LAX to Glacier Park in Two Door

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Heading out tomorrow for a 20-hour trip to Glacier National Park. About 1,350 miles one way.

We noticed on our maiden camping voyage a few weeks ago that you run out of cargo space quickly in a two door, even with just two adults. So, we added the Roam 83L rugged case on top. I strapped it instead of adding a roof rack on top of the roof rails and then drilling holes into the case, because I need to be able to take the Roam case off in order to fit in the garage. So, straps it is.

Planned stops: Vegas, Zion, Whitefish. If anyone has any trail or road suggestions, please let me know. Thanks!

Will update with pics and gas mileage along the way.

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The straps tuck away neatly, to avoid flapping/fraying.

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Two of the 83L’s would fit nicely but I’ve opted to use that space for the recovery boards.

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UPDATE 9/26

11 days
3,783.9 miles
17.4 MPG (20 mpg until Vegas, where the highways change to mostly 80+ mph, which kills gas mileage)
4 National Parks
3 Broncos spotted

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Packing a Two Door

This is what the cargo space looked like when we got home yesterday. The main objective was visibility out the rear window and side windows. You can pack more stuff on top of the cooler and probably in the crevices better, but not a lot more is going in here without sacrificing visibility.

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45 quart cooler, two Plano trunks, two medium duffel bags, three backpacks, a Ford accessories soft cooler, ARB air compressor, and other small things.

Note that there’s no tent or bags or other camping gear. The two-door would be stuffed to the roof if camping gear were included. That’s why we got the Roam 83L, but sadly the amount of stuff you can store up there is underwhelming.

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I am now more inclined than ever to rip out the rear seats. Those seats rarely get used and it sucks trying to pack with a ledge and slope to contend with unnecessarily.

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Highlights of the Trip

We spent most of our time around Kalispell/Whitefish, MT, and Glacier Park but on the way up we drove through Zion, stopped briefly in Bryce, and spent a day in Yellowstone (not nearly enough time). Then on the way the way home, we spent a couple days hiking around Provo, Utah then hiking and off roading around Bryce and Vegas.

By far, the best part of the trip was Bryce. Thanks to @Rick Astley for the assist on going counterclockwise. The hike was tough at some places, but we took plenty of water, snacks, and breaks to enjoy the amazing views all through the trail. Can’t thank you all enough for this suggestion!

Fairyland Loop (Bryce)

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While in Bryce, I used the All Trails app to find an off road trail in the area. I have absolutely no off road experience outside of one day at the Nevada Off Roadeo, so FR 87 was perfect. Mostly washboard roads with small rocks and mild rutting for about 25 miles, then the final mile or so through some rocks on FR 209 over to an amazing viewpoint.

At the end of FR 209, there’s a viewpoint that’s the cherry on top of the fun drive out there. I arrived as the sun was still rising snd not another soul around for miles probably. Truly amazing.

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Here’s the trail to that spot. FR 209 is the little poke to the East at the end of the much longer FR 87.

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At the end of FR 87:

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FR 87’s long washboard roads have a speed limit of 35 😉, watch out for cows and blind corners but otherwise there’s nothing out there to disturb with dust once you get past Bryce Resevoir.

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Provo, UT

Another great stop was Provo, Utah. Not only is the town lively with great dining (Black Sheep has bomb Native/Tex Mex cuisine), we stumbled upon an easy 4-mile round trip hike to natural hot springs just outside of town, where you can soak in the hot springs. Highly recommend Fifth Water Hot Springs trail for anyone in the area. It’s only about a 40 minute drive from town to the trailhead.

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Vegas - Bad Words OHV Route

We stopped in Vegas on the way home to visit my in-laws, so I used the All Trails app again to find a moderate trail for another sunrise drive.

The Bad Words OHV Route was perfect for gaining confidence, because it’s all rocks but only patches of the trail are blocked by larger rocks that require technical skills. There are plenty of steep climbs and descents to test the one-pedal and trail control. There was just enough to challenge me so I could learn without completely freaking out. After the Off Roadeo, I know the Bronco is way more capable than my ability, so it’s fun to test my comfort level and get better at it with this completely capable truck.

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An amazing trip! There’s never enough time on a road trip like this, but I really regret not finding the time to off road through West Glacier to Polebridge while we were in Montana. It might be a couple of years before we’ll be back in the Bronco, but Polebridge is on my list. Along the way next time, I’d like to see Canyonlands, the Arches, and A LOT more of the Dixie National Forest in Utah.

Random pics from the trip.

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Outbound Exploration

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Nicee, on our sport we went similar setup but with Pelicans v730 box. Have fun on your trip! We wrapped a 1500 mile trip, she had all the fun wheeling while I sit and wait for my 2dr badlands Dirt Mountain build 😔

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shimmy825

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awesome. Enjoy! If I may ask - what dealership did you get your bronco from?
 
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awesome. Enjoy! If I may ask - what dealership did you get your bronco from?
Thanks, the plan is to take it slow and easy, enjoy the journey.

Kearny Mesa Ford down in San Diego, probably the most knowledgeable Bronco dealer in SoCal, if you’re looking.
 

