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  1. Default Seek advice for a trip

    Every year I make a road trip with my family in December. For this year I am planning the following: we will arrive in Denver and then drive to Keystone. We will stay a few days there and then will go to Durango (3 days), followed by Page, AZ (2 days), Springdale, UT (3 days) and then LA.

    Do you have any advice/recommendation? Three years ago we went to Moab, Monument Valley and Grand Canyon, and the comments I found here were very helpful.

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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    It sounds like you have a nice trip layed out, and since you've already established the places you are spending your time, it seems like you must already have a pretty good idea of what you are going to see and do.

    So with that being said, what kinds questions do you have and/or what kinds of advice/recommendations are you looking for?

  3. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Midwest Michael View Post
    So with that being said, what kinds questions do you have and/or what kinds of advice/recommendations are you looking for?
    My main concern is about the weather and road conditions during December. Last time I've been in Moab/Arizona the weather was pretty good. But I don't know if that is the usual weather. I don't live in US (but I love the country). Also, are any of the planned stretches too long or tiresome?

    I would like to hear some recommendations of those who already visited those places. Things that we should be aware of. (When I went to Moab, I didn't know that Fiery Furnace was closed as well as most of restaurants in town...)

    Thanks you very much.

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

    Default Unpredictable weather.

    You should be prepared for anything with regards to the weather and snow and freezing temps are quite possible, especially in Colorado. All the drives between your destination points are doable and comfortable enough to be able to take your time if the conditions demanded so. You have options on your routes and if the weather was kind I would travel from Keystone to Durango via US50 and US550, aka The Million dollar Highway. I would also be tempted to stop one night on the way and have one less night in Durango. You will go over Monarch Pass, through Currecanti National Recreation area and be near to Black canyon on US50. The Million dollar highway is spectacular and the mountain towns of Ouray and Silverton are lovely. There are high passes along the way and you would have to check road and weather conditions. I would imagine you have planned a visit to Mesa Verde NP from Durango. You could also consider one day/night at Bryce canyon between Page and Zion NP, but that is at high elevation and can get extremely cold.

  5. Default

    Thank you very much Dave. In Durango I plan to visit Mesa Verde and make the train ride, so I think we will need number of planned nights. But I will consider stopping in the way to Durango. I was planning to go via 285 but I will follow your advice. What do you recommend? Through 70, 50, 550 or 285, 50, 550?

    I also plan a day trip to Bryce Canyon, travelling from Springdale. Should I stay there?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Colorados scenic routes.

    Wjhereas US-550 is often highly recommended, it is one of those roads which is not for everyone. I have met plenty of folk who freak out at the very mention of it. On the other hand, US-285 is a lovely scenic route. In CO it is hard to find a route which is not scenic. Even I-70 is fantastic drive. Loveland Pass (US-6) - a short detour off I-70 - is one pass which is open all year round to accommodate the tanker traffic which is banned from the tunnel.

    As for Bryce, it would probably be warmer to stay in Springdale. It is a nice little town, and a good base for the national parks there.

    The train trip from Durango is really worthwhile. It goes through some wonderful country. However, I would check first. It does not always go all the way to Silverton, during the winter months. There are wonderful Hot Springs at nearby Pagosa Springs.


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