We loved staying at Rand Creek Ranch – it was a great location to head east into Cody or west into Yellowstone, and we did a lot of both while there! On Thursday night, we decided to go to the Cody Rodeo, which runs nightly through the summer. Before the rodeo we had a fun dinner and live music at the Cody Cattle Company, which was just walking distance from the rodeo. The kids enjoyed it too!
On to Yellowstone. We spent part of our four days in Cody going in and out of Yellowstone. No matter where you stay, and even if you stay INSIDE Yellowstone, you are going to be in your car a lot. The park is massive and all of the highlights are spread out. While we are so glad we went, in hindsight this would have been more enjoyable for older kids or for us to go without kids. After two weeks of being on the road, more time in the car was not a dream come true.
If you do not have a ton of time at Yellowstone or do not want to drive around all day, the geyser area is best. We parked there, caught Old Faithful in time to see an eruption, and were able to do a lot of walking in that immediate area to see other geysers.
The rest of our time with Yellowstone was spent driving, driving, and driving some more, pulling over with a million other cars when a buffalo crossed the street, and then driving. It is gorgeous, but growing about 90 minutes from Yosemite spoiled me!