America’s Parks & Monuments featuring Mt Rushmore
Explore the Old West on this 11-day tour to Yellowstone, Grand Teton, and Badlands National Parks, Buffalo Bill's stomping grounds in Cody, and historic national sites including Mt. Rushmore and the Crazy Horse Memorial.
Rugged frontier towns of the Old West and renowned national historic sites are hallmarks of this 11-day escorted tour across America's western frontier. Your Wild West discovery begins in Chicago, where you board the legendary California Zephyr for your journey across the Rocky Mountains to Provo, Utah. From Provo, your travels take you to the cowboy town of Jackson and Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks, Cody, the Black Hills of South Dakota and Badlands National Parks, and Mt. Rushmore and the Crazy Horse Memorial.
Highlights and Inclusions
- Transportation aboard Amtrak's California Zephyr from Chicago to Provo, UT (1 night on train)
- Hotel accommodations for 9 nights including 2 nights in Yellowstone National Park and 1 night at Ucross Ranch
- 13 meals including a Chuckwagon dinner
- Float trip on the Snake River
- Yellowstone touring including Lower Loop and Old Faithful
- Buffalo Bill Center of the West Museum
- Mt. Rushmore National Monument
- Crazy Horse Memorial
- Visit to Badlands National Park
- Transportation aboard a deluxe motorcoach
- Services of a professional tour manager
- Baggage handling
Day 1 - California Zephyr across the Western Frontier
Your tour to the Old West and some of America's best-loved National Parks, historic sites, and monuments begins at Chicago's Union Station, where you meet your tour manager and fellow travelers at 12:30 pm for a brief meeting before boarding the California Zephyr for your 2:00 pm departure. As this iconic train makes it way west, take time to get acquainted with your fellow travelers and the train's many features. Overnight train. (D)
Day 2 - Across the Rockies to Provo
Keep your camera handy today because you're traveling through some breathtaking scenery as the Zephyr climbs across the Colorado Rockies, through the Moffat Tunnel and along the Byers, Glenwood, and Ruby Canyons. Make time to visit the glass-walled Sightseer Lounge car for panoramic views of the passing scenery as well as for an educational Trails and Rails presentation conducted by volunteer park rangers as you travel between Denver and Grand Junction. The train is scheduled to arrive in Provo at 9:36 pm. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel. Overnight Provo. (B, L, D)
Day 3 - Discover Jackson
After breakfast, make the scenic journey by coach through the beautiful Star Valley to Jackson, Wyoming. Upon arrival, the day is yours to stroll the wooden plank sidewalks and enjoy stunning views of the majestic Grand Teton mountain range. You can hop on the free shuttle from the front of your hotel into Jackson Plaza for dining or to browse the shops and galleries of the Town Plaza. Be sure to get a picture of yourself in front of the elk antler arches or sit on one of the saddles that are bar seats at the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar. Overnight Jackson Hole. (B)
Day 4 - Snake River Float Trip
This morning hit the water for a float trip along the Snake River as you wind through Grand Teton National Park. Keep an eye out for elk and other wildlife indigenous to the area. This afternoon is free for you to explore Jackson on your own. This evening enjoy a delicious chuckwagon dinner and entertainment. Overnight Jackson Hole. (B, D)
Day 5 - Explore Grand Teton National Park
Discover the hidden treasures of Grand Teton National Park this morning. Highlights include a stop at the new Moose Visitor Center, a photo stop at the breathtaking Jenny Lake Overlook, Jackson Lake Lodge, and Colter Bay. Later, we travel by coach to America's first National Park, Yellowstone, with a photo stop at Lewis Falls as we enter the Park. As you travel to your lodge, located within the confines of the Park, you may catch a glimpse of herds of buffalo as well as awe-inspiring rock formations. After checking into your room, your evening is at your leisure. Overnight Yellowstone National Park. (B)
Day 6 - Yellowstone Sightseeing
Established in 1872, Yellowstone National Park has the world's most extensive region of geothermal activity with thousands of hot springs and fumaroles that dot the landscape. Today's Lower Loop sightseeing tour showcases some of the Park's most renowned sights. We'll drive through the Hayden Valley to look for bison. Enjoy a photo stop at the spectacular Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and Artist Point. Walk around Fountain Paint Pots and, finally, stop at the famous Old Faithful Inn and Geyser Basin. There is time to explore the Old Faithful area and see the most famous of all geysers erupt before returning tour our lodging with the evening at leisure. Overnight Yellowstone National Park.
