The 2018 GMC Terrain Denali is loaded with enough safety and convenience tech to satisfy anyone; the usual luxurious safety accoutrements are there — lane change and blind spot alerts, rear cross traffic alerts, keyless open and start, dual zone climate control, heated and ventilated seats (as I mentioned), lane keep assist with lane departure warning, forward collision alert, and low-speed forward auto-braking. But there were other less usual things like the 360º surround vision that showed everything around the vehicle from all angles when backing up, wireless device charging, and an 8″ infotainment and navigation screen. The car comes with SiriusXM and OnStar, but it also has Apple Carplay and Android Auto capability built-in. The heated steering wheel was nice, too. I especially liked the safety alert that would show when you stopped the SUV — reminding you to check the back seat when you stopped the car. If that keeps one parent from forgetting that their child is with them when they get out, it’s worth seeing the alert anytime you stop the car and there is something in the back seat.
If you aren’t someone who usually likes to go camping, because you enjoy a non-communal toilet and shower (raises hand), then Collective Yellowstone is a glamping treat. The tents are spacious, with an amazingly comfortable (and heated) kingsize bed in the middle of the room. There was a wood-burning stove in a corner with a stockpile of pine wood, fire starter sticks, and a lighter; there were also portable space heaters on either side of the bed. Even so, the below-freezing temps made it less likely that we would spend much time out of the heated bed when we were in the tent. The bathroom with a shower and septic-connected toilet were located in a teepee just to the rear, attached to the wooden platform our tent was erected upon; there was no heater in the bathroom, so I’m not gonna lie — I didn’t take a shower in the morning (yeah, I’m a wuss). To be fair, though, this wasn’t a four-season campground, so I can’t fault Collective for the surprise weather. In all honesty, the snow made everything that much MORE. As beautiful as the area probably is in the spring, summer, and fall — with snow it was magical.
The following morning, with an even fresher batch of snow on the ground, we loaded all of our luggage into the back of the Terrain and took off for Yellowstone National Park. We were offered the option to go mountain biking, fly-fishing, or kayaking as part of our experience, but since we’d never been to this part of the country before, Kev and I agreed that we’d rather spend as much time driving around as possible.
As we drove through the Yellowstone, we observed steam rising from the various hot springs and (I assume) geysers alongside us. At one point, it was like we were driving through fog, but it was just hot spring steam. We were about 8 miles from Old Faithful when traffic started to come to a sudden halt and we were behind a huge line of cars. Concerned that it would be like that the rest of the way, we were pleased to soon find that the holdup was because park rangers were having to help stop traffic so that hundreds of bison could cross the road; it was truly something to see!