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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    11,001

    Default Visual Aid might be helpful

    Quote Originally Posted by Delbon
    and being completely new to this part of America I accepted that Moab was at or near Bryce
    Del, What I would recommend at this point is that you get a hold of a map, (either by purchase) or a free one online or at the library and look at the area we are describing as you are reading these posts. The distances we describing are akin to driving back and forth accross England several times and you might find our commentary more helpful if you were using a good map as a visual aid.
    Thank you for your very detailed recommendations if we wished to stay over night prior to our visit to the South Rim from Vegas is there anywhere you would recommend
    I would recommend either staying at Kingman or Wiliams, Arizona.
    - we could then stay at El Tovar at the Canyon
    , Excellent and I still think you should spend two nights here, but anyway,
    Rubys in Bryce and say Cliffrose lodge at Zion
    both are more expensive than they ought to be and there are other options in the area. For about half the cost and twice the scenery you could stay at the Bryce Valley Inn in Tropic and have a great breakfast next door. This field report could be a good primer for your planning purposes.

    Mark

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Chichester West Sussex UK
    Posts
    5

    Default

    Thanks for all your help - I will let you know how it goes

    Thanks for a great site

    Del

  3. #13

    Default Your trip sounds familiar

    How exciting! I just came across your postings. Your trip sounds very familiar to me. You see, I'll be traveling to Las Vegas at the end of April 2007 for a friends wedding. I plan to take 2 extra days or so and drive to the Grand Canyon with a stop at the Hoover Dam. It will be the first time for me as well. I really enjoyed all the advice you've gathered so far and now I have some more ideas of where to stay and what to do. I will try to remember to check back here and let you know if I come across any other interesting information.

    I noticed you were considering including Zion or Moab into your trip. I have been to Moab and it is a great place to see. But, because of the distance (and I freely admit that, overall, I am not very familiar with that part of the country) you would probably have to cut short your visit to somewhere else to get there. With all that driving, I would recommend keeping the driving to a minimum and allow yourselves to have the extra time at the places you do choose to visit.

    Tonya

  4. Default i did a portion of your planned trip in May 2005

    I did this route last spring. It was an AMAZING trip. We spent 3 nights in Vegas then went to the Grand Canyon (south rim)--i don't have the routes we took in front of me, but its been posted previously.
    Don't miss a stop at the Hoover dam. It was great. The visitors center has a wonderful movie/informational talk/and tour. It is great.
    We did the drive from vegas to the GC i(south rim) in one day and got in early evening. El Tovar is amazing--we could not get reservations there, so make sure you have made those(Xanterra is the company that handles all in park reservations. Also do a google search for grand canyon national park search--that website has alot of info re:planning a trip to the park. Once in the park the rangers and hotel staff were very helpful)
    We stayed in the park and i would highly recommend it. Once we parked the car we used the transportation in the park to get to where we needed to go...but since you are right on the rim at the El Tovar you are going to have a great view. Make sure you see sunrise over the canyon. If you want to hike there are plenty of rim hikes to take, but even the car lookout points are quite amazing.
    After two nights at the GC we went out thru the east entrance--nice way out of the park--it gave a different perspective. I do recall gas/petrol stations being very few and far between...so we filled up prior to entering the park and then leaving out the east entrance it was awhile before we saw another one...don't run too low in this area.)
    From the GC we went to Zion. We stayed at the Majestic View Lodge--it was a beautiful place. All the rooms had balconies and the red rock was visible.
    If you want to check out other reviews of the hotels check out tripadvisor.com ---that is where I found the Majestic View Lodge and it was wonderful. Great restaurant on premises too.
    We did not go to bryce so i cannot give you any info on that. Instead we went to a spa in St. George, Utah (Red Mountain Spa) and then flew home. if anyone is interested in that info..let me know.

  5. #15

    Default Alternatives for weather.

    A couple thoughts on availability and routing, spurred by the thought that March is awfully close to Winter at some altitudes. There's a lot of good news after research, but its worth spending some time being aware.

    After some checking, the good news is that except for GCNP-North Rim, the other parks, Zion (but could be icy), Bryce, and the South Rim, (see tab from the north rim listing) are open year-round, barring any recent snows not fully cleared.

    Note of caution however, everything I can see (1, 2) says Cottonwood Canyon Road is a dirt road, and recommended for 4-wheel drives during the winter. Car rental policy is likely to prohibit driving on such a surface.

