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2016-08 Yellowstone Trip

Our trip through South Dakota's Black Hills, Mount Rushmore, Yellowstone and Grand Teton National parks has been one of my most cherished trips. These places represent some of the best that the United States has to offer and is a trip I recommend to everyone. All of the states that we travelled through for this trip are Colorado, Nebraska, South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho and Utah. We flew into Denver, Colorado and drove for a day up through Nebraska. If you have no desire to see the Oregon trail or quirky thing like Carhenge, I would recommend flying into Rapid City, South Dakota. We loved Nebraska but it is a lot of driving.

Carhenge in Alliance, Nebraska was a little out of the way but quirky and well worth the stop. Alliance is a small town by New Jersey standards but nice town and down home, beautiful people. Carhenge was started as a passion project by one man to bring visitors to Alliance and it got us hooked. We had a great time and were very glad we stopped.

Also while in Nebraska, we stopped at Chimney Rock National Historic Site and Scotts Bluff National Monument Both were interesting but CarHenge, for its quirkiness and

The rented family truckster is shown to the right. This was a 2016 Chevy Traverse. We had 5 people who were going to be spending 2 weeks and 2000 miles together so it had to be comfortable and had to fit all our luggage. It did all of the above and we loved it. And it had captain's chairs in the middle row of seats which meant they could swivel, recline and have separate arm rests and the person in the third row seat had plenty of leg space.

South Dakota and the Black Hills were amazing with the Mount Rushmore and Crazy Horse monuments being so close. When traveling to Mount Rushmore, make sure you make a stop to the Artist's Studio where Gutzon Borglum, the artist behind the monument left documents, scale models and renderings of his vision for the full monument which was never finished. Then the Needles highway with its pigtails and narrow one lane tunnels through stone and weaving and curving through the forests of South Dakota.  Below are pictures of Mount Rushmore from behind the entrance, The Chapel in the Hills near Rapid City which was a full scale recreation of a Scandanavian craftsmen church, and then 2 photos of Needles Highway.

 

We next spent some time in Cody Wyoming and saw the rodeo, Buffalo Bill Cody arms museum and the Damn named after him. Then on to Yellowstone National Park which was amazing. The Bison, the Bubbling, colorful lava pits, the geysers, the Bison, the scenic beauty, of artists point and the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Waterfalls, wild life around every turn and the Bison. There are 1000's of Bison located in many places throughout the park which made for great viewing and the occasional traffic jam. We then traveled south through Grand Teton National Park which was beautiful but I wish we had spent more than one day there. Next time we will designate at least 3 days to Teton although you could easily spend a week there. We finished up our trip with a stay in Salt Lake City where we visited Antelope Island and the Mormon Tabernacle before heading home. We documented our trip with many photos and a photo album available by clicking this link