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Thread: July Roadtrip

  1. #1

    Default July Roadtrip

    I'm hoping to spend 3 weeks this July traveling around out West. I haven't had much time to plan so far, but I definitely want to see the Grand Canyon and Seattle -- so I'm looking for a good route between these two places that will hit spots of interest and give me a diverse sense of the west.
    I also have to rent a car (I'm located in Boston), and am planning to fly somewhere near either of those starting points -- would you recommend dropping off the car, or driving in a full circle back to where I've picked it up (it seems that some companies have high fees for dropping a car where it wasn't picked up)? And if the full-circle method is preferred, where are suggested starting points that might tie this trip together? Also -- what points of interest are must sees in this area? I'm more or less unfamiliar with the west coast (aside form a brief visit to LA and San Fran in the past) and am hoping to make the most of my time (and money... which is somewhat limited).
    Any suggestions from veteran road-trippers or Westerners are much obliged!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Threefold Beauty

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    There are three major advantages to doing a 'loop' trip. The first is that you save on the car rental fee, the second is that you get to see more of the country by taking one set of roads outbound and another set back to your starting point, and the third is that you save money (again) by being able to fly into whichever airport along the loop offers the lowest airfare from your home. In your case, and for the loop I'm going to suggest, Salt Lake City and Las Vegas probably offer the lowest fares, but you should also at least look at Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, and Los Angeles (including alternative airports like Oakland and Ontario).

    Anyway, describing the loop counter-clockwise from Las Vegas, it would run up I-15 by Zion and Bryce Canyon to Salt Lake City, then on US-89 through the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone to Bozeman; across northern Idaho and Washington on I-90 to Seattle; down the Cascades on I-5 past Mt. Ranier and Crater Lake National Parks; over to the coast via US-199 and down US-101 through Redwood National Park to San Francisco; down the Pacific Coast Highway (CA-1) through Monterey and Carmel and along the Big Sur coast to L.A.; and then I-15 back to Las Vegas. You could do the Grand Canyon as a two day out-and-return from Las Vegas at either the beginning or end of the trip.


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