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  1. Default Newbie here seeking advice--month long road trip out west

    Just found this forum and I'm excited to get some feedback on our plans. We're hoping to take a road trip this spring (2 adults, 2 kids) using Denver as our hub to travel in and out of. We'll be coming from the Northeast on either train or plane to Denver and renting a car for a month. Here's a rough itinerary I came up with. Any thoughts/comments/advice of any kind is appreciated!

    Day 1 Arrive; explore Denver and areas south; hotel
    Day 2 Drive to Santa Fe, stay with friends
    Day 5 Head to Sedona; hotel
    Day 6 Explore Sedona; drive to Grand Canyon; hotel
    Day 7 Explore Grand Canyon (may add a day here); hotel
    Day 8 Head to Zion; hotel
    Day 9 Explore Zion; drive to Bryce; hotel
    Day 10 Explore Bryce; drive to Capitol Reef/Grand Staircase; hotel
    Day 11 Explore Capitol Reef; drive to Moab; hotel
    Day 12 Explore Moab; hotel
    Day 14 Drive to Mesa Verde, CO; hotel
    Day 16 Drive to Salt Lake City; hotel
    Day 17 Drive to Yellowstone; hotel
    Day 20 Drive to Cody, WY; hotel
    Day 22 Drive to Black Hills/Custer State Park; hotel
    Day 25 Drive to Badlands; hotel
    Day 29 Depart Denver

    I have some extra days at the end so we can be a bit flexible as we're traveling. I think we'll definitely add a day at Grand Canyon; not sure where else yet.

    Also, some additional questions:

    --Any advice on figuring out a budget for this? I'm trying to make sure I don't forget anything. Transportation looks about $2500 between rental car, gas & plane or train fare; I'm thinking $100 a night average for hotels; food has me stumped. Would like to buy a cooler to use to cover breakfast and lunch, and/or eat at hotels with breakfasts. Dinner will be out, or cook in if we have a kitchenette type set up in our hotel.
    --I have a list of what I'd like to see/do, but it's long so I don't want to type it all out. If there's something off the beaten track, or some undiscovered gem I'll be near, please let me know! Conversely, if there's
    --Any reasonably priced hotels and/or restaurants that we'll be near would be appreciated too.

    Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,271

    Default

    Welcome!

    What are the proposed dates? Yellowstone is essentially still in winter mode well into May, with very few roads and facilities open.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,749

    Default Thoughts.

    I think an extra 2 or 3 days in the middle of your trip would be useful, it's fine on paper but you are going to feel a bit rushed and deprived of time from GC through Southern Utah. It would also free up some time if you were to choose between Mesa Verde and Sedona, although both are worthy of a visit. I would consider heading from Santa Fe to Mesa Verde and then to the GC via Monument Valley and skipping Sedona purely on time issues.

    If you are travelling early and Yellowstone is an issue as suggested by glc then there are many other great sites to consider visting along the rest of your route.

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by glc View Post
    Welcome!

    What are the proposed dates? Yellowstone is essentially still in winter mode well into May, with very few roads and facilities open.
    Hi. We'd probably be hitting Yellowstone the 2nd week of June.

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Southwest Dave View Post
    I think an extra 2 or 3 days in the middle of your trip would be useful, it's fine on paper but you are going to feel a bit rushed and deprived of time from GC through Southern Utah. It would also free up some time if you were to choose between Mesa Verde and Sedona, although both are worthy of a visit. I would consider heading from Santa Fe to Mesa Verde and then to the GC via Monument Valley and skipping Sedona purely on time issues.

    If you are travelling early and Yellowstone is an issue as suggested by glc then there are many other great sites to consider visting along the rest of your route.
    Thank you...that makes sense (going thru Mesa Verde first and skipping Sedona). It will give us more time in the places that will require it.

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