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  1. Default Fresno to KC in 10 days

    Hi, we are going from Fresno, CA to the Kansas City area in early May and have about 10 days. We've done the southern route many times and want to see something different on this trip. We'll stay in motels...no camping this time. What do you suggest?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default That's a Big "That Depends"

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    Besides the usual caveat that this is your trip and that where you go, what you see, and the pace you do it at all depend on your tastes, there's an additional item we can't foresee that will have a big impact on your choices. I'm also assuming that you have ten days for a one-way transit, and aren't planning on a full round trip in that time. I'm further assuming that since you've gone "the southern route many times and want to see something different", you'll want a generally northern route this time. But since you list this as a spring trip, the first thing that will affect your choice of routes will be whether Tioga Pass is open when you leave Fresno. If it is, then going through Yosemite would be my route of choice since it would put you in good shape to continue on US-6 through south-central Nevada to Ely and Great Basin National Park, then US-50 and UT-21/UT-130/I-15/UT-9 south to Zion National Park, up US-89 and UT-12 to Bryce Canyon National Park, and continuing on UT-12 to UT-24 and Capitol Reef National Park. From there, continue on up past Arches National Park and take I-70 through the Rockies past Colorado National Monument to Rocky Mountain National Park north of Denver. Finally, even though it's a bit out of the way, I'd suggest taking I-76 up to I-70 and follow the old Oregon Trail along the Platte River and use NE-2 to connect to I-29 down into Kansas City. That's as scenic a route as you're going to find and requires only four solid days of driving, leaving you a full six days to spend in the great outdoors.

    If, however, Tioga Pass is still closed when you set out, then you'll have to go up to Sacramento and take I-80 mover the Sierra Nevada to Reno, and US-50 to Ely NV where you'd join the route previously described.

    AZBuck

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    Another option to I-80 would be CA-41 to CA-49 to CA-88 over the Sierras, then NV-88 to US-395 to Carson City to pick up US-50. CA-88 is maintained year round and sees a lot less traffic than I-80 or US-50.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    If this is a round trip, it could change the entire scenario, too. It's 3 days one way via the "fastest routes" -- down the 99 to 58 to I-15 then up to I-70, or, up north 99 to I-80 and then I-29 down to KC.

    What did you consider "the southern route"? I-40 to I-35?


    Donna

  5. Default

    Thanks so much for the suggestions. Perhaps I'd better tell you a bit more...this is a one-way trip. It usually takes us 3 days on the I-40 to I-35 route but we have time for sightseeing this year. I'd love to see the National Parks, but can't walk far...bad knee, no hiking on this trip. Can you drive through to see things or are they all walking tours?

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

    Default You can see a lot without hiking.

    If you go onto the national parks website, you will be able to see the maps of the parks, and get information where you can, and can't drive. The rangers at the visitor centres can also be of great assistance. Like you, my sightseeing is mostly through the windscreen.

    Zion has a bus which takes you around. There is also a bus in Grand Canyon. Bryce you can see without walking. Arches requires some walking to see the best of the Arches. Canyonlands can be seen mostly by driving through it, with very short walks. Colorado NM can be seen driving and Rocky Mountain NP does not require much walking. The great basin has a great self guided driving tour.

    Lifey

  7. Default

    Great, thank you, LM...that's what we're looking for.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default National Parks (For the Rest of Us)

    While it is true that our national parks have, as one of their central duties, the mission to save our wild places for future generations, and while they certainly attract the rugged outdoors type that loves to wander off into the wilderness under full backpack, it is also true that they make every effort to make as much of that beauty available to all of us as they can. My wife has a bad knee which limits her mobility and I'm not as spry as I was 40 or 50 years ago, but we are actually making much better use of our parks now than we ever did before. A big part of this is that we know a lot less than we did when we were younger, and now make it a point to stop and talk to the Rangers on duty at the information desks at each and every national park. They always have suggestions for places to get to where we can experience the grandeur of their particular park with little or no hiking, and always over flat, often paved, surfaces.

    Besides making the parks as physically accessible as they can, our national larks system tries with varying degrees of success to make them economically affordable as well. They offer a number of cost-saving passes. For most people who are going to visit four or more parks in a year, the 'America the Beautiful' annual pass for $80 usually makes economic sense, but note that if you are over 62 the 'Senior Pass' is only $10 for the rest of your life and military ('Military') and handicapped ('Access') get free passes. If you do go with the 'America the Beautiful' pass, note that the one year starts at purchase so it makes sense to buy it at the first park you come to that charges an entry fee. They will all have the passes available.

    AZBuck

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    To tag onto AZBuck's information about the national park passes, the "military" pass is for active duty ONLY. This is one place where the retired ones can't cash in on a military price. For those that think, "well, they can get the Senior Pass": that's only true if you are retired military over 62. Those who retire in their 40s and 50s still have to wait until they turn 62 to get the Senior Pass.


    Donna

  10. Default

    Does anyone have motel recommendations on the above route? I know I can (and will) search online but if anybody has comments, I'd love to hear them. We've done long trips like this before (not this route) but pulling a travel trailer for the nights and using campgrounds to park.

    Thanks for any input.
    Burgh

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