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Glacier and Yellowstone Parks

California
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Glacier and Yellowstone Parks

I saw an interesting post here about comparing RMNP to Yellowstone. Much to my surprise, the overwhelming majority of posters said if they had to do one park they would do Yellowstone. It got me thinking, because although I've never seen Yellowstone it always seemed not that scenic in pictures and just about the geysers. I know this is probably ignorance, but it was my impression. So, can anyone be clear about what the tremendous pull is for Yellowstone, why is it a must see in your lifetime kind of park?

Also, comparing Glacier to Yellowstone, if I had to pick one for our next trip, which is best? Or is it possible to do both in the same trip, perhaps 2 - 3 days in each place with a travel day in between? Or is that not enough time to see things?

(I think I'm in travel withdrawl after our incredible trip to RMNP so I'm already thinking of next year!)

Santa Fe, New Mexico
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for Santa Fe, Mesa Verde National Park, Boulder, New Mexico
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1. Re: Glacier and Yellowstone Parks

Yellowstone is not just geysers and I can not describe the draw I have to this park. This was the park that started it all!

You have the opportunity to see lakes, rivers, streams, canyons, waterfalls, mountains, valleys, wildlife and thermal features.

Visit www.nps.gov/yell/ for more information. They have photos, videos and tons of info!

I would recommend seeing Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons in one trip, saving Glacier for the next trip. Too much to see and do in the Yellowstone/Teton area to only spend 2-3 days, but that is just my feeling.

We will be spending 10 days in the area and I don't feel it is enough!

Colorado
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2. Re: Glacier and Yellowstone Parks

A lot of Yellowstone's draw for me is the fact that I went there many times as a child and teenager. Now it simply is a place I remember with the utmost fondness. The experience of ooh's and ahhs as a child will remain with me for a lifetime. And I wasn't a city kid! I was from the backroads of Washington State. Yellowstone is not just geysers, but the geysers are really astounding if you've never witnesses them before. The contrast between the calming nature and the boiling geysers is something I cannot describe in words. It is a one-of-a-kind place and I highly recommend going there at least once in your lifetime.

I see you're from California and that made me remember my trip to Yosemite as a teenager (with the parents). It was a startling contrast to Yellowstone because the crowds are so much worse! There's no escaping them. If you want to find back country - you can truly find it in Yellowstone.

Fruita, Colorado
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for Fruita, Grand Junction
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3. Re: Glacier and Yellowstone Parks

For me the huge difference between the two parks is the amount of wildlife you will see in Yellowstone compared to RMNP. Hour after hour we saw the most awesome animals in addition to the gorgeous scenery. My husband & I went in the fall when it wasn't so busy & it was fantastic. But 3 days in Yellowstone could be enough even in the busier times. Haven't been to Glacier so I couldn't give you any comparison there. Glad you enjoyed RMNP.

pacific northwest
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4. Re: Glacier and Yellowstone Parks

Yellowstone has advantages and disadvantages compared to Glacier. Advantages include more large wildlife, a great chance you will see large wildlife from your car or the road, and the extensive geothermal opportunities. I am headed in on a ten day backpack in October to see the remote geothermal sites. Glacer advantages include, more mountians, clifts, jagged ridelines, etc., and fewer tourists.

Yellowstone disadvantages include hordes of people that often make it seem like a zoo or fenced in wildlife safari place. At times in peak season it reminds me of what Jurasic Park would have evolved to if the animals had not taken over! Go after Labor Day if at all possible.

Depending on what you are seeking you can do Glacier and Yellowstone in the same trip. I seldom spend less than three or four days in Yellowstone and the same for Glacier. Anything less and you should pick one or the other.

Oh, one advantage for Glacier is that you can take Amtrack (the Empire Builder) right to the entrance, and then rent your car.

Both have streams, lakes, and fantastic lodges. You will nto go wrong with either choice.

You can easily do Yellowstone and the Tetons in the same trip. I have spent a week in the Tetons but I get bored real quick. The mountains are great to look at from a distance. But beyond that view I have found little to set the Tetons apart form other places. They have lakes, and woods, and wildlife, and streams, and waterfalls but no geothermal to speak of and their wildlife is certainly not as numerous or available as Yellowstone. These days a day or two in the Tetons does the trick for me.

California
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5. Re: Glacier and Yellowstone Parks

Thanks for all of the very helpful responses. It's pretty clear that Yellowstone has to be seen to be appreciated, and I'm sold, I have to do Yellowstone and Glacier. Not sure if it will be a combined trip or 2 separate ones, but we'll get there. Thanks again for the help.

6. Re: Glacier and Yellowstone Parks

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