Long time lurker, first time poster. My wife and I have October 6-14 off work, I have a truck, and her co-worker is letting us use her nice travel trailer. We want to take our dog with us, so it's time for a road trip. We're thinking of driving from SD to Crater Lake as direct as possible and then coming back via the coast.
The plan as of now is to leave on Friday afternoon and head straight from SD to Crater Lake (by I-5), stop somewhere along the way Friday night, spend Saturday driving to CL, then set up camp and spend a day there. After that, hit the road south following the coast as much as possible. We'll probably hit Redwood NF, Avenue of the Giants, and then stop somewhere near SF (Half Moon Bay?) so we can visit with some friends in the area. After that, take Hwy 1 down and hit Carmel/Monterey, Big Sur, Hearst Castle, maybe Pismo, Santa Barbara, then straight through LA and back home.
This would give us a week to get from CL back to SD. Ideally I'd like to be able to drive a few hours, set up camp, explore the area for the day, then head out the next morning to do the same thing in the next place. I realize that towing a trailer will be slow going, especially on 1, and having our dog with us will limit where we can go (although she's an indoor dog so she can stay in the trailer all day provided it's not hot), so I'm a little worried that this plan is a bit ambitious. I genuinely enjoy driving (3 years ago we drove from SD to Chicago via a bunch of national parks and then back by Route 66), so I'm not too worried about that, but I want to make sure we have decent time to check out the areas we will be staying. Is this doable, or are we stretching ourselves thin?