We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

Genesee, CO
posts: 520
reviews: 44
Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

Has anyone done this road trip from Denver and which route did you take. Of course, mapquest sends me I-25 North (BORING) to I-90 West which i definitely do not want to do.

This is what I am thinking:

1) Highway 40 up to Granby-Steamboat Springs-Craig-Dinosaur-Vernal

2) 191 North through Flaming Gorge-Rock Springs-towards Jackson

3) From there thinking of bypassing Grand Tetons/Yellostone (was just there couple summers ago and would rather avoid the crowds and focus on getting up to Glacier) ... so 26 West to Idaho falls?

4) I-15 North to Butte then I-90 West to Missoula

5) 93 north up through Kalispell to West entrance.

Any different suggestions? Also where would you stop along this route (don't mind driving 8 or so hours per day to get up there).

Thanks,

Tanya

Charlotte, North...
posts: 1,638
reviews: 14
1. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

Tanya: I do like your itinerary. The only thing I would mention if there is any way that you could catch Craters of the Moon NM, Redfish Lake and the Sawtooths, and then the Bitteroots along the way from the Twin Falls/Idaho Falls area up to Missoula, I would recommend it. It should be a beautiful drive, but it would be much longer than most other routes. I really like yours, though, it's just a thought.

Sean

Genesee, CO
posts: 520
reviews: 44
2. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

Thanks,

i will map that out and see how much longer?

where is red lake? Can't see it on my map.

I think that would mean:

1) 20 west of idaho falls past craters over to 75

2) then 75 up to 93 into missoula?

What about taking 20 then cutting across with 93 at arco and taking that up instead of going all the way to 75? or would that not even be worth it if missing sun valley and sawtooth?

how close is the actual craters of the moon entrance to arco?

Elkins, West...
posts: 357
reviews: 75
3. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

We did a similar route, in reverse, a couple of years ago. We used 93/26 from Missoula to Pocatello so we could drive by Craters of the Moon, which is worth a looksee. Nice drive. If you have time, consider a detour down to Stanley, ID, to get a glimpse of the Sawtooths, which are very nice, under-appreciated mountains. Once we hit I-15, we stayed on it to Park City, where we picked up 40 into Colorado. If you've never been to DInosaur NM, we found it fascinating and well worth the detour. From Dinosaur, we headed southeast to Meeker and Rifle, before picking up I-70. Since we weren't going to Denver, we then cutoff at Glenwood and ambled down to Taos on the way home.

Basically, if you have a good road car and a love of driving, it's a wonderful trip. If you're pulling a traveller or rushing about in an RLR (rolling living room) anxious for the destination and not the journey, I'd listen to Mapquest.

Genesee, CO
posts: 520
reviews: 44
4. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

we will be unhindered by a trailer or RV :) just an SUV.

do you think it is worth it scenery vs. time to go up that route?

we are not in a huge hurry to get up there so can take some time, but want the time to pay off in scenery.

Genesee, CO
posts: 520
reviews: 44
5. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

to clarify i meant up 93 in Idaho.

New York City
posts: 4,242
reviews: 72
6. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

Tanya !!

One area I always wanted to drive was thru the Red Rocks Wildlife Refuge west of Yellowstone going to Salmon Idaho. I believe the scenery is spectacular and the wildlife abundant. Part of the drive is on good gravel road, meaning less people and the exit is at Salmon, Idaho, which crosses the Lemhi Pass, ancestral home of Sacajawea, if you are in to the Lewis and Clark discovery.

On the way to Glacier on the Missoula side you will be near the National Bison range, and that should be very worthwhile.

Have a great time.

Craig Colorado to Vernal, Flaming Gorge is very scenic driving. Look out for wild mustangs.

Elkins, West...
posts: 357
reviews: 75
7. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

--do you think it is worth it scenery vs. time to go up that route?

No offense, Tanya, but when you start asking questions like that, the answer is always "No, the scenery isn't worth the time." When traveling, I have found that there are drive-fast-to-get-there-soon days, and there are this-slow-drive-is-the-destination-not-the-route days. Vacations are more enjoyable both for yourself and for those sharing your road if you know which kind of day you're having and plan accordingly. If time is of importance, save the scenery for another day.

Genesee, CO
posts: 520
reviews: 44
8. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

<<<No offense, Tanya, but when you start asking questions like that, the answer is always "No, the scenery isn't worth the time." When traveling, I have found that there are drive-fast-to-get-there-soon days, and there are this-slow-drive-is-the-destination-not-the-route days. Vacations are more enjoyable both for yourself and for those sharing your road if you know which kind of day you're having and plan accordingly. If time is of importance, save the scenery for another day.>>>

That is why i am asking, is to get an idea of what days to play for scenery and which for time. But thanks for your input :)

I think that is the whole purpose of tripadvisor, to ask for advice like that. But I may be wrong, maybe I am supposed to plan ahead and say want scenery on day 1 want interestate on day 3 :)

cheers :)

Charlotte, North...
posts: 1,638
reviews: 14
9. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

Tanya: Redfish Lake is very near Stanley, Idaho. Little Redfish Lake is also right there. Here's a pretty cool shot of Redfish Lake. Sorry I didn't respond sooner.

http://www.svguide.com/s05/svgs05_cover.jpg

Elkins, West...
posts: 357
reviews: 75
10. Re: Road Trip Denver to Glacier NP

But Tanya, I DID answer your question. You are asking, basically, "Is the beauty of this road worth the time it will take me to drive it," and I am answering you, "If time is of the essence, then no beauty is enough; but if you have the time to appreciate beauty, then you will find it."

I'm saying that if you have a short vacation and you're hurrying to Glacier to maximize your park time, then this road will not be worth the delay. But if your wallet is filled with time, you might want to spend some driving 93.

Beauty isn't something you find; it's an attitude you bring. I can advise you on places and routes, but only you can measure the attitude you will bring to the journey.

kevin