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September 2012, need itinerary help.

Brookfield...
posts: 13
reviews: 2
September 2012, need itinerary help.

My husband and I (both in our 50's) are camping at Grant. I have been trying to figure out how to arrange our days at the park and need help.

We are arriving at the east entrance, driving from Mount Rushmore

on Monday Sept 17, and leaving for home on Saturday Sept 22.

So 5 nights and 4 full days.

We would like to see the highlights of the park. No rough hiking (DH had back sugery last August). Maybe a day trip to the tetons?.

I have been reading the forums alot and have bought a copy of yellowstone treasures, Maybe to much reading... just don't know which way to go. Thanks for any help.

Atlanta, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
posts: 16,177
reviews: 256
1. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

Here is a map and link to the top ten must sees in Yellowstone-

http://yellowstone.net/intro/top-10/

Pam who is one of the DE is excellent at detailed daily trip plans.

Good luck!!

N. Idaho
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park
posts: 9,737
reviews: 71
2. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

OK, here is a suggestion:

Monday: Arrive in YNP. If you are coming from SD, you will probably get in pretty late so not much time today. Check to see if they are still having Ranger programs, there may be one in the evening.

Tuesday: Make this your geyser day. Go to the Upper Geyser basin and Old Faithful. Check in at the Visitor Center and write down the eruption times for the predictable geysers on the brochure available at the desk. (50 cents). Try to work your walk thru the basin so you can see some of these geysers. I usually start by going behind Old Faithful on the path to the left side of this geyser, crossing the bridge and up onto Geyser Hill. From there I head down the geyser basin to Morning glory pool (pit toilet here!) and go back toward Old Faithful on the paved path. I like to eat lunch at the Lower General Store which should still be open then. It will be the first store you come to on the right (well, the geysers are on the left, lol) as you head back to the Visitor Center. After you see this area, hop in the car and head north from Old Faithful on the loop road. Do the Firehole Lake Dr. (on the right) and go almost to Madison Jct and turn left into Firehole Canyon Dr. This is one way headed back South. (If anyone needs a pit stop, go on to Madison Jct, there are flush toilets there.) Rejoin the loop road and pick up Fountain Paint Pots, Midway Geyser Basin, Biscuit Basin and Black Sand Basin. Head back toward Grant. Stop at Keppler Cascades.

Wednesday: Make this your Canyon Day. Head north to Fishing Bridge. Park and walk across looking for wildlife. Continue North to LeHardy Rapids and then enter Hayden Valley looking for wildlife. At Canyon, you have a couple of choices. If you want to go to the Visitor Center first, go past the entrances to the South and North rims, and tour the VC. Then work your way back on the South and North rims. If your husband's back is bothering him, the easiest access and view is Artist Point on the South Rim. It is level right out to the view. The viewing platform has some steps, but you can actually see just as well from below. Return to Grant picking up Mud Volcano on the way. If you want a short, level hike, do Natural Bridge. It is an old road bed.

Thursday: This will be a long drive day. If you want you can interchange it with Wednesday. Drive North toward Canyon (stop for pit stop at VC) and cross over Dunraven (this road closes Sept 22 but again check at Canyon VC for information) to Tower Fall. Stop there and at some of the overlooks north of the Fall. At Tower Roosevelt Jct, turn Right into Lamar Valley. Drive out there and stop if you see people with cameras with long lenses and spotting scopes. Return to Tower Roosevelt Jct. Head toward Mammoth. If your time is running OK, do Blacktail Plateau Dr and Petrified Tree drives. Many see black bear back in here. I never see squat! Head on to Mammoth. Walk the lower Terraces. The best bathroom here is the new one by the bus parking lot and the gas station. Drive the Upper Terraces. Start south toward Norris. Do Norris if you have time (I doubt it!) and return to Grant.

Friday: Use this day to revisit anything you want to see again, or to visit things you have missed (Norris Geyser Basin? Virginia Cascade Dr?).

Saturday: Head for home. If you are not pulling a trailer, I would go out the NE entrance and over Beartooth Highway to Red Lodge. THis will be weather dependent, so ask at Grant on Friday how things look over Beartooth. This is Highway 212 on the map. The bad thing is that the road between Canyon and Tower is supposed to close today, so that would mean going either out the East entrance to Cody, cutting up Chief Joseph Scenic Highway toward Cooke City and then onto Beartooth OR going around the west side of the Loop Road (Norris -> Mammoth -> Tower Jct).

I am sure you will have a wonderful time!!

(editing to add: Laughing at PeachBelle because we were typing and thinking at the same time! Where is thbergs and the ice cream recommendations?)

Pam

Edited: 2:31 pm, July 19, 2012
Brookfield...
posts: 13
reviews: 2
3. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

Thank you for your quick replies. Since I read so many of the forum questions and answers, you would think I would figure this out. Maybe they don't sell huckleberry ice cream in September. lol

This should work out great, Our anniversary in on Sept 18th and it will be nice to be closer to our campsite.

Thanks Again

Linda

N. Idaho
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park
posts: 9,737
reviews: 71
4. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

Oh yeah, you can get huckleberry ice cream in Sept!

Pam

Spery, Iowa
posts: 2,768
reviews: 80
5. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

Cleaning sweet corn- taking a break to say, get the Huckleberry icecream! If it is a cold September day, Hot Cocoa works also. Purchase first floor of Old Faithful Inn, eat (or drink) on the second floor deck :D Have a great trip! No day trip to Grand Tetons. Put that on the list for your next trip with a few more days!

Albany, New York
posts: 1,077
reviews: 30
6. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

Theres thbergs!!!! yipppeeee for the ice cream tip!!!

Brookfield...
posts: 13
reviews: 2
7. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

Nope, ice cream for me, I live in Wisconsin, used to the cold, and love

dairy products. lol

Taipei, Taiwan
posts: 3
8. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

Can I do the same thing during late September to early October?

N. Idaho
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park
posts: 9,737
reviews: 71
9. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

hyr09, did you mean as far as itinerary? Yes, you could. The weather does start to get *iffy*, meaning increased chances of snow the later you go in the fall. Also, services start to shut down in Yellowstone after the first weekend in September. Obviously the natural wonders aren't closed ( lol) but restaurant, lodging, ranger programs and other services start to close.

Since you are likely coming from a distance, the earlier in Sept. you come, the better off you will be.

If you are planning a trip, you should start another thread and we will be glad to help you with specifics for your trip.

Pam

Sand Springs
posts: 5
reviews: 25
10. Re: September 2012, need itinerary help.

I printed your itinerary post and took it with us to Yellowstone. We followed it and mixed in some input from others on this forum. Even though we were first timers to the park, I think with your help we hit the highlights without wasting a lot of time wondering what we should see next. We just got back today, 9/24 and the weather for our 11 day trip was perfect and very little smoke and only in a few areas. Thanks for sharing your tips, they help more people than the one you replied to.