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  1. Default 1st Road Trip Advice Needed - California

    Wow - what a great site this is.

    We are planning our first road trip to America and after some research (mainly on this site!), my proposed route is.

    San Francisco
    Lake Tahoe
    Yosemite
    Millers Rest
    Zion NP
    Bryce Canyon
    Grand Canyon
    Las Vegas
    Lake Isabella
    Three Rivers (through Sequoia NP)
    Monterey
    San Francisco

    We are planning to do this over 18 nights, staying in a number of places for a few days.

    We're looking at a C25S RV for 2 adults and two children (21 and 16 yrs old) -will that be big enough?? El Monte seem to have reasonable prices - anything I should be aware of?

    Any tips or advice would be so welcome please.

    In particular, it's the stretch from Three Rivers back up to San Fran - have I chosen a good route - are there better ones - there seems to be a lot of driving from Three Rivers to Monterey - any suggestions?

    Thanks very much
    Giles

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Define Child

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    A 25 foot class 'C' RV with a slide out is rated to take two adults and two children. However, I would not call either a 21 year old or a 16 year old a child. That being said, whether you all will be comfortable in this rig depends on whether there is a separate bed space over the cab in addition to the 'master' bed and the typical dinette bed, and how amenable you all are to close quarters for extended periods. There will be very little privacy with this set up.

    Yes, there is a fair amount of driving involved in getting from Lake Isabella to San Francisco while also trying to take in the mountains (Sequoia National Park) and the coast (Monterey), and that's probably more than you'll want to drive in a day (more than 500 miles) while also seeing some of the park and city. But there's nothing intrinsically wrong with the general route, so if it works for you do it.

    AZBuck

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default Lifestyle choice.

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    I think your trip is doable but it would depend on how many places you want to stay at for "a few days", and by a few days do you mean a couple would be enough ?

    We're looking at a C25S RV for 2 adults and two children (21 and 16 yrs old) -will that be big enough?? El Monte seem to have reasonable prices - anything I should be aware of?
    It should be big enough and more nimble to get around in than a 30ft, although with the larger RV you have a full size back bedroom and more storage space. As the kids are grown up you would probably use the bed over cab for one of them [a double] and the Dinette area that converts into a bed for the other.
    When comparing costs make sure you add the extras up such as extra mileage costs, kitchen and bedroom kits, [if required] and Insurance waiver fees. When I have compared costs Cruise America seem to beat El Monte overall but check for special deals.
    We used this family run company who also offer a pick up and drop of service from San Fran. If it is for next year you should be OK but they get booked out well in advance.

    Any tips or advice would be so welcome please.
    If there is anything specific just ask. I will say that the RV lifestyle should be a "lifestyle" choice and not for budgeting reasons, as by the time you have added campground fees and the fact you are only likely to get a 10mpg return it won't end up a lot cheaper [if any] than Motels and a car. Having said that it's the way we love to travel. It's also a great way to spend time in the National parks where lodging is dearer but a campsite will only cost around $20.

    In particular, it's the stretch from Three Rivers back up to San Fran - have I chosen a good route
    If you want to see Sequoia then it's a great route. One caveat though, from Three rivers through Sequoia on the Generals highway is a mountainous route and will be slow going in the RV. It has a recommended 22ft length restriction but it is legal to travel with a vehicle up to 40ft, we done it in a 30ft RV without problems but it does get narrow in places. [see report in above link].

    As you build your trip keep asking questions and we can help you get te best out of it.

  4. Default Which Helicopter Tour of Grand Canyon is the Best

    Hi

    I'm planning a stop at Grand Canyon for a few days and want to book a helicopter tour - there seem to be so many when I Google - can anyone please recommend any.

    Thanks
    Giles
    Last edited by AZBuck; 09-06-2009 at 02:21 PM. Reason: Please keep all questions about this trip in one thread.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default The Real Choice(s)

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    For all the many companies offering helicopter flights to the Grand Canyon, there are really only a few things that you need to be concerned about: where are you starting from, where are you going, and what is the duration of the flight. Typically flights out of Las Vegas will go to the 'west' canyon. This is Indian Reservation land which means that the airspace is not subject to the FAA's special flight rules and the aircraft can fly into and even land in the canyon. On the other hand, this portion of the canyon is not as deep or spectacular as the part that is preserved in the national park. Flights over the national park portion typically depart from Grand Canyon Airport in Tusayan just outside the park's south entrance. These flights are restricted as to how low they can fly, the important point being that they cannot descend below the rim. So with that information in hand, you'll have a better idea of what each operator is offering you, with the remaining variables being the duration of the flight, the number of passengers carried and the 'patter' of the pilot.

    AZBuck
    Last edited by AZBuck; 09-06-2009 at 02:34 PM.

  6. Default Where to be in California on 4th July?

    Hi

    I am planning on being in California in July 2010 and wondered where the best place to be would be for 4th July celebrations - I hear Lake Tahoe is good (firewords) - if so, any recommendations in terms of Campsites for an RV.

    Thanks as ever
    Giles
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 09-08-2009 at 06:49 AM. Reason: Merged Again - If you keep creating new threads about this trip you may lose your ability to post.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default Independence

    Almost every area is going to have some 4th of July celebration, and certainly Lake Tahoe would be one option. You might look at Independence, California as another option.

  8. Default

    Thanks for all the replies and apologies for starting new threads - I'm still learning!

    Cheers
    Giles

  9. Default Looking for a Campsite between Lake Tahoe and Zion

    Planning is going well - we are now booked in at Lake Tahoe for 4th July celebrations.

    I'm now looking for a stop0over between Lake Tahoe and Zion - Southwest Dave - you stopped over at Millers - can you please tell me the campsite name - do I need to book in or just turn up? Or are there any better places to stop a bit further on to split the route in half.

    Thanks as ever
    Giles

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default Millers rest area.

    Hi Giles,
    Millers rest area is just that, a rest area that you can park up at for up to 18 hours, so no campsite name or advanced bookings, but a nice spot.
    This might be a bit early to stop depending on the time you want to leave Tahoe. We continued through Tonopah to Warm springs [deserted town with a hot tub in the middle of nowhere] and then headed South on the 375, otherwise known as the E.T highway. Along this route is the "Little alien Inn" in Rachel that as far as I remember you can park up overnight free of charge or get an electric hook up for about $15. It's basic but to just get your heads down for the night, it is in quite a good spot to split your journey.

    In answer to an earlier question, we took a helicopter flight from Tusayan [Grand canyon airport] with a company called Papillon. We took a 50 min flight across the canyon to the North rim and loved every moment.

    If you are planning on camping in the National parks you will need to book in advance and you can find all the info on every park and campground by clicking on the map at the NPS website. You will probably find that the $80 annual pass is cheaper than paying individual entrance fees and can be purchased at the entrance kiosk of the first park you visit.

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