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  1. Default 1st time in America ! Las Vegas - San Francisco - One Way


    This is going to be our 1st time in US, so we´re very excited. We want to see and discover everything, but unfortunnely we dont have time and money. Our trip will be between 13 and 26 of October. What we intend to do is, arrive on 13th at Las Vegas and stay ´till 16th when we will rent a car for 10 days ( i am not familiarized with galons and miles ... any imput about wich car i should rent without a crazy consume of Gas and a nice cheap rentacar will be very apreciatted ).
    16Th October we will drive to GC ( via Hoover ... ) ... don´t know how many days we will need to see GC, Zion, Bryce ( maybe we can skip one of them if u think our time is not enough ).
    After, the idea is to go to Death Valley ( Moja Preserve ), Yosemite ( Sequoia ), Big Sur and San Francisco ( could change for Los Angeles, if i could get more time ).
    What we need is expecially info about the route ( 10 days will enough ? not to exausting, and to much drive ? ). Of course any stops, or night places ( sleeping ) or wahatever ... Please, feel free to add, or sugest whatever you want. Thank You

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    You didn't say exactly who the "We" is that is doing this trip (couple, family, multiple adults, etc) but as long as you're a group of 4 or less, your best value in a rental car is going to be a regular sedan. Something in a mid-size to full-size will likely be the most comfortable.

    10 days should be workable. I'd see something like this:
    16th Vegas - Hoover Dam - GC, spending the afternoon and overnight at GC.
    17th - morning at GC the drive towards Bryce, stopping at Page or Kanab.
    18th - Bryce
    19th - Zion
    20th - Death Valley
    21st - Drive to Yosemite, stay in the park
    22nd - Yosemite
    23rd - drive towards coast near Cambria
    24th - head up coast through Big Sur to Monterey
    25th - SF

    That still leaves you with a little time to play with to play with, and there are some areas where you could tweek to give yourself more or less time at any one location, but that's an outline that shows your plan is certainly possible.

  3. Default

    Thank You Midwest Michael, after my post and after some more research i change plans ... tell me what you think, please.

    13 - Oct. arrive ( evenning ) SF
    14 - SF
    15 - SF
    16 - SF - Big Sur ( haven´t decide yet where to stay ... )
    17 - Yosemite
    18 - Yosemite
    19 - Tioga Pass on my way to Death Valley
    20 - LV
    21 to 24 - GC and/or Bryce Canyon and or Zion ... or whatever we want to do ! No need to rush and want to see alot, and not enjoying time in the places.
    25 ( evening ) - LV
    26 - Flight Home

    So, what you think about this? Can you give me some "secret" about the route!? Restaurants / Motels / Hotels / Others places in this route or whatever you think that will add something to our trip will be very aprreciated. Ah ! Any cool ghost town in this route ?

    thank you and all the best

    P.S - I f anybody else have time to share some ideas, and to gimme some input, would be very good. Thank You.

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

    Default Looks pretty good !

    It's a nice plan you have coming together full of amazing, interesting and diverse attractions. Im sure you will LOVE IT !

    If you are heading to Big Sur you may as well carry on down the coast as far as Cambria for the night and then head via CA46 through Paso Robles to 101 and CA41 through Fresno. Expect it to be a bit over a 4 hours to the south entrance of Yosemite and 5 hours to the Valley. You can't beat lodging within the park but it comes at a price so you might want to look at nearby towns, Mariposa, El Portal, Groveland and Oakhurst. For good value, fun family lodgings you could take a look at the Yosemite Bug which is not far from the park.

    Taking time to enjoy Tioga Pass and perhaps stop at Mono Lake would make the town of Bishop a popular choice between Yosemite and Vegas. As you head to Vegas go south on 395 to Lone Pine and take 136 to 190 across the park to Death valley junction. At Death valley junction [where 190 joins 127] turn right and immediately left onto Ash Meadows/Bell Vista road into Pahrump and the 160 to Vegas. On route you can stop at the Sand dunes near Stovepipe Wells, Furnace Creek, [from here detour down to Badwater basin, the lowest POINT in the USA and take Artists drive on the way back up] Zabriske Point and maybe Dantes view.

    From Las Vegas you could head to Zion and enjoy the canyon and stay for the night [Springdale is a wonderful town nearby] and next day head to Bryce canyon, which is a lovely drive through the Mt Carmel tunnel and stay near Bryce. [22nd?]

    On the 23rd drive towards the south rim of the Grand canyon for the night. Other than NP lodgings you have the Cameron Trading post near the east entrance, the town of Tusayan near the south entrance and offering more budget friendly options a bit further away are Flagstaff and Williams. You could break the journey up with a saty in Page AZ or Monument valley.

    On the 24th enjoy more of the GC and stay in Flagstaff or Williams before driving back to Vegas on the 25th. You could detour onto route 66 through Seligman just to get off Interstate and see this 'quirkey' '66 town and you would also have the option to stop at the Hoover Dam on the way.

    If you are planning a trip to Alcatraz while in SF [highly recommended] then I would book tickets in advance. Here is the only official booking office where you do not have agents fees or have to book other tours with it.

    In Yosemite there is more than the valley and Tioga Pass, Glacier point is a 'must' for the views alone and you also have the giant Sequoia trees at Mariposa Grove. Both of these can be visited on the way to the Valley from the south entry point.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    If you want a ghost town, there's Bodie. It's off 395 about 20 miles north of Lee Vining. However, before you go you need to get permission from the car rental agency, the last 3 miles of the road in (CA-270) is maintained but unpaved.

  6. Default

    Uauuu Thank very much Dave !
    You have been very detailed about the route and gave me a lot of information. 4sure i´ll use your tips/advices : ) After i do the trip i will post how it was. But before i will research more and if i need i will abuse of your simpathy and put a couple more questions.
    - glc, thank your for the Ghost Town.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default It's what we do.

    You are very welcome and feel free to ask as many questions as needed.

    Just to confirm what glc said about Bodie, you would most likely be in breach of your rental contract if you drove on the unmade road and would be responsible for any damage and/or recovery fees if anything were to happen. It could easily take up half a day to visit.

    After i do the trip i will post how it was.
    We will look forward to that very much, thanks.


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