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    Can anyone give me some tips,
    I'm planning to drive from MA to Grand Canyon, AR with my girls (teens) Even-though one can drive but I would not let her drive on this trip as she just got her licence, so I will be driving myself. I was thinking of taking off 2 -3 week vacation at the end of June. We want to explore as much as we can, we are both adventures and would love to stop by as many places as we could.
    I saw few places already "Gateway Arch" in St. Luis, Lincoln Tomb in IL,.... any tip will be highly appreciated.
    How about the car... RV vs MINI VAN? any advice on this?
    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Welcome to RTA!

    I'd favor the minivan unless you prefer the RV lifestyle. It will get 2 to 3 times the gas mileage of a RV, and a RV may wind up costing more by the time you get done. Campgrounds are not free, and there are budget motels/hotels almost everywhere. RV's are also a pain to drive and park in cities, and go slower. You will also pay a premium on the toll roads.

    Exactly where in MA will you be leaving from? You can maximize the experience by taking different basic routes in each direction. To me, the southern Utah parks are not to be missed and you may have time to include Yellowstone.

    Your new driver can't get any better experience than driving on the relatively uncrowded western Interstates - with your awake vigilance, of course.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default The pros and cons.

    Quote Originally Posted by evacindy View Post
    How about the car... RV vs MINI VAN? any advice on this?.
    There is a whole thread discussing this which might help you make your decision.


  4. Default

    Thank you GLC
    Ill be Driving for Westfield MA,
    I will definitely go with the minivan, I never even thought about the Campgrounds..and the gas.. woosh.. van it is.. and the motels sounds more safer for me and my girls.
    Thank you again, I will google Yellowstone too,

  5. Default

    Thank you Lifemagician the link was helpful..

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default 3 weeks is a lot better than two.

    I would certainly try and use the full 3 weeks, or as close to it as possible. It will take 9-10 days of driving to get outh there and back at a sensible pace with no real 'major' sight seeing. If you are having to rent a vehicle [?] it would be costly for a new driver under 25 years of age to drive. Another thought is [if you are renting] whether or not your time would be better used by flying out west, into Denver or Vegas for example. If not, I would look at making good time out west with a bit of sight seeing [ 5 to 7 days ] by taking 44/40 from St Louis and after spending a bit of time at the GC you could head up into Southern Utah for some of the great red rock scenery and National parks, including Zion, Bryce, Capital Reef, Arches and Canyonlands. Then into Colorado, possibly visiting the historic remains at Mesa Verde NP and taking the old steam train ride from Durango to Silverton. Driving up the 'Million dollar Highway' [US550] from Durango is spectacular and from Montrose you could take US50 past Black canyon, through Currecanti Nat Rec area and over the Continental divide at Monarch Pass before making your way towards Denver/Rocky mountain NP. You probably won't have time to see it all but the drives are spectacular with amazing and diverse scenery. From the Denver area it will take you a reasonable 4 days back home, so with the full 3 weeks you would have 10 days or so to enjoy the west.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    I agree with Dave, 2 weeks is enough time to make this trip, but 3 weeks would give you much more time to explore and enjoy yourselves.

    I'd also 3 weeks would also be the minimum time you'd need if you want to drive there and back, and do both Grand Canyon and Yellowstone. If you are only around 2 weeks, then I think you really need to stick to the Grand Canyon, and the other Utah and Colorado parks that have been mentioned.

  8. Default

    Thank you again. (Midwest Michael and Southwest Dave)
    This site is full of information.. I LOVE IT!!!!!!
    Yes I will be renting a car for the whole 3 weeks, I got a good price with unlimited mileage for only 1,099 and yes I will be driving by myself as my as Im going to use my own insurance, daughter just got her licence (as much as she would want to drive, I wont risk Besides, I don't mind driving and we would love to see as many places as we can..
    I just asked my boss and I can add 5 more days so I we will have 26 days to explore, I know its still far but I love to plan as early as possible.
    Ill try to find some cheap motels that will allow us to sleep in one room to save some
    I will look at all the suggestion and work on them.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Planning together.

    Those extra days will make a huge difference. Search around the RTA site where you will find info on the forums and the trip planning pages in the tool bars above. I would recommend you get a good map and start working out what you wanna do. I would include your daughters in the planning and let them all have input, if they have a vested interest in the trip it will go much smoother and be more fun for all. Once you have some dots on the map and you have more questions, don't hesitate to ask.

    Enjoy the planning !

  10. Default

    I love the idea of having a map and put those dots.. @ Southwest Dave.
    My girls are absolutely involve. This trip was a request from them to me and we made a deal if "both" of them not one or two gets good grades then I will take time off and we we go and they did. (I think I'm the luckiest single mother on Earth..)
    In the past 4 yrs we went to road trip to Florida, Atlanta and Canada and had fund and they wanted to stop everywhere and take some photos.. but I wish we knew about this site which is super informative we would enjoy more. We will use this site to plan and ask for opinion.
    Thank you all for taking your time to answer my add..

    Happy Mama..

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