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  1. Default Start in Vegas to GC then east to Midwest

    Hi all.

    I am trying to plan my first family road trip and would like some advice regarding places to stay,eat etc. in the southwest to Colorado then home to the midwest.

    So far here's the plan: From St. Louis, fly to Vegas, stay one night, rent a car and drive to Grand Canyon, east through Az, north through Utah, into western Co, stay in Breckenridge for a couple of days, Denver for a couple of days, then home to St Louis (Springfield, IL).

    I need ideas about MUST SEE'S along the way, places to stay, places to eat, stuff to do in Breckinridge for a family of five. (Kids 9, 16, 16) Also best scenic routes, how to navigate Grand Canyon area, where to stay there, too!

    Alot to ask? But I'm kind of lost here. You can email me if you want. Thank you!! Johnc

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default Lot of resources and ideas for you!

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnc IL View Post
    I am trying to plan my first family road trip and would like some advice regarding places to stay,eat etc. in the southwest to Colorado then home to the midwest.
    You are from Springfield, Illinois? You ought to respond to this thread -- we always love to receive local's input! Welcome to the Great American RoadTrip Forum!
    So far here's the plan: From St. Louis, fly to Vegas, stay one night, rent a car and drive to Grand Canyon, east through Az, north through Utah, into western Co, stay in Breckenridge for a couple of days, Denver for a couple of days, then home to St Louis (Springfield, IL).
    First, look at this thread -- which I just posted about using online resources. What is the time frame? We can offer hundreds of ideas about places to stop and explore -- it would help us if we knew if you are looking for hiking or scenic drives or shopping opportunities or???

    Mark

  3. Default more details of trip

    Mark,

    Thanks for the reply.

    Here are a few more details to help you. I thought we'd do the first part of the trip to mostly sightsee. Once we get to CO, then we'd stay and maybe whitewater for a half day, or hike, or bike, or something. Kids and wife like to shop. We're not real outdoorsy, but do like to sightsee. Looking for scenic routes. I have about a week and a half to two weeks to do this.

    Day one: From Vegas, drive the strip, (no stops) go to Hoover Dam, and Grand Canyon, "so my kids can see it". Overnight and eat around Grand Canyon. (N Rim vs. S Rim?)

    Day two: Leave GC in am. Head east/north east up through Utah, or maybe go towards Sedona? Then up through Utah, and into western CO and into Breckenridge to stay for a few days. Will I need two days to get to Breck? If so, where do I stay, and which route is the coolest?

    Days 3-4 to 5,6+, Stay in Breckenridge or other mountain town to whitewater, shop, hike,bike, eat. Looking for sort of low key stuff.

    Days 6-8+ Go to Denver, ball game, mint, etc. Last day,home to St. Louis, Springfield.

    Oh, and I responded to Andy about Springfield. Thank you!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default Pretty fast pace!

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnc IL View Post
    Day one: From Vegas, drive the strip, (no stops)
    No stops in Las Vegas? Seems pretty odd -- and this first day is really pushing it timewise, but...
    go to Hoover Dam,
    Are you planning on taking the tour or just driving over the dam?
    and Grand Canyon, "so my kids can see it". Overnight and eat around Grand Canyon. (N Rim vs. S Rim?)
    Getting a place to stay at either the north rim or south rim can be tricky -- have you made reservations or are you planning to stay at Williams or Flagstaff?
    Day two: Leave GC in am. Head east/north east up through Utah, or maybe go towards Sedona? Then up through Utah, and into western CO and into Breckenridge to stay for a few days. Will I need two days to get to Breck? If so, where do I stay, and which route is the coolest?
    You could make it in a day -- but you would be blowing past some of the most scenic places in America. By the most direct route it would be about 600 miles which you can do in a day -- a very long day. I would recommend, at a minimum that you use US-191 through Monument Valley and stay overnight at Moab. Drive around Arches NP the next day and then take I-70 to Frisco and then south to Breckenridge. If you can take a little more time, I would suggest the Million Dollar Highway between Durango and Montrose and over US-50 and then north. Gorgeous mountain driving around Ouray.
    Another resource for planning activities in Colorado is this site -- it was created for planning RV vacations but their associations with outfitters are excellent and I would recommend anyone they recommend. If you look at this section of their site and scroll down to the "Optional Activities" and click on the "more" you can get a very quick idea about outfitters and the cost of some of these trips....
    Last day,home to St. Louis, Springfield.
    You are planning to drive from Denver to Springfield in one day? That doesn't sound like a fun day. Could you break it up a little with a stop in Kansas City?

    Mark
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 04-26-2007 at 06:24 PM. Reason: added some colorado resources

  5. Default

    Mark,

    Thanks for your excellent help and recommendations.

    I'd like to fly into Las Vegas, spend one evening/night, and drive out of Vegas the next morning.

    Drive to Hoover Dam, probably not stop for time reasons, and off to Grand canyon. Take in GC scenery, and from your advice, stay overnight in Flagstaff or Williams? (Planning late June, no reservations anywhere yet.)

    Per your recommendation, in morning, from Flagstaff area, head north to Durango to do the million dollar highway. (Moab would be way out of the way.) Do you have a recommendation for the trip from Flagstaff area to Durango? Also, based on your recommendation, I guess I would stay in Montrose or somewhere around there, and make it a two day trip to Breckenridge. Any suggestions in that area? Then stay 3 days in Breckenridge. Then off to Denver.

    We'll see how much energy I have left to do the last 14 hour trip from Denver to home. (I've done it before!!)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default OK then -- in that case....

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnc IL View Post
    I'd like to fly into Las Vegas, spend one evening/night, and drive out of Vegas the next morning.
    Oh thanks goodness -- it would be a shame to be in Las Vegas and not see the strip at night. Since your kids are underage -- I would suggest an early meal at
    La Collina Cucina-- get there about 6:30 and watch as daylight turns into twilight -- one of the most magical transformations as the strip hotels turn on their lights. The food is quite good and reasonably priced as well. Strip traffic is a little nuts -- but it is easier most nights southbound.

    The Ethel M chocolate factory is also intriguing to kids of all ages.

    Mark

  7. Default

    Mark, We're back from our trip from

    Vegas to Sedona, Flagstaff, GC Four Corners Durango, up through Ouray, Montrose, over to Breckenridge and back home to St Louis, Springfield, IL. 2500 driving miles in 9 days.

    I wanted to thank you for your recommendations, especially the million dollar highway stretch. That was SPECTACULAR!!!

    We had a blast, and much of our planning is due to your recommendations and other stuff gleaned from this website.

    Thanks and keep up the good work!

    JohnC IL

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default Thanks for the update!

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnc IL View Post
    Mark, We're back from our trip from
    Vegas to Sedona, Flagstaff, GC Four Corners Durango, up through Ouray, Montrose, over to Breckenridge and back home to St Louis, Springfield, IL. 2500 driving miles in 9 days.
    Glad to hear from you -- sounds like you really saw some wonderful country.

    Mark

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