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  1. #1

    Default Austin to Cali via ?

    Hi everybody. I'm new to the forum and although I'm not new to road trips, I might as well be. I think my last trip was in college. Now I'm married with a 7 1/2 yo. I'd like to take her to California this summer. I have friends scattered from Venice to Cupertino so flying and renting a car would be fine I suppose except for the cost involved. Plus I'm thinking grand canyon, Indian reservations...on the way there. I'm looking for advice big time. Ruby, my daughter, is a Waldorf kid so she's not going to be watching videos in the backseat but she's easy to entertain and doesn't mind being in the car (we routinely drive 3 1/2 hrs to see family in Dallas, sometimes in the same day). Are there places to stop along the way for someone her age? My husband is working so it would just be us that safe? I really want to instill in her a love of the land and of road trips. I see it as a great way to bond with my daughter and to visit friends she's never met. I'm open to all ideas which is why I came here, to the experts! We have no date restrictions, was thinking July, and want to spend as little as possible (I will be packing a cooler). Thanks for reading...gratitude in advance for tips and advice!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default She Should Love It

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    At Ruby's age, any stop where she can get out of the car, get some exercise, maybe let off a little steam, and see something new qualifies as an age appropriate stop. Fortunately, there are many such stops all along the Interstates. She's also old enough that she can act as co-pilot and keep an eye on the maps and exits and let you know when something is coming up. That's the best way I know to keep her engaged and have her learn a little something about the country you'll be driving through.

    I-10, I-17 and I-40, your principle routes, are all well traveled highways with plenty of motorists' services, so you'll never be far from 'civilization'. And cell phone coverage is essentially universal along the Interstates. So just exercise the same normal precautions you would in driving around your own home and you should be perfectly safe. The one thing I would caution you about is that July is monsoon season in the desert southwest. If you experience an afternoon thunderstorm and come across a portion of the road that is under water, heed the signs and do NOT try to drive through. I should have known better and lost an engine in one such foolish attempt.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Time ?

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    It sounds like a wonderful opportunity to do some family bonding and catch up with friends, but how long have you got for this trip. From Austin to LA to SF and back through GC and Monument valley to Albu and home for instance is getting close to a 4000 mile round trip in a loop. That would really be driving at the max [500-550 miles/ 9-10 hours per day] for a week so with a young one and single driver I would imagine a 10 day trip plus any time with friends or major sight seeing stops.
    If you use your natural instincts as you would at home then there should be no safety issues as long as you are using Motels and friends places to stay.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Albuquerque, New Mexico


    Quote Originally Posted by Saza
    Are there places to stop along the way for someone her age?
    One place I highly recommend is the Tinkertown Museum, in the mountains near Albuquerque (hereís a map).
    Itís a really neat place, itís inexpensive, and two National Forest Picnic Areas are just a mile up the road. You can see a few pictures here.

    Have a great trip!

  5. #5

    Default Planning in progress...thanks!!

    Thanks for the great replies! I have all of the links open, as well as google maps, and we are starting to see a route appear. As for the question of timing: luckily, we have none! We're just going to set off sometime around the end of June or beginning of July and just take our time...we will set things to see on the way there and the way back and visit friends in between. I'm so excited!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Great !

    If we can help some more as you build your trip just let us know !

    Check out the the National parks site for some great natural wonders such as Grand canyon, Death valley ,Yosemite, Mesa Verde and so on and so on, I find it really helps with putting a route together.

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