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  1. Default Dallas - Sacramento with kids

    Hi - we are planning to drive from Dallas to Sacramento at the end of July for a family reunion. We will be traveling with our 2 children, both below 13 years. We have mapped out the journey online, which will take us through Amarillo, Alberquque, Flagstaff, Bakersfield and then north to Sacramento.
    - Realistically, how many days should we anticipate the drive will be? We would like to be able to stop at a couple of attractions on the way, but not too many as we do not want to arrive tired or late for our reunion.
    - How many hours and miles should we plan to cover in a day?
    - Are certain routes more scenic than others?
    - Do we need to take any precautions along the way because of the hot summer?
    Thank You!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO



    How many days CAN you take for this? How many hours a day are you willing to be "on the road"? How about the return trip?

    Just to GET there, you are looking at a minimum of 3 days dedicated driving via fastest route, and that's pushing it. We normally recommend no more than 550 miles a day on Interstates, which would be a minimum of 10 hours with minimal stops (bathroom, fuel, eat on the fly).

    If you can give us a realistic time frame, we can recommend routes for both directions with a few recommended stops. Exactly how old are the 2 kids? What type of attractions are you most interested in?

    It definitely gets hotter than Dallas in the southwest deserts, but it's a LOT less humid.

  3. Default

    Hi TKS,

    Oh the memories came flooding back of my childhood when I lived in Texas and would drive every year for 9 years to Los Angeles to visit my Grandparents and then drive back home after a couple of weeks. Every year my brother and I BEGGED our parents to stop at the Grand Canyon but they didn't! :(

    On the first day if you get a really early start you might be able to make it to Albuquerque from Dallas which is approx 650 miles. This might be to much so you might want to stop in Tucumcari at 475 miles. Just east of Amarillo is Cadillac Ranch which might make a good stretch of the legs.

    Day two will have you passing Albuquerque, NM and on the east side of town is the Petroglyphs National Monument for a short hike.

    If you only make it to Tucumcari, NM the first day, then you will probably only make it to Holbrook, AZ the second day approx 410 miles. Add a detour to see Painted Desert and Petrifed Forest National Parks. It will add about 30 miles to your trip. Exit at the Painted Desert, take the scenic park road south stopping at a couple exhibits and then take Hwy 180 to Holbrook, AZ.

    If you make it to Albuquerque the first day you might be able to make it to Flagstaff the second day. Approx 320 miles. Add 30 for the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest. (another stop my brother and I begged to go to but parents never stopped!)

    Day 3 Would be a good time to swing up and visit the Grand Canyon National Park. From Holbrook to Flagstaff up Hwy 89 to Hwy 64 to enter at Desert View entrance station to the Grand Canyon and back down to Williams, AZ is approx 250 miles which will give you time to see the Grand Canyon. If you made it to Flagstaff, then you are looking at only 165 miles and more time to see the Canyon.

    Day 4 Williams to Bakersfield, CA is approx 450 miles. Kingman, AZ is big on the Old Historic Route 66. You will find a lot of the Old Route 66 on I-40 to Kingman. If you find you want to spend the time. The Old Route 66 between Kingman to Oatman, AZ and on to Topock, AZ is a great section of what the old route 66 use to be like. It will be slower than driving on I-40.

    Day 5 will have you in Sacramento, CA approx 280 miles.

    If you are going and coming the same route, you might be able to do some things coming and others going back home.

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