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Thread: Yellowstone ---need help and advice

  1. #1
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    I have dreamt of going to Yellowstone National Park since I was eight years old. I have decided it is time to fulfill this dream because you never know what the future will bring. the problem is the expense. No matter how I add it up, between airline fares, trying to RV it, etc. It adds up to more than I can afford. Indiana is just so far away. I have even considered going during the off-season but it is still too much.

    My dream was to take all three of my kids. It has Taken so long that one of mine is already grown and out of the house, and another one will be out after this school year. I have one kid left. I am sad we were nit able to do it when
    all three could go. Does anyone have any ideas on how I can make this happen before it is too late for my youngest two? Thank you!

  2. #2
    Super Member boxerlady's Avatar
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    Yellowstone is a wonderful place. The thermal features, the animals, the lake, the mountains. Start a "Yellowstone fund." Put some money aside each week. If you RV it, from Indiana it will take about 4 or 5 days to get out there. If you fly into Jackson, you can spend more of your vaction time there. I would suggest to stay in the Canyon area of Yellowstone, it is more towards the center of the park and gives you easier access to the rest of the park.

  3. #3
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    How about tent camping? It is a lot cheaper then an RV. Some friends of us went during the summer with their mini van and 5 children (10-18 yrs). They took shifts driving from southern California.

  4. #4
    Super Member boxerlady's Avatar
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    Go in August. July is way too crowded. Still good weather in August. If you tent camp, take good sleeping bags or lots of blankets! Gets chilly at night.

  5. #5
    Super Member Charlee's Avatar
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    Fly in, and stay outside the park where the rates are going to be cheaper. Staying in Gardiner or West Yellowstone are also going to be expensive, but still cheaper than say the Old Faithful Lodge. Get a rental car and make the drive to the points that you want to see each day. Makes for a longer day, but it can be done. (I used to live in the Bozeman area, and managed to see almost all of Yellowstone just through day trips)
    Another option is to camp in the park. Check the campgrounds out, there are some that are "hardside" campers only because of the bear activity, but there are those that will allow tents. The camping fees are MUCH less than motels, and add a bit of adventure to your trip, especially if you've never camped before! :)

  6. #6
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Fly? RV? Drive out and camp. I just checked and it's about a 24 hour drive total. You can do that in two days and see several other things along the way. You could also see Mt. Rushmore and Devil's Tower.

    Make sure you make reservations for a campsite if you go during the busy season.

  7. #7
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    and if you find you actually can't go=get a DVD on it. there are some lovely ones out there I'm sure. I love to watch travel shows on Italy, etc. I know i'll never go, so it's the next best thing.
    good luck

  8. #8
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    We took our three kids there and tent camped. It wasn't nearly as expensive. It was the only way we could afford it.

  9. #9
    Super Member redkimba's Avatar
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    Have you thought about checking into taking the Amtrak train? Just a quick search shows that they have a station at the Grand Canyon.

  10. #10
    Super Member Marlys's Avatar
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    I live about 6 hours from the Park and we take all of our company there. I drove to Akron, Ohio in 2 days last fall, so I know it can be done. We usually stay in West Yellowstone for about $100/night - you are not going to find anything much cheaper close to the park. I know people do it, but I would not camp in a tent in or near the park because of the bears. If you want to PM me, I can let you know where we stay and some of the ways we have made it a bit more affordable. I have also traveled out to MN & WI often so I know some of the nice, affordable places to stay along both the ND & SD routes. You definitely should do it if you can. It is worth the trip!

  11. #11
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    We took our 4 children about 12 years ago and tent camped it!!
    I think we had the absolutely best tent site in the whole park. We had a great time. We brought in and cooked all our own food, hiked all over the place and kept the cost way down.

  12. #12
    Super Member Pat P's Avatar
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    In the 1980"s my BIL wanted to skydive off El Capitan (Yosemite) so we piled our two kids and my IL and drove out in our van. All expenses were shared I had generous IL, DH and I did all the driving. We all stayed in the same room, kids slept on the floor, yes it was tight but we made it work. Anyone that you are close enough that you could live with for a week or two? We took a cooler with ice and drinks, fruit and snacks we built memories for a lifetime and had a ball. Hope it works out for you. Determination will get you halfway there!

  13. #13
    Super Member Murphy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Annaquilts
    How about tent camping? It is a lot cheaper then an RV. Some friends of us went during the summer with their mini van and 5 children (10-18 yrs). They took shifts driving from southern California.
    I agree here. Tent camping is inexpensive, normally. This is very doable.

  14. #14
    Senior Member squilter's Avatar
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    In 2004, my husband and I took a trip out west to the Grand Canyon and pulled our pop-up camper and stayed in a different place every night, most it cost us to stay was $43.00 night. We got to see A LOT of stuff on the way. We even stayed at Circus Circus campground in Las Vegas. We were gone 11 days on it cost around $2000.00 for gas, lodging and food. Not to bad we didn't think for how long we were gone

  15. #15
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by redkimba
    Have you thought about checking into taking the Amtrak train? Just a quick search shows that they have a station at the Grand Canyon.
    Yeah, but the Grand Canyon is quite some distance from Yellowstone Park. Arizona? Wyoming?

  16. #16
    Senior Member squilter's Avatar
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    We didn't have reservations when we camped and we went in June. We mostly stayed at KOA campgrounds, they were all nice. Hope you find a way to go, you will never regret it. It was one of the places my husband always wanted to go....now mind ya, I have NO desire to go back out there. We left Missouri and went the south route and came back the north route, loved the north route but I am not a dry, not grass, not trees drab person and that is just me.

  17. #17
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by squilter
    We didn't have reservations when we camped and we went in June. We mostly stayed at KOA campgrounds, they were all nice. Hope you find a way to go, you will never regret it. It was one of the places my husband always wanted to go....now mind ya, I have NO desire to go back out there. We left Missouri and went the south route and came back the north route, loved the north route but I am not a dry, not grass, not trees drab person and that is just me.
    I meant a reservation for inside the park. It can get pretty full during the main part of the season.

  18. #18
    Senior Member squilter's Avatar
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    Yes that is so true.

  19. #19
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scissor Queen
    Quote Originally Posted by squilter
    We didn't have reservations when we camped and we went in June. We mostly stayed at KOA campgrounds, they were all nice. Hope you find a way to go, you will never regret it. It was one of the places my husband always wanted to go....now mind ya, I have NO desire to go back out there. We left Missouri and went the south route and came back the north route, loved the north route but I am not a dry, not grass, not trees drab person and that is just me.
    I meant a reservation for inside the park. It can get pretty full during the main part of the season.
    We had a reservation for our campsite in the park.

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