    An alternative is to stay on US-89 after getting into Utah from the GC. About 60+ miles West is Kanab, where you can inquire about road conditions to Zion and Bryce. Although Zion is closer (via Utah-9) at that point, parts of it may be least accessble. I recall in 2003 it was closed until sometime in May because of unusually heavy snow the prior winter. Zion has two sections, not connected within the park itself -- that is you can drive through one section for some amazing visual memories from the road. The other section has a visitors center and a number of trails/tracks. Still you should be able to biew at least some of it.

    Bryce is further North via US-89 and Utah-12 towards Bryce. If you have the time, you can go further East on Utah-12 from Bryce and touch the Northern reaches of Grand Staircase-Escelante then doubling back on Old-Escelante Road. If you want a different route back, you could try US-89 N, Utah-20, and I-15 back down to Utah-9 (for Zion) or continue on to L.V.

    In all cases its worth checking locally at time of travel to be sure of the road conditions, and of course defer to anyone who's travelled in these parks during that time of year.

    A few other notes:

    Watch your fuel level. While most parks have a village nearby with filling stations, there are no fuel facilities for cars within the parks .

    Daylight Savings Time begins March 11, in 2007, due to recent national legislation. A timezone runs roughly along the Eastern Nevada and California borders. Arizona doesn't participate, so after March 11, when the most Western states "spring forward" Arizona's time will be synched with theirs. Utah, however does particpate, always remaining an hour ahead of them.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Ontario Canada
    Posts
    169

    Default I second Judy's route

    It is only about 6 hours maximum drive from Las Vegas to Grand Canyon Village if you go to Flagstaff, then north to the Canyon.
    Not sure why you would need a stopover night on the way?
    You could stay overnight in Flagstaff.

    There are several free online "trip planners" to enter your stops and plan your itinerary. Also, you can type in Grand Canyon Village (for example) on www.mapquest.com or any other free online map, then zoom out to see the whole area.

    Microsoft Streets and Trips is a great program to buy and keep if you will travel North America often. It is not expensive.

    Zion National Park is probably my personal favourite. Hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
    At Bryce Canyon, perhaps reserve a horseback ride down into the canyon (1/2 day trip). It is a great way to see more if you are not big hikers.

    Grand Canyon West on the Hualapai Indian Reservation at Eagle Point is opening a new "glass skywalk". I believe it is to be open by the end of 2006? To stand out over the canyon, 4,000 feet up and look down! This costs extra and is not part of the national park but looks interesting / great / a thrill factor for those afraid of heights!

    I agree that Moab is out of your way for this trip. Perhaps another time. Stick to the main three Zion, Bryce, and Grand Canyon for the time frame you have.

    Everyone has already given very helpful answers. Keep asking questions and we are glad to assist in planning your itinerary.

  7. #17

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Syv View Post
    Grand Canyon West on the Hualapai Indian Reservation at Eagle Point is opening a new "glass skywalk". I believe it is to be open by the end of 2006? To stand out over the canyon, 4,000 feet up and look down! This costs extra and is not part of the national park but looks interesting / great / a thrill factor for those afraid of heights!
    I'm looking for more information on this area, "Grand Canyon West" on the Hualapai reservation.
    How rough is that road from Dolan Springs? (Pierce Ferry Rd I think is the name)
    What about the road from Grand Canyon West to Peach Springs? Anybody here driven these roads? Do-able in a rental car in late March? Mapquest's information is sparse.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    11,001

    Default The attraction (is supposed to) open in March, 2007

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonB1971 View Post
    How rough is that road from Dolan Springs? (Pierce Ferry Rd I think is the name)
    Pierce Ferry Road is paved from US-93 to the Diamond Bar Road junction. You will need to travel on Diamond Bar Road to the Grand Canyon West. It is a graded, gravel road -- a bit bumpy, but not a problem for any car. However, all rental agreements preclude travel off-pavement!
    What about the road from Grand Canyon West to Peach Springs?
    The Buck and Doe road is a jeep trail -- I wouldn't do it a car and you would need the permission of the Hualapai nation to try it.

    Mark

  9. #19

    Default

    Thanks Mark.
    I did a little more research and found this site
    ...and as chance would have it, we're going to be in Vegas the week the skywalk opens! I'll def be making this journey.
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 01-15-2007 at 11:44 AM. Reason: Preferred URL format

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    11,001

    Default Nice directions

    Jason,

    Good find -- that is a new site. Useful info there! We plan on going down and covering the opening too.

    Mark

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