Marvel at the mountain majesty of Grand Teton National Park before setting off on a rafting adventure* down the Snake River. Along the way, your guide will help you spot the beavers, eagles, elks and other animals that live in the park.
After lunch, travel to the historic (and trendy) Western town of Jackson to explore as you wish. Late afternoon, visit the park's Mormon Row Historic District, whose preservation is being supported by a grant from Tauck. A homesteaders’ settlement dating back to 1890 located in an undeveloped area of the park, Mormon Row is home to a number of weathered historic structures – including the iconic T.A. Moulton barn, an unofficial symbol of the park – with the dramatic Teton Range as a backdrop. You'll feel like you’ve traveled back in time at the site, which attracts photographers from around the world... so have your camera ready! Spend the evening as you please at the Inn. (B/L)
You may want to check out the American Indian artwork and artifacts on display at Grand Teton National Park's Colter Bay Visitor Center before traveling on this morning to Yellowstone National Park, established in 1872 as America's (and the world's) first national park – where your historic "home away from home" for the next two nights, the Old Faithful Inn, is just steps away from the famous Old Faithful Geyser, shooting up to 184 feet in the air approximately every 90 minutes!
This afternoon, a locally guided walk explores Geyser Basin – keep an eye out for Yellowstone's diverse wildlife as you explore some of the features of the park, whose geologic wonders include two-thirds of all the geysers in the world. The remainder of the afternoon is free to explore as you please. Have dinner at this iconic inside-the-park hotel at your leisure tonight. Stay Two Nights: Old Faithful Inn (B/D)
Journey through Wyoming's Bighorn Mountains today, past deep canyons, vast grasslands, and blankets of wildflowers en route to one of the highlights of your Wyoming vacation – a double dose of Western ranch life that your family will love! First, feel the spirit of Cowboy Country during an authentic ranch experience – including a cookhouse lunch and an opportunity for a horseback ride*, or a horse whisperer or a roping demonstration – at the T-A Guest Ranch in Buffalo, Wyoming. A real working cattle ranch, the T-A Ranch was the site of a famous siege and shootout during the infamous "Johnson County War" in 1892; you can still see the old gunshot holes in the ranch's original horse barn!
Later, continue on to an overnight and dinner at your leisure at yet another real Wyoming ranch – the Ranch at Ucross – topping the night off with an old-fashioned campfire complete with stories and s'mores! Stay: The Ranch at UCross (B/L/D)
Depart the Ranch at Ucross and Wyoming and head for the Black Hills of South Dakota. Look up in wonder at the Crazy Horse Memorial, where you'll view the work in progress as artisans carve the likeness of the famous Lakota warrior out of the mountain. Begun in 1948 after an Oglala Lakota elder commissioned sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski to create the memorial on the face of Thunderhead Mountain to show “that we have heroes too,” the independently funded project is now carried on by members of the late sculptor's family; when completed, it will be the largest rock sculpture in the world. At the project's visitor's center – which includes the former Ziolkowski family home – you'll explore exhibits that speak to the diverse histories and cultures of America’s native peoples, and learn more about this unique family project.
Then it's on to Mount Rushmore National Memorial, where you’ll be welcomed by the colossal granite heads of four US presidents: Washington, Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Lincoln. The sculptures were the work of Danish-American Gutzon Borglum and his son, a 14-year project begun in 1927. From here, you’ll head to the K Bar S Lodge for an overnight stay and this evening’s farewell reception and dinner to celebrate a week of authentic western magic in Cowboy Country. Stay: K Bar S Lodge (B/L/D)
There are currently no departures available on this trip. Either it's the end of the season and new departures will be released shortly, or this itinerary has been changed and will no longer continue. Feel free to contact us for information about when next seasons dates will be released or click here to view the general release dates for all destinations.