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  1. #1

    Default uk to san francisco return to uk from Las Vegas

    Travelling early next year 2015. Flying to SF from UK then driving to Yosemite, Death Valley, Las Vegas, Zion, Bryce, Monument Valley, Flagstaff and back to LV via Hoover Dam and bridge. About three weeks in all. Has anyone got any comments on the route, any places of interest nearby and when is the best time to go (thinking May time)?

    Thanks

    John

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default A loop trip?

    Hi, and Welcome to the Great American Roadtrip Forum.

    Great trip you have planned there, and no doubt, one of your country men will be online soon to share when he made that same trip.... well, almost the same.

    May is a lovely time to visit, but it could leave you missing out on the spectacular Tioga Pass, the eastern entrance of Yosemite. Depending on how much snow fell during the winter, the Pass can open as late as well into June. It has been known not to open until July, but June is more common.

    One thought which came to mind is, why not fly into and out of the same city? This could save on air fares and car rental. In three weeks you would have enough time to do a nice loop something like this - SF, down the Pacific Coast Highway, across to the Grand Canyon via Bakersfield, through Monument Valley to Bryce and Zion (perhaps picking up Arches or Canyonlands along the way), and down to Vegas. From Vegas you could go through Death Valley, and if Tioga Pass is open, enter Yosemite from the east, and back to SF.

    This would put Yosemite at the end of your trip, and more chance of Tioga Pass being open.

    There are a whole stack of threads on this particular trip, and no doubt someone will post the link soon. I don't have that one.

    Lifey

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,747

    Default Agreed.

    Here is the link to some of our favourite threads covering the area as mentioned above, although there are many more if you search the forums and/or scroll down this page where you will find 'Similar threads'.

    I agree with all the above, you could create a loop with no back tracking which could equal cheaper flight and rental costs. You also have the time to do so quite comfortably and yes, you are in for an amazing trip !

    For the reasons mentioned about the Tioga Pass I would go mid to late May and visit Yosemite as late in your trip as possible, the other advantage of going the way mentioned above is that if you decide to drive down the coast a way to include the spectacular section around Big Sur, it will put the Ocean on your side of the road. You should still be ahead of the big crowds and it's a nice time to visit although my favourite time is in the Fall, mid September to October. The big advantage in May is that the waterfalls in Yosemite will still be flowing making a spectacular sight. Just south of Yosemite you will also find Sequoia NP and Kings canyon.

  4. #4

    Default

    Thanks Lifemagician for the idea of flying into and out of the same city. Will certainly look at the possibilities.

    John

  5. #5

    Default

    Thanks Southwest Dave. So many possibilities but I think we will aim to come late May next year. Now the Grand Canyon runs shuttle buses do you just drive to your hotel/lodge (any you would recommend?) and pick up the bus at a stop and choose places to stop?

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

    Default

    Yes, you can hop on and hop off the Shuttle Buses where ever you'd like, and yes you can get on them right at your hotel if you stay at one of the lodges within the park, or if you stay at a hotel in Tusayan. Just keep in mind, there are several different bus routes within the park so you may have to look for the right bus and/or transfer between buses depending upon where you want to go. You'll find more details on the shuttle bus service on the nps website.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    You don't HAVE to use the buses at the Grand Canyon except for the Hermit's Rest road. All other parts of the park are accessible by car, and there is plenty of parking in the village itself.

  8. #8

    Default

    Hi Johnny we did similar trip in 2011 but in reverse to you, Las Vegas to SF. In Las Vegas we did side trips to Red Rock Canyon, Hoover Dam, Lake Mead. Boulder City is a must go to for the small town America experience. Mel's Diner will take you back in time and the food is excellent. Its just a few miles from the dam. Leaving Vegas we went to Death Valley for an awesome visit, saying on a ranch and playing golf in 100 degrees plus. Ridgecrest is another desert town for the all-American experience. If you play golf there you might have the course to yourself! Road trip to Tahoe is another experience not to miss. Enjoy

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    The Great Midwest, Illinois to be precise
    Posts
    527

    Default In and Out Burgers

    If you come across one of these hamburger joints, stop in and enjoy some mighty good eating.

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