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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: jamesbond007 on January 09, 2020, 11:43:58 AM

Title: Mustachian Yellowstone + Grand Teton
Post by: jamesbond007 on January 09, 2020, 11:43:58 AM
We love travel and nature. I found this great deal on Southwest to Salt Lake City and booked my flights to SLC in July for 10 days. We would like to visit Yellow Stone, Grand Teton and other places nearby Salt Lake City. Any ideas on cheap hotel stays with a kitchen(nette) so we could cook our meals? We have a 5 YO so hostels etc are not an option. Pretty much anything I search online is at least $250 per night.


Any ideas?
Title: Re: Mustachian Yellowstone + Grand Teton
Post by: caleb on January 09, 2020, 12:11:38 PM
In between Yellowstone and Grand Teton there's a forest road that runs west about 60 miles into Idaho (really, there's only one).  Along that road are a bunch of spots that you can pull off and camp for free.  We stayed at a beautiful spot above a reservoir a few years ago on a road trip.
Title: Re: Mustachian Yellowstone + Grand Teton
Post by: lentil on January 09, 2020, 12:28:09 PM
The cheapest way to visit YNP/GTNP is to tent camp. It lets you stay inside the park (which means saving hours of driving) for an average of $25-35/night. And with a camp stove, you can cook your own meals. Camp stoves are okay to fly with IF they are 100% clean (check with your airline, of course), and then you can buy fuel when you arrive. Or you can rent gear from an REI in Salt Lake City.

Non-camping lodging inside the parks is very expensive, and lodging all around the parks tends to run pretty high too. It can work to visit GTNP while staying in Jackson Hole (but Jackson Hole has some pretty tight restrictions on AirBnBs, if I recall...there may be some slightly cheaper hotels). In particular, I think it's a hassle to stay outside Yellowstone and drive into the park every day. Yellowstone is huge and driving is slow, so staying in a nearby town typically means going in and out over the same section of road again and again. Having said that, you could try checking West Yellowstone and Gardiner for possibilities.

If you end up staying in hotels/lodges/cabins and still want to economize on food, you can opt to bring a cooler (and again, maybe a camp stove...or if you can make it work for some meals, an electric hot water kettle) and avoid the overpriced, sub-par national park dining options. Even just packing your own breakfasts/lunches helps save a bit, with the added bonus of giving you a break from lunchtime crowds in certain hubs.

Hope you have a fun trip!
Title: Re: Mustachian Yellowstone + Grand Teton
Post by: lsl129 on January 09, 2020, 05:51:41 PM
There are a few reasonably priced lodging options within Yellowstone, especially at Roosevelt lodge and old faithful, but some of these have shared baths. In park lodging is actually often cheaper than those in West Yellowstone, and also cuts your driving by several hours. For Grand Teton, we stayed at the Ranch Inn in Jackson, and it was very nice and reasonably priced. We had a cooler with sandwiches, etc, which saved money and gave us more time in the parks. We had a great trip and hope to go back. Good luck!