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Blanksam

Trip from St Louis to Salt Lake-Yellowstone-Glacier

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We planning a trip to Yellowstone and Glacier but wanted to visit Salt Lake City first. We wanted to know how the drive from Denver (via i70) to Salt Lake would be in our 40 ft Allegro Open road diesel. I know one other option is I80 but how is the drive west of Denver on I70? Is the scenery worth the drive?, any significant grades to worry about?

What is best route option from West Yellowstone to West Glacier?

Thanks

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Blanksam,

Welcome to the Forum.

Where are you starting your trip from? That will help other to give you alternate directions. I know that I-70 West of Denver is passing right through the Rockies with a number of passes. I-80 West does have long hills but no passes to go through. 

So let us know where you are starting from and lets see what comes up.

Again, Welcome,

Herman

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Blanksam

Sounds like a nice trip.  I would recommend IH-70 right through Denver and the mountains.  It is gorgeous scenery.  There are some steep grades but nothing you can't handle in your Open Road.  It would be nice to detour off of IH-70 on Hwy 191 in Utah to see Arches National Park, Canyonlands NP, Capitol Reef NP, drive Hwy 12 over the Hogback Highway then see Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park before heading north to Salt Lake.  I can't help you with the best route to Glacier.  We plan to go there ourselves next spring on our way to Banff, Alberta.

 

Don

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What do you want to see? What kind of roads do you want to travel, scenic or flat relatively level. If it is gentle to level by all means i 80. It is all easy from St.Louis from Denver. I 80 is a flatlanders paradise but through dry arid country, not so scenic unless it is your first time. Now the other ways. I 70 will have some pretty good passes heading East to West they are pretty gradual for the most part. Steeper side is west headin East both Vail and Eisenhower. After these two it is a pretty gentle heading West. Glenwood Canyon is absolutely worth the drive!  Another climb in Utah but no comparison heading to I 15 North to SL. A far prettier drive, cut off at Green River a hundred miles west of Grand Junctions on a diagonal into the Unita National Forest on US 6/191. It is another climb but not steep East to West, steeper the other way. It is an absolutely beautiful drive. Guel up in Denver or Grand Junction off the Horizon exit. It is 500 miles to SL from Denver. Fuel up again in Spanish Fork near I 15 as you head north to SL.. We have traveled these routes for 50 years having grown up in Southern Oregon and live in Denver. I might add too that as you look at the map all the roads intersecting I 80 and US 50 "The Loneliest Highway" a bit south in Utah are definitely worth a serious look! The scenery and topography are amazing and each is very different from the other. There are plenty of places to pull off and spend the night in seclusion as there is very limited traffic, as in nearly none.It is just the wilds of the WEST! It is all dry camping, but you are all self contained making it all the better.  None of these roads will challenge your senses or your driving skills but but will your visual from desert to alpine. If you have never been to the West you are in for a huge majestic experience. ENJOY and TAKE YOUR TIME.

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Oh there are a myriad of routes to take that could take 3 month to do the trip justice. There are many secrets in Colorado and Utah where ones imagination can run wild seeing Indians on the plains hunting bufflao and other game. The topography can be wildly different around every bend. The ultimate trip for anyone from the East would be to take I 70 to Utah 128 and to Moab and then 191 South to Blanding and up to Hanksville. 24  to 12 into the backside of Brice Canyon and from there a multitude of choices. The length of US 89 and all of the side roads will offer weeks of amazing driving miles. Consider that I have backpacked many many miles in southwest Utah with more than 100 Boy Scouts in the 1980s, Oh how I miss the backcountry.

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On 7/31/2020 at 3:49 PM, akadeadeye said:

Blanksam

Sounds like a nice trip.  I would recommend IH-70 right through Denver and the mountains.  It is gorgeous scenery.  There are some steep grades but nothing you can't handle in your Open Road.  It would be nice to detour off of IH-70 on Hwy 191 in Utah to see Arches National Park, Canyonlands NP, Capitol Reef NP, drive Hwy 12 over the Hogback Highway then see Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park before heading north to Salt Lake.  I can't help you with the best route to Glacier.  We plan to go there ourselves next spring on our way to Banff, Alberta.

 

Don

I did that trip, sort of... travelled from SF Bay area, up through SLC and North into Teton Nat'l Park for a few days, then on up to Yellowstone a few days more... From there, headed on up to the East entrance of Glacier, and must tell you this... I went thru the gate at 7 am, so no one was there to advise me... I later learned that, towing a motorcycle trailer with my SUV, the trailer being 8"X5", and 7 feet high, I would have been turned away, and advised to follow the southern route to the West entrance. Why? Because the Going-to-the-Sun road is, in part, cut right out of the mountainside, and the low-hanging cave-like arches purposely dug into the mountain, will rip the shreds off anything larger than an SUV. I made it through because no other vehicles were on the road coming at me (one lane each way), and I could take the turns, some tight, with a wide approach.

You can't really be towing anything much higher than your SUV - or longer - without the Rangers turning you around at the East entrance, and extending your scenic drive a few more hours. The Ranger I spoke to in my campground later that day - quite astounded that I came in through the East entrance - told me best not to EXIT the East entrance with my trailer in tow... by the way, there's only one road through the park - the GTTS road

Edited by OBIWAN_CANOLI

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