Day 7 - Pahaska Teepee / Buffalo Bill Center of the West Museum
Wyoming is steeped in Old West history. Begin the day with a visit to Pahaska Teepee, Buffalo Bill Cody's original hunting lodge. Continue on to the Buffalo Bill Center of the West Museum. This complex contains 5 museums under one roof. The Buffalo Bill Museum, the Remington Firearms Museum, the Whitney Museum of Western Art, the Plains Indian Museum, and the new Draper Natural History Museum. After our visit, we check into our hotel in Cody, WY. The evening is free to enjoy downtown Cody with its western shops and galleries, have dinner at one of the many restaurants within walking distance of our hotel, or return to the Buffalo Bill Center of the West Museum—your ticket is good all day. Or, watch an Old West shoot-out next to the Irma Hotel, built in 1904 by Buffalo Bill and named after his daughter. Overnight Cody.
Day 8 - Cody to Ucross Ranch
We depart Cody this morning and cross over the beautiful Bighorn Mountains into the Powder River Valley. The Bighorns were named by the Crow tribe that live on the east side of the mountains. We will make a rest stop at Shell Falls and take time for photos of this lovely waterfall before proceeding on through Sheridan. We arrive in time for lunch (on your own). The afternoon is free to participate in ranch activities like horseback riding. Tonight, we'll partake in a cowboy cookout at the ranch. Overnight Ucross. (D)
Day 9 - Crazy Horse Memorial / Mount Rushmore
We depart the ranch early this morning and head through the Powder River Valley toward rapid City, SD and the Black Hills. We make a photo stop at Devil's Tower before continuing to the Crazy Horse Memorial. Tour the museum and take a bus ride to the base of the mountain to see this famous mountain sculpture up close. Next, we continue to Mt. Rushmore National Monument. The faces of four Presidents—Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Roosevelt—crown this peak in the Black Hills. There is time to walk the Avenue of the Flags and visit the museum as well as photograph the Presidents before we check into our hotel. This evening is at your leisure. Overnight Keystone (B)
Day 10 - Badlands National Park/Wall Drug
This morning we travel along the Cheyenne River into Badlands National Park, featuring 244,000 acres of protected prairie and home to bison, bighorn sheep and the endangered black-footed ferret among other animals. Next, visit Wall Drug, "America's Favorite Roadside Attraction," for lunch on your own. Discover a variety of western souvenirs and classic pieces of Americana in this Old West emporium. This evening enjoy a farewell dinner at our lodge. Overnight Keystone. (B, D)
Day 11 - Tour Conclusion
Your tour concludes after breakfast this morning but you will have memories of this Wild West adventure to last a lifetime. (B)
Rail Your Way
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Train and Hotel Accommodations
Hotels include the Marriott (Provo), The Lodge at Jackson Hole, Yellowstone National Park lodging, Holiday Inn Buffalo Bill Village (Cody), Ucross Ranch, and K Bar S Lodge (Keystone).
Amtrak accommodations are available in Coach class, Roomette, and Bedroom. Coach accommodations include a reclining seat with leg rest. Roomette accommodations include a private cabin featuring two comfortable seats beside a picture window during the day, converting to an upper and lower berth at night. Bedroom accommodations feature a sofa and chair by day, and upper and lower berth by night. Bedroom accommodations also include a sink and self-enclosed toilet and shower. All travelers have access to the Sightseer Lounge. All meals are included on board the train.
+Vacations By Rail can supply connecting rail from your closest Amtrak Station.
Hotel accommodations are based on availability; substitutes will be similar in quality and amenities.
Dates & Prices
Select from the packages below to view prices for this tour.
|8th July 2015||$2,699||Book Now|
|9th September 2015||$2,699||Book Now|
|16th September 2015||$2,699||Book Now|
|8th July 2015||$3,044||Book Now|
|9th September 2015||$3,044||Book Now|
|16th September 2015||$3,044||Book Now|
|8th July 2015||$3,324||Book Now|
|9th September 2015||$3,324||Book Now|
|16th September 2015||$3,324||Book Now|
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Amtrak Coach: Departs 8th July 2015 ($2,699), 9th September 2015 ($2,699), 16th September 2015 ($2,699)
Amtrak Roomette: Departs 8th July 2015 ($3,044), 9th September 2015 ($3,044), 16th September 2015 ($3,044)
Amtrak Bedroom: Departs 8th July 2015 ($3,324), 9th September 2015 ($3,324), 16th September 2015 ($3,324)
Vacations By Rail can book your connecting rail from your closest Amtrak Station.