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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
    Posts
    32

    Default Denver to Grand Canyon to NJ

    Hi,

    This is my first post to the forum. I've been reading up a bit and there's some great info on here.

    I'm planning on driving to Denver from NJ at the end of April. From Denver I'd like to head to the Grand Canyon and was wondering what the best route would be. I would like to take in some other National Parks along the way. Once at the Grand Canyon, I'm thinking about heading down to Sedona and east on I40 back to NJ. I have about 10 days once I leave Denver. Do you guys have any recommendations? Maybe heading to Sedona will make things kind of tight time-wise. I'm planning on just winging it for the most part. I would like to check out Monument Valley and the Painted Desert as well.

    Thanks!

    J

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

    Default Time Enough

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    Denver to the Grand Canyon to "New Jersey" is around 3,000 miles more or less, depending where your final destination is. With no stops, that would take about 5-6 days of workmanlike driving. so you do have a fair amount of time to sprinkle among parks and detours during your trip.

    For your purposes, perhaps the best route from Denver to the Canyon would be basically I-70 west to US-191 south. You could see Rocky Mountain National Park while you're in Denver and then Colorado National Monument, Arches National Park, and Monument Valley during the drive to the Canyon. A worthwhile little detour from that route would be to go to Goosenecks State Park just north of Mexican Hat, NM via NM-261/NM-316.

    After the Canyon, Sedona (and Jerome and Tuzigoot National Monument as long as you're in the area) is certainly possible. Be sure to take AZ-89A down through Oak Creek Canyon from Flagstaff to get there. The 'downside' to this is that it will take a day to really enjoy and there is no really good way to get from this area to I-40 but to backtrack up AZ-89A or use I-17. Then, as you start your drive home, check out Walnut Canyon National Monument, and of course Petrified Forest National Park (Painted Desert).

    Note that if you plan to visit 5 or more National Parks with entry fees, the National Parks 'America the Beautiful' pass program is a great deal. You can buy one at the first park you come to so that the one-year clock on the pass starts as late as possible.

    AZBuck

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
    Posts
    32

    Default

    Thanks AZBuck! I love your suggestions. It looks like a nice ride. I've driven through Oak Creek Canyon before and it's beautiful. Do you know if there is a good spot to stop for the night between Denver and the Grand Canyon. It looks like a 12 hour trip on the map and I think I can break that up and still keep on schedule. I'm wondering if it's worth a stop to Glenwood Hot Springs. The plan you laid out looks like it hits just the right amount of National Parks and gives me time to enjoy them. I wanted to hit Bryce Canyon but it's so out of the way. Maybe on my next road trip. Also, would I take 191 to 160 to the Canyon? 160 looks pretty desolate.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default Moab ?

    I think Glenwood springs is a little to early for just one overnight stop [lunch perhaps] and I would look at overnighting in Moab and visit Arches NP. To get to Moab come off I 70 early and take US 6/UT 281 through Castle valley to Moab, it's a spectacular little drive as it follows the river through the canyon to 191. After here take 191 to 163 to 160 as it will take you past Monument valley which is a worthwhile stop, even though it is not a NP and you will have to pay an entrance fee.

    Once you hit 89 South the last place for lodgings before Grand canyon is Cameron trading post which has a cool store and good grub as well. From Cameron take 64 along Desert view drive into Grand canyon which is the East entrance. Lot's of great viewpoints all the way to the village area but stop at the first, the Watchtower near the entrance where you get wide open views of the Colorado as it starts to make it's way through the canyon.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
    Posts
    32

    Default Tuba City

    SWDave - did you mean 128? I didn't see a 281 on the Google map. Is Tuba City worth a stop?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default Oooops !

    SWDave - did you mean 128?
    Apologies, Yes I did, it's been a long day ! Lol

    As for Tuba city I am not sure, I have driven right through there but not stopped, there is just so much to see and do in the area. Somebody might come along with a personal experience but have a google.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
    Posts
    32

    Default Grand Canyon Lodging

    Thanks Dave!

    Have you ever stayed at the GC? Can you recommend lodging?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default Yes and no.

    I have, and what a wonderful experience !

    The bad news is that I travel by RV in the States and use campgrounds but you will find all the lodging options at the South rim here.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    Tuba City is basically just a wide spot in the road, it and Moenkopi are reservation towns with no tourist attractions that I'm aware of. Yes, 160 between Kayenta and US-89 is pretty desolate but fast, it's good 2 lane with a 65 mph speed limit.

    In the interest of accuracy, Goosenecks and 261/316 are in UT, not NM.

    As far as lodging at the GC goes, the link gives you all the options. You will be hard pressed to find anything in Tusayan for less than $100 a night. That's about what the Cameron Trading Post costs too.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
    Posts
    32

    Default Mapping Software/Website

    Thanks GLC!

    I'm using Google and Yahoo maps online. I also have a DeLorme at home. Do you guys recommend anything else for good road trip planing? I'm driving from NJ to Denver and trying to break up the trip a bit to maybe take 3 days to get there.

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