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routes denver to yellowstone

Bedford UK
Level Contributor
239 posts
120 reviews
routes denver to yellowstone

We are thinking of travelling to Yellowstone and would drive from Denver. We aim to spend about 8 nights in the Yellowstone, Grand Teton area which would give us about 5 nights for our journeys to and from the area. I wondered if any of you had views about interesting routes to Yellowstone and possible stopovers - it would be good to visit different types of area - eg coming back via Cody - to give us lots of different experiences. We enjoy hiking and taking in ancient sites.

Any ideas?



Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
325 posts
187 reviews
1. Re: routes denver to yellowstone

We are doing the same drive so I would be interested in what you find out. Here is what we are doing - Denver/Boulder/Aspen - 3 nights/Green River/West Yellowstone - 2 nights/Jackson - 2 nights/Casper/ and back to Denver

Level Contributor
191 posts
6 reviews
2. Re: routes denver to yellowstone

We are driving from Denver and doing the first night in Thermopolis, 2nd night Cody, 3rd night Gardiner, 4th night Old Faithful Inn and 3 nights in Jackson and back to Denver. Thermopolis is supposed to be the Worlds largest mineral hot springs.

Woodland Park...
Level Contributor
3,284 posts
12 reviews
3. Re: routes denver to yellowstone

We've taken the route from Denver on I-25 to Fort Collins and then US 287 from Fort Collins to Laramie, I-80 to Rawlins, and then US 287 through Dubois and into Yellowstone through the south entrance. It's certainly the scenic route but we enjoyed it. For alternate routes you could consider going into the CO mountains and through Steamboat Springs which is one of my favorite Colorado towns - the Strawberry Park Hot Springs are a "do not miss."

Another thing to consider as park of your trip to/from Yellowstone would be to visit Devil's Tower NM in Wyoming and perhaps even combining it with South Dakota/Black Hills/Deadwood/Mount Rushmore/Badlands. If you're motivated, the drive from this area of SD is a day's (6+ hours) drive from Denver and about 8.5 hours from Yellowstone.

Rock Springs, WY
Level Contributor
181 posts
160 reviews
4. Re: routes denver to yellowstone

Assorted tips:

(1) Because you enjoy hiking, when you get to the Yellowstone area, buy the little paperback entitled Day Hikes in Yellowstone...it's cheap and useful, loaded with half-day and full-day hiking routes and directions in all areas of the park. (2) I have an approach/avoidance feeling about Cody---on the one hand, it is a nice tourist town with the world class Buffalo Bill Historical Center, a nightly rodeo, the historic Irma Hotel...and yet, with all of the road construction that's always occurring at the park's east entrance, you can spend a long time sitting in a long, long line of cars backed up for miles waiting for entry into the park---check the conditions to make sure the entrance is even OPEN into the park from Cody! (3) One route is driving from Denver, up I-25 to Fort Collins, picking up 287 to Laramie. In Laramie, eat at Jeffrey's Bistro downtown. Take a break with a nice walk around Washington Park. Visit the U of WY's art museum. Then, instead of getting on I-80, pick up 30 W out of Laramie (the old Lincoln Highway, bypassed in the '60s by the interstate). Stop in Medicine Bow at the historic Virginian Hotel, named after the classic western, The Virginian, that was written in the area by WY/PA writer Owen Wister. (Note Wister Peak in the Teton Range and say to yourself, "hey, we saw Owen's cabin across the road from the Virginian in Medicine Bow.") Proceed up 30 and hop on 80, proceeding into Rawlins. Visit the old State Pen: it has a fascinating, cool little museum. The old Pen was the state's prison into the 1980s. Hop on 80, zoom across the Red Desert, and maybe stop in Rock Springs. Eat at the brew pub downtown. Visit the dinosaurs at the college. Maybe drive 12 miles west to Green River to visit the very nice little Sweetwater County Museum. Out of Rock Springs, go up 191. There's a big oil and gas boom going on now, so formerly quaint little Pinedale is rollicking and expensive now, with generally no vacancies. But, coming into Pinedale, on the right, take the road pointing to Fremont Lake, but go by Fremont Lake, continue about 15 miles to the road's end, park the car, and take the 6 mile roundtrip hike there from the trailhead for a fantastic vista of the Wind River Mtns. Out of Pinedale, continue north on 191, through the Hoback, into Jackson. Visit the Cowboy Bar. Visit the local museum. Maybe catch the summer stock theater. Watch the tourists. Take a half-day raft trip out of Moose, WY. Visit the Wildlife Art Museum heading out of town. Do some hiking in the Tetons, on the way to Yellowstone. In Yellowstone, use that book I recommended above. ---But mostly, have a great time and honk your horn when you pass through Rock Springs, where I live....

Bedford UK
Level Contributor
239 posts
120 reviews
5. Re: routes denver to yellowstone

Thanks, guys. Brilliant ideas in there.

6. Re: routes denver to yellowstone

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