Yellowstone without Tetons?

Old Mar 12th, 2006, 11:08 AM
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Yellowstone without Tetons?

All your wonderful posts have helped me plan trip to Yellowstone first week August. Our family is planning 7 nights in 3 different locations all over Yellowstone. We're 2 nights OF Inn, 3 nights Lake Yellowstone cabins, 2 nights Tower/Roosevelt cabin. We're only going to Jackson (Flat Creek Inn) for our last night on way back to airport. With so much to see in Yellowstone-as posts like yours, John127 and others have shown-do you think it's a mistake not to take in Grand Tetons? Honestly, on my previous trips, 30 years ago, out to this part of the country, I was more blown away by Yellowstone than Tetons. I know there's also Cody, Beartooth HWY, and many other places we could spend time going to. We're hikers-and our daughters don't enjoy driving as much as husband and I do. Also don't know what I'd omit, if we changed plans. Opinions? Many thanks to all of you.
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Old Mar 12th, 2006, 11:18 AM
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I think you're always better off not trying to cram too much into too short a time. Better to really experience one area than to "breeze by" several!
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Old Mar 12th, 2006, 11:51 AM
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For me that is 'way too much time in Yellowstone. The Tetons are one of the most beautiful places in the world.
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Old Mar 12th, 2006, 01:27 PM
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You must drive completely thru GTNP to get to Jackson - no other reasonable way. The views are incredible, but we far preferred Yellowstone to GTNP. What I might do is plan to leave Yellowstone early on next-to-last day, skip seeing anything in Yellowstone, and head right to entrance to GTNP. Plan to check in later in day at final night's lodging. That gives you most of a day in GTNP. You can see the hightlights that way.

If you are flying into Jackson as well you could also see some of GTNP on your way up to Yellowstone.

Whatever you decide, don't torture yourself about it. If you look at a map, you could keep adding things on this trip until it took all summer - hence some of the posts here that want to know if they can cram 4 parks into 10 days. Just enjoy the wonders of Wyoming and Montana - you can always go back. And since you seem to have lined up in-Park lodging for your trip, don't mess with it now.
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Old Mar 12th, 2006, 02:14 PM
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I agree that at a minimum you should try to budget time on your way through the Tetons on your way to and from Yellowstone. They are spectacular but Yellowstone was the highlight of my trip to that area. That said, if you think you will have regrets about the trip, how about trimming the last 2 nights out of Yellowstone in order to stay in Jackson to explore the Tetons?
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 01:44 AM
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Dont miss the Tetons, gorgeous area with wildlife, whitewater rafting out of Jackson, wildlife, the scenery is indescribable
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 02:08 AM
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We had also heard about wildlife in GTNP. We saw a few squirrels and a lot of birds only - until we returned to rented condo to find giant moose eating landscaping. I thihk we were just unlucky, but we did see everything imaginable at Yellowstone.
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 04:56 AM
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To really see the wild life, a float trip on the Snake River is the way. I am not advocating a lot of time in the Tetons, but a day or two would be good.
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 05:09 AM
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soxgirl,
I agree with CAPH52. Slow Travel is always best. Without sounding too salty, if viewing wildlife is a priority, you may want to get up before sun-up and find a place where animals feed (ask a Ranger). You don't see much wildlife from a car unless Bear Jams excite you. Best hiking is in the Beartooth Wilderness but you can do that another time.
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 06:39 AM
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Hello,
I too am planning my trip for this summer and have several posts here. I also have friends who own a condo in Teton Village and they go several times a year. They much prefer the Tetons to Yellowstone. Go to google's images page and type in both and to me the pictures of Grand Teton make it no contest. My friends that go out often also say the float trips on Snake River, Jenny Lake or Jackson Lake at dawn or dusk are the prime setting for wildlife viewing. Only you can decide as others here have said they prefer Yellowstone. I would just say read, read, read, look at the pictures and then know your family and pick what your family would prefer. Everyone is different. We are getting excited about our trip.
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 06:56 AM
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To visit that area and not spend time in the Grand Teton is to miss some of the most majestic and beautiful scenery in this country, if not the world!
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 07:51 AM
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You've already been and were more impressed with Yellowstone than the Tetons. I'm the same way. I like driving through the Tetons but that's enough for me. If you are spending the night in Jackson, then you will be driving throught the Tetons.

If you daughters are more impressed with the Tetons, then they can come back sometime in the future.

