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  1. #1

    Default Palm Springs to Reno in mid-October

    Any suggestions of must-see sights between Palm Springs and Reno? I'm planning on visiting Joshua Tree, the Mojave National Preserve, Death Valley, Bodie...

    (At that time of year, will Death Valley still be crazy dangerously ridicuously hot?)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Your Bases Seem Covered

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America forums!

    By October, average high temperatures in Death Valley will be in the low 90's with overnight lows around 60. That is certainly a manageable temperature range, and in fact will be quite pleasant in the morning hours. You will still need to have (and drink) plenty of water, and dress properly (loose fitting light clothing) as well. But that's actually a good time of year to visit the desert. Warm enough to remind you that it is desert, but cool enough to be tolerable.

    You've already listed most of the major attractions between Palm Springs and Reno, but if you plan to stop anywhere along the way, this w3ill need to be a two day journey. The other possibility, if you can add a day, or at least the far better part of one, AND if Tioga pass hasn't already gotten snowed in, is to take CA-120 into Yosemite and back out. But make sure the weather forecast is good. YOu could get caught on the west side of the Sierra Nevada if it snows while you're in Yosemite and then have to head up the west side to I-80 before continuing east into Reno.


  3. #3

    Default Should I spring for GPS in my rental car?

    Over the last few years, I've taken solo road trips in the Midwest and California, and this October, I'm taking a 10-day trip from Palm Springs to Reno, with stops in Joshua Tree, the Mojave National Preserve, Death Valley and assorted spots along 395.

    I've never used GPS before, and I wondered if veteran road-trippers who use GPS think the expense is worth it (it's $100 extra -- the way I travel, I can do a lot with $100!)?

    Sometimes it's a headache to read my directions, check the map, look for landmarks and drive all at the same time. On the other hand, I've made some great discoveries because of wrong turns!

    Anyway, would love to hear your thoughts.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 06-09-2009 at 03:53 PM. Reason: Please do not start new threads for the same trip.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    You can buy a basic GPS for less than $100, and you can keep it. Walmart has a good selection.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia


    Quote Originally Posted by Retronista View Post
    On the other hand, I've made some great discoveries because of wrong turns! Thanks!
    You've said it all!!

    For my current trip I bought a GPS, and other than just watching the map as I drive along, I have not used it much at all. It came in handy in Calgary when I wanted to find the library. However, that meant I did not take much notice of my surroundings, and had difficulty finding my way back to the truck stop where I was staying. And I did not know it's address. Just typing in the location or the name of the truck stop did not work either, since there were three truck stops with the same name in town.

    My only reason for buying it was to give it to the lovely folk who supplied my vehicle for this trip. Shopping around for one in several States, I did not find any around $100. The cheapest was $150, but most decent ones were between $200 and $300.

    If you happen to drive up 395 in eastern California, be sure to stop at Bishop. There is a bakery in town you cannot afford to miss!

    Lifey who loved the biggest little city

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    I just checked, and they start at 80 bucks. The cheapest ones stocked in the stores (Sanyo, Tomtom) are right around $100. They even have a Garmin for $108.

  7. #7


    Very helpful advice!

    I think I'll probably skip the GPS and apply that money to my bakery tab in Bishop. :-)

    Thanks, everyone!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    SF Bay Area

    Default Erick Schat's Bakkery

    Great bakery, do not miss.

    If you're into photography, or just like looking at pretty landscape pictures, be sure to drop into Mountain Light Gallery in Bishop; founded by the late adventure photographer Galen Rowell and his (also late) wife Barbara.

    Some people think his photos are too saturated (color dense)... I think they're stunning.

  9. #9


    Thanks for the tip about the gallery!

    I'm forever cranking up the saturation levels on my own little camera, so there is no such thing as too much color, as far as I'm concerned...

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