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Thread: is it to much?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Valby, København, Denmark, Denmark
    Posts
    3

    Default is it to much?

    Hello everyone

    I am a new member of this site, and hope you can help with some good advice and tips
    Me and the wife are planning a Roadtrip, and we do not know if we have chosen a slightly wild ride when we only have 3 weeks, also we have our daughter at 6 months.

    We travel from April 19 to May 9 - 2013

    The trip is well over 3700 miles
    Here are our planned trip, I put a star by them we'd rather not do without

    Los angeles, Ca *
    Santa Barbara, Ca *
    Monterrey, Ca *
    San Francisco, CA (about 4 days) *
    Napa Vally, Ca *
    Redwood National Park *
    Crater Lake, Oregon *
    Reno, Nevada
    Lake Tahoe, Carson City, Ca *
    Yosemite National Park, Ca *
    Bakersfield, Ca
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Zion National Park, Utah *
    Bryce Canyon, Utah *
    Grand Canyon, Arizona *
    Tucson, Arizona *
    San Diego, CA
    Los Angeles, Ca *

    Sorry for spelling mistakes and grammatical errors

    sincerely,

    Jens from Denmark

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default yes and no

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    It is possible to do all the things you've listed, but I think you might have a bit too much for this to be enjoyable.

    Basically, with the exception of 4 days in San Francisco, you would only have time for, at most, one night in every place you've listed. Throw in your drive times, and that means in many cases you would only be looking at a couple hours at each stop. Especially when traveling with a young child, I don't think you'd want a trip where you constantly have to be on the go.

    If it was me, I think I would get rid of Crater Lake and Tucson. They are both the farthest removed from your other destination, Tucson especially so, and Crater Lake's access will still be fairly limited in late April. Since Vegas doesn't seem to be a priority, another option you could consider would be to go first to Yosemite, then across the Sierra's to Lake Tahoe, and then head straight across Nevada to Utah for Bryce and Zion, which should shave some miles off your trip.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Yes, It's Probably Too Much

    Velkommen! Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    That many miles and that many points on the itinerary really does seem to me, at first blush, to be quite a bit, especially if you're going to be traveling with an infant. You would need a minimum of 7 full days (or the equivalent) devoted strictly to driving to cover the miles. That would leave you less than a day at each of the locations you want to get to. And all of that assumes normal mobility, which you won't have as your daughter will require you to make more frequent stops and take time from your sight-seeing. Personally, I would cut out everything north of roughly San Francisco. That would still let you see Yosemite, the southern Utah national parks, Yosemite, Death Valley, Las Vegas and the Arizona and southern California locations. And even that will be pushing it

    AZBuck

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default Less is more.

    I have to agree with what has been said, it's just a bit too much to really enjoy some of the great places you will be visiting, sometimes less is more !

    What I would possibly do is reverse the direction of your whole trip so you will come south down the coast at the end of it, putting the coast and Oceanside viewpoints on your side of the road. I would head from LA on a direct path to the GC [skipping SD and Tuscon] and then Bryce, then go from Zion to Lake Tahoe and then to Yosemite and straight across to San Fran. You could include Napa valley after Yosemite and perhaps visit Muir woods and then drive into SF over the Golden Gate bridge.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Valby, København, Denmark, Denmark
    Posts
    3

    Default

    Thank you for all your replies =)

    We have reconsidered our trip based on your answers
    One thing we appreciate is shopping so it must be time for, and we thought maybe taking a few nights in las vegas anyway .. but how is the trip from Yosemite National Park to Las Vegas?

    Now we have cut some miles off. and we would say it seems more realistic, what do you think?

    Trip we now are planning is

    Los angeles, Ca *
    Santa Barbara, Ca *
    Monterrey, Ca *
    San Francisco, CA (about 4 days) *
    Yosemite National Park, Ca *
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Bryce Canyon, Utah *
    Zion National Park, Utah *
    Grand Canyon, Arizona *
    San Diego, CA
    Los Angeles, Ca *

    I think its important to have oceanside viewpoint on our side of the road, so i think we will reverse the trip =)

    A second question:
    it is possible to see redwood trees near San Francisco?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default

    I'd say that will work much better for you.

    You can easily see redwoods just outside of San Francisco at Muir Woods. Those are coastal redwoods, like you'd find at Redwoods National Park. If you're interested in seeing Giant Sequoias (which are a very different tree, but still also at times called redwoods), there is the Mariposa Grove within Yosemite NP. If Tahoe is no longer part of your plans, you could consider also making a stop at Sequoia National Park, and either way, I would look at adding in Death Valley, since it is so close to your path.

  7. Default It all really depends

    If you do want to add a couple locations back in without adding a ton of miles, I would add back Lake Tahoe, Carson City, and Reno. All of those are actually quite close to one another. It takes just over an hour from South Lake Tahoe to Reno and Carson City (Nevada) is along the way. South Lake Tahoe (especially Eagle Falls) is beautiful. I've been to South Lake Tahoe twice and we visited Carson City and Reno the first time. I think it took us 16 hours nonstop (aside from gas/food/bathroom) driving from Washington State to South Lake Tahoe. Google estimates 13 hours, but I don't remember if we ran into traffic or stopped for food or something. I realize you're talking about a slightly different area but it's not far from Lake Tahoe, Carson City.

    I don't think that it would actually take a full 7 days of driving to reach all your destinations. It took my sister 3 days driving to get from Washington State to Tennessee (2,400 miles), and that was taking interstate 40.

    With a baby, yeah, it might be a bit overwhelming. But overall I don't think it is impossible. To get from Yreka, CA (very north) to Los Angeles, CA it's estimated just under 10 hours drive time. I think a lot of it depends on what route you take, as opposed to just all the cities you want to visit. It also depends how you drive, LOL. People in southern Cali drive crazy. Particularly around San Francisco (I haven't been further south).

