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  1. #1

    Default Mom & two kids planning 7K summer roadtrip

    Hi All,
    In the beginning stages of planning a roadtrip with my kids, ages 7 and 8. Leaving from Seattle in middle/end of June and returning around 8/28.

    I want to leave enough time to chill for a few nights here and there and want to spend no more than an average of 4 hours in the car every day. We have some dates we have to hit but other than that are pretty open.

    Tentative itinerary (w/ nights in between) -- don't need to hit the cities, per se, but they are geographical benchmarks for where we want to hit. There are two weeks in end of July that are not flexible.

    Mt. Rushmore
    ferry crossing back to US or other idea....
    Burlington, VT
    Boston, MA (see family)
    NYC, NYC on 7/19 for four days -- have reservations, business meetings, etc.
    Washington, DC (two nights w/ family)
    7/25 - 8/1 Nags Head w/ family)
    Asheville, NC
    Little Rock
    San Antonio (a must to see grandparents for a couple days)
    Four corners
    Salt Lake
    meander back to Seattle

    Am I crazy? We drive an old LandCruiser.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default looks good

    Welcome to the RTA Forum

    I think you've got a pretty nice plan. With 2 months to work with, you can certainly go at the slow pace you are talking about. I will say that 4 hours a day really isn't very much, and I'm sure you could have a few days where you drive for 3-4 hours, stop somewhere that your kids will enjoy/run around/etc, and then continue on for another 3-4 hours. That would give you a little more time to stop at your highlighted destinations.
    ferry crossing back to US or other idea....
    Instead of a ferry, I think I would simply visit Niagara Falls, and cross the border there.

    I will also remind you that you'll either need a passport for yourself or a photo id (ie drivers license) AND proof of citizenship (birth certificate). You'll also want to bring your kids birth certificates, and if it is just you and the kids, you may want to bring a letter from the kids father giving permission to cross the border or some sort of court document showing that you have custody.

  3. #3

    Default Thanks

    Thanks for the Niagara Falls suggestion. Will incorporate. Also, I'm a baseball writer (and my kids are fans, too) so I cannot believe I overlooked Cooperstown. And we'll try to hit some minor league games along the way. Niagara to Cooperstown looks easy.

    And thanks for the reminder re: the note from dad for crossing into Canada.

    After I get the itinerary finalized my husband will see where he can fly in and out and join us for little bits of the trip. We're having our house renovated and would probably have to move out anyway... this is what spurred the idea for a massive roadtrip. Unfortunately, he has to stay and work in Seattle most of the time (and oversee the construction). But he'll be w/ us the first week of the trip and then again in North Carolina and some other week or weekend of driving after that. He may even join us in San Antonio and take over -- w/ me flying back to Seattle for a (much needed) break!


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    I would recommend that you and both kids get US passports. The kids must apply in person in the presence of BOTH parents.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Other Baseball Stuff

    There are Minor Leagues nearly everywhere on your journey, and certainly Cooperstown is a must, but two other baseball related 'shrines' are within reach on your trip as well. The first is the Field of Dreams in Dyersville, IA which is about 100 mile north of I-80 between Omaha and Chicago. True, it's a movie set, but I thought it might appeal to you as a writer. The second is instructional baseball at its best, the Cape Cod League which has been training the stars of tomorrow for over 100 years.


  6. #6

    Default Three nights enough in Yellowstone?

    Thanks for the Field of Dreams tip, AZ. I've tweaked the trip a bit and plan to not go as far south as Omaha and instead hit some MiLB in Sioux Falls and then more in Cedar Rapids, which is right near Dyersville where the Field of Dreams set is.

    Then, instead of Chicago, we'll head to Milwaukee to see MIL v. STL in early July. Then I'll make the trip to Michigan via the Lake Michigan Car Ferry out of Manitowoc, WI and spend the night w/ some friends in Muskeegon, MI. Then go from there straight for two nights in Niagara Falls and on to two nights in Cooperstown. I'll get there a few weeks before induction weekend so it shouldn't be too bad.

