Somthing to visit near Yellowstone

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Jul 2nd, 2004, 08:26 AM
  #1
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Somthing to visit near Yellowstone

This may seem similiar to "Needing a vacation from vacation,.."

We'll be day hiking for two weeks in Grand Teton and Yellowstone, and usually find that we need a "day off" part way through our hiking trips. At that point we'll be in the Mammouth Hot Springs area.

Any suggestions for a break from vacation?

We're considering driving to Bozeman, Livingston, Big Sky, Cooke City or Cody. Not looking for excitement and entertainment, but just a town to poke around, sip a coffee (is Starbucks wishful thinking?) just get a flavor of small town Montana/Wyoming.
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Jul 2nd, 2004, 08:32 AM
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My first question is, do you have kids with you?

Was on this same vacation last year, loved it! I SO LOVE Wyoming and South Dakota area!

I have a brother that lives in Wyoming, so we visit as frequent as possible.

If you have kids, Evans Plunge is in Mammoth Springs area which is great swimming for the kids.

If no kids, do you like a western flare? If so, Cody Wyoming is great!

If no kids and you like to gamble? Deadwood South Dakota.

What about Mt.Rushmore? Keystone is a neat little town!
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Jul 2nd, 2004, 09:09 AM
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mlarson:
To answer your questions--no kids, except kids at heart.

Western flare is okay as long as it isn't staged. We prefer to see real life.

Although I'd love to see SD, I'm just looking for a day trip from Mommouth before we take on another week on the trails in the national parks.
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Jul 2nd, 2004, 09:26 AM
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Virginia City, Bannock, Gates of the Mountains, Beartooth Highway, Little Big Horn. All can be done in a day from Yellowstone, albeit some would be a very long day and might require a vacation from the vacation from the vacation.....

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Jul 2nd, 2004, 10:12 AM
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Now, I haven't been there yet, but I would be tempted to try Livingston. Go to www.livinston-chamber.com for research. A few interesting museums, and the town claims to have many of its old historic buildings intact (the chamber of commerce gives out walking tour maps). It was the original gateway town to Yellowstone, and only 52 miles north along a scenic road. I believe the town is also becoming popular with some Hollywood-types, and has been used as a base for some recent movies, such as "A River Runs Through It". Don't know much about Bozeman - I suspect it has a western feel, but it might not be "small" enough. Big Sky, I think, is primarily a purpose-built ski resort area, so you won't find an old-western town feel there.

Cody would not be a bad choice either. It has a very authentic Western feel to it - I have been there, for some reason it struck me as 'dusty'. However, we had fun walking around the shops. There is also a 'Buffalo Bill Historic Center', which is probably interesting, plus trolley tours (you can rest up from hiking!). I think they hold a rodeo EVERY night, so you could stay and watch that. (Of course, they DO also have the cheesey staged gunfights, but we didn't see any of those.) They have a website at www.codychamber.org. Cody is quite a bit further away, however.

No Starbucks at any of these places, though, at least not according to the Starbucks website!
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Jul 2nd, 2004, 10:44 AM
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Clouise,

Try posting your question on the Yellowstone National Park Chat Page (link below.) I bet you will get plenty of good ideas!

http://www.yellowstone-natl-park.com/wwwboard/chat2.htm
 
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Jul 2nd, 2004, 11:02 AM
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Out of Mammouth Livingston would be a "small town" experience. Since my favorite wilderness area to hike is the Beartooths ie.pristine wilderness I'd suggest taking the Cooke City road to Red Lodge. If you want to camp on the way you could stop at Island Lake. The road to Red Lodge is one of the prettiest in the world. 64 miles from Cooke City. About a two (yes) hour drive. Happy Trails
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Jul 2nd, 2004, 11:19 AM
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I'm sorry, I misunderstood where you were referring to. I was thinking you were in South Dakota. Sorry!

My family really liked Cody Wyoming. They do have a good rodeo every nite. We enjoyed that also. The main street thru Cody has alot of very nice little shops to visit.

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Jul 2nd, 2004, 11:32 AM
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I'll pile on for Cody too. It's not too far from YS. We arrived late in the afternoon last week and were sorry we had to leave the next morning...the downtown looked like a nice place to wander around. No Starbucks but saw a number of local coffee houses serving espresso drinks.

If you don't want to make a whole day of it, West Yellowstone had a few bits and pieces to see. Good coffee drinks in the back on a nice inde book store (The Book Peddler). We liked the Museum of the Yellowstone in the old Union Pacific railroad station.
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Jul 3rd, 2004, 04:58 AM
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Depends on what you want to do:

If you want one of the most awesome drives in the U.S., I wouldn't miss Beartooth.

If you just want to hang out in a nice town, I'd go for Bozeman. Great downtown for walking around, shopping, eating. Pickle Barrel is a great place for a deli sandwich.

I don't find Livingston to be all that appealing.
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Jul 6th, 2004, 08:33 AM
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I've heard lots of favorable comments about Beartooth Highway. Is it really that wonderful as compared to some of the other great drives in North America? I thought Ice Parkway through the Canadian Rockies, Big Sur, Going to the Sun Highway and many others in Alaska, WA and OR were quite spectacular. Should I definitely add Beartooth to my list?
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Jul 6th, 2004, 09:16 AM
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There is the cutest little old west town at the West gate to Yellowstone. You'll find antique stores, a christmas store, and among other things, the custest diner complete with photos of the front of the building each winter. You'll be amazed at the amount of snow in front from year to year. When those of us in the North East were experiencing the horrible "blizzard of 77", they had very little snowfall. It was fun to look at all of those pictures and relax in an atmosphere where the word "hurry" isn't in the vocabulary. The Holiday Inn Conference Center is a nice place to stay in West Yellowstone complete with jacuzzis for tired feet.
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Jul 6th, 2004, 09:19 AM
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Forgot to add that also at West Yellowstone, there is a fantastic Grizzly Bear exhibit complete with live bears. If you're lucky, you may be there at feeding time. They are very interesting to watch and quite ominous. Also, on the road to Bozeman, there is a great river rafting place where they take you down the Galatin River for a very exhilerating rafting experience, complete with a certified guide. Our kids LOVED it. I have to admit, I did too!
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Jul 6th, 2004, 09:21 AM
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Clousie,
The Beartooth Highway is a great drive and definitly one of the best. As a backpacker I think the Beartooth Wilderness area beats the Tetons and Yellowstone. I've been to the ones you have mentioned as to much of the Sierra's. Red Lodge is a great little town also. It's a Ski/Backpacking/Rodeo crowd with a tourist mix.
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Jul 6th, 2004, 11:12 AM
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The Beartooth is indeed incredible and not to be missed.
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Jul 29th, 2004, 05:29 PM
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We just got back from a visit to Yellowstone/Grand Tetons. We flew into Bozeman, which is a neat town - some nice shops and the Museum of the Rockies. Nothing totally amazing, but what was one nice thing about the museum was that is was open until 8pm and had a planetarium. We spend the first night of our vacation here.

We were very disappointed in Livingston. We went, and didn't find much of anything there. We visited the RR Museum - nothing special. I read my husband the travel description from AAA and asked him if I misunderstood something; it didn't seem as nice as depicted. He agreed that he would not match the description to the place.

Cody is a great western town! Lots of western atmosphere. We went to the rodeo at night, and visited Trail Town, which is a collection of historic homes/cabins, etc. I'm facscinated by Western American history, so I liked this. We ate at the Irma Hotel - which was built by Buffalo Bill Cody at the turn of the century. Real western feel!

Cooke City is extremely small - there is not much there.
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