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  1. Default Driving From La To Nyc With My 2 Dogs, Need Trip Planner!

    I am planning a drive from LA to NYC in the next week or so. I will be traveling with my 2 dogs, 2 large german shepherd dogs. It will be my first solo cross country trip, although I have driven it twice before, and once drove from Brooklyn, NY to Belize in Central America. I am not a novice to long distance driving, but this will b ethe first time alone, and will have to consider my dog companions. Ideally, since it is winter, Id like to take the best route weatherwise. Ive mostly driven the southern route in the past, and think that this will probably be the safest bet. However, I do think taking the more northern route might be more intersting, with great hiking opportunities with the dogs. I have ample time, and will just make the trip in a liesurely not bound by any specific timeframe. Id like to know if anyone has any suggestions for a route to take that will allow me to see some of the great sites and also save driving time. Burnout and fatigue is a big issue for me, one that I fear. Not like I can ask the dogs to drive!
    Id like to spend some time doing fun things, but not stray too far off the main path...
    any ideas? looking for hidden gems and cool spots, not just the biggies..what id really like to find, especially since im on the west coast now, is that road you always see in road trip movies, huge red rocks and towering structures, miles of empty in Thelma and Louise...
    all I remember about my previous cross country trip is miles and miles of two lane highways....

  2. Default Route Idea

    Keep an eye on weather reports, but a good route for you sounds like I-10 to I-15 through Las Vegas, and then on up into southwestern Utah. Southern Utah is where you'll find red rocks aplenty, and I-70 goes right through a beautiful area called the San Rafael Swell (do a search for it on this forum and you'll find tons of info about it.) Utah State Route 12 in southwestern Utah is amazing (but not sure how well it's kept this time of year), and I also recommend Utah 191 and 128 which will take you south of I-70 down to Arches National Park and then will loop back up to the interstate.

    I'm sure you'll get more ideas from some of the other contributors. Have a safe trip. You mentioned burnout...just keep the driving to less than 500 miles a day, and less than that if you have more time and resources.

    Good hiking,


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Let Having the Dogs Work for You

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    There are three basic routes between Las Angeles and New York, and you should familiarize yourself with all three over the next week or so. Then, a day or two before you leave, sit down for a serious session with the Weather Channel and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and see which of those three routes offers the best chance of clear weather. There will be plenty of opportunities for hikes with the dogs along whichever route you choose. Taking the time for a few such hikes a day will go a long way towards making the dogs' trip enjoyable, and you less prone to burnout.

    Unfortunately, the movies give a false sense of what's out there to be seen, since they always choose only the best locations for their scenes. But if you have the time, see if you can fit in Monument Valley (US-163 through northeastern Arizona and southeastern Utah). Unfortunately (although around here we think of it as fortunate) the main fact of any cross country drive is that it consists of miles and miles of driving.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Still searching

    Quote Originally Posted by nastasia View Post
    what id really like to find, especially since im on the west coast now, is that road you always see in road trip movies, huge red rocks and towering structures, miles of empty road...
    I think all of us have been looking for a road like this our entire lives. Occasionally, you find it (or a reasonable facsimile), and you remember it - but it is fleeting. One of the reasons a road would be empty is because it doesn't go anywhere people want to be.

  5. Default

    thanks for the tips everyone, I will certainly do my research now and find the most interesting route. Also, what are the driving conditions through the Rockies and Colorado..not really weather wise, but is it a difficult drive? Also, what is there to see past the Rockies, in Nebraska, say...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Easy Questions

    If you go through Colorado on I-70 driving conditions will be similar to all other Interstate highways. These roads are all built to the same specifications which limit the grades and curves in order to facilitate constant high speed traffic. There will be long steady climbs and descents, but nothing that of itself should cause you to avoid this route. As for things to see in Nebraska and other states along your drive, check out this resource.


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia


    Quote Originally Posted by nastasia View Post
    Also, what is there to see past the Rockies, in Nebraska, say...
    Only thing I know of in NE is 'Carhenge'. Not been there yet, read lots about it, and definitely will visit this year...

    Was in a booklet of the 21 must see places in the USA.

    Lifey who has it pencilled in

  8. Default

    First, I agree wholeheartedly with taking I-15 to I-70. The San Rafael Swell in UT is great (100+ miles of nothing but road, dirt, rock, and shrubs, etc). Then there's Glenwood Canyon (lots of hiking there). Then you get into Vail and before Eisenhower Tunnel. Definitely hiking there. There's also Loveland Pass (US6 instead of going I-70 through Eisenhower Tunnel).

    In Nebraska, it's actually quite scenic for the mostly 'flat' parts of the country. The Great Platte River Road Archway Monument will definitely make you take pause. If you do take I-76 east of Denver to Big Springs, NE, there are some small state parks, etc. I've mostly just 'driven through' NE, rather than stopped to look around. The nicer parts, to me, are the ones from Pine Bluffs, Wyoming to Big Springs on I-80. Lots of odd out of place rock formations, cliffs, bluffs, rocky formations.

    One of those 'red rock cliffs' you talk about to me is US6 from Provo, UT to Green River, UT. Since you'd be on I-70, you'd miss it. Not necissarly right by the road, but just to the east it runs for a good 40 miles or so (more brownish than red).

    Definitely going down to see Arches National Park on US191 towards Moab is worthwhile. Only about 20-30 miles south. Takes a few hours to explore the park (more if you want to walk it). You'll be going in the off season, so car traffic will be minimal, as will be tourists/hikers, etc. Not sure of the animal policy in national parks though (don't have dogs).


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default San Rafael Swell and Goblin Valley

    I agree with the above sentiments -- one of my favorite Interstate highways in America is the stretch of I-70 from it's beginning in western Utah to the Eisenhower Tunnel.

    Here are some field reports from the San Rafael Swell, Goblin Valley
    and beyond.

    Here are some more suggestions for places to stop and wander after the tunnel.


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