Utahtea
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 08:02 AM
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Perhaps you could spend a day as was suggested above. You could have lunch at Signal Mountain Lodge overlooking Jackson Lake and maybe even rent a boat for an hour from the marina there.http://foreverlodging.com/foreverinf...ontentKey=2324
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 06:46 PM
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Thank you all. I think I'll grab at Gail's suggestion to leave Yellowstone early our last day and spend the bulk of the day in the Tetons. Since we drive right through GTNP on the way up, we can easily change our minds and leave Yellowstone a day early if we're so moved. I believe Xanterra only wants 2 days notice on cancellations as they must promptly fill up. Thanks also wildlife viewing tips. With the mice running around in my attic and squirrel in my backyard, a dawn viewing of moose, elk, bear, etc. sounds unlike anything I see here in MA.
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Old Mar 13th, 2006, 08:09 PM
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On my first trip to Yellowstone I was with my father who measured trip success by miles per gallon, miles driven per day, and how little he could pay for a motel. (We stayed in some first class fleabags.)

On that trip we did NOT visit the Tetons. To do so would have hurt our miles per day average.

I finally saw the Tetons when I was 32.
When I did, I wondered why in the world we did not take the time to see them on that first visit. Oh well. I had time to take a good look when I finally got there. This time, I was with my wife and son.

As much as I love Yellowstone, I think 7 nights there could yield one day at least for the Tetons.

I have spent as many as 5 nights there, and was able to visit the most interesting parts of the park.

Tower/Roosevelt. Fond memories, I think. We stayed there on that first trip. The night was cold and we woke up shivering. My dad was fussing like all fury when he had to build a fire to get warm. Of course the fire consumed all the fuel in about 3 hours, and the cabin was so drafty that the heat soon radiated out through all the cracks.

We had to use a central bathhouse and get water from a faucet in the yard.
Fortunately,the cabins did have a bucket for that purpose. I went out to the bathhouse fairly early after sunrise. A man in search of water came around the corner just as I stepped out of the door. He was not too alert that early and he walked into the north end of a south bound bear.

The startled man yelled "BEAR", slung his bucket up in the air and fled.
The bucket came down and hit the young bear in the north end. That scared the youngster and he headed off as fast as he could go, straight into the doorway of the ladies' end of the bathhouse.

Several ladies and girls in various stages of dress came running out of the door screaming. The bewildered bear finally emerged. Gathering his wits, the animal headed for the woods. Smart move.

My advice: Check the predicted low temperature for your nights. If need be, get an extra fire log before you get to the cabins. You might not use it, but if you need it, you will have it. Of course with global warming, you may not need any fire at all in the first week of August. The last time I was in Yellowstone, it was hotter than the hinges of your local furnace.

You might want to check and see if the road from Tower to Canyon is open this summer. If it is still closed for repairs, Roosevelt is something of a dead end. You can either go back to Mammoth or go out the Northeast Gate to the Beartooth Highway, which I highly, highly recommend.

Regardless, you will enjoy the trip.
But don't ignore the Tetons even if you do no more than drive up Signal Mountain for the grandest Teton view I can think of. They are majestic.

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Old Mar 14th, 2006, 03:22 AM
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Bison tip - there is a place called Hayden something (?Plain) that is almost a guarantee for large numbers of large animals. When we were there they wandered around on the street, arms length from cars. You could hear them breathe!

If by chance you get tired of all the animals, watch the human animals who think they are at some sort of petting zoo as they approach moose, bison and try to get a picture with them. After a while, it really makes you root for the animal and hope it charges the idiot.
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Old Mar 14th, 2006, 05:42 AM
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The Lamar Valley is much better than the Hayden, less people and more critters. Its also home to several of the Parks wolf packs.

Try to make a little time for the Tetons, you will never regret it.
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Old Mar 15th, 2006, 06:59 AM
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Talking about the Teton's --- I highly recommend Dornan's log cabin's in Moose, Wyoming near the south entrance and on the Snake River with an awesome view of the Teton peaks and a deck for dinners as you watch the beauty. The cabins are very up to date and there is a good restaurant when you don't want to cook, with another great viewing deck, and store/gas staion near the cabins.
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Old Mar 15th, 2006, 07:37 AM
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Actually, Dornan's is a good choice for any meal--breakfast, lunch or dinner.
For close-up bison viewing, nothing can beat driving down Antelope Flats Road in the Teton. The road also leads to the historic Moulton Barn, site for great photo ops.
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Old Mar 15th, 2006, 07:44 AM
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just a comment from the other side. The north part of the park is my very favorite. I've seen a lot of mountain ranges, and while the tetons are beautiful, imo, there are other more magnificent ranges, and nothing matches the majesty of Yellowstone. So I'm with you, soxgirl.
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