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  1. Default Driving from New york to San diego

    I am planning my second cross-country drive. This time I plan to hit:
    The badlands, Mt Rushmore, Grand Canyon, Zion, yosemite (spelling), and yellowstone. My question involves planning the routes I will take. I will be doing the trip in 11 days. Last time I did it in 10, and had no trouble driving 400-500 miles per day. Unfortunatly the last trip was several years ago and I cant recall the routes I used. I am interested in time efficient routes. How do I best go about determing this.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Round-trip in 11 days?

    Quote Originally Posted by jpcannavo
    The badlands, Mt Rushmore, Grand Canyon, Zion, yosemite (spelling), and yellowstone
    Welcome to the Great American RoadTrip Forum! Yes, it is physically possible to travel from NY to San Diego and back in eleven days, but even driving 500 miles per day, I don't see how you will have time to see the SD badlands, Grand Cayon, Zion and Yellowstone. You have to figure that your top average speed in the national parks will be something on the order of 27 mph (summer time traffic, stops, etc.) so in order to cover those 500+ miles per day, some days you will need to be in the saddle for 12+ hours.

    All that said, if you really need to do this speed run -- I-80 to I-90 to the Dakotas and then US-14/20 through Yellowstone and then I-15 south to Cedar City, Utah and take SR-14 east to US-89 and then SR-9 west again through Zion back on I-15 to San Diego. From San Diego, I would take I-8 to US-95 to US-60 to SR-89 and SR-64 to the South Rim and then depending upon how much time you have left, you can explore the Colorado Rockies before jumping on I-70 east-bound or simply head east on I-40.


  3. Default From NY to San Diego NOT ROUND TRIP!

    No way
    Excuse my lack of clarity!
    I am driving from NY to San Diego and flying back to NYC!
    I did this drive a few years ago in 10 days - in a convertible - with a now ex-GF. She did all the navigating. We hit Bad lands, Brice canyon, Black hills, Rushmore, Zion, Death valley, Yellowstone, Yosemite, Grand teton. This trip was the single best vacation/trip/recreational thing I have ever done in my life!
    Unfortunately, contacting my "ex" is not an option, and I cant remeber the routes we used.
    I will be making the same "northern" trip again, but this time +/- minus Brice
    canyon, but adding the Grand Canyon. I think I can comfortably do this in 11 days.
    Any suggestions for most efficient/ routes?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Almost

    Yes, it is possible to make the trip you're contemplating in 11 days. To drive by everything on your list would take a minimum of around 4400 miles, so you'd just have to average 400 miles a day. But the key is that phrase 'drive by'. If you want to actually take even a few hours at each of the marvelous areas you're taking all that time to get to, then you're going to have to cut back just a bit. The one location that is a bit off the most efficient routing is Yosemite. If you eliminate that, then you lower your total miles to more like 3850 miles and you've bought yourself more than a full day's time to explore the others.

    Anyway, the most efficient route for what you want is just I-90 west to around Sheridan, WY and then US-14 to Yellowstone, and US-89 down through the Tetons to join I-15 in northern Utah. Continue down I-15 through Utah to the Bryce/Zion area where you hop back on US-89 down to Cameron, AZ. Use US-180 into the Grand Canyon and AZ-64 out to join I-40 at Williams. I-40 and I-15 will then take you into San Diego. While on-line software will help you visualize the individual segments, I strongly recommend that you get a good paper map of the US, or better yet - an atlas, and plot out your route. Be sure to see what else is along the way that you may have missed the last time.

    Now for a bit of RoadTrip philosophy. One of the major thrills of being on the road is seeing new stuff. The sense of discovery and adventure is almost palpable. The trips I have been most disappointed in (and they are few and the disappointment minor!) have been those where I tried to recreate a previous trip. Just as there is nothing like your first kiss, there is nothing like your first trip down a road. This is just by way of saying that you might be better served in your quest to recapture that thrill of yesteryear by planning a whole different route. It's a huge country out there and there's a lot more to see. Now, I know that Mark (the Editor) maintains that every trip down a given piece of road is a new adventure and I understand the philosophy behind that sentiment, but here you have a chance to work with a clean slate and have (almost) the entire country at your disposal. It would be a shame, I think, to let that opportunity pass without so much as a thought to doing something new.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 06-16-2006 at 09:12 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Gordon's Well


    As you near San Diego after your speed run, you might wish to avail yourself of a "secret" oasis to re-charge your batteries. Exit I-8 at SR-115 and turn right on Evan Hewes Highway and follow it (east again) about a mile to the aquaduct and you should find an undeveloped (hot) pond surrounded by palm trees.


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