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Staying in one place?

United States
Level Contributor
106 posts
23 reviews
Staying in one place?

My family of 5 (2 adults, 3 kids ages 7, 10, and 12) are going to be driving from Denver (where we live) to YNP and GTNP next June. We have a full week, Saturday to following Sunday). Because I didn't realize accommodations would fill up so fast I only booked about a month ago when we decided this is what we would do.

I have Saturday through Wednesday night booked at Grant Village in YNP and then Thursday through Saturday night booked at Colter Bay Lodge in GTNP.

I guess I don't have a whole lot of choice on lodging since most everything is booked for the dates I would need, but am I going to regret basing ourselves in only one area for our time in YNP? I suppose I could keep watching other lodging for openings, but not even sure which I should look at or how to organize it? Or will we be able to cover a good portion of the must-sees relatively easily from Grant Village? If anyone has done a similar trip based from Grant Village I'd love if you would share your itinerary.

Thanks,

12 replies to this topic
Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta, Savannah
Level Contributor
19,806 posts
95 reviews
1. Re: Staying in one place?

Grant Village is very south. Keep trying. There will be cancellations. Try to balance that with a place in the north or Canyon which is more centrally located. It will cut down on drive time.

Spery, Iowa
Level Contributor
11,225 posts
181 reviews
2. Re: Staying in one place?

Cancellations happen. There is often an increase after the first of the year when people firm up vacation plans. Call and look at the www.yellowstonenationalparklodges.com website. While any location can work, you add driving time, are not already at busy areas early and late without the daytrippers and Grant has fewer food choices. (with 3 kids, the western cabins might be a good fit- they seem to have a bit more room. there is also a 3 bed room at the OF Inn that does not show on the website)

Driving from Denver, I would do a night in GTNP first. You don't want to be driving in the dark.

Saturday- Day 1 Denver to GTNP

Sunday- Day 2 to Canyon or Lake

Monday- Day 3 tour YNP, overnight same

Tuesday- Day 4 tour YNP overnight OF

Wednesday-Day 5 tour YNP, overnight OF

Thursday- Day 6 YNP to Coulter Bay

Friday- Day 7 Tour GTNP

Saturday- Day 8 Tour GTP

Sunday- Drive to Denver

N. Idaho
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park
Level Contributor
25,217 posts
112 reviews
3. Re: Staying in one place?

You've got plenty of time to pick up cancellations which occur frequently. Sometimes they don't happen until January when people really start looking at their summer plans after having booked their lodging the previous May. It will take looking at the Xanterra website several times a day and I would start that in January. I agree with the suggestion for 2 nights at Canyon or Lake and 2 at OF.

To just give you an example, I found consecutive nights at OF Lodge in early June for August and then found a Roosevelt cabin with the en suite bath(very few of them) in mid-July for a mid-August travel date.

Grant is just so far south to be able to effectively tour the upper areas of the park. It's sort of convenient for Old Faithful but staying at OF is much, much better!

BTW, the Xanterra website thbergs linked you to is NOT user friendly. You'll have to do a bunch of searching at every location to come up with what you need. When you see something open, grab it because it will be gone.

Pam

Atlanta, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
Level Contributor
35,212 posts
508 reviews
4. Re: Staying in one place?

Totally agree with others. Never have booked lodging until Jan thru March for the summer. Always find cancellations. Only book thru Xanterra.

Rockwall, Texas
2 posts
5. Re: Staying in one place?

My husband and I just spent 3 days in Grant and the hotel had mice!!!!!!! Mice were in our towels, clothes and food. We talked to one gentleman who said his wife went to get clothes out of her suitcase and she screamed because a mouse was in there. We did tell the front desk twice and they did nothing. This is a health hazard as mice carry diseases. I realize we are in the wilderness but they have to try and control the population! I did send Xanterra an email and have not heard anything yet.

NYC
Level Contributor
58 posts
13 reviews
6. Re: Staying in one place?

We stayed at the Old Faithful Inn last month, and my husband saw a guest and his wife complaining about a mouse in their room. Don't bring any food into your rooms, and keep your suitcases zipped up. We didn't see any, but I'm sure they were there.

United States
Level Contributor
106 posts
23 reviews
7. Re: Staying in one place?

Okay I was able to change some things. I'm not worried about getting to YNP before dark. We will be leaving CO early in the morning and it's the week of the summer solstice and it's only an 8.5 hour drive so we will definitely be arriving well before dark. Better? :) Next I'll be asking for advice on what to see and do around each area, but I'm not there yet!

Night 1: Grant Lodge

Night 2: Grant Lodge

Night 3: Canyon Lodge

Night 4: Canyon Lodge

Night 5: Old Faithful Inn

Night 6, 7,8: Colter Bay Lodge

Madison, WI
Level Contributor
10,594 posts
66 reviews
8. Re: Staying in one place?

I've driven to Grant Village from Fort Collins....add a little more from Thornton. Google just shows wheels turning no stops. Add about 20-30% for real time and it's more like 10.5 hours. Once you hit 287 off I-80 at Rawlins you will have to slow way down.

United States
Level Contributor
106 posts
23 reviews
9. Re: Staying in one place?

Either way if we leave at 6am and sunset that day in Yellowstone is 9:11pm we will be fine. Even if we leave at 7am we will still be fine, even if it takes 12 hours we would get there by 7pm, which is still a full 2 hours before sunset. I am not worried about getting there before dark, so I don't think I will need to not stay in the park the first night.

N. Idaho
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park
Level Contributor
25,217 posts
112 reviews
10. Re: Staying in one place?

Yes, that looks better!

I'd still try to tweak it a bit if by January you've still got the energy, lol! I'd go with 3 nights Canyon and 2 OF OR 2 Canyon/1 Mammoth/2 OF. BUT what you've got will work.

Let us know when you are to the point you'd like daily suggestions.

Have you seen this Top 10 list?

https://yellowstone.net/intro/top-10/

Pam

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