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  1. #1

    Default Sacramento CA to Sequoia/Kings Canyon to Flagstaff AZ

    Hello, I'm new and thrilled to finally figure out how to post.

    In mid-May, I will be starting a 6 week road trip. An overview is: Oregon to Sacramento to Sequoia/Kings Canyon to Flagstaff to Phoenix to Santa Fe to Oklahoma City to Dallas to Shreveport to Vicksburg MS to Saginaw MI to St Louis MO to Utah National Parks to Boise and back home to Oregon. Parts of the route is dependent on visiting family and friends. The trip is a gift from several friends. They were going to fly me out, but I asked for gas money instead.

    I need lodging to be less than $100/night. Also, due to physical limitations, I am not able to take advantage of any of the wonderful hikes to enjoy the stops even further.

    On the Sacramento to S/KC to Flagstaff section, I need some expert advice. I would like to only have one night on the road, but still be able to see as much as possible. I will be starting fresh in Sacramento have spending time with friends. It will be just myself on the road.

    Would it be best to go Sacramento to Fresno to Hwy 49 and loop to Hwy 198 to Bakersfield/Barstow to Flagstaff? Or would it the same amount of time going a bit slower down Hwy 49? Or is there another suggestion?

    Thank you in advance for your time and consideration to my questions.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Welcome to RTA!

    In the interests of time, you need to go down 99 to Fresno and into S/KC on 180. This is about a 3.5 hour drive. You will need to get through S/KC and out via 198 to at least Visalia same day. Visalia/Tulare has a good selection of hotels in all price ranges. This also means getting out of Sacto very early in the morning if you want to enjoy the park at all. Visalia to Flag via 99, 58, and I-40 is a full day's drive - somewhere around 10 hours counting normal brief gas, food, and bathroom stops.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Sacramento to Flagstaff is a 2-day trip by the shortest route. You can add Sequoia-Kings Canyon to that, especially considering you don't plan to hike. Going via CA-49 is going to be very slow going, with the potential of more stops (as you realize how much history you're driving through, and you may want to stop and see some of it). It is quite possible that it would add an extra day into your travels. If you are determined to do this in two days, what I'd do is this: come down CA-99, then hang east on CA-180 (a gorgeous drive) into Sequoia. Then come out CA-198. Catch CA-99 again to CA-58 at Bakersfield, and take that to I-40. I'd do the Sacramento to Sequoia/Kings Canyon bit the first day, overnight around Tulare or Bakersfield, and drive to Flagstaff the next day.


  4. #4


    Thank you. Since I visit friends in Sacramento and take day trips with them to surrounding area, I am not concerned about that part of the trip. I am wanting to add S/KC, since I have never been there. The Bakersfield to Flagstaff is also another road that I have taken frequently.... so no big stops planned this year.

    Thank you Donna and GLC for your input. I did realize that it was a min of a 2 day trip, with having a rest at start and end.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default It all takes time.

    Driving all the way to the end of Kings Canyon can take some time, and then all the way back. There is also a hike to go and see the General Sherman Tree. If you have a permit, the special permit parking spots are 300 metres from the tree. From the regular parking area, it is much further.


  6. #6


    I do have a permit... just don't prefer to use it if I don't have to. I can walk just not far.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    I've done the regular path to the tree. Use your permit, trust me. The regular path is 1/2 mile long and has a lot of stairs. The walk back is all uphill. You can certainly walk down to the tree from the regular lot, then walk to the accessible lot and ride the shuttle back to your car - *IF* the shuttle is running. I don't think it starts till Memorial Day weekend. The accessible path is wheelchair-accessible so it doesn't have stairs to deal with. Remember you are going to be at 7000 feet altitude.

  8. #8


    Thank you for the tip. Yes, stairs would be a problem.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Room for all.

    I do have a permit... just don't prefer to use it if I don't have to. I can walk just not far.
    Best you take gls's advice.

    If you are concerned, as I often am, that you may be taking a spot when someone who needs it more might come along, I can assure you there are at least half a dozen parking spots... if not more. I did count them, but can't remember. However, when I saw '300 metres', I decided not even to attempt it. Way too far for me. (No idea why they use metres there.)


  10. #10

    Default USA road trip May-June I-5, I-40, I-55/65/75, I-80, I-70, I-84

    Would the moderator please put the CA/AZ post into this one? Thank you.

    The first 1/3 of the trip is beginning to take shape.

    IF you see something is a “dont miss” that I missed, please let me know. OR if I have something listed that is a “SKIP THIS” or would be hard on someone with walking long distances or lots of steps or rough ground (ok, not really handicap, but this list makes it look like I am), please also let me know.

    Albany OR to Sacramento CA. Visit friend 2-3 days (I have made this trip regularly, so will not stop along way.)
    Sacramento CA to Bakersfield CA via Sequioa/Kings Canyon National Park (I have never been there. Long Day)
    Bakersfield CA to Flagstaff AZ (have made this trip several times, not planning to stop unless I find something I can’t miss)

    Flagstaff AZ to Phoenix
    Museum of Northern AZ
    Lowell Observatory ??
    Walnut Canyon Natl Monument ?? (not sure-- I am not able to do lots of stairs or long rough hikes)
    Sedona AZ driving tour

    Phoenix--Will be staying with uncle. 1 night
    Phoenix AZ Living Museum

    Phoenix AZ to Albuquerque NM
    Petrified Forest Natl Park/ Crystal Forest
    Gallup NM Gallup Cultural Center

    Albuquerque NM and Santa Fe NM
    Indian Pueblo Cultural Center
    NM Museum of History and Science

    Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
    Loretta Chapel
    Historic Santa Fe Plaza
    Fine Arts Musuem

    Santa Fe to Oklahoma City
    Tucumcari--Mesalands Dinosaur Museum
    Canyon TX--Panhandle Plains History Museum
    Goodwell OK No Man’s Land Museum
    Clinton--OK Route 66 Museum

    Oklahoma City--Still working on this one. stay with friend
    OK History Center
    Natl Cowboy and West Heritage Museum (Ansel Adams and Madonnas of the West displays)

    Oklahoma City to iwouldratherknit OK
    Tahlequah Cherokee Heritage Center (Annual Trail of Tears Art Show)

    iwouldratherknit OK to Royse City TX (visit brother)
    Sulfer OK Chicksaw Museum
    Arbuckle Mountains

    Royse City TX to Shongaloo LA (visit cousins) left open

    Shongaloo LA to Vicksburg MS (stay with friend) left open

    Last edited by justmemedia; 03-08-2015 at 05:21 PM. Reason: added moderator note.

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