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  1. Default Fargo, ND to CA and back!

    My roommates and I are looking to take a roadtrip from Fargo, ND to San Francisco, then down the coast to San Diego, and back to Fargo. It would be in mid-May when we get off school! The route we have picked out right now looks like this:

    Black Hills, SD
    Salt Lake City
    San Fran
    Other CA places (I'll probably ask about those later!)
    San Diego
    Cedar Rapids (one of the girls lives here)
    Minneapolis (the rest of us live around here)

    What I'm wondering is if anyone has any insight into these decisions:
    Reno- Only one of us will be 21. Our route takes us literally right through it, but is there anywhere else around Reno that would be more fun for U21ers? Like, say, Carson City?
    Vegas- Once again, the same problem arises, only one of us will be 21. We were thinking about going through Phoenix and then the Grand Canyon instead. Is Phoenix the place to be or are there other cities in Arizona that would be more worth our time? Or should we just stick with Vegas and skip Arizona completely?
    Cheyenne- Is it worth going out of our way to see Cheyenne, WY? I've heard from a few people that it's kind of a cool, quirky city and that we might be able to find a few cool things there. Worth it or leave it out?
    Death Valley- We kind of discussed wanting to see Death Valley. Will we see it if we decide to go to Phoenix instead of Vegas? Is it worth it?

    Thanks in advance for any insight you can provide!!!

  2. Default

    Being under 21 is not a problem!! There is life before 21.

    You can enjoy the trip no matter where you go. There is so much to see and do, depending upon your interests -- new adventures - have you gone white water rafting? or surfing? or hiked on a snow capped mountain peak, or explored cliff dwellings? or... You concentrate on cities. I would suggest that you also consider the many national parks that are outstanding -- Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Arches, Bryce Canyon, Zion, etc. In June, Death Valley will be unbearably HOT. And along the CA coastline there are the missions, Hearst Castle, etc and numerous beaches.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Have you your own vehicle and how long have you got ?

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    Being under 21 isn't a problem if you have your own vehicle,[s] or the one 21 year old is doing all the driving and then there would be young driver fees on top of the rental cost to consider. I've not been to Reno, but I think you will find Vegas a blast without being able to go in casinos and bars and would expect Reno to offer a 'buzz'.

    As mentioned above, there is so much more than the City life to explore and you will find a lot of info digging around the RTA site. How long have you got planned for this trip ?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default The Biggest Little City

    Reno boasts to be the Biggest Little City in the US. It has much more to offer than just casinos. And the drive from Reno to LV via Death Valley is well worth it. DV will be hot, but even if you do not do any of the hikes, it would be a pity not to drive through it. It is a landscape you will not see anywhere else.

    If your route goes right through Reno, I am assuming you will be on I-80. We do not yet know how long you have for this trip, but if time allows, you could consider (after Denver) take I-70 - has to be the most scenic interstate in North America - and US50 - The Loneliest Road in America - to Reno. These will give you an unbelievable overview of the mountain and desert country.

    Even if SLC is a must on your schedule, I would suggest I-70 to I-15 to SLC.


  5. Default we will be driving our own car and we'll have probably about 10 days

    for everyone saying it's not about the cities we visit- what are some places on our route that are nice for stopping? we're all student-athletes and pretty into exercising and would probably love a good hike/run every couple hours!

    from san diego, we'd like to see Death Valley and the Grand Canyon. what kinds of places are there in those areas?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    If you only have 10 days, you will have to scale this trip way back. Just to go point-to-point to the cities you listed in your first post is 5000 miles. You aren't going to be able to average 500 miles a day every day and see anything but scenery out the windshield and the inside of hotel rooms.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default There is the problem.

    By the time you add small detours to your trip to visit attractions your trip is going to be around 5000 miles in distance, or basically 9 hours of every one of your ten days in the car with only time for short stops for food and bathroom breaks and to fill with gas. Unless you can find more time you need to cut back quite a bit or all you will see will be through the windshield. As an example, to spend a day in SF and SD and to drive the scenic coastal highway would take 4-5 days minimum to make all those extra miles count for anything at all.

    To make your trip more comfortable I would be looking at going from SLC to Vegas and then turn around and head to the Grand canyon and cut out going right over to Reno and the coast. Even that would be pushing it somewhat, but would be doable. Around the Black hills are Custer State park, Mt Rusmore, Wind cave NP. On route to Vegas just off I 15 you will find the natural gem that is Zion NP. From Vegas you could stop at Hoover dam and detour onto part of original route 66 at Kingman through Seligman. After GC head up through Monument valley to Moab UT [home to Arches and Canyonlands NP's] to I70. Near to I70 is the rim drive around Colorado National Monument and at Dillon you could take a detour onto US6 at Dillon and cross the continental divide at almost 12000ft over the spectacular Loveland pass. Rocky mountain NP is a relatively short journey north of I70 and there are some great hiking opportunities around Bear lake.

    These are just a few of thousands of options and you will have to pick and choose carefully. You will find Lot's of info digging around the forums and checking out the planning pages above. For instance the Map centre will help you create routes and then you can find attractions along them.

    Bottom line, find a lot more time or cut back.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default What's the purpose?

    You will by now be quite clear that what you proposed to do in the time available, simply is not feasible. But my question is....

    What is the purpose of this trip? What are you aiming to achieve?

    You and your friends need to think about this carefully, and each come to their own conclusion. Then, when you put all the information into the mix, you may find that you are able to come up with a trip which achieves your combined purpose. Once you are all clear on that, it will not be too difficult to design a trip within your time (and budget) constraints.

    But simply to set off on a trip to hit a list of cities without any goal in mind (other than seeing those places) is not going to satisfy, and I doubt that it will work.

    Keep in mind that not everything needs to be achieved by the time you reach 25. You have a whole lifetime ahead of you. Make sure you enjoy life's journey!


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