    I'm planning on only three nights in Yellowstone. My family does a lot of hiking and I'm already thinking of renting a canoe. Any ideas on whether I'll regret leaving that soon?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default more baseball info than you probably want to know

    I think you'll enjoy your stop at Field of Dreams, just make sure you bring your gloves and maybe a bat so you have fun playing on the field. The field itself is ok, but really the fun part is that almost any time you go, you can take part in a little batting practice or a pickup game with other visitors.

    On a technical level, the baseball team in Sioux Falls isn't actually minor league baseball, they are part of the American Association, a independent baseball league. Now, as a spectator is doesn't make that much of a difference, but unlike official minor league baseball, the teams aren't affiliated with any major league club. Basically, you end up seeing a lot of players whose prospect status has peaked and they still want to play, even though major league teams have pretty much given up on them.

    The Cedar Rapids Kernals are the single A affiliate of the Angels and play in a nice new ballpark. Its certainly one of the nicer places to watch a game, although my favorite minor league park in the area is in Clinton Iowa, which is a nice 80 year old WPA ballpark.

    Another option baseball option for you in this area would be a Northwoods League game, with teams in Waterloo and in Madison. This is a wood bat summer college league, much like the Cape Cod League that Buck referenced earlier, where college students are basically auditioning for MLB scouts. Some pretty decent pro players have come out of this league in recent years.

    Finally, for your game in Milwaukee, make sure to get there early to take part in some of the tailgating. The parking lot party might be my favorite reason to go to a game at Miller Park.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Yes, But...

    Quote Originally Posted by DSeattle

    I'm planning on only three nights in Yellowstone...Any ideas on whether I'll regret leaving that soon?
    Regret is a funny emotion. Certainly you could spend considerably more than three days in Yellowstone and still not see and do everything that it has to offer. On the other hand, I've been there several times, only once was my stay longer than a day, and yet I regret none of them. In each case, I knew what my time limits were and just made the best use of the time I had. The key to this is doing just what you're doing now, prepare. Read through the park's web site thoroughly and pick out the things that you find most intriguing and even then be sure to stop at a ranger/visitor center and talk to the people there who know the park intimately for their recommendations on how to make the best use of your time. Yes, you will leave with things undone, but the sense of wonder at what you've seen should easily outweigh any sense of regret for what you couldn't get to on this trip.

    By the way, if you plan to visit more than 3 National Parks on this trip, be sure to buy an annual National Parks Pass at the entrance to the first park you visit.


  9. #9

    Default Southwest/Utah suggestions?

    The final 10 days of a 9-week 8K mile roadtrip w/ my two kids (ages 7 and 8) will be in the Southwest. Since the trip will be in its waning phase (we're starting in Seattle on 6/19 and will be in Roswell, NM on 8/17), I'm thinking that we may not be terribly inclined to linger anywhere too long.

    My plan is to go from Roswell thru Abq and up to Mesa Verde, CO for two nights camping. Wake up in Mesa Verde and spend the day driving through 4 Corners and up through UT. But where to spend the next three nights?

    The Utah portion of the trip is problematic: I know nothing about this area and there is Glen Canyon, Capitol Reef, Canyonlands, Arches National Parks... and more. We'll probably spend two or three nights (max) at one of those places. Could someone advise what a good route would be? There may be some that are just good to drive through while heading elsewhere for the night.

    After a couple nights in some beautiful Utah place, we'll head up thru Salt Lake, Idaho and hit two nights in Hells Canyon before the final sprint back to Seattle.

    Suggestions for places to hit/avoid/linger on this final leg (from Roswell on up) are appreciated.

    Many Thanks!
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 02-16-2009 at 01:10 PM. Reason: Merged with originial thread about this trip

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Albuquerque, New Mexico


    My plan is to go from Roswell thru Abq and up to Mesa Verde, CO for two nights camping.
    Suggestions for places to hit/avoid/linger on this final leg (from Roswell on up) are appreciated.
    I can think of a lot of places between Roswell and Mesa Verde, but for sure take the kids to the Tinkertown Museum just outside of Albuquerque. They’ll love it, I guarantee. It’s about ten minutes off the Interstate – very easy to find. There are two picnic areas less than a mile further up the road, or, if you have time, you could drive up to Sandia Crest, where there is a gift shop/restaurant, and a very nice view.

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