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  1. Default Newport Beach to Somewhere Out of State (But Where?)

    For several years now, my two young daughters (8 and 6) have been bugging my wife and me to go on an RV trip. The younger one is finally old enough, and so I've booked an RV for a longish summer trip: July 3-12. (Picking up the RV on Friday the 3rd, and departing early morning on Saturday the 4th.) I'm looking for any and all help I can get in planning a trip, as the person I met at AAA for a Trip Tik was absolutely useless.

    We've been all over northern and southern California, and so are looking for a trip that takes us out of state. I have a rough idea of where we'd like to go: Newport Beach northeast to Zion (where we'd like to stay a few days), south to Grand Canyon (for a day or two), south to the 40 with a detour to see a little of historic Route 66. I haven't filled anything in between because I have so many questions and no answers.

    Is this a doable trip? Are there places I'm overlooking? Are there RV camps or even a campground to stay that first weekend that won't require a three-night stay (because it's July 4th weekend), as I don't want to be pinned down the first few nights on the road. Should I be going somewhere completely different?

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions or advice. I looked through the previous posts, but as I mentioned I'm looking to get us out of California, and most of those deal with California itineraries.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    Welcome to RTA!

    RV Parks aren't nearly as picky about that 3-day stuff that motels often require for the 4th of July weekend, though there are always a few. You're looking at nine days on the road. It's about a day's drive from Newport Beach to Zion - roughly 10 hours in an RV. Allow a full day to see Zion, if not two. If you'd like, the third day you could drive up to Bryce Canyon and see that, too. On the fourth day, drive to the NORTH Rim of the Grand Canyon, via Jacob Lake. See that on the 5th day. You could then drive to Page and see some of Lake Powell and the Glen Canyon Dam on the 6th day. On the 7th day, drive down to Kingman via Waputka Canyon National Monument and Sunset Crater, overnight around Williams (RV parks are there). The next day, drive the section of Rt 66 that goes from Seligman to Peach Springs and then into Kingman. The following day, home.

    That's just one example, and something that my husband and I would have done. We too like to GET OUT of California, when we possibly can, on vacation.

    BTW, at all the national parks and monuments, enroll your girls in the Junior Ranger Program. It will keep them focused and entertained, and (slyly, of course) it will teach them something. If they complete it, they get a patch, badge or a pin to keep.

    Another thought -- if you go to Zion and Grand Canyon, you will be paying out about $60 in entrance fees. If you add Bryce, Waputka or Sunset Crater, you'll add another $10-25 each. That said - consider buying the Annual National Park pass at the FIRST entrance station you pass through. The $80 is good ALL year, so if you take a weekend trip out to Joshua Tree, Sequoia, Yosemite or similar, it will pay off.


    Donna

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Start with your maps and your interests.

    Hi, and Welcome to the Great American Roadtrip Forum.

    While you were at AAA, did you pick up individual maps of the adjoining States.... AZ,NV,UT maybe even NM and CO.

    AAA maps are among the best, and have a wealth of information, including all the routes for you to choose from, with scenic routes marked by dotted lines. They also show all State Parks, National Parks, State Forests and National Forests. And touristy attractions such as Four Corners.

    Sit down with those maps and choose all the sights which appeal to you. The experts here will then help refine your plans.

    It would pay you not to let too much grass grow over this, as booking accommodation within the parks needs to be done a.s.a.p. The sites are limited and much sought after.

    Lifey

  4. Default What an awesome itinerary!

    Donna, this is exactly what I was hoping for. What a great itinerary. The only thing I might adjust is that first driving day. Even as excited as they are, not sure the girls can handle 10 hours in the car. Do you know of any places to stop just after Las Vegas? I was looking at Mesquite, NV, which is a 5-hour drive from NB.

    As for the rest, I'm going to start planning now. I see the RV camp at the Grand Canyon North Rim is already booked solid, except for a lone 21-foot site. Sadly, ours is the 25' RV so I'll have to find a place nearby.

    regards
    dave

    Quote Originally Posted by DonnaR57 View Post
    Welcome to RTA!

    RV Parks aren't nearly as picky about that 3-day stuff that motels often require for the 4th of July weekend, though there are always a few. You're looking at nine days on the road. It's about a day's drive from Newport Beach to Zion - roughly 10 hours in an RV. Allow a full day to see Zion, if not two. If you'd like, the third day you could drive up to Bryce Canyon and see that, too. On the fourth day, drive to the NORTH Rim of the Grand Canyon, via Jacob Lake. See that on the 5th day. You could then drive to Page and see some of Lake Powell and the Glen Canyon Dam on the 6th day. On the 7th day, drive down to Kingman via Waputka Canyon National Monument and Sunset Crater, overnight around Williams (RV parks are there). The next day, drive the section of Rt 66 that goes from Seligman to Peach Springs and then into Kingman. The following day, home.

    That's just one example, and something that my husband and I would have done. We too like to GET OUT of California, when we possibly can, on vacation.

    BTW, at all the national parks and monuments, enroll your girls in the Junior Ranger Program. It will keep them focused and entertained, and (slyly, of course) it will teach them something. If they complete it, they get a patch, badge or a pin to keep.

    Another thought -- if you go to Zion and Grand Canyon, you will be paying out about $60 in entrance fees. If you add Bryce, Waputka or Sunset Crater, you'll add another $10-25 each. That said - consider buying the Annual National Park pass at the FIRST entrance station you pass through. The $80 is good ALL year, so if you take a weekend trip out to Joshua Tree, Sequoia, Yosemite or similar, it will pay off.


    Donna

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Lifemagician View Post

    It would pay you not to let too much grass grow over this, as booking accommodation within the parks needs to be done a.s.a.p. The sites are limited and much sought after.

    Lifey
    Indeed, already finding that out — Grand Canyon North Rim and Zion RV sites are booked solid. Crossing my fingers that the Zion and North Rim private RV camps have a site or two unbooked.

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

    Default North Rim

    Quote Originally Posted by ymdone View Post
    Indeed, already finding that out — Grand Canyon North Rim and Zion RV sites are booked solid. Crossing my fingers that the Zion and North Rim private RV camps have a site or two unbooked.
    There is nice accommodation at Jacob Creek.

    Lifey

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    Mesquite is doable, and has a number of RV parks (if memory serves). St George UT is just up the road a little further than that - and there are some decent RV parks there too. I wish I could remember the one we stayed at there a couple of times, but it was so long ago it wouldn't surprise me if it had changed a lot. Mesquite is 350 miles, St George is 394.


    Donna

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Much closer.

    Years ago I stayed at a lovely RV park which is much closer than either St George or Mesquite. It was still a bit of a drive, but it was the Jellystone in Virgin.

    However, don't give up on the national parks. Check out what their cancellation policy is. If it is free to cancel, you might find that you could pick up a cancellation anytime. I would be checking every day.... or more than once a day. You just never know.

    Lifey

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

    Default

    Outside of Zion National Park is Zion Canyon Campground and RV Park. The location is super, as it is right on the other side of the Virgin River from Zion NP. It also has hookups and a shower building, which Zion's campgrounds do not. We had a river-side spot when we were there and loved that!


    Donna

  10. Default

    As it looks now, we're stopping off in Las Vegas the first night (so we don't have the girls get too tired from a long drive), at the Circus Circus RV Park. Good price, right off the Strip just behind the casino itself. We fiddled with your original itinerary a little to include three nights at Zion Canyon Campground. It looks gorgeous, and I've requested a river spot. Crossing my fingers. Then we're doing Page/Lake Powell for a night, Grand Canyon for two nights, and still trying to figure out the remaining two nights.

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