Driving from Texas to Yellowstone

Old Mar 16th, 2014, 12:26 PM
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Driving from Texas to Yellowstone

I need help planning my June trip to Yellowstone. We're a family of four driving an AWD vehicle, pulling a pop-up camper and no real time constraints. My kids are teenagers. We're starting in Palo Duro Canyon in the Texas panhandle. Some things we like are hiking, fishing, kayaking/rafting, astronomy/observatories, history (my husband loves old west stuff), wildlife, and home cooking (we're very adventurous eaters). Gotta keep it cheap. What are the "can't miss" sites along the way?
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Old Mar 16th, 2014, 05:26 PM
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Any interest in the National Solar Observatory? http://www.nso.edu/
Also click on the link to Kitt Peak.
Do you or the teenagers want to see the Pacific Ocean?
Are you returning to Texas after Yellowstone or going onward in July?
There are a lot of don't miss places in the western third of the US.
I do have a friend that is the manager of the Pine Mountain Observatory outside Bend Oregon. Bend is also a great place to do kayaking on both lakes and the Deschutes River.
It is a long days drive but I have driven from Bend to Idaho Falls ID driving into Yellowstone the next morning.
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Old Mar 18th, 2014, 05:12 AM
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Thanks for the NSO link, tomfuller! In planning with my husband, we were originally thinking to head east and see Mt. Rushmore and Deadwood,etc. But when Glacier National Park was mentioned, he lit up like a firecracker. Don't think we'll make it all the way to the coast, but it does look like we'll stay west. I'm not sure yet how to return.We're really just about adventure and scenery. I'm very open to all suggestions. Anyone know if seeing the northern lights is a possibility?
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Old Mar 18th, 2014, 07:52 AM
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There are a great places to wander to along the way. It depends on what you've seen in the desert SW and/or the mountains of CO. If you want to go all the way to Glacier NP, you'll probably want to get to Jackson WY as fast as possible. If that's the case, I'd stop along the way in or around Durango CO and visit Mesa Verde NP, maybe take a ride on the narrow gauge railroad. After a couple of nights in the area, head on up to Jackson and then on up to Yellowstone and on to Glacier NP. The next time I do a road trip, I'm going to spend more time in Great Falls, Montana. There was more to do there than I realized.
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Old Mar 18th, 2014, 10:12 AM
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Straddle the spine of the Rockies to Yellowstone: In New Mexico, Chaco Canyon, Taos; in Colorado, Mesa Verde, the Silverton train, Rocky Mountain NP, Dinosaur National Monument, etc.

Browsing through these pictures might give you some ideas:

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Old Mar 18th, 2014, 12:43 PM
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Thanks, guys! I really loved browsing your photos, Michael. Made me so excited to see these beautiful places.
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Old Mar 18th, 2014, 01:08 PM
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On June 20-21 I am intending to be at the Pine Mountain Observatory. http://pmo-sun.uoregon.edu/
My friend Mark Dunaway is the manager of the observatory.
There is a free dry campground on the west side of the Pine Mt. road which is south from Millican off US 20.
Your best chance of seeing Northern Lights is likely at Glacier NP.
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