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  1. Default What do you think of my plans-California road trip Oct/Nov 16

    Hi
    Flights are booked so busy organising my itinerary, can anyone give comments on the following plan.
    We are 2 Adults & 2 teenagers, we are very much a family who pass through, i.e see something then move on quickly. (My husband & I did this tour 20 years ago)
    We have hired a car (Toyota RAV 4 or similier)

    27 Oct Arrive LA - evening, stay in Hollywood 3 nights (Hollywood Orchid Suites)
    Plan to go to Universal & do all usual sightseeing

    30 Oct Pismo Beach
    Leave early for long drive along coast

    31 Oct Monteray
    Plan to Whale watch at Moss landing next day

    1 & 2 Nov San Francisco - Arrive here probably in the afternoon & just use tram to tour

    3 & 4 Nov - Yosemite (staying in park)

    5 Nov - Lone Pine - just a stop over

    5 & 7 Nov - Las Vegas - (poss stay at Cosmopolitan) tour some hotels & do rollercoaster

    8 & 9 - Back to LA - Maybe do 6 flags

    10 Nov - flight home

    Any advice very much appreciated

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,064

    Default

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I think you've got a solid trip lined up, but there are a few things you should probably think about.

    The biggest potential problem is that by early November it is possible that Tioga Pass would be closed - closing the link between Yosemite and Lone Pine. The pass typically closes for the season sometime in November, but there are years where it has closed in October. Even if it has not yet closed for the season, it's possible that it could be closed short-term because of a storm. The important thing is to make sure your reservation at Lone Pine can be canceled in case you need to find another route around the Sierras.

    I'd hope that on the day from Lone Pine to Vegas you're planning to spend a little time in Death Valley.

    I think you could consider adding the Grand Canyon to your trip. That would mean at least 2 days - a half day to drive there from Vegas, and a long day on the road to drive back to LA - but right now, you've got 5 days planned around LA, and you could probably shorten that up, if you'd like.

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

    Default Reverse.

    You may like to consider reversing your roadtrip. It would make the drive along the Pacific Coast Highway both easier and more enjoyable, as all the view points/overlooks and the ocean will be on your side of the road. Heading north, all these pull-offs mean crossing over oncoming traffic in and out of them.

    Lifey

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Midwest Michael View Post
    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I think you've got a solid trip lined up, but there are a few things you should probably think about.

    The biggest potential problem is that by early November it is possible that Tioga Pass would be closed - closing the link between Yosemite and Lone Pine. The pass typically closes for the season sometime in November, but there are years where it has closed in October. Even if it has not yet closed for the season, it's possible that it could be closed short-term because of a storm. The important thing is to make sure your reservation at Lone Pine can be canceled in case you need to find another route around the Sierras.

    I'd hope that on the day from Lone Pine to Vegas you're planning to spend a little time in Death Valley.

    I think you could consider adding the Grand Canyon to your trip. That would mean at least 2 days - a half day to drive there from Vegas, and a long day on the road to drive back to LA - but right now, you've got 5 days planned around LA, and you could probably shorten that up, if you'd like.

    Hi
    I have considered the Tioga pass being closed, and as yet not confirmed any reservations in Lone Pine, I may wait to nearer the time to book, but thanks for the warning.
    Yes definitely plan on visiting Death Valley.
    I really want to add the Grand Canyon, but didn't know if fitting in too much, but you are right, I could spend less time in LA and add it on, thanks for suggesting it.

  5. Default

    I had not thought of that which is annoying as spent so much time organising my trip based on the plan shown.
    Thank you for the suggestion

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

    Default That's why we're here.

    Quote Originally Posted by San001 View Post
    I had not thought of that ...
    Guess that is why you came to this forum. :-)

    I would not have known if someone had not told me.

    Lifey

  7. Default

    I lived in northern California for many years and you've picked one of the best spots in the world for tourism.

    30 Oct Pismo Beach
    Leave early for long drive along coast
    -- Gorgeous drive and the right time of year, too! You must stop at Hearst Castle near San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara. It will be a highlight of your trip.

    31 Oct Monteray
    Plan to Whale watch at Moss landing next day
    -- Monterey is one of my favorite places. The Monterey Bay Aquarium is world class and the John Steinbeck flavored sights and tours are worth seeing. Beaches around Monterey are good too but, the water is cold. Lots of good restaurants. If you like amusement parks, check out the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Santa Cruz is a funny, weird place and you'll have a good time there, too.

    1 & 2 Nov San Francisco - Arrive here probably in the afternoon & just use tram to tour
    Fisherman's Wharf and Pier 39 are great. Cable cars are wonderful but lines can be very long to get on. Parking is horrendously expensive. Figure $50 to park for one day! Check out Ft. Drum, which is the 19th century fort which protected SF Bay. The Golden Gate Bridge was built over it and construction was modified so that it would be preserved. Take a Bay Cruise, perhaps a dinner cruise but buy tickets early or you will be waiting in a long line just ot buy tickets when you get there. Must eat: Clam Chowder in a sourdough bowl, Calamari, It's It Ice Cream Sandwich.

    5 & 7 Nov - Las Vegas - (poss stay at Cosmopolitan) tour some hotels & do rollercoaster
    -- Looks good. That is about all the Vegas I could stand. I honestly don't like the place much. I'd rather do the Grand Canyon and Lake Mead but, that's my personal preference. The Meteor Crater and the Petrified Forest are on the eastern side of Arizona and definitely worth seeing.
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 05-23-2016 at 10:05 AM. Reason: added some quotes for clarity

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,749

    Default Grand canyon.

    I really want to add the Grand Canyon, but didn't know if fitting in too much in
    If you 'lost one day in LA and left Vegas on the afternoon of day 7 and travelled to the GC you could stay 2 nights [one full day] and then drive direct back to LA.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Great to see.

    Hi Markia, and Welcome to the Great American Roadtrip Forum.

    Thank you for jumping in with your first post to share some of your knowledge with this member. It is always great when we have folk who are familiar with places/routes share their experiences.

    Should you ever need advice, or have questions when planning a roadtrip, feel free to start your own thread.

    Lifey

  10. Default

    Thats a great tip.. thanks . Coming from Australia where we drive on the left, it isnt something I would have thought about.

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