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  1. Default NC to Southwet USA via Seattle and back...SOLO

    This is going to be my - I graduated college in May and have yet to find a job, don't have anything better to do, lets see the country - Roadtrip.

    I am looking into taking a roadtrip from NC to Seattle (maybe 4-5 days to get there) to visit a friend, then taking my time getting back to NC via OR (PCH), CA (Sequoia NP), AZ (Grand Canyon), UT (Arches NP), NM (Carlsbad Caverns NP) - I plan on sleeping at truck stops and camping. I am planning 3-4ish weeks for this trip. I have estimated ~8000mi. Does this seem like a reasonable amount of time and milage? Am I crazy for doing this by myself (some people say that I am out of my mind!!)? Are there any places that I should avoid because of weather? I can drive in snow but I prefer not to. I'll be traveling Late Sept - Early Oct.

    Thanks for any advice that can be provided.

  2. Default 7143 miles

    I used MS Streets and Trips and plotted your stops as you listed them -- plus added the Black Hills (it's along the way). The miles totaled 7143 and the driving can be done in less than 12 days. Seems to me 3-4 weeks would give you a nice trip on this route with room to play a little wherever you want to. Bob

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula

    Default go for it

    I think you should have plenty of time. I agree with Bob on adding the Black Hills. You might also want to add the Corn Palace, Deadwood, Mt. Rushmore, Wall Drug, etc. while going through that area.

    When visiting the Grand Canyon, you might want to plan for also doing the North Rim, then Zion, then Bryce, than across the Grand Staircase-Escalante area to Zion. Very cool areas!

    If you are comfortable being alone and enjoy your own company, then you should have no problems enjoying this solo roadtrip. It's NOT crazy at all. Enjoy yourself.

  4. #4
    Lorri Guest

    Default NC to Seattle

    Go for it, but use some more time if you can and see more
    than the usual tourist stuff. As for travelling alone, I am
    a 74-year-old woman who drives cross country very often -
    a piece of cake, just be flexible and stay cool. Audio
    tapes DO come in handy when things get a little dull.
    Talk to people, stop in small town restaurants and enjoy
    the time of your life.

    By the by, my last trip was 12,000 after roaming around the
    south quite a bit.

  5. Default Looks like my trip will be extended

    I just realized my thread is featured on the home page. WOW! I love this website.

    I am now planning to add Badlands, Mt. Rushmore, Bryce, Zion, a bit of Route 66, Natcez Trace Parkway, as long as other curiosities off the beaten path. THANKS FOR THE SUGGESTIONS!!!!

    I am going to spend $50 on the NPS park pass and I am going to put it to good use. I don't have a strict plan, just places I would like to go and a map. It's a good thing I don't really have a timeframe to stick to.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Ontario Canada

    Default agree

    Yes - you're on the right track with suggestions given above. You'll have plenty of time & have an AMAZING trip!! ZION & BRYCE are two of my fav nat'l parks. Both spectacular & so different from others.

    Reminder if stopping overnight "along the road" NOT to sleep at deserted highway rest stops. I recommend truck stops, 24-hour gas stations or restaurants, or even a mall parking lot within city limits. Bring a cozy sleeping bag for that time of the year overnight in a tent or vehicle will be cold in the desert. Not to worry though - I've done this sleeping in the car thing many many a time (single female) with no problems whatsoever.

  7. Default Weather

    None of us addressed the weather question -- although it is possible to run into a snow shower anywhere in mountain country in September/October, the weather is predominantly good most places (and storms do not tend to be major ones). I doubt you'll have any problems and in fact you'll probably find cool to warm days, crisp clear nights -- great weather for road-tripping and photography, if you are into that. Be sure to tell us all about your trip when you get back! Bob

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Thanks for the post!

    Thanks for being excited about the featured post.

    Go have an amazing adventure!


  9. Default Another Question?

    I noticed in another thread that it was recommended that reservations should be made for Grand Canyon, Bryce, Zion in mid-november. I plan to go to these areas in early october. I don't really have a strick itinerary so I don't exactly know when I will get there. I do plan to camp there. Do ya'll [i'm from the south... can't help it :)] think I will run into problems with no reservations?

  10. Default Maybe

    You may or you may not (have problems). My guess is not, in most cases. At GC, there is a campground outside the park to the south (a few miles south of Tusayan) called Ten-X. You can often find space there and it is a nice camp. There will likely be rooms available at the Canyon, or in Tusayan, and if all else fails, you can always drive to Williams or Flagstaff and get a really cheap room easy enough -- it's about 70 miles. Personally, I wouldn't worry about it. I'm less certain about the Zion/Bryce areas, but again, I doubt in October/November you'll find the crowds that are prevalent in July.


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