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  1. Default West Coast Road trip stop offs?

    Hi guys, I'm new to this forum so firstly hello to you all. I'm after some advice and knowledge on places to stop along our long drives. Below are the destinations we are travelling from and we are looking to stop between these to rest, look at scenic views or visit attractions that 'tourists' see and any hidden gems you may know. Thanks in advance.

    From: San Francisco CA
    To: Yosemite National Park

    From: Yosemite National Park
    To: – Mammoth Lakes

    From: Mammoth Lakes
    To: Las Vegas

    From: Monument Valley
    To: – Grand Canyon

    From: – Grand Canyon
    To: Phoenix

    From: Phoenix
    To: Hollywood

    From: – Los Angeles
    To: San Francisco, CA
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 06-02-2017 at 07:09 AM. Reason: this is a public forum, I've removed the addresses originally posted by member

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

    Default

    Welcome to RTA!

    When is this trip? Before you embark, you should ensure that Hwy. 120, the Tioga Pass Road through Yosemite, is open. Otherwise, that Yosemite to Mammoth Lakes Day is going to be a super long one, as you have to go around the Sierras via an open pass. Right now (June 2nd), it's still closed (to my knowledge).

    The other thing -- why Las Vegas to Monument Valley and then Grand Canyon? If this were my trip, I wouldn't want to backtrack like that. But at the GC, don't miss either a sunset or a sunrise over the Canyon.


    Donna

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default

    How much time do you have for this trip and when will it take place ? With enough time you could go from Vegas to Zion and through Page to Monument valley and then to the Grand canyon. We would normally recommend you reverse the trip and head south down the coast to put the ocean on your side of the road, but CA1 coastal highway is closed at the time being.

  4. Default

    Thank you so much for your replies. The trip is this August and the route was actually planned by an operator. We'll be there for 2 weeks. Do you think that's enough time to do as you say? Thank you so much for your help.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default

    The beauty of the open road is having the freedom of choice to go where you please and do what you want rather than following someone else's idea of a good trip. We can help you with that but I would urge you to look at the maps and search around these forums for ideas and se what appeals to you so we can help you piece it together.

    With 2 weeks you could certainly look at the outline I mentioned and have the time, but it also depends on how many days you would like to spend in the City's. Yosemite is a place where you could easily spend a couple of nights, or as mentioned the second night in Mammoth. From a personal point of view I would much prefer to spend more time in the natural wonders than in the concrete jungles, but that's me. You may have to decide on whether you would rather see Zion more than Phoenix, you could possibly do both, but then again there is Bryce canyon, and in the Page area Lake Powell, Glen canyon Dam, Antelope canyon etc. We can help you build your trip but do a little research and make it yours.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
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    Default

    As I told someone on another thread, Phoenix during the summer is like the inside of your oven: HOT. Mostly it's hot and dry, but it could be a humid heat, as late July and into August becomes "monsoon" season. Zion can be much the same, but Bryce (at higher elevation) is cooler. So is the Grand Canyon. You'd have the cooler temperatures *and* the natural beauty at the national parks (for the most part).



    Donna

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default My preference.

    Quote Originally Posted by lozenges View Post
    To: Las Vegas

    From: Monument Valley
    To: – Grand Canyon

    From: – Grand Canyon
    To: Phoenix

    From: Phoenix
    If you are planning to go from LV to Monument Valley via Kanab, then the North Rim of the Grand Canyon would be the logical one to visit. At 1000 ft higher in elevation, it is not only deeper to view, but every bit as spectacular as the more developed South Rim - in fact in some places it is even more spectacular. It is also easier to get around and park. Smaller crowds, especially significant in August No need to wait for a shuttle bus, as you can drive yourself around to all the view points. There are still the short hikes to get away from the visitor centre and of course the rangers with their stories and advice.

    You could then head towards MV. You could book a tour, but for me, US163 which passes through the middle of MV is a spectacular drive, even if it means you drive North to Mexican Hat, (or beyond) and back south again. The country you pass through and the route you will take is srunning.

    On your way down to Flagstaff you will pass by several attractions, all of which are worth stopping at IMHO - Cameron Trading Post, Sunset Crater and Wupatki National Monument. From Flagstaff to Phoeonix you have the choice of going via Walnut Canyon with it's cliff dwellings or Oak Creek Canyon and Sedona.

    ....... the route was actually planned by an operator.
    Makes me wonder if this person has ever actually driven around the area.

    Lifey

  8. Default

    Southwest Dave - I agree, the beauty about this trip is that we can pretty much do what we want when we pass something we like. I'd just wondered if you guys had stopped off at any points and thought what a gem this is! The natural wonders is what we are after really, obviously the concrete jungle is not to be missed, we just prefer the nature side of things.

    Donna - Thank you for letting us know this. A few family members are saying its going to be absolutely boiling in each place!

    Lifey - Thank you. The other half wishes to walk on this see-through footpath/rim they have built, which is why we have gone for the south rim. What you suggest does sound good though, I'm not sure how I'd work it in without making the change of rim though.

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

    Default The National Park is NOT the Skywalk.

    Quote Originally Posted by lozenges View Post
    Lifey - Thank you. The other half wishes to walk on this see-through footpath/rim they have built, which is why we have gone for the south rim. What you suggest does sound good though, I'm not sure how I'd work it in without making the change of rim though.
    Be aware! The Skywalk is not the National Park. It is on Indian land near the west rim which is no where near as spectacular as the Grand Canyon NP, which will be familiar to you from pictures and film.

    Furthermore, whereas $30 (or the Anerica the Beautiful Pass) will admit all of you in the car to the NP, the Skywalk is charged individually - close to $100 per head. On top of that you will not be allowed to take a camera or a telephone with camera with you, as photos are not permitted. I am not sure if you can now drive all the way, but it used to be that you were driven the last part over an unmade road.

    If I were you I would think this over carefully, lest you be disappointed with your visit to what you thought was the world famous Grand Canyon National Park.

    Lifey

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
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    Default The details.

    Southwest Dave - I agree, the beauty about this trip is that we can pretty much do what we want when we pass something we like. I'd just wondered if you guys had stopped off at any points and thought what a gem this is! The natural wonders is what we are after really, obviously the concrete jungle is not to be missed, we just prefer the nature side of things.
    Sure we can but first we need to know those details of where you are going and then we can add suggestions. So are you already tied into an operators plan and if so what does the full itinerary look like, or can you start planning from scratch ? If you can start over tell us what you would like, does Zion NP appeal to you ? How much of your time do you want to spend in SF, LV and LA ? If you give us an idea of your itinerary we can make meaningful suggestions but it all comes from the detail.

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