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  1. Default Portland-Craters of the Moon-Yellowstone-Grand Canyon- San Diego

    We arrive the morning of 6/11 and love Portland, so we'll spend a day in the city. The reservation is set for the Snow Lodge in Yellowstone on 6/15. Finally, we have to be in San Diego for a business meeting on 6/27.

    The travelers: two teens 14 and 16 and two adults.
    What we're looking for: cool and beautiful nature of the west. Weird sights, meeting the locals, local food, festivals, and sights. To sum it up to meet America: things, people, food and places we don't have in the southeast.

    vehicle - Ford explorer 4x4 with Garmin Nuvi system.
    ace in the hole - mega pile of Marriott points to spend on rooms

    So folks, here are the million dollar questions: What routes should we take? What should we see? What can we save for another trip? How do we best spend our time?

    After Yellowstone what is the best route and things to see in route to the Grand Canyon? Stop in Grand Teton? Salt Lake City? After the Grand Canyon what should we see as we travel to San Diego?

    Any comments will be appreciated.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Between Here and There

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    Between Portland and Yellowstone a drive up the Columbia River Gorge is certainly in order, and if your tweens are Twilight fans, they might appreciate lunch at the View Point Inn. Then in Idaho, a couple of my favorite unknown great sites, Bruneau Sand Dunes and Bruneau Canyon. The drive in to Bruneau Canyon deserves some warning. You will be crossing a bombing range for nearby Homestead Air Force Base, and there will be signs warning you to beware of 'objects' falling from airplanes, but the drive is perfectly safe albeit on a dirt road. A little farther down the road is the Thousand Springs Scenic Byway and the Hagerman Fossil Beds.

    Between Yellowstone and San Diego, you'll of course want to leave the Park via the south gate and go through the Grand Tetons as well. You can then follow US-89 down to Salt Lake City. From there, I-15 will take you to San Diego past Zion National Park, Valley of Fire State Park, Mojave National Preserve, Joshua Tree National Park, and Anza-Borrego Desert State Park,


  3. Default


    Thanks so much, this is just the kind of info I need to start filling in this trip.


  4. Default

    Don't forget Bryce on the way to the Grand Canyon, too. It's really worth a stop and unlike anything you'll see in the southeast for sure!

    For weirdness, you can might be able to make a stop at the Salton Sea on the way to San Diego. Not quite sure of the etiquette of outside links on this forum, but National Geographic has a nice piece on the Salton Sea on their site.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Salton Sea

    Only last week I saw a NG documentary about this on local television. Would have to agree, it looks like something unusual, and worth checking out.

    Lifey who put it on her to-do list

  6. Default

    Anthony Bourdain visited the Salton Sea in an episode of his show. If I'm close by I could plan for a short visit. Bourdain's video didn't make it seem like the kind of place you'd want to spend much time at.

  7. Default

    The Salton Sea is definitely off the beaten path. You mentioned being interested in "weird sights" and I think it definitely qualifies there, but I wouldn't advise folks not looking for weirdness to go out of their way for it. I would make time for Joshua Tree, though. It's worth a stop.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    I honestly think you would see all you want to see of the Salton Sea with a "drive-by" on Highway 111 from Mecca to Niland.

  9. Default

    Yes, it's for people who really are interested in the weird underbelly of life. Not a traditional tourist attraction!

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