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  1. Default Road trip advice: San francisco to Las Vegas

    Hi all, my friend and i would like to take a road trip from san francisco to las vegas. neither of us have been in the western us and we're looking to take a 7 or 8 day road trip. I'm looking for suggestions on what to include in this trip, as i dont really know the area. So far I know i want to include San francisco (obviously), Yosemite, Death Valley, and Las Vegas. we would spend 2 nights in both San Fran and Las Vegas, and probably 1 night in yosemite and death valley.

    Ah i have so many questions:
    are there other attractions nearby, either cities or natural, that we should hit on the way?

    Does this trip sound feasible for only two drivers?

    Will we have trouble renting a car if we're both 21?

    Is there a way to estimate how expensive gas would be?

    Is there a way to roughly estimate how much the trip would cost we're going to be in pretty cheap motels/hotels?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Western/Central Massachusetts
    Posts
    1,703

    Default Welcome!

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America Forum!

    This is an extremely popular trip - we get perhaps more posts on this trip than on any other, so you are in good company as far as resources pertaining to this trip.

    Does this trip sound feasible for only two drivers?
    Yes, I don't see there being a problem regarding this.

    Will we have trouble renting a car if we're both 21?
    You should be able to find a place that will rent you a car, but you may find that most places will charge a fee if you are under 25. They consider that being an inexperienced driver.

    Is there a way to estimate how expensive gas would be?
    Fortunately, the government keeps track of this. The amount used depends on the vehicle you will be driving, of course.

    Is there a way to roughly estimate how much the trip would cost we're going to be in pretty cheap motels/hotels?
    I would figure on $50-60 per night to be safe, and that is on the low side, of course. Expect to pay more within the cities.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,318

    Default Here's a few more resources

    You might want to read through:
    Bucks for the Basics for tips on how to figure out your budget
    Topic Number 1? which gives links to several discussions about the area you plan to explore. This should give you plenty of tips about places to see along the way.
    Gas Buddy is another good place to find out gas prices across the country

  4. Default

    thank you for the helpful replies.

    do you believe that the weather will make it troublesome going through and spending time at yellowstone and kings canyon? keep in mind this trip would take place around the third week of march. i have no experience camping and my friend has only camped a few times. is camping doable in this weather? are there still plenty of things to do in yellowstone in the winter?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,318

    Default Yellowstone?

    Do you mean Yosemite?

    Well, cold weather camping does require having either more expensive sleeping bags for colder weather or you can get cheaper sleeping bags and buy some military surplus wool blankets to throw on top. I tend to avoid camping when it's cold so I'm not the best one to give you advice on that. I don't like to be cold.

    I'm also going to have to hope that someone else pops in more familiar with those areas during that time of year because I can't help you much there either.

    Here's the national park service webpage for Yosemite. It does talk about road closures in the park and might give you other tips. Here's the one for King's Canyon. I see that it does discuss the different seasons so that should help, too.

  6. Default March in Yosemite?

    Assuming you're going to be going to Yosemite in later March, it could be cool to cold, and you might even seen a bit of snow (depending upon the year...)

    According to the National Park Service the average high temperature for March is 58 F, and the average low temperature if 36 F. Of course you can see higher or lower temperatures. But they also typically (average) get 10 inches of snow and 5 inches of rain in March. So you need to be prepared...

    The National Park weather service describes the weather as ": Highly variable, with sunny and relatively warm days, but still an occassional winter storm.".

    Now, since your'e coming in at the end of winter, the waterfalls can be spectacular in Yosemite -- snow melts drives huge falls and the creeks are full of water. Can be spectacular.. While the higher elevations will probably still be closed with snow, the valley floor will be open -- lots of hiking trails to the waterfalls and around the area. And if the weather is bad, but you're warm and dry -- there are winter activities like cross country skiing available.

    If you're camping -- you need to be prepared for bad weather. It's doable as a camping trip (I've camped in snow and freezing rain before), but you might want to have enough spare funds to be able to find a hotel room if you need to rather than tackle a winter-style campout if the weather isn't good. And if you do decide to tackle a later winter camping trip, make sure you go prepared.

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