08:37 PM   #6
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We made a similar trip last August / September. Stops included Badlands, Devil's Tower, Mt. Rushmore / Crazy Horse, Custer Battlefield / Little Bighorn, Yellowstone (stay at Fishing Bridge inside the park if you can) / Tetons / Jackson Hole, then down into Colorado along the Front Range to Colorado Springs / Pikes Peak. IMHO, if I had to skip one, it would be Devil's Tower. The rest were just incredibly awesome, and well worth seeing. We took 6 weeks to do it all, but we stayed quite a while in several places, including a full week in Yellowstone and almost that long in Colorado.

Enjoy and travel safely!
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Old 04-27-2016, 08:59 PM   #7
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I've driven in on the Beartooth pass and if I did it again I would unhitch trailer and drive in and return to tt to enter another entrance. but definitely go. Enjoy your trip it looks great, stay clear of bison, they can find you in the dark on a trail before you see them. I might try going in but wouldn't try down,
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Old 04-27-2016, 11:15 PM   #8
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Wandering,

Your trip is what I consider to be the classic great American vacation! I know all those destinations can be accomplished in 3 weeks, but my $.02 worth is this... Drop Glacier NP (and maybe Roosevelt) so you can spend more time in the Badlands (take a ranger guided hike there... You will find fossils, I guarantee!) and Black Hills (Custer SP is amazing... A bison heard went through the campground while we were doing the laundry one early morning). Besides Rushmore, don't miss Crazy Horse. After Devils Tower continue west with a stop at the Custer Battlefield (been there many times, and will always go back... touches the soul), then go up towards Billings and into Yellowstone via the Beartooth (folks, this is a real mountain road... You will see snow). Yellowstone is so big that it can be the whole trip... Cool things to do there: take a guided horseback ride... Several offered, and you will meet real cowboys. Go on the stagecoach steak-fry... More Cowboys, campfire music... Unforgettable. All sorts of ranger guided walks and hikes all over the park. Lot's of world class fishing, if that is your thing. Wander down to Teton (love that place, love the hiking) go into Jackson for some touristy stuff (see the Silver Dollar Bar at the Wort Hotel) and while there, take the chair lift up to the top of Snow King mountain (fantastic view, nice little hikes, great picnic spots... Buy the photo they take of you at the top!). Go back up to Yellowstone and out the East gate... Fantastic high mountain drive to Cody, and visit the Buffalo Bill museum (don't miss it!). Everybody hates driving across Nebraska... Try going across the western part on highway 20... You might be surprised.

Thinking about your trip makes me crazy! Enjoy!


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Old 04-28-2016, 12:41 PM   #9
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Michigan -> Tetons -> Yellowstone -> Glacier -> Michigan

Novibill - we are going last week of August and 1st two weeks of September, hoping to catch the start of fall colors. No reservations but we should probably book something for Labor Day weekend. Will look forward to hearing about your trip.

Rkloud9 - Thanks for suggestions, they sound great. I agree on Glacier while it is one of my favorites it adds allot of drive time. We will see where the wind takes us.


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Old 04-28-2016, 01:25 PM   #10
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We did a similar trip last year. Very beautiful part of the country. In my experience drive times took much longer than anticipated especially in the mountains.The scenery is spectacular so you will want to be able to take your time and enjoy the majesty. The picture in my signature was taken last year in the Big Horns.
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:42 PM   #11
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I went to college in Montana and was fortunate enough to visit Yellowstone, Teton, Jackson Hole, etc. on many occasions. The million dollar cowboy bar in Jackson is really cool, so is the town square. I miss it so much out there!
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Old 04-28-2016, 02:09 PM   #12
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Here are some additional sights;

The waterfalls at Sioux Falls, SD.
The Little Bighorn battlefield at Crow Agency, MT. (Exit 510 off of I-90)
The Missouri River waterfalls at Great Falls, MT.
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Old 04-28-2016, 11:26 PM   #13
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Here's my 2 cents...
A few that we found interesting along our travels, other than the big places you've listed..

In no particular order...
- Rushmore Cave
Rushmore Cave - Rushmore Cave Family Adventure Park
- Mammoth, SD (Wolly Mammoth working dig site)
Home
- Bear Country, SD (drive through the bears)
Bear Country USA
- Thermopolis, WY (Hot Springs)
Thermopolis, Wyoming - Gateway to Yellowstone Country
- Cody, WY - Buffalo Bill Museum
https://centerofthewest.org/
Virginia City, MT (Ghost Town)
Virginia City, Montana - Chamber of Commerce
Glacier Park - Road to the Sun
https://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvis...thesunroad.htm
- Waterton Park, AB - Boat Cruise
Waterton Tour Boats: Rocky Mountain Boat Tours: Waterton Inter-Nation Shoreline Cruise Co.

There is a lot more to do in each area, but these are some of the highlights! So much to see and not any where near enough time, is what we found..
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Old 07-03-2016, 04:17 PM   #14
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Anyone in Canyon CG yellowstone next 3 nights?
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Old 07-16-2016, 09:22 PM   #15
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Trip photos are here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cdrdwd...57668265484464

it was a great trip, 4 National Parks, 5000 miles in 21 days.

-Bill
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Old 07-17-2016, 06:40 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoviBill View Post
Trip photos are here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cdrdwd...57668265484464

it was a great trip, 4 National Parks, 5000 miles in 21 days.

-Bill
Thanks for sharing those photos NoviBill. They make me want to head west again. The footing on some of those hiking trails you were on certainly looked somewhat treacherous.
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