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September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Eldon, Missouri
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September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Hi all,

I`m in the planning stages for a Sept 2009 road

trip to Montana, with the main destination being

Glacier. We`ll (my wife and I) be coming from Eldon, Mo which is just north of Lake of the Ozarks. We have 17 days and will be leaving Sept 13. I know it`s probably better to do this earlier, but this is the best we can do. I`m a piano bar entertainer and summer is lucrative at the lake.

A little bit about us. We`re 53, in OK shape

(we`re not athletes though). Our interests are (not

necessarily in this order) scenery and scenic

driving, hikes under 5 miles, fishing (from shore,

we don`t have flyrods or waders), history and

culture, interesting towns, nature and wildlife,

Lewis and Clark and pretty much anything western.

We`d also like to keep the cost of accommodations

down to under $100 per night (under $80 would be

even better). We went to Yellowstone in 2007 so we

just have a quick run through there scheduled as we

plan on going back in a few years. Also, we`re going

to do South Dakota on another trip, so we`re pretty much just going through it.

Anyway, I`ll just throw out my initial itinerary

(actually it`s about my 15th already lol), and leave

it up to you guys to tell me where to go, what to

see and do, where to stay, where to eat, cool routes

to take etc.... It`s cold here with snow on the

ground, so it`s a good time of year to pipe dream

about a vacation. Already can`t wait to go!

Itinerary:

Day 1: Eldon, Mo-Sioux Falls, SD

Day 2: Sioux Falls-Miles City, MT

Day 3: Miles City-Helena

Day 4: Helena-Polson

Day 5: Polson

Day 6: Polson-East Glacier

Day 7: E Glacier

Day 8: E Glacier

Day 9: West Glacier (not sure where)

Day 10: West Glacier

Day 11: W Glacier-Great Falls

Day 12: Great Falls-Ennis

Day 13: Ennis

Day 14: Ennis-Dubois, WY thru Yellowstone and GT

Day 15: Dubois-Cheyenne

Day 16: Cheyenne-Broken Bow NE or Grand Island

Day 17: Home

There it is. Let me know what you`d do or have

done or would change. I look forward to hearing from

you. And I`ll post a trip report when I get back

next year. Thanks in advance.......Tony

New York City
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11. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Hey Tony !! It's very good to be a kid !!! Here is some info on NW Montana and some general fishing material. Saw a cute description of Ennis.

" Ennis, Montana is a small town with a population of 11,000 trout and 1000 people located near top-rated trout streams, pristine lakes, and the majesty of the Madison River Valley. Enjoy a complete western vacation in Ennis, an authentic western town surrounded by three ranges of the Rocky Mountains and three million acres of the Beaverhead National Forest."

Tony, Montana may be the fountain of youth !!!

visitmt.com/tripplanner/…fishing.htm

gonorthwest.com/Montana/northwest/mtnw.htm

indiana
Destination Expert
for Glacier National Park
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12. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Tony, We have driven from Spokane twice to Glacier. The drive in NW Montana is very scenic.We did stop south of Troy once at the Giant Cedars. It was a nice break and short hike but I don't know if I would go out of my way to see it. If you drive on 37 you will follow the shoreline of Lake Koocanusa. This is a pretty drive and there is fishing there also. The only other time I have spent in NW Montana is driving from Missoula either on 83 or either side of Flathead Lake. We didn't make any stops so I can't offer any advice there.

Uden, The...
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13. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

The drive east of Flathead Lake is scenic and you can buy the best cherries in the world here, but not sure they'll still be there second half of september.

Also don't miss Missoula's Carousel.

Eldon, Missouri
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14. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Thanks Hikes, Tet, NYC. I`m gonna post an updated itinerary based on everybody`s advice and see what ya`ll think........Tony

New York City
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15. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Hi Tony, Looking forward to your itinerary for a great western, big sky trip. Since you are into music, I try to remember some of my tapes and cd's when we drive out west. My wife brings the ear plugs. I bring the sound tracks to, " The Big Country ", "How the West was Won", and "High Noon".

Happy planning !!

Eldon, Missouri
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16. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Alright gang, here`s what I`ve come up with. Having a hard time finding reasonable (or any) accommodations in Glacier that late in the year, so I`m gonna stay out side the park and turn my whole trip around. Gonna start with a little Oregon trail and take it from there. Still looking for advice on places to stay and things to do using the same criteria.

Day 1: Eldon, MO-Kearney, NE

Day 2: Kearney-Laramie WY stopping at Scottsbluff and Guernsey area.

Day 3: Laramie-Lander on US 287

Day 4: Lander-Ennis MT thru GTNP and Yellowstone

Day 5: Ennis area

Day 6: Ennis-Polson thru Helena and Missoula

Day 7: Polson

Day 8: Polson-Libby thru Thompson Falls

Day 9: Libby area

Day 10: Libby to east side of Glacier thru Eureka, catching west side of park on the way.

Day 11: Glacier

Day 12: Glacier

Day 13: Glacier

Day 14: Glacier to Fort Benton

Day 15: Fort Benton-Miles City on US 12

Day 16: Miles City-Mitchell or Sioux Falls however far we get.

Day 17: Home

Let me know what ya`ll think...........Tony

Uden, The...
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17. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Hi Tony

Laramie to Lander is just a good 3 hours drive and Lander to Ennis is 6 hours and more chances on delays and slow driving if you want to call stopping for wildlife "delays". Maybe consider to drive to Dubois or Moran Juncktion that day and take more time for the GTNP/Yell drive. In Lander I can recommend the log Best Western and Sink Canyon SP makes a nice visit. Dubois also has ample, rustic, lodging but we didnot stay ourselves. The stretch Dubois to Moran Junction is very scenic.

Tet

Eldon, Missouri
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18. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Good idea Tet. That`s what I`m gonna do. Thanks!

New York City
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19. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Hi Tony !!! Great trip coming up, you will really enjoy. I am putting a few places in along the way that may be of interest to you going and returning.

Near Chimney Rock, ScottsBluff.

http://www.furtrade.org/

http://www.oregontrailwagontrain.com/

If you are near Pinedale Wyoming.

http://www.museumofthemountainman.com/

One last wildlife experience on your way home.

http://www.fws.gov/cmr/

Have a great time, Happy Trails !! Go West, Young Man !!

Eldon, Missouri
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20. Re: September 2009 Montana Road Trip, Input Needed

Thanks NYC. Now I pretty much just need accommodation advice for the towns I`ll be staying in. Especially the east side of Glacier. Also, in mid to late September, how much of this do I need to book in advance and how much can I wing. We`d like to stay as flexible as we can, but don`t want to waste time running around looking for a place to stay.

Tony