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  1. Default Las Vegas to San Fran in Feb

    Hi Midwest Michael and other experts,
    First of all - thanks a lot for this very valuable and insightful site!
    I need to drive my car from Vegas back to San Fran next week in 3 days.
    Despite this is a necessity, I would like to get most out of the trip and if possible do sightseeing in Death Valley and Yosemite (Valley).

    Do you have recommendations given current weather conditions - I don't want to take too much risk as I have a toddler in the car and really need to do this in 3 days.

    Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Time Enough

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    I'm a bit confused by whether you are going to start the drive in three days (on Monday?) or have thee days in which to do it. But, be that as it may. The drive from Las Vegas to San Francisco via Las Vegas is a bit problematical in February because CA-120 through Tioga Pass and Yosemite Park is closed for the winter and that would be the preferred route. So you're going to need about a day and a half to two days just to make the drive as it is. then you'll need additional time for food stops, fuel, potty breaks, and to give the toddler some time to do what (s)he does best: toddle. So two days minimum in reality, three days would be quite comfortable.

    My main suggestions would be these. February is a great time to see Death Valley since the temperatures will be relatively mild and there are a number of short nature trail hikes that you child could walk or enjoy in a stroller - check at the entrance station. But even at the current 'low' temperatures of around 70º for daytime highs be sure to bring and use lots of sunscreen, wide brimmed bonnets, etc.

    Your route will have to skirt the Sierra Nevada to the south, so after Death Valley you'd continue west on CA-190 to US-395 south, then CA-14/CA-58 through Bakersfield to CA-99 north through the Central Valley to Fresno, then CA-41 to Yosemite. As you drive along be prepared to stop every couple of hours to get some exercise and play time. This needn't be excessive, a town park with a playground, sandbox or whatever will do quite nicely. But that does mean that you should be getting off the main road occasionally and driving into small towns and looking for such things. Roughly those stops would be Inyokern (your first real option after Death Valley), Bakersfield, Fresno (maybe Millerton Lake State Rec Area north of town), etc. You get the idea. Some of these will obviously double as food breaks.

    If you are going to have any weather related problems, they will most likely occur on the roads into or out of Yosemite, so just be ready to give up on that and turn around if it looks bad. And just as Death Valley required protection against the sun and heat, Yosemite will require protection from the cold and snow. You'll need a bit of everything in your ditty bag for this trip. but you will find it enjoyable if you just take your time.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 02-10-2012 at 02:33 PM.

  3. Default

    AZBuck, brilliant! Thx so much, exactly the advise I needed

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