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Please help- Itinerary Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, Black Hills, Mount Rushmore

Please help- Itinerary Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, Black Hills, Mount Rushmore

Old Mar 6th, 2008, 08:59 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Mar 2008
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Please help- Itinerary Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, Black Hills, Mount Rushmore

I am planning a trip this summer leaving TN and traveling through the Black Hills/Badlands and on to Yellowstone/Grand Tetons returning south through Denver and Kansas. I need help with the planning such as places to stay and how to make the most of my time. We have 14-15 days for the entire trip. If those of you familiar would help me with itinerary and anything at all I would really appreciate it. I am really kinda at a loss because I have never been much west of the Mississppi and need help.
Savannahvol is offline  
Old Mar 6th, 2008, 10:05 PM
  #2  
 
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Concerning the SD part of your trip - I would recommend reserving 1 day for the SD Badlands,3-4 days for the Black Hills, drive to Devils Tower from SD then up to Grand Tetons/Yellowstone. It seems one never has enough vacation time, but you have to save something to see the next time you visit! In the Black Hills, I would recommend staying at either Hill City or Keystone - they're more centrally located to Mt.Rushmore,etc. and the Badlands would also be an easy daytrip from there. On your last day in the area, you could plan to make your way to Deadwood & stay there before getting an early start for Yellowstone leg of your trip.
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Old Mar 8th, 2008, 04:52 PM
  #3  
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Thanks for your comments. I was thinking of staying in Keystone. I was planning about 3 days for all of South Dakota. Anybody got any recommendations on the rest of the trip. Thanks for all your help.
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Old Mar 8th, 2008, 05:36 PM
  #4  
maj
 
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First of all, you will love it. I can still remember my first impression of the western part of our country. I would backtract as little as possible because the distances are so much greater between places than in the east and midwest. I would stop in the badlands on the way to the Mt.Rushmore area.

Are you traveling with children? That can make a difference on what you will want to see and do.

We spent two nights in the Black Hills area and that was plenty for us. I would rather spend more time in the Yellowstone/Teton area with the amount of time you have.

It definitely isn't too early to start making reservations in those areas. I would look to see how long it will take you to get to the areas you want to go. I can't remember exactly how long it took (and we stopped at different places -- like Devil's Tower), but it took us about a day's drive from the East Entrance of Yellowstone to Rapid City.
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Old Mar 8th, 2008, 08:23 PM
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I did a very similar trip but we flew into Rapid City. We stayed in Keystone for two nights. Keystone is very close to Mt. Rushmore. Depending what time you expect to arrive in the badlands area you would probably only need a 1/2 day or all day there depending how much you plan to do. It wasn't that far from Keystone we did it as a day trip. You may only need another two nights in the Rushmore area. Make sure you include Custer Park and a drive on the Needles Hwy. It is a great drive. From Keystone we went to Deadwood which was also a good stop. From Deadwood it is an all day drive to the east entrance of Yellowstone. We stayed in Cody for a few nights before entering the park. The Bill Cody museum was very interesting and we also drove the Chief Joseph and Bear Tooth Hwy both beautiful scenery. If you are planning to stay in Yellowstone you should make reservations as soon as possible. Rather than travel back and forth from Yellowstone to Tetons I would stay in Jackson Hole when you visit the Tetons and you would probably only need a night or two again depending on what you plan to do. We are not hikers so we found that enough time to take in the scenery.
mmouse52 is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2008, 09:23 PM
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When in Yellowstone, I like the immersion of staying in the park. If you plan to do that, consider staying a couple of different places simply to experience the different areas. I highly suggest staying at Old Faithful Inn; it's magnificently historic and you can walk right out the front door and take a great geyser walk, but you can sit out on the balcony and watch Old Faithful do her thing.
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