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Thread: Please help!

  1. Default Please help!


    I am an Brit living in San Fran and have 4 or 5 mates coming over in June for a holiday for 2/3 weeks. I want to do a road trip all the way down to san diego, but also want to bring them to vegas so i plan to do a 'loop'. Could someone please tell me the places to check out on the trip down to san diego and how long we should stay in each spot?
    Thinking about hiring a vw camper for a couple of weeks? any suggestions about this? i.e. is it a good way to travel?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default "Y" Loop

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America forum.

    Actually, if you just go point to point to the three cities you've mentioned, your route looks more like the letter "Y" than it does a loop, and you'd do each arm of the Y twice. You can do better than that and show your friends more of America if you really do a loop. One such loop would go like this. Head down the Pacific Coast Highway (CA-1) through Monterey, and Big Sur (LOTS of posts on the forums, try the Search function on the toolbar). Spend a day or two in Los Angeles. Be sure to visit Balboa Park in San Diego, maybe take a tour of the Harbor. You could spend a week in San Diego alone (I have) but a couple of days will give you a chance to get a good taste. Cross southern California on I-8, CA-111 and CA-78 (with a possible side trip to the Salton Sea, America's version of the Dead Sea) to enter Arizona on I-10. Then take US-60 and US-89 to Prescott, and AZ-89A through the towns of Jerome and Cottonwood to Sedona. All of these towns are worth at least a day, Sedona is worth several, but you'll have to keep it moving. From Sedona, head up to the Grand Canyon. (What, you were going to bring your friends 7000 miles and miss it by a couple of hundred?) After at least a day hiking the rim or even getting a bit down into the canyon, head on up to Las Vegas. When you get done with Las Vegas, take a few days and return to San Francisco by way of US-95, NV-374, through Death Valley to US-395 north then take CA-120 through Yosemite National Park and on back in to the Bay Area. Anyway, that's just one possibility. Hopefully it might trigger some more ideas of your own.

    Now, for the not so good news. Three weeks of 5 or 6 guys in a VW camper is far more togetherness than I even want to think about. To be honest, I think that such a specialty vehicle will rent for such a premium that you might be better off renting two sedans and having a bit more room and the opportunity to switch off who's travelling with whom.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 02-25-2006 at 09:06 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Another couple of ideas

    Quote Originally Posted by mcgowske
    I want to do a road trip all the way down to san diego, but also want to bring them to vegas so i plan to do a 'loop'.
    AZBuck's suggestion is a great one, here is another one to consider...

    I would head east and north on Interstate 80 and go to Lake Tahoe and Virginia City. Both will be gorgeous in June and Virginia City is a very cool western town -- plenty of pubs and places to wander. Then south back across the Sierras on US-50 to Placerville and the south along the Golden Chain Highway (SR-49) also known as the Gold Rush Trail.

    The whole front range of the Sierras is loaded with gold rush historical towns, great pubs and pretty country. I would check out Murphys -- pretty upscale, a fun place to check out. When your each SR-120 turn east and go check out Yosemite National Park.

    After seeing the park, continue south on SR-41 to Bass Lake Road and Zig-zag your way to Sequoia NP and if you are up for a real adventure take County Road 41 (at the southern end of the Giant Sequoia National Monument) and cross Sherman Pass -- awesome views -- this will lead to Kennedy Meadows road on the eastern side of the Sierras (steep, use low gears).

    When you reach US-395 turn north and proceed to Olancha and turn east again on SR-190 past the Panamint Springs resort past Emigrant Pass into Death Valley National Park. It will be hot in June -- but Death Valley is an amazing place and if you can stay a couple of days your mates will remember it forever.
    Be sure to stop by the bar at the Furnace Creek Inn and wander around the lilly pad oasis a while.

    From Death Valley continue east on SR-190 to Death Valley Junction and then follow State Line Road to Ash Meadows road to Bell Vista (the name changes, but you don't really have to change roads) to NV-SR-160 and then south to Pahrump and then on over to Las Vegas. Plenty to do here...

    Your mates may enjoy seeing London Bridge in Lake Havasu, Arizona If you have time, and want to drive on a section of historic Route 66 on your way to Lake Havasu -- use US-93 and check out Hoover Dam (great tour) and then zoom down to Rosie's for lunch (good grub and a biker hangout).

    Jump on I-40 and immediately exit at exit 44 and take historic route 66 over Sitgreaves Pass to Oatman and then down past Golden Springs back to I-40 (go east to the next exit 9) and then south on SR-95 to Lake Havasu.

    From there I would go south on AZ-SR-95 (it is a very pretty drive along the eastern side of the Colorado River) At Parker I would cross the river and follow SR-62 to Earp (named for Wyatt Earp) and then west on SR-62 to SR-177 to I-10 (west) to Cotton Springs Road and go explore Joshua Tree National Park a little and then I would go to Desert Hot Springs and soak at Sam's Spa (darn nice water).

    After that nice soak you will be ready for the driving challenge of SR-74 over Sugarloaf Mountain (south of Palm Springs) and I would follow SR-371 to SR-79 and sample the tasting rooms at the wineries as you make your way north toward Temecula for the best stromboli on the planet.

    After the stromboli jump on I-15 and zoom down to San Diego. (on the way you could take the driving tour at the San Diego Wild Animal Park near Escondido)

    San Diego --- too much to do.

    And then follow the coast all the way back to San Francisco. Now, this would be a good "loop".

    Happy Planning!

    Last edited by Quebec Gen; 02-25-2006 at 02:37 PM.

  4. Default

    Cheers lads!!!
    some nice ideas there for me to ponder over!!

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