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  1. Default Advice re Utah in February

    Hello. We (Australians) will be honeymooning in the US for approx 4 weeks in Feb 2010. Plan at the moment is 1 week rock climbing in Joshua Tree, 12 days driving around canyons etc in Utah then a week in NY. Tentative route for the middle 12 days is:

    JT - Sedona - Page - Moab - Moab - Torrey - Escalante - Kanab - ?Vegas

    This will take 8 days and leaves a gap of 4 days before heading into LAX to fly to NY. Options are to climb for a little longer in Joshua Tree, fly to NY earlier, spend more than 8 days doing the Utah road trip.

    Does anybody have any thoughts on the planned 8 days. Is it too rushed, too slow or are there useful side trips to be undertaken? Are there likely to be significant weather issues. We will be in car rather than RV.

    thanks

  2. Default

    That's a lot of area to cover for 8 days so I'd recommend using the 12 days. I'm also wondering why you choose some of the locations over others. Remember daylight hours are going to be very short this time of year and you don't want to drive after dark because you will be missing the beautiful scenery.

    What about the Grand Canyon? Between Page, AZ and Moab you will pass right by Monument Valley as you cross the Arizona, Utah border on Hwy 163. Near Moab is Canyonlands National Park and Arches National Park and you will want to spend a day in each. I'd recommend moving on to Bryce National Park instead of staying in Escalante, Utah. I'd skip Kanab and go to Zion National Park and stay in Springdale, Utah.

    We've been in Zion in February and there was a lot of snow on the ground. It has snowed for several days before we arrived. Bryce can get a lot of snow because it's at 8,000 foot elevation. All areas you will be traveling to can get snow in February. I'd check weather conditions before you head out each day to make sure the roads are open. Between Torrey and Escalante, you go over the Boulder Mountain pass at 9,400 feet.

    Utahtea

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    Joplin MO
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    Default

    I would do a loop. Go from Joshua Tree to Vegas and head north on 15 to Zion. Take 89 to Bryce, then 12/24 to Capitol Reef to I-70, then to Moab to see Arches and Canyonlands. Come down through Monument Valley to the Grand Canyon, then to Sedona and LA. Buy a national parks pass ($80), it will pay for itself.

  4. Default

    Good point re daylight hours. We had planned to stay in the cheaper non-resort motels and see the sights between stops rather than aim to spend the nights in Bryce, Zion etc. The places you mentioned were on our itinerary e.g Grand Canyon en route to Page, Monument valley en route to Moab, Arches while at Moab, Staircase/Escalante en route to Torrey and Bryce en route to Kanab. Zion would be between Kanab and somewhere else..

    Springdale and Bryce sound good though. Perhaps another night in Page and an extra night in Bryce would be in order? A night at Grand Canyon itself?

    How about JT - G Canyon - Page - Page - Moab - Moab - Torrey - Bryce - Bryce - Springdale - Vegas - LAX ?

    thanks again

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by glc View Post
    I would do a loop. Go from Joshua Tree to Vegas and head north on 15 to Zion. Take 89 to Bryce, then 12/24 to Capitol Reef to I-70, then to Moab to see Arches and Canyonlands. Come down through Monument Valley to the Grand Canyon, then to Sedona and LA. Buy a national parks pass ($80), it will pay for itself.
    that's what I had in mind - but in reverse!!

  6. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tony pearce View Post
    Good point re daylight hours. We had planned to stay in the cheaper non-resort motels and see the sights between stops rather than aim to spend the nights in Bryce, Zion etc. The places you mentioned were on our itinerary e.g Grand Canyon en route to Page, Monument valley en route to Moab, Arches while at Moab, Staircase/Escalante en route to Torrey and Bryce en route to Kanab. Zion would be between Kanab and somewhere else..

    Springdale and Bryce sound good though. Perhaps another night in Page and an extra night in Bryce would be in order? A night at Grand Canyon itself?

    How about JT - G Canyon - Page - Page - Moab - Moab - Torrey - Bryce - Bryce - Springdale - Vegas - LAX ?

    thanks again
    I doubt you will need two nights at Bryce because of the amount of snow that will probably be there. If the paths are groomed you can rent snow shoes and do some of the trails, otherwise you're walking or hiking will be very limited in Feb.

    I love Lake Powell and highly recommend taking the Rainbow Bridge Boat Tour if they have one going this time of year.

    Utahtea

  7. Default ? snow chains necessary Utah February

    Greetings from Australia. I will be driving Grand Canyon/Moab/Escalante/Bryce in mid February. Is it likely that I will need snow chains or will winter tires be enough?

    thanks
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 12-02-2009 at 06:02 AM. Reason: merge with original thread about this trip

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
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    Default

    It's impossible to predict this far in advance. On my trip through that area around March 1st this last year, I had no problems in a rear wheel drive pickup truck with so-called "all season" highway tires. There was no deep snow anywhere, but there were a few icy and slushy spots. Keep abreast of weather and road conditions and be prepared to modify your route if necessary. I doubt that you would be able to rent a vehicle with true "winter" tires - they will generally have "all season" highway tires, be it a RWD, FWD, or AWD vehicle. If there are chain requirements in place for a particular route, it would be best to find an alternate or wait it out.

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