Vegas and beyond
We are planning a road trip leaving from and returning to Las Vegas mid September.
Our aim is to see the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, Bryce and Zion National Parks, however we only have 8 days to do it in, with 2 of these being spent in Vegas.
Can anyone help with suggested itineraries and routes?
Although just to make things a little tricky we have a 5 month daughter, so long (greater than 7 hours) days of driving and long hikes are out of the question.
Are we being to unrealistic in our quest??
Any help would be great-this is a great forum and resource!!
I think you can JUST do that in your allotted time, but you won't have much time to enjoy each attraction.
It's about 280 miles from Las Vegas to the GC South Rim. With delays at the Hoover Dam, allow 7 hours. It's about 4 hours from the GC to Monument Valley.
From there to Bryce Canyon will have you stretching the 7 hour limit - it's only about 300 miles but most of that will be on 2 lane mountain roads. However, this is a VERY scenic drive - via UT-261 (Moki Dugway), UT-95, UT-24, and UT-12. This will also take you through Capitol Reef. You may need to allow for a night around Torrey.
Bryce to Zion is less than 2 hours, and Zion back to LV is about 3 hours.
If the numbers don't look too good, you may have to cut out Monument Valley - then you can go from the GC up through Page and US-89 all the way to Bryce. This would also cut out UT-12, which is one of the most scenic drives anywhere.
Thanks for your response. Given your advice I think we will try to take a few extra days (2-3) so we can enjoy more of the sights and definitely include Monument Valley.
Just a few other questions:
1. What sort of car do you recommend (we will be renting one and staying in motels). Would you need a 4WD, SUV or would a regular car make the trip?
2. Why is there such long waits/delays at Hoover Dam (excuse the ignorance we are from Australia)?
Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !
I think you are in pretty good shape for your trip but if you can get another couple of days then all the better ! The route glc has mentioned from MV to Bryce via the Moki dugway is very scenic and if you have the extra time I would plan for an overnight stop if you decide to go this way, although the quicker route would be to head through Page from 160 to 198 and then 89.
A regular car will do you just fine, you are not allowed to go anywhere off road under your rental agreement.
The delays at Hoover dam are for security checks and traffic congestion, but for how long will depend on the volume of visitors. I went through in Oct with hardly any delays but during the busy period it'll be different. If you are lucky you could complete the journey in under 6 hours or you might want to spend a bit of time at the dam. I might be wrong but trying to read between the lines, I think you might have confused glc's estimate of 7 hours as "delay time" at the dam whereas it is a possible total travel time including delays.
Last edited by Southwest Dave; 08-14-2009 at 02:11 PM.
Reason: Another thought.
Thanks for all the advice. I think we are well placed now to do the trip.
RE: Hoover Dam-i had read elsewhere that sometimes there were delays of up to 2 hours so i was interested to know why..but you have now answered that for me.
Something you might like to do if you do not get delayed much at the dam - when you reach Kingman, instead of getting on I-40, continue through town and follow AZ-66, which is the routing of old Route 66. Stay on that through Peach Springs and rejoin I-40 in Seligman. This is the longest stretch of old Route 66 that still exists and is maintained. This will only add an hour or so to your drive, depending on stops you may make along the route.
Good call !
We enjoyed our trip along that stretch of '66, it seemed popular with bikers and seeing a bunch of Harley's going past and the longest train I have ever seen running alongside the road added to the experience. Although there was no shortage of other attractions along the way.
Shopping in style
And a little hair and beauty treatment
Dave, you have just answered an un-asked question for me. The photos and the mention of the train did it.
When I left LA for my trip to Chicago on the train (whatever it was called) we stopped for ever-so-long right outside the photos you show... but it was night... and I was lucky to have been on that side of the train.
Lifey who wondered where the train stopped