Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 24
  1. Default LA - Las Vegas- Grand Canyon- San Fransisco- LA + national parks

    2 of us have hired a car and are hoping to take the following route from 4-23 Feb LA - Las Vegas- Grand Canyon- San Fransisco- LA + national parks. We would be greatful for any tips about the most scenic routes, sights off route, relatively cheap accomodation, road and weather conditions, costs for parks etc. Is there accomodation in/near the Grand Canyon or do you have to drive out from Vegas? Can we go rafting at this time of the year? Are some of the passes closed? We have a GPS but should we also buy some good old fashioned maps? We would love to get the most out of our trip and would prefer cheap but comfortable accomodtion and save our money for the sights rather than staying in top hotels with all the facilities. However as we are 2 women we would also like to stay safe.

    We would be grateful for any tips and suggestions.

    Thanks in advance


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Paper maps for sure !

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    First and foremost, YES, buy paper maps and do not blindly follow a GPS route. Not only have they been known to lead people into dangerous situations before now, they will take you by what they consider the fastest route and not the one you might want to take, ie the scenic route. The GPS can also add 60 or 70 miles distance to a trip to take you on Interstate which might only be a few minutes quicker than the scenic route which could also save fuel and would be more enjoyable.

    You can get lodgings within the National parks or in nearby towns and it's not only recommended, it's neccessary as the Grand canyon NP is too far to do as a day trip from Vegas. The Tioga Pass [CA120] into Yosemite will be closed due to winter snow accumulation on the high ground, so if you plan to visit there you will have to enter from the west side which is no big deal.

    If you travel from LV to GC you can then head back towards Bakersfield and up through Fresno towards Yosemite NP, possibly visiting Sequoia NP on route. You could also drive through Death Valley NP first. It's in Yosemite and Sequoia National parks where you are at a greater risk of travel disruption and you would be entering a chain control area where snow chains might be required, so you would have to carry them and be prepared to use them if needed. From Yosemite you could head direct to San Francisco or head towards Napa Valley and enter the City over the Golden Gate bridge before heading south on the coast highway towards LA. A couple of nights could easily be spent between the two, possibly in Monterey and Cambria.

    You can get an idea of Motel costs using the RTA browser to the right of the page but I would get those paper maps out and see what appeals to you and then plan your route. Once you have some dots on the map we can help you join them up.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default A few more national parks

    If you are starting in LA, you may find it more economical distance and time wise, to go direct to the GC, before LV.

    You have 19 days for this trip. So have you thought of perhaps including Monument Valley, Bryce and Zion? You could leave the GC via the eastern entrance, along Desert View Drive, head out towards MV, onto Bryce and Zion, before heading into LV. The road from Zion to LV is quite spectacular in places.

    Staying safe in hotels is not difficult. As a sole female traveller I have never had a problem. Ask to see the room before you commit. They cannot refuse this. Check not only that the room is clean, make sure the smoke detector has not been disabled and check that the room has an internal lock which cannot be opened from the outside, such as the chain lock. In some areas you may find the hotel / motel discount coupon booklets could be of use to you. These booklets are commonly found at rest areas along the interstates, truck stops / travel plazas and welcome centres at State borders.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Totally missed that !

    If you are starting in LA, you may find it more economical distance and time wise, to go direct to the GC, before LV.
    I would 100% agree with this and admit that I focused on the LV to GC and totally missed you were starting out from LA. [doh !] You may want an overnight stop on route, in which case you could also visit Joshua NP and follow sections of old route 66 through Oatman, Kingman and Seligman. It's also possible to get to GC same day by a more direct route.

  5. Default

    Thanks for the good ideas. We have planned the following route as a loose agenda but may need to be flexible if weather conditions don't allow.
    LA - GC village stay overnight ( are there places to stay in the NP or do we need to stay outside) walk into GC and stay overnight at Phantom ranch ( would we ned to book that in advance?) what routes would you suggest as best for going down and comin back up? Is it possible to have a days rafting in GC at this time of year? Then onto Page and Lake Powell and the Glen Canyon dam - Antelope valley ( I heard that you should be there at a certain time ) - Monument valley - Moab/ Arches NP/ Canyonlands NP - Bryce Canyon either 70 or scenic route 22 ( or would this be closed?) - Zion NP - Las Vegas and Hoover dam - not sure here about best route to Yosemite as some of the passes are closed bt would like to see death valley if possible and the Sequioa trees. Then some time spent in San Fransisco and a couple of days down the coast to LA. Is there any whale watching at this timeof the year? Do you think that thisnis doable in 19 days?

  6. Default

    Thanks Dave. Where would the best place to get real maps and would the car hire fim provide us with snow chains? do you guys have winter tyres on the cars?

  7. Default

    ThanksLifey,,,the tip about the discount coupons sounds good

  8. Default

    Dave is Joshua park a must see enroute or would it be better to go straight to GC ?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Automobile Associations.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eily View Post
    Where would the best place to get real maps ...
    You don't say where you are, but AAA is a good place to get maps. If you are a member, they are free. If you are coming from overseas, check to see if your local automobile association has a reciprocal arrangement with AAA, in which case your membership will give you access AAA's tourist information and maps.


  10. Default

    We r coming over from Germany and I have a bunch of maps from the ADAC..but they are not as detailed as some of the road route discussions in this forum. Would we be able to get a more detailed map of the area at a gas station?

Similar Threads

  1. PortlandOR-Utah National Parks-Grand Canyon December 2012
    By mamamia in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 09-07-2012, 11:15 PM
  2. San Fransisco - Grand canyon - Las Vegas
    By horra14 in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 06-06-2011, 01:46 PM
  3. Indy to Grand Canyon, Bryce and Zion National Parks May27th to June6th
    By pbravard in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 02-20-2011, 10:38 PM
  4. San Fransisco to Las Vegas and Grand Canyon
    By mrmick001 in forum Going to Las Vegas!
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 08-06-2007, 09:27 AM
  5. san francisco to grand canyon and other national parks
    By NHnative in forum Spring RoadTrips
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 02-22-2006, 09:08 AM


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name