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  1. Default Las vegas - Albuquerque March 2012

    Evening All

    After some information about our forthcoming trip, Fly into vegas on the 21st march 2012, staying 4 nights, then planning on driving to Williams via Hoover dam, staying one night in Williams, following day take the train to the grand canyon, full day in GC and had planned to stay the night in Flagstaff.

    This will take us to the 27th March, we have a flight booked from Albuquerque to Miami on the 30th thus giving us 3 nights to explore the surrounding area, our main concern is weather conditions but would love to do some kind of circular route taking in Monument valley.

    Any recommendations, tips, maps, driving time etc would be very much appreciated

    Regards Andy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Some 'pointers'.

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !!

    If you are stopping in Williams for the night you will have time to take a stop at Hoover dam and you could detour from I40 and head from Kingman through Seligman on part of the original route 66, where yoo will find some wierd and wonderful memorabilia shops etc. You could take the train into GC or just drive yourselves in. If you were to drive you could continue out of the east entrance to Cameron for the night. This route would take you along 'Desert view drive', with it's many viewpoints of the GC and without the need to back track. It would set you up for a nice easy drive to Monument valley. However, if you head for Flagstaff you could visit Walnut canyon and/or Sunset crater.

    It would be possible to drive from MV to Albuquerque in a day, so again you have further options. Four corners NM for the touristy 'one hand and foot in each of the four states at the same time', which is the only place this can be done. [AZ,UT,CO and NM] Near to Cortez is Mesa Verde NP and a little further along the road is Durango and the famous rail ride to the mountain town of Silverton. You could head further east still, before heading south, to Pagosa Springs and soak in the natural hot springs as a treat.

    A lot will depend on the pace you want to travel and what appeals to you so do a little research around the forums using the search box and by scrolling down the page where you will find 'Similar threads'. You need a good paper map to travel with and to get a feel of the area when planning, but you will find the RTA mapping programs in the green tool bar above very useful. You can search for attractions and create routes and 'play around' with your options. Once you start to fill in the blanks we can help to 'fine tune' your trip.

    Enjoy the planning !

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default And a little further along.

    Adding to what Southwest Dave has posted, after Durango, with that lovely train, and Pagosa with the hot springs, my goodness they are hot! you could continue on along scenic route 160, over Wolf Creek Pass. Pass through Alimosa and some 18 miles further on take 150 into Great Sand Dunes NP, one of the lesser visited, but none the less a great NP.

    At Fort Garland take 159 south to Albuquerque, through San Luis where there is a magnificent life size Way of the Cross going all the way up the hill to the chapel at the top; through Taos, and the bridge over the Rio Grand; Sante Fe, with its many attractions, including the Basilica and the Miraculous Staircase; and then onto Albuquerque.

    But you won't want to do all that, on one day.


  4. Default

    Thanks guys for the quick response,some interesting points there which we will take into consideration, from your own experiences how do you think we will fare weather wise once we reach Williams/Grand canyon/Cameron/MV etc.

    Just a quick question regarding hire car, a couple of years ago we did Vegas/Death Valley/Lone Pine/ Lake Tahoe and had a very nice chrysler, would that be suitable for the roads we will encounter on this trip

    regards again Andy

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default certainly

    Any standard sedan will work just fine for your trip. There's no place where you'll need to go off the pavement, and even if there was, you can't take any rental, including 4 wheel drive rentals, off-road.

    The only word of warning is that you can't be assured of getting the exact same model of car as last time. Rental companies book by class, using the words "or similar" when it comes to the models they use as an example.

  6. Default

    Thanks for that micheal, do you have any experience of this area around end of march as to the weather conditions, we originally had planned Bryce/Zion and the North rim but believe most of it will be inaccsesible.

    regards andy

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Bryce and Zion are both open and accessible year round. They can and do see some snow, although by the end of March, it would be a fairly rare. Average high temps should be in the 50's (F), with lows a little below freezing.

    The north rim does close for the winter, and does not reopen until mid-may.

  8. Default

    Thanks again, think we have decided on the first 2 nights after leaving vegas which are as follows. (any advice on accomodation, resteraunts from personal experience would be much appreciated)

    Day 1, Leaving Las Vegas 7am en route to Williams, taking in the Hoover dam and old route 66 through kingman/seligman etc, overnight in Williams

    Day 2 Early Start to drive up to South Rim GC, full day up there and hope to catch the sunset followed by overnight stay in Cameron.

    Would appreciate any feedback inc estimated driving times for both days.

    Time to start planning day 3 and 4 :-)

    regards andy

  9. Default

    Also wondered after looking at the maps section what would be the best paper map to purchase for the Williams/GC/MV/ Route please.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default piecemeal

    Honestly, its kind of hard to give good advice on a piece by piece basis. The best choice for day 1 and 2 will likely decide on what you do with days 3 and 4, etc. It would likely be best if you sketched out a rundown of an itinerary, and then make changes and adjustments from there.

    Having said that, both of your first two days look good. Williams has lots of motel options, and you can certainly compare your options in the Reservations section of RTA. I believe Cameron really only has the Trading Post as the one and only option.

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