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  1. Default Great loop road trip

    My husband and I are planning a 31 day road trip. It's a once in a lifetime. Calgary to Vancouver down the coast to LA Then inland I 15 back to Calgary April 2016 . There is so much to see and do so if any one has any favourites or ideas they would like to share. I would love to here them Karen

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Welcome to RTA!

    Given that we don't know the first thing about your interests, we'd be hard-pressed to make suggestions. Nature? Museums? Hiking? History? Weird stuff? Combination of all of the above?

    Things that come to mind easily: Craters of the Moon National Monument (Idaho). Oregon Caves National Monument (Oregon). Redwoods National Park (California) and Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park (along with a few other state parks in that area of California). Salt Lake City. Promontory Point (Utah, where the two railroads met when they were being built in the 1800s).

    Are you planning this trip from paper maps? You'll find that these are necessary for good planning. You might also get some good ideas from looking at this site's Map Center.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Getting started.

    Hi Karen. I would recommend you use the RTA site as a research tool, you will find endless amounts of ideas and info by digging around. Start with the 'How to use this site' link above and use the search function. Study the maps and see what appeals to you and once you have a few of your own 'must see's' marked out you will see how a route might form around them. Once you have a few basics down and more specific questions we can give meaningful advice rather than just throwing darts in the dark.

    You will need to check the conditions of some areas as some may still be in 'winter mode' during April, places like Yosemite and Crater Lake for example will have limited access but will be open.

    Enjoy the planning !

  4. Default

    Hi Dave thanks for the tips. You tip about the " winter like" conditions is a good one. Our daughter is an Aussie living in Banff so this a visit to her and a big road trip for us. I guess as Aussies we are chasing the tips for the best of' along the way to help us get started. We aren't your museum and art gallery type , but love natures art gallery . Thanks for your pointers and look forward to search the site more.

    Currently researching the best and safest way to travel Calgary to Seattle iin early April , enjoying the dramatic scenery on offer if you have any tips.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Maps will help you a lot.

    Hi Karen, Do you have any good detailed maps of the areas you'd like to roadtrip? If you can't get any locally, maybe your daughter can get them and send them to you, or you could get a Rand McNally road atlas from the RTA store via the link below. If your daughter is a member of CAA, she will be able to get maps of all the US States as well as the Canadian provinces for free. The road atlas has all those as well. Those maps have an incredible amount of information on them, including historical and natural attractions, all cities and towns, no matter how small. Much more than you will ever be able to see within the confines of a computer monitor, let alone a little gps screen. The roads are all shown graded from high speed interstates to historic byways and backroads. Scenic routes are highlighted. Maps will be invaluable during the planning process, and essential when on the road.

    You do not say in which State you live, but if you are a member of RACV, NRMA etc. take your membership with you. It will give you access to tourism information from the CAA and AAA all over North America. No doubt your daughter will have trips planned to the local attractions and the stunning national parks of Canada.

    I would highly recommend that you drive the Sea to Sky highway from Cache Creek to Vancouver. The routes from Jasper or Lake Louise/Banff to Kamloops and then Cache Creek are incredibly scenic. Make sure you leave enough time to stop at the stunning views and sites. About half way between the lovely little towns of Lillooet and Whistler is Joffre Lakes Provincial Recreation Area, with a great hike to three glacier lakes, one above the other. Probably the most accessible glacier lakes in BC. Absolutely spectacular.

    You're in for a great trip, but I will leave it up to you to see all the attractions on the maps and having done your research, decide which places to explore. Glacier NP and Yellowstone NP are two more places which will have limited access and services, being still in winter mode.


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