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Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

Calabasas...
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Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

I will be traveling with my daughter and her children over Memorial Day weekend. She lives in Denver, and we've taken advantage of the beautiful scenery and great hiking in RMNP, and her 8 yr. old is eager to see Yellowstone. What would be the most direct route, and which entrance should we take to get in the Yellowstone? We were thinking of staying in Grant Village for 3 nights, but am now wondering if we should make one night hops on the route before we return to Denver. What would be the best overnight so we don't have to make the long drive on one day?

Worcester...
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1. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

As its quite late to be planning a YS trip, I'd worry more about finding lodging. Are you looking to stay in the park? If so, call Xanterra and check for openings. If not, there are border town that add more driving time, but provide more amenities. Either way, I suggest calling around tomorrow. If you get lodging that's not really agreeable, you can check the cancellation policy, and try to rebook during the next month. Good luck!

Calabasas...
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2. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

Thanks for your concern - I have made reservations for 3 nights in Grant Village. Still concerned about how to break up the driving time, and make the most of our time in YS.

Worcester...
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3. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

That's good that you have lodging confirmed. I'll be doing the drive from Denver less than two weeks later.

Spery, Iowa
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4. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

Grant Village is not the best for seeing the park. You will have more back-tracking, with less to do in the area after dark. And driving in the park after dark is discouraged, as the roads are used by big dark furry beasts. Keep trying for cancellations- Canyon is often recommended, with a night at Old Faithful if you can.

Jackson, Wyoming
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5. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

The most direct route, meaning most interstate would be: Denver-Cheyenne-Rock Springs-Jackson-Yellowstone/Grant, as a parent this is a pretty long haul in one day. I drive Jackson to Cheyenne pretty regularly, on this route and its under 6 hours, with a quick stop in Rock Springs for bathrooms & food. When you add in Jackson-Grant and Denver-Cheyenne and you've added another 3-4 hours, for a total of 8-10 hours depending on stops. I agree overnighting just makes sense. On this route, I would overnight in Jackson, and enjoy GTNP on your way up to Grant via the south gate the next day. . Jackson is a good choice as there are lots of options for lodging and restaurants, but it is the most expensive place to stay. An alternative route with less interstate would be Denver-Cheyenne-Rawlins-Lander/Riverton-Dubois-Yellowstone, Lander/Riverton (5-6 hours from Denver) would be a good overnight, although another 75 minutes would put you in Dubois, which is about 2 hours from Grant Village (103 miles). This would allow you to get up in the morning and spend the day enjoying scenery as you drive through GTNP and the south gate of Yellowstone. This route has some fabulous views of the Absarokas, the Pinnacles over Togwotee Pass. The Tetons will be spectacular, but you'll get those with either route. So in summary either Jackson or Dubois would be my choices for an overnight stop on the way to YNP from Denver both about 7 hours from Denver. If that's too much car time, stop in Lander or Riverton.

Spery, Iowa
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6. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

Lander is a nice little stop over. Sinks Canyon is a must see. It is a nice drive from Lander to the park. Riverton is a little bigger, with a different feel.

Lansing, Michigan
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7. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

We are driving from Estes Park as well in Mid-June. Planning to stop for the night in Lander as we are adding a side trip to the Fossil Cabin/Como Dinosaur Bluffs and hopefully Independence Rock as well. With those stops it will be a 8+ hour drive and we wanted to hit Togwotee Pass during daylight hours and make for a more relaxed trip from Lander to Signal Mt/Tetons, or in your case Grant Village. Will add Sinks Canyon to our list as well! (thx thbergs!)

There are some good looking restaurants in Lander we'd like to try, and maybe the Scream Shack for a little ice cream before we turn in for the night!?

http://www.landerbar.com/index.php

Spery, Iowa
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8. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

In Lander, We like the Gannet Grill- fun to eat outside, we hit it up every time we are in town and are doing the Hitching Rack for our daughters wedding this August, but haven't eaten there yet- a bit pricier than we usually did with the kids. I can recommend the Bunk House at Lander Llama for lodging as well. Kids will love it.

Colorado Springs...
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9. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

A 5 day trip from Denver to Yellowstone is quite a haul, especially with Kids. I live in Wyoming and drive all over the state regularly. If you wanted to break it up somewhat, you could go via Lander and then over Togwotee Pass into Teton and Yellowstone. That way, you'd have 6 hours from Denver, and another 3 to Moran Junction. You'd all get a peek at the Tetons before heading up the Rockefeller Parkway into Yellowstone. The south entrance is not the most exciting entrance because you'll drive through pine trees for a long time before hitting any of the thermal stuff. Since your trip is so short, I'd pick one area, stay two nights and do short trips, then head on back to Denver with another overnight along the way. You will be driving ALOT. We've had a pretty mild winter, so the park should be fairly accessible by Memorial Day.

10. Re: Denver to Yellowstone - 5 day trip with kids

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