Grand Loop Road

Grand Loop Road, a scenic drive in Yellowstone NP

Grand Loop Road is an amazing journey on the very heart of the Yellowstone National Park, in the U.S. state of Wyoming. The drive is definitely worth it. A drive not to be missed.

How long is Grand Loop Road?

The road was originally built in 1915 and later paved in the 1940s. It’s 230km (140 miles) long, running through the major features of the park, curving around in a figure-eight past the park's most striking natural features. The drive includes unsigned portions of US 20, US 89, US 191 and US 287, all of which traverse the park. Much of the driving is done on twisty and turny roads, yet some, are straight ahead and flat. Just be careful on the turns and don't cut corners or speed much more than the registered limit.

How long does it take to drive the Grand Loop in Yellowstone?

Expect an average speed limit of 45 mph. The bison, bears, and other wildlife don’t obey traffic laws or speed limits. If wildlife get on or near the road, traffic often comes to a stop. For this reason, it can take anywhere from 4 hours to 7 hours to drive the entire loop depending on traffic. In the summer months, the traffic can be stop-and-go the entire way. It can get very busy in summer so plan to take your time. The scenery is fabulous. The drive takes you to multiple locations throughout Yellowstone National Park. Much of the 140-mile system was originally planned by Captain Hiram M. Chittenden of the US Army Corps of Engineers in the early days of the park, when it was under military administration.

Is Grand Loop Road open?

It’s a high mountain road that crosses several mountain passes, including Craig Pass 8,262 feet (2.518 m), Kingman Pass 7,119 feet (2.170 m) and Dunraven Pass 8,917ft (2.718m). Some parts of the road are totally closed in winters.

 

 

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