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  1. Default Route from Wisconsin to Arizona - Summer 2012

    We will be driving MH from AZ to Wis summer of 2012. The trip there will be direct, but on the return trip we want to take our time and see some places we have not been. Would like to show the kids Mt Rushmore, Yellowstone, any other suggestions? Preferred route? Preferred stops along the way? We will have our 4 youngest with us, 11, 9, 6, and 3. We will take about a week or so on way back, so not an extended amount of time to zig zag. Highlights would be great. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Welcome!

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America Forum!

    I'm estimating this route to be about 2700 miles of driving, or a bit under 400 miles per day. That's going from central Arizona, north to Yellowstone, then east to Mount Rushmore and along the Interstates back to Wisconsin.

    Along the general route are Zion, Bryce Canyon, and Devils Tower National Monument, as well as Salt Lake City and the Missouri River.

    Tell us a bit more about yourselves - what are the types of things that interest you and your family? Is this your first venture out in a motorhome, or are you seasoned veterans? Are there any things that you prefer to avoid (besides traffic)?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    A week really isn't very much time to really add anything to the stops you've already listed. The detour to Yellowstone means you're looking at a full 5 days of driving to get back. Yellowstone is a huge place where even 2 days is barely enough time to scratch the surface.

    Of course there are a ton of places you could see, in addition to what Tim mentioned, the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, Arches, Grand Tetons, the Badlands are all among the possibilities (and there's tons more), but with just a week, you won't have a whole lot of time. You might consider simply focusing your time on the 4 corners states instead, which would save you a couple of days worth of driving, and give you much more time to see, explore, and let the kids have fun. Yellowstone and the Black Hills are both fantastic places, but you could be better served by saving them for a trip when you'd have more time to explore them.

  4. Default Phx to Milw, then Milw to Phx (scenic: Mt Rushmore, Yellowstone, etc)

    We are planning a family trip, going direct from Phoenix to Milwaukee, via quickest route (1818 miles - NM, Tx, OK) then more scenic route on return trip and going to Mt Rushmore, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Grand Canyon. Any input on favorite stops along either route, and suggestions would be great. We have large family, including 4 young children between 10 and 2.

    Mod note] Please do not create multiple threads for the same trip and ask the same question elsewhere. You have already had responses that you have not replied to./
    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 01-12-2012 at 10:01 AM. Reason: Merged threads.

  5. Default

    Just learning how to find my previous posts! Sorry for duplicate. Yes, we understand that a week return trip does not leave us with alot of time at any one stop. We can extend for a couple days, but thinking it might be best to make Yellowstone and Grand Teton a trip on its own, and concentrate on Badlands, Mt Rushmore, then down to AZ and Grand Canyon, Etc.

    We are experienced weekend trippers, who have trailored for a number of years. We upgraded to a Class C, so this will be our first extensive trip, back to Midwest to see family, etc.

  6. Default

    Thanks for input. We will be doing this route on return trip, trip to Wis will be via most direct route. We are experienced travel trailer - weekend and week long trips, but have upgraded to a Class C. This will be our first extensive trip across the country. Avoid - large metro areas and traffic, and big on interstates rather than smaller passes in mountain areas.

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

    Default Get the Kid's involved.

    Just learning how to find my previous posts! Sorry for duplicate.
    No problem, we just like to keep to a 'One thread for one trip' policy, it's easier for everyone to follow. You can click on the 'Thread tools' at the top and select 'Subscribe' and you will get notices when anyone responds. If you click on your user name you can find 'Started threads' also.

    We can extend for a couple days, but thinking it might be best to make Yellowstone and Grand Teton a trip on its own, and concentrate on Badlands, Mt Rushmore, then down to AZ and Grand Canyon, Etc.
    That's certainly a possibility, but I think what Michael was referring to above was to make a seperate trip another day for the more Northerly section and perhaps concentrate on the Four corners region, to save miles with your limited time. Perhaps through RMNP in Colorado to Southern Utah and Arches/Canyonlands NP's and maybe down through Monument Valley to GC. Although with an extra couple of days on the way back, you could incorporate all the above and head to Badlands and Mt Rushmore as well. In a class 'C' that would equate to about 5 days of driving for 8 hours or so per day, with a bit of time out the vehicle to stretch the legs and let the Kid's let off steam, get some food and fill with gas etc. It's at what pace you and the Kid's are comfortable with, but it's always nice to have a day or 2 off from driving 'here' and 'there' to enjoy the surroundings and unwind.

    With that in mind I would also allow a minimum of 4 days for the 'direct' outward journey. Have a good look around the forums and road trip planning pages with a good map to hand and see what you come up with.

    Once you have some dots on the map for sure, we can help 'Fine tune' the detail. Let the Kid's join in the planning and get them excited about it. If they have a vested interest in the trip, it will be more fun for the whole family !

  8. Default

    Great advise.
    We have sat down and mapped the first part of the trip, from Phoenix to Madison WI. We tentatively plan to stay first night in Albuqurque, NM, Second night in Joplin, MO and third night in southern Wis. Any further advise on that leg would be appreciated. Might want to add another day in so kids dont get worn out? Kids are excited, but two oldest will not be with us, and two middle will be flying earlier to see grandparents, but will be travelling back with us. So drive to Wis we will have 3 year old and 6 year old only.

    Return: (kids 15, 11, 9, 6, 3)
    First night - Sioux Falls SD (jellystone), second and third nights - Hill City SD (Rafter J), F Fourth night - Rawlins Wy (Rawlins KOA) Fifth night - Canyonlands - Moab UT. 6th and 7th nights Williams AZ (Grand Canyon Railway RV - take train trip into Grand Canyon). 8th day - drive to Phx. We will spend some time in Badlands and Mt Rushmore, then Canyonlands and then Grand Canyon. Any further advise?

    We will do a separate trip - different time to yellowstone.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Albu to Joplin ??

    Albuquerque to Joplin is far too much in one leg, especially with the young ones. That would equate to almost 15 hours on the road with the appropriate rest stops. You could get further on day 1, say Santa Rosa area maybe, but even then you should only expect to be in the Tulsa OK area for night 2. You would then be looking at Springfield/ Bloomington IL for the next night before finishing the journey. That's if you wanted to go through Joplin etc as per your route for a particular reason. From Santa Rosa you could head through Kansas which is slightly quicker according to my mapping. Stops from Santa R would be around Emporia KS and Dubuque IA.

    Coming home looks quite reasonable. Moab [Canyonlands/Arches] looks a little time crunched when you consider travel time to get there and then the time to get to GC/Williams. An extra night here would of been beneficial IMO.

    I can undestand the attraction of the Grand canyon train [although I bet that will be expensive for all] but I would consider booking a night in Mather campground in the GC NP.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    I am intimately familiar with your proposed route - I live in Joplin and travel to both the west coast and Chicago frequently. The only leg even remotely doable in one day is the one from Phoenix to Albuquerque (465 miles), especially in a RV with 2 young children. ABQ to Joplin (765 miles) and Joplin to Madison (645 miles) aren't even what I'd try to do in a car in one day unless I had a time-critical emergency.

    I would plan on 4 days - with overnights in ABQ, somewhere between Amarillo and OKC, and around Rolla MO. This gives you approximately 450 mile legs. If everyone is feeling okay, you could stretch the second day to OKC and the 3rd day to STL. If you do that, I'd advise you get through the city before stopping so you won't be directly fighting inbound rush hour traffic in the morning.

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