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Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

Virginia
Level Contributor
96 posts
Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

We will be visiting GTNP, YNP, and Glacier for the first time July 2019. It will be my husband, myself, and almost 13 year old daughter. I realize that there is so much to do and see! Just wondering how this itinerary looks and if we need to cut it back by a day or two, what would be the best to cut out? Maybe cut a day from Glacier? I'm still a little confused especially with east Glacier and what to see and what hikes to do. We would like to do some moderate hikes but probably nothing more than 3 or 4 miles. I'm going to post in the Glacier forum also. I do already have YNP lodging booked. Thanks in advance for any opinions or advice!

Day 1: Fly into Jackson Hole, buy cooler/food, explore downtown. Stay in GTNP.

Day 2: "Family Rock Climb" with Exum which includes hike to Hidden Falls. Stay in GTNP.

Day 3: Ride the gondola, watch the paragliders, eat waffles, and some other hikes. Maybe Bar J Chuckwagon dinner? Stay in GTNP.

Day 4: Drive to Lake Lodge. Explore/hike in Lake area.

Day 5: Drive to Cody. Buffalo Bill museum, Irma, Rodeo. Stay in Cody.

Day 6: Drive through Red Lodge/Beartooth Hwy to Roosevelt Lodge. If time, explore Mammoth area. Stay at Roosevelt Lodge Cabins.

Day 7: Explore/hike Canyon area. Cowboy Cookout in Roosevelt. Stay at Roosevelt Lodge.

Day 8: Canyon area and drive to Old Faithful Lodge. Stay OF Lodge.

Day 9: Explore/hike OF area. Stay OF Lodge.

Day 10. Grizzly/Wolf discovery center, drive to Virginia City, maybe stop at Norris Hot Springs. Spend the night in Helena.

Day 11: Drive to East Glacier. Stay in East Glacier.

Day 12: Boat ride and hike to Grinnell Glacier.

Day 13: Hike/explore areas in East Glacier.

Day 14: Drive Going to Sun Road, stopping/hiking along the way to West Glacier. Sleep in WG.

Day 15: Whitewater rafting/maybe horseback ride/hiking in West Glacier.

Day 16: Visit Whitefish/Zip Line and visit Polebridge. Sleep in West Glacier.

Day 17: Fly home out of Kalispell

12 replies to this topic
Spery, Iowa
Level Contributor
11,088 posts
181 reviews
1. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

It looks good to me! But if you have to cut a day from the YNP portion, I would cut the Beartooth Highway drive on day 6. It would mean changing the cookout to that day, one night at Roosevelt and and a new OF reservation for night 7, changing all the nights after night 8 though.

Salt Lake City, Utah
Destination Expert
for Salt Lake City, Lake Powell
Level Contributor
20,464 posts
41 reviews
2. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

No need to do two Chuckwagon dinners. Skip the Bar J in GTNP. Instead ride the free after 5 pm gondola at Teton Village to the observation deck and restaurant.

Atlanta, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
Level Contributor
34,933 posts
508 reviews
3. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

I would cut a day from west Glacier and add it to Many Glacier area.

It is amazing scenery there and wildlife. We saw grizzlies there.

You will drive the GTTSR so could cut the Beartooth if needed.

Ennis MT
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park, Ennis
Level Contributor
3,247 posts
32 reviews
4. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

Day 10: I wouldn't stop at Norris - it's out of your way and may be a bit disappointing.

I would suggest stopping at Quake Lake on your way to VC - very interesting Visitor's Center.

Spery, Iowa
Level Contributor
11,088 posts
181 reviews
5. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

Well, Norris would depend on if Steamboat is still erupting in 2019. So far in 2018, it has been very exciting!

Ennis MT
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park, Ennis
Level Contributor
3,247 posts
32 reviews
6. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

I thought they were referring to Norris Hot Springs outside of the park?

Spery, Iowa
Level Contributor
11,088 posts
181 reviews
7. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

OH! Yes, my mistake! Sorry!

Tacoma, Washington
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
Level Contributor
11,490 posts
1 review
8. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

day 1-3 grand Teton

day 4 early am grand Teton, pm Lake, night Lake

day 5 am Canyon area, pm to Cody, evening Cody

day 6 red lodge to Roosevelt, ppm cookout

day 7 early AM lamar valley, Mammoth, Norris, evening Lamar

day 8 to old faithful in am, pm old faithful

day 9 old faoithful/geyser, night Bozeman

day 10 to Helena then toeast glacier,

day 11 am two medicine lake, pm Logan pass bus from st Mary , night St Mary

day 12 am grinnel llake. glacier hike are for experienced hikers given elevation gain., night Many Glacier or st mary

day 13 GTTSR to west side, see Avalanche lake by bus from Macdonald lodge parking. night west glacier

day 14-15 activities mentioned last two days

day 16 fly home

Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta, Savannah
Level Contributor
19,581 posts
95 reviews
9. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

I'd trim it at the end from the Glacier days.

Level Contributor
23 posts
10 reviews
10. Re: Where to trim this 18 day itinerary?

Just FYI, the Grinnell Glacier hike is @many glacier not out of East glacier. the drive from East glacier to many glacier will take you a few hours, depending on if you stop in st Mary’s along the way. We spent a week in the park last year and many glacier is worth the drive. If you can snag a stay in the hotel it’s well worth it. (Similar to Yellowstone I kept checking my dates and finally got a room!) The hike to grinnell is serious, and really should get an early start. We couldn’t get there early enough so took the double boat ride and hiked to grinnell lake and saw a beautiful view of the falls. The kids even braved swimming in the lake.

East glacier wasn’t my favorite place to stay, I would recommend the Izak Walton as an alternative, they have cabooses to stay in or the beautiful hotel. Their food was wonderful too! Going to the sun, I think it’s worth it to go both directions! be patient for parking at Logan pass and hike to the hidden lake overlook!

Rafting I highly recommend Wild River rafting! Small local company very safety oriented compared to a few other competitors we saw on the river. Also glacier distilling worth a stop! Enjoy!

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