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  1. #1

    Default Vegas to monument valley

    Hi All, just after advice and ideas for a trip we are looking to take in march. Think we will be driving from vegas and I want to go to monument valley , Grand canyon north rim, also I do like a good ghost town, I have driven in the US many times, Even been stopped by the police !!! any advice or ideas?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I'm sorry to tell you that your goal of going to the North Rim isn't possible on this trip. That side of the Grand Canyon is closed in March, and typically doesn't open up until May. The south rim is open all year.

    How much time do you have for this trip, and what kinds of advice or ideas are you looking for?

  3. #3


    Hi thanks for the reply,
    We have not booked so the time of year is negotiable, advice and ideas of places to see and places to avoid, trip will be around 10 days, The wife wants to visit Flagstaff and Albuquerque !
    I just like the idea of monument valley, and have told her its to far (mind you that's mainly to get another trip later)

    so really places to stay and tourist traps to avoid!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default A Loop From Las Vegas

    Ten days would allow for a very nice trip from, and back to, Las Vegas that could easily include all your stated goals. Described anti-clockwise (although you can certainly do it the other way if you wish) you'd leave Las Vegas on US-93 south, cross Hoover Dam, take a possible side trip to Oatman, then take I-40 east to Williams AZ. From there, US-180/AZ-64 will take you up to and through Grand Canyon National Park along Rim Drive to US89 south. It's worth noting that just north of the intersection of AZ-64 and US-89 is the Cameron Trading Post where you can purchase Indian jewelry, art work, and crafts. Taking US-89 south from Cameron will take you past both Wupatki and Sunset Crater National Monuments. These are connected by a scenic drive running roughly parallel to but east of US_89. RReturning to US-89, follow that south to Flagstaff.

    My wife and I just spent several days in the Flagstaff region and there is certainly plenty to do there besides the already mentioned national monuments. Check out the Museum of Northern Arizona, Lowell Observatory (where Pluto was discovered), Walnut Canyon National Monument, Oak Creek Canyon, and several local walking trails.

    Next up would be the drive east on I-40 past Meteor Crater and Petrified Forest National Park to Albuquerque. I'm not that familiar with Albuquerque, but certainly worth your time to look into are Petroglyph and Salinas Pueblos National Monuments. Next up you'd head north out of Albuquerque on I-25/US-550 to Durango CO and then west on US-160 to Mesa Verde National Park. You should also note all of the ancient Indian ruins on your route - probably not what you were thinking when you asked for 'ghost towns' but they certainly qualify by any definition of the term.

    From Mesa Verde, continue west on US-160 to the Four Corners area. If you want, you can visit the Four Corners Monument, but it's really nothing more than a large concrete slab in the ground marking the only point in the United States where four states share a common point, useful if you're trying to 'get to' all 50 states but otherwise nothing to write home about. Then head northwest (you'll have to back track a bit if you go to Four Corners) on CO-41/UT-162 to US-191/US-163 south past Goosenecks State Park to Monument Valley.

    Your last leg will be across Southern Utah and northern Arizona back to Las Vegas. From Monument Valley continue southwest on US-163/US-160 about 33 miles past Kayenta and take AZ-98 and US-89 (north) to Mount Carmel Junction UT and UT-9 west to Springdale and Zion National Park. Finally, continue west on UT-9 to I15 south back to Las Vegas.

    That entire loop would require the equivalent of three full days worth of driving, but spread out over seven or eight days (depending on how long you want to stay in Las Vegas or other towns along the way) would leave you plenty of time to explore the sites en route. It is also worth noting the number of national parks and monuments available to you. If you decide that you're going to visit three or more (the Grand Canyon alone costs $30 to enter), then you should purchase an annual pass at the first one you come to. These cost $80 and are good for entry by the holder and all passengers in his/her car to all national parks and monuments for a year. Note, however, that Four Corners and Monument Valley are Navajo Tribal Parks and not part of the federal parks system, so those are extra.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 10-17-2015 at 01:19 PM. Reason: Typo

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