RV Road Trip Across America: Week Three: Butte, MT to Alpine, WY


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img_1549(I was sitting in the Mirage Sports Book in Las Vegas typing this post.  It was on a Sunday, and the Captain wanted to watch the Redskins Game.  Taking advantage of free and great Internet when and where I can.  There will be a whole post about Vegas.)

Internet issues continue to plague me.  Internet connections at most of the RV parks is terrible.  I have a backup and can use my phone as a hotspot, however, at the RV resort we have been staying in for the past week, I only have one bar in the resort 🙁  I am now at Starbucks, determined to get this post posted.

RV Road Trip Across America:  Week Three:  Butte, MT to Alpine, WY

Spending the night at the Holiday Inn Express in Butte, Montana, was really nice. It was great to have strong shower pressure and wash my hair without turning the water on and off (which is what I have to do if I shower in the 5th wheel – otherwise I have to pack a bag with my shower essentials and haul it over to the bath house). However, life is full of give and take, and I’ll take going to the bathhouse and having the opportunity to travel across the country.

Jackson, Wyoming

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Looking down on Jackson, Wyoming

On our way to Jackson, Wyoming from Butte, we came across an overlook of the valley of Jackson, and it was nothing short of stunning.  (I know I’ve said that A LOT in my posts about this trip, however, it is so true.  Lots of stunning things to see right here in the United States).

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10% Grade Next Five Miles!

We stopped to take photos before we began our trek down the mountain, which had a 10% grade.  That is extremely steep, especially when towing a 15,000 pound fifth wheel!

Fireside Resort

Reflection, Fireside Resort, Wilson, Wyoming

Reflection, Fireside Resort, Wilson, Wyoming

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Covered Entranceway, Fireside Resort, Wilson, WY

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Cabins for Rent at Fireside Resort, Wilson, WY

Our next stop was Jackson, Wyoming. We spent two nights at the Fireside Resort.   The RV sites were a decent size for a privately owned resort, and they also had the cutest cabins available for rent.  We ate dinner at a great restaurant nearby, Calico Restaurant and Bar.  They had amazing flatbread pizza.

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Jackson, Wyoming Town Square

The town square in Jackson, Wyoming is the gateway to the Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks.  The town boasts an arch made out of elk antlers.  (Stuffed animal head trophies and antlers of all kinds are very popular in the West).  The town boasts numerous restaurants, hotels and shops.  The Captain and I enjoyed a really nice dinner at the Silver Dollar Grill inside the Wort Hotel.

Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks

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Grand Teton National Park Sign

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We visited both Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park. I have been to both parks before, back in 2006, and I was still just as much in awe then as I was on this trip.   Absolutely spectacular. There is no other way to describe the magnificence of these two parks, and an absolute must see (along with Glacier). The fall colors were starting to peak, and the color was stunning against the backdrop gray of the stone mountains.  I kept taking photos hoping to capture the sheer size and scope of the mountains, however, it is an impossible task.  (But I keep trying).

Yellowstone Landscape

Yellowstone Landscape

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Reflections in Yellowstone

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River in Yellowstone

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Magnificent Mountains in Yellowstone

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Fall Colors, Teton National Park

Old Faithful Inn

Interior Old Faithful Inn

Interior Old Faithful Inn

Interior, Old Faithful Inn

Interior, Old Faithful Inn

Stone Fireplace, Old Faithful Inn

Stone Fireplace, Old Faithful Inn

Red Door, Old Faithful Inn

Red Door, Old Faithful Inn

If you have time, I highly recommend staying in the Old Faithful Inn. Make your reservations early, especially when traveling during prime season in the summer.

The Inn was built back in the winter of 1903-1904, and is the largest log structure in the world.  The interior contains four stories of balconies, and a massive fireplace in the main lobby with four hearths.  Each hearth is 16 feet across.  The inn has 327 rooms, and is open from the beginning of May until the beginning of October.

We have the flexibility to travel at times other than peak; however there also lots of other retirees traveling during the same time. We always make our RV reservations well in advance when possible.

There is so much information on the Internet regarding Yellowstone and the Grand Teton National Parks that I won’t bother repeating all of it here. Trip Advisor is a good place to start.

Old Faithful Geyser

old-faithful-geyser sign

Old Faithful Geyser Sign

Old Faithful Geyser

Old Faithful Erupting

The Old Faithful Geyser was discovered in 1870, and is so named for its eruption predictability.  Old Faithful erupts about every 65 minutes following an eruption lasting less than 2.5 minutes and every 91 minutes following an eruption more than 2.5 minutes.  The geyser erupts approximately 20 times per day, and the average height is 140 feet.  The water temperature at the vent is 204 degrees, and the steam temperature has been measured at 350 degrees.  Depending upon the duration of the eruption, between 3,500 and 8,400 gallons of water are expelled.

Here is a video I took of Old Faithful erupting:

[https://vimeo.com/188182261 w=500&h=280]

On the way home from Yellowstone, we came across this bull moose laying in the grass:

Moose Laying in the Grass

Bull moose laying down

Alpine, Wyoming

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Grey’s River, Bridger-Teton National Forest

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Grey’s River, Bridger-Teton National Forest

We spent a week in Alpine, Wyoming where we met up with the Captain’s family. Alpine is about 40 miles south of Jackson, Wyoming.  There are some beautiful trails through the mountains in this area, and I would love to go back sometime with my camera and spend time taking photographs. This area is located in the Bridger-Teton National Forest.

We also saw the first snow fall of the season in the upper elevations:

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First snow of the season

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View of the snowy mountains from our campsite.

However, the snow quickly melted as it tends to do this time of year.

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Rusty Weeds

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Sunrise at the campground, Alpine, Wyoming

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Sunset at the campground, Alpine, Wyoming

We explored all around the area while we were here, and discovered Palisades Reservoir.

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Palisades Reservoir

The people who live here are rugged, hard-working, down to earth and kind.  They hunt and camp by the rivers and streams in the woods without electricity or running water for weeks at a time.  They live off the land, and are proud.  The winters here are brutally cold and snowy.  However, the spring, summer and fall make Alpine and the surrounding areas a beautiful place to visit.

Next stop:  The National Parks of Utah.

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