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  1. Default Looking for feedback/advice for our 2018 trip

    Planning a trip out west for next summer, starting in Rochester, NY.
    Early development of an itinerary is shown below; currently the only part that is booked is the 4 days in Yellowstone. ( July 5-8)
    Would appreciate any advice or comments on the plan we have, as we have never undertaken such a trip before.
    Day 1, drive Rochester to Chicago area, drive only
    Day 2, Chicago to Sioux Falls, again only driving, no sightseeing
    Day 3, Sioux Falls to Custer State Park
    Days 4, 5, 6, Custer State Park area attractions
    Day 7 Drive to Yellowstone
    Days 8,9,10 Yellowstone
    Days 11, 12, Grand Teton
    Days 13, 14 Arches
    Days 15, 16, 17 Grand Canyon
    Days 18, 19 Mesa Verde
    Days 20-25 open to suggestions as we head back to Rochester
    Thanks for the help, have already appreciated this forum

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Minor Comments

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    You've got a generally very good RoadTrip planned with sufficient time in most places to accomplish what you seem to be setting out to do. The one place where that's not true is in your initial three days. I understand the temptation to start out and try to make significant mileage so as to get off to a good start, but a 600 mile day ending in some of the worst traffic congestion in America and starting out the next morning into the teeth of that same congestion makes no sense. Instead, I'd suggest that you pull up a bit earlier, say around La Porte IN and get a relatively late start the next morning so that you're not trying to circumnavigate Chicago at rush hour and then end your second day of driving around Jackson MN. It may seem as though those are minor changes and that with an extra hour or two of daylight as you drive westward you should be able to do more. But this isn't about doing more, it's about doing the trip enjoyably and safely. And while you may not think you have time to, or even want to, do sight-seeing along the way, it is important that you take occasional breaks from driving.

    Otherwise, I'd just point out that you have the opposite problem on the way back. You seem to have scheduled six days for a drive, Mesa Verde to Rochester, that could be done in four so I'd look for somewhere in between those two points that appeals to you and where you could spend a day off the road, say St. Louis.

    AZBuck

  3. Default

    Thanks very much for the input, had not considered the traffic problems around Chicago, we will definitely heed this advice.
    As far as for the trip back, we really are hoping to get some suggestions- especially maybe something in Colorado that would be another nice family stop, and are considering Mammoth Cave in KY.
    again, thanks for taking the time to supply the advice, it is greatly appreciated

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,747

    Default A few of the options in Colorado.

    From Mesa Verde you could spend another couple of days enjoying some sights through Colorado. One option would be to take the 'Million dollar Highway' (US550) from Durango through the mountain towns of Silverton and Ouray, a wonderful drive. Heading east on US50 from Montrose you will pass Black canyon, go through Currecanti National Recreation area and cross the continental divide over Monarch pass. From Poncha springs you could head towards Woodland park and Colorado Springs which will put you close to Pikes Peak, Cave of the Winds and Garden of the Gods.

  5. Default

    Excellent, exactly the type of advice we were looking for. So glad I found this forum, both replies we have gotten were wonderful and very appreciated.

  6. Default

    My wife and I were at Mesa Verde, the Grand Canyon, and a few other places in Utah and Colorado this past March! One place we wish we would have stopped to see was the Garden of the Gods... We heard a lot of good things about it from the locals.

    Are you doing a lot of camping? If so, you may want to book the Grand Canyon campground in advance too! We barley got our site for ONE NIGHT, but we only booked a month or so in advance.

    We actually camped for FREE right across from Mesa Verde on some BLM land! Could definitely be a nice place to rest up before you head out again, our site had an amazing view of the park! We also went to Royal Gorge State Park in Canyon City, CO which is on your way to Colorado Springs, CO. They have an awesome FREE campsite there too. And the park itself has a few cool things to do (ziplines, etc.), including one of the worlds highest suspension bridges.

    We just made a video going into more detail on the two campsites we used near Mesa Verde and Royal Gorge. Check it out if you're interested!
    https://youtu.be/naSdvMZquAY

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