new york to yellowstone roadtrip

Nov 1st, 2012, 09:37 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 1
new york to yellowstone roadtrip

Hi everyone,

I'm planning a trip from New York City to Yellowstone. On the road I'd like to visit parks lake Niagra Falls, Badlands NP, Yellowstone NP and visiting some cities like Washington DC, Chicago. On the internet I can not find such a route, but checking google maps this seems possible. Has anyone ever taken such a trip and does anyone suggest a route or have any ideas. I"m planning about 18 days including 3 days NY, 3 days Yellowstone.

Many thanks
coolhandluke is offline  
Nov 1st, 2012, 10:14 AM
Join Date: Oct 2003
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I think you need much ore time for a trip seeing so many places- esp since you are bouncing around in all directions. And I assume this is a one-way trip - there's no way you could do round trip.

Do you need to start in NYC - makes more sense to start in DC, train to NYC and then rent a car and go from there. Otherwise from NYC you are either going straight south to DC and then back north to Niagara (and you will need your passport to get across the border to the Canadian side where all the good stuff is) then head west.

My parents did a similar trip when they retired - but they took 7 weeks to do a roundtrip from NY area.

And what time of year are you looking at? They stated in May - so it was June when they got to Yellowstone.
nytraveler is offline  
Nov 1st, 2012, 11:26 AM
Join Date: Dec 2006
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I did Yellowstone (actually Boise) to NYC and back a couple of years ago, but we were gone for about 25 days. We did a circle route and did not return the same way we'd gone. Are the 18 days you're planning one way or round trip? We visited Yellowstone, Devil's Tower, Mt. Rushmore, Badlands, Chicago (2 nights) and NYC (4 nights) on the way, and stayed in Ithaca 3 nights (visiting relatives), then visited Niagara Falls, Mackinac Island (2 nights), the Little Bighorn, and Yellowstone again on the way back.
azzure is offline  
Nov 1st, 2012, 12:51 PM
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If you're doing a round trip you'll spend most of those 18 days on the road. And, if you allow 3 days in NYC plus 3 in Yellowstone you've only got 12 days travel time. Doable, but even for someone who likes to drive a lot, doesn't seem like fun.
If it'a 1-way, strongly suggest you drop either DC or Niagara Falls. If you drop DC you could take SR 17 across southern NY to I-390 into Rochester and then to the Falls. From there catch I-80 in Buffalo all the way to Chicago.
From Chicago I-94 to I-90 near LaCrosse and then 90 UD 14 near Sheridan, WY and into Yellowstone via Cody.

If 1 way skipping Niagara Falls, from DC west on I-70 to Indianapolis and then I-65 into Chicago where you follow the route from above.
Possible stopping points other than Chicago and Yellowstone could be Wheeling, WVA, Souix Falls, SD, Mt.Rushmore and the Black Hills in SD, maybe a sidetrip to the Little BigHorn Battlefield in MT, and Cody, WY.

A 1-way would still be a lot of driving, but fun. RT sounds more like work.
boom_boom is offline  
Nov 1st, 2012, 05:32 PM
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 15
Get an old fashioned paper USA map (AAA makes some nice ones that have driving times/distances) to begin to visualize the trip. Looking at the whole country at one time as you consider a route that doesn't backtrack will be a big help. Also, make a priority list of which places matter the most to you and try to work them into this trip (and leave the other places for another trip).
We have done cross country driving trips and you must allow 5 driving days just to cross the country (without any stops for sightseeing other than the "look out the window and point at a sight") type of sightseeing.
letusgo is offline  
Nov 1st, 2012, 05:56 PM
Join Date: Dec 2008
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We've done CT to Yellowstone with a stop in Chicago for a wedding and back in 11 days. We didn't have enough time anywhere, but I would rather have seen Yellowstone than missed it and we got to spend two days there. We did stop in the Badlands for a quick look and a very quick visit to Mt Rushmore on the way out. I hope to go back to Yellowstone.

On the way back we drove through Grand Teton but did not stop. The trip home was pretty much drive, drive drive.
emalloy is offline  
Nov 1st, 2012, 08:15 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,305
A more immediate problem is the expense of renting a car in New York City -- you'll be paying a lot more than if you rent the car further west.

My suggestion:
1) Visit NYC, using mass transit
2) Bus to train from NYC to Washington DC
3) Visit DC, using mass transit
4) Ride Amtrak on the Capitol Limited, direct from DC to Chicago
5) Visit Chicago, using mass transit
6) Rent a car in Chicago, then drive to Yellowstone and back
7) Fly from Chicago to NYC

You may note that this schedule does not include Niagara. I will state ABSOLUTELY that Yellowstone is a more worthwhile stop than Niagara. Anyone who says otherwise is just plain WRONG.
PaulRabe is offline  
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