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Thanks, the plan is to take it slow and easy, enjoy the journey.

Kearny Mesa Ford down in San Diego, probably the most knowledgeable Bronco dealer in SoCal, if you’re looking.
nice! I'm with Galpin here in LA. Super nice but yeah, not the most knowledgeable
 

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We enjoyed Canyonlands and Bryce quite a bit more than Zion. Zion ranked 4th out of the 5 major NP's in S.E. Utah when we did them earlier this year.

Zion is incredibly small. And if you didn't already book your stay at their lodge, you're staying outside the park and rely on the very-packed shuttles for entry to the NP. It's not as great of a NP as it sounds, unfortunately. There are also the algae blooms in the water so you can't even do the river hikes without risking a few days of emptying your bowels violently.

At Canyonlands you can also get a permit to drive the White Rim Trail (permit is about $5 at the info center in the middle of Moab) which would already be massively more exciting and beautiful than Zion.

As for Glacier NP, as @Superthornbird mentioned, upper Grinnell is an amazing hike and worth the entire trip just for it! There are a number of small shacks just south of the east exit of the park (that you will need to go through to access Grinnell), the eating over there is fantastic even if the outsides of the buildings seem uninspiring. Prices at the chalet's are quite high.

Polebridge is a nice little pocket in the park, your Bronco will do fine on the roads. But there's not as much to do over there.
 

BrentC

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We enjoyed Canyonlands and Bryce quite a bit more than Zion. Zion ranked 4th out of the 5 major NP's in S.E. Utah when we did them earlier this year.

Zion is incredibly small. And if you didn't already book your stay at their lodge, you're staying outside the park and rely on the very-packed shuttles for entry to the NP. It's not as great of a NP as it sounds, unfortunately. There are also the algae blooms in the water so you can't even do the river hikes without risking a few days of emptying your bowels violently.

At Canyonlands you can also get a permit to drive the White Rim Trail (permit is about $5 at the info center in the middle of Moab) which would already be massively more exciting and beautiful than Zion.

As for Glacier NP, as @Superthornbird mentioned, upper Grinnell is an amazing hike and worth the entire trip just for it! There are a number of small shacks just south of the east exit of the park (that you will need to go through to access Grinnell), the eating over there is fantastic even if the outsides of the buildings seem uninspiring. Prices at the chalet's are quite high.

Polebridge is a nice little pocket in the park, your Bronco will do fine on the roads. But there's not as much to do over there.
Whitefish is a favourite haunt for us Calgarians. Enjoy the area and don’t forget to do a bar crawl in Kalispell.

Road To The Sun is an epic drive for views - should be ok for crowds now that we’re out of summer season.

When in Utah, don’t forget to go to Arches NP. Fun sand wash wheeling and awesome scenery.
 

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Heading out tomorrow for a 20-hour trip to Glacier National Park. About 1,350 miles one way.

We noticed on our maiden camping voyage a few weeks ago that you run out of cargo space quickly in a two door, even with just two adults. So, we added the Roam 83L rugged case on top. I strapped it instead of adding a roof rack on top of the roof rails and then drilling holes into the case, because I need to be able to take the Roam case off in order to fit in the garage. So, straps it is.

Planned stops: Vegas, Zion, Whitefish. If anyone has any trail or road suggestions, please let me know. Thanks!

Will update with pics and gas mileage along the way.

EF8BE501-0D05-471C-B7F5-1C3C33604BB5.jpeg


The straps tuck away neatly, to avoid flapping/fraying.

9D7DFF66-8761-436A-81F4-9AC39328109C.jpeg
674ED90C-9A66-4ADB-B94B-DEEC9F382546.jpeg
F79633CC-106C-4D6E-A8EA-F57FB06C9719.jpeg


Two of the 83L’s would fit nicely but I’ve opted to use that space for the recovery boards.

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Watch out - some parks have implemented reservation schemes. (Which probably some Bronco reservationists will love.) But for everyone else, watch out or you could get locked out or constrained with your visit. So plan accordingly.
 

jbellousux

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With a finite amount of time, I’d consider skipping Vegas, except maybe to eat, and making an eastern detour north of SLC to drive through Grand Tetons and Yellowstone NPs. Moab/Arches/Canyonlands are awesome, but deserving of their own destination trip. Tetons & Yellowstone are as well, but you can really see some highlights just passing through those parks.

Watch the beginning of “The Shining” before and after your trip to catch some beautiful cinematography of St. Mary’s Lake on the eastern edge of Glacier NP. The entire park is gorgeous. You have to want to get over by Many Glacier Lodge, but the water, mountains and hiking will not disappoint, if you opt to go there.
 

deejay08

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Thanks, the plan is to take it slow and easy, enjoy the journey.

Kearny Mesa Ford down in San Diego, probably the most knowledgeable Bronco dealer in SoCal, if you’re looking.
I have a bronco on order there, can you tell me what the experience was like please?
 
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What do you put in the boxes?
Haven’t figured that out yet. Probably bags of smaller items, propane tanks, tools, etc. The 83L isn’t large enough for our sleeping bag, unfortunately.
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