    I have been to a number of the places on your list but not all. So I "Google-Mapped" them out for you in a route that would take you in a huge circle but actually decreases the overall miles of your estimation. Also, I went by all the places on your original list.

    Crater Lake to Redwood National Park (approx 3.5 hrs, 174 miles)
    Redwood National Park to Yosemite National Park (approx 8 hrs, 468 miles)
    Yosemite National Park to Napa Valley (approx 3.5 hrs, 166 miles)
    Napa Valley to San Francisco (approx 1 hr, 59 miles)
    San Francisco to Monterey (approx 2 hrs, 118 miles)
    Monterey to Bakersfield (approx 4 hours, 221 miles)
    Bakersfield to Santa Barbara (approx 2.5 hours, 147 miles)
    Santa Barbara to Los Angeles (approx 1.5 hours, 95 miles)
    Los Angeles to San Diego (approx 2 hrs, 121 miles)
    San Diego to Tucson (approx 7 hours, 410 miles)
    Tucscon to Grand Canyon (approx 11.5 hrs, 553 miles)
    Grand Canyon to Bryce Canon (approx 6 hrs, 166 miles)
    Bryce Canyon to Zion National Park (approx 2 hrs, 80 miles)
    Zion National Park to Las Vegas (approx 3 hrs, 170 miles)
    Las Vegas to Reno (approx 7 hrs, 453 miles)
    Reno to Lake Tahoe Carson City, CA (approx 1 hr, 43 miles)

    Total 65.5 hrs drive time, or just under 3 days (of straight, nonstop driving)
    Approx 2,577 miles


    Obviously this isn't taking into account any traffic or other delays but hopefully this gives you a better idea of what you might want to do.

    If you eliminate only Bryce Canyon and Tucson, you'll shave off 14 hours of driving time, and about 413 miles.

    Even with them, it all boils down to how much time you'll want to spend per place. If you really want to squeeze out some extra time, you could make a couple day-trips out of your longer visit to San Francisco, and that would leave you extra time for the others. Or shave a day off your trip to San Fran.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default

    I think you've made a math error, an0nym0us. Adding up all the miles you've listed comes up with a total of 3444, not 2577, and that doesn't include the miles to complete the loop from Tahoe to Crater Lake, which adds roughly another 400 miles. That makes the total distance up to about 3800. (I think you also made an error when calculating the savings of removing Tucson and Bryce, as 413 miles shouldn't equal 14 hours of driving time!)

    3800 miles is very much 7 full days of driving. On a multi-day trip, 500-600 miles is a full day, and that's if you're sticking to the freeways (and much of this trip would be on slow-going 2 lane roads.) Driving 2400 miles in 3 days is something we would strongly recommend against, and google time estimates are always going to be optimistic because they don't include basics like stopping for fuel, restrooms, food, etc. Your experience of a 13 hour estimated trip actually taking about 16 hours is very typical.

    But in any case, the bigger picture involves far more than miles and distances. We've said, you could certainly drive to all those points within the time available for this trip, but driving would take up such a large part of the trip, there would be very little time left to enjoy the sites themselves. Most people don't want to drive every single day of a 3 week trip, especially not when traveling with an infant. That's why the revised plan, with just a couple less stops, looks like a much better option for an enjoyable trip.
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 01-14-2013 at 07:40 AM. Reason: typo

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Valby, København, Denmark, Denmark
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    Default

    Thank you guys

    Our plan should be like this

    19-apr Los angeles
    20-apr Los angeles
    21-apr Los angeles - Grand Canyon (1 night somewhere) 791 km - ca.*7 hours
    22-apr Grand Canyon - Bryce Canyon 462 km – ca. 5 hours
    23-apr Bryce Canyon - Zion national park 129 km – ca. 2 hours
    24-apr Zion national park - Las Vegas 273 km – ca. 3 hours
    25-apr Las Vegas (40 years birthday =p )
    26-apr Las Vegas - Death Valley - Yosemite national park 186 km – ca. 2hours + 548 km – ca. 7 hours
    27-apr Yosemite national park
    28-apr Yosemite national park
    29-apr Yosemite national park - San Francisco 369 km – ca. 4 hours
    30-apr San Francisco
    01-maj San Francisco - Napa (udflugt) 80,2 km – ca. 1 hour
    02-maj San Francisco
    03-maj San Francisco - monterey 190 km – ca. 2 hours
    04-maj Monterey - Solvang - Santa Barbera 336 km – ca. 3 hours + 53,6 km – ca. 1 hour
    05-maj Santa Barbara - Santa Monica 148 km – ca. 2 hours
    06-maj Santa Monica - San Diego
    07-maj Santa Monica - San Diego (kr langs vandet) 18 km - ca.*2 hours
    09-maj San Diego - LAX 202 km - ca. 2 hours

    Again thank you for your input =)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default

    I see two issues I think you'll want to fix.

    The biggest one is your Vegas-Death Valley-Yosemite leg. Tioga Pass, which is the direct route through the park across the Sierra's will still be closed in late April. You'll have to go around via the Bakersfield area. You'll want to stop somewhere along the way, with the Lake Isabella area being one potential spot.

    The other is that I don't think you have enough time planned for the Grand Canyon. Its a pretty full day from LA to the Grand Canyon, and then you've got a pretty long drive again to Bryce Canyon. You could do it, but you'd only have a couple of hours at the Grand canyon. I'd plan to spend 2 nights there.

    Obviously, it would be more efficient to do San Diego at the start of your trip, before the Grand Canyon, rather than going down the coast, through LA, and back down to SD at the end of your trip. However, I'm guessing you're trying to time things to hit Vegas on your birthday.

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