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  1. Default San Francisco to Austin, any good advice?

    Hi all. I need to drive from San Francisco to Austin next week. We'll have 5 or 6 days so we have a little time to fool around. We'll be in an old but reliable car with no AC. The proposed route was to go south on I-5, then head east over to I-40 as far as Albuquerque. From there, should we continue east on 40, then turn south to Austin, or should we go south from Albuquerque to hook up with I-10 east? I'd prefer to take the more interesting and/or scenic route, if there is a noticeable difference. We'd love to do some fun things along the way too if anyone has any good ideas to share. Historic, scenic, or quirky, these are all good. Thaks in advance for your help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Keithville, LA

    Default My Personal Favorite

    Highway 285 South. You can catch it a little east of Santa Fe in Clines Corners (first quarky stop - very large tacky Truck Stop there). 285 goes through Roswell (aliens and one of my very favorite towns), down to Carlsbad and thus the Carlsbad Caverns. Now you can head off the route here a little and go to the Guadalupe Mountains National Park and then get back on 285. It will take you to Fort Stockton, Texas where you can hit I-10 and get to Austin. I've never taken 285 further south than Pecos, so I can't really help with attractions from there to Fort Stockton.

    When in Pecos - get a cantaloupe. They are wonderful. I bought one from a farmer at a truck stop about a month ago.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default There is No Bad Advice

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    The is only about a 40 mile difference between the two routes, with the I-10 route being slightly shorter. However, you pay for that by having to drive through L.A. and Phoenix. The terrain is not that much different either. But the big plus on the I-40 route is that the Grand Canyon is 'only' a 120 mile detour. I also agree with Laura that if you go I-40, the best connection south to Austin is US-285 with side trips to Carlsbad Caverns and/or Guadalupe Mountains National Parks. Also consider a stop at Monahans Sandhills State Park and coming into Austin via US-87 and TX-71 with another possible stop at Fort Concho in San Angelo


  4. Default Thanks!

    Thank you very much for those ideas. For that part of the trip, it's exactly what I was looking for! Besides, after all those miles with no AC, going to Carlsbad Caverns sounds like a nice respite from the heat.

    I don't think the Grand Canyon is going to be part of this trip. I'd want more time there than we will have on this trip, and I'll want to go hiking when I go (and I don't have enough time on this journey). On the AZ part of I-40, Flagstaff will be a must stop. Any other suggestions for AZ? In NM, I want to visit Acoma pueblo and perhaps drive on an old stretch of Rt.66. If anyone has any other suggestions, I'm all ears. I especially enjoy somewhere senic to camp for at least a night, as well as historic spots along the way. The Indian culture of that area is also an interest of mine. Any places left to get good local crafts at fair prices (especially direct from the artisans)? I enjoy supporting local artists when ever I can (and can afford to). Again, thank you in advance!

  5. Default Another question about San Francisco to Austin

    Thanks for posting all the great info on this site.

    My question this time is about food. Does anyone have any reccomendations for great local places to eat on this route? From about Flagstaff on to Austin is where we need some ideas. I love to spend my dollars locally, and will go out of my way to avoid chain restaurants. The kind of places we like are, of course, locally owned, good food, perhaps regional flavor, and funky atmousphere is always a plus. Also, does anyone know of a good web site that focuses on the issue of good road food? I've been looking, but have not found one I like nearly as much as this one!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default just get out there

    I've found the best way to find good local food is to ask the locals. Simply getting off the interstate, driving into town a little ways and looking for places with lots of cars in the parking lot is an excellent way to find some great road food.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Two resources I use

    Quote Originally Posted by wavydave15 View Post
    Also, does anyone know of a good web site that focuses on the issue of good road food?
    There are two resources that I use (in addition to the ones suggested above. Incidently, the best way to get local info fast -- is to bet a haircut at local barbershop....) Anyway, this book covers many locals-only food establishments in New Mexico and is one of the better online resources. We have our own version here -- but it is woefully incomplete these days....


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