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  1. Default Late May/early June 2007 - St. Paul, MN to SoCal

    My friends and I go to college in St. Paul, Mn, but I live in Southern California. They are both native Minnesotans and have either never been out of the state (or not terribly far out of it), so we've been thinking it would be fun to road trip back to my house after second semester (late May/early June). We're considering either going by way of Vegas or the Grand Canyon because they've never been to either.

    Any thoughts, ideas, tips, suggestions, etc? Important things are cost-effectiveness, ease and packing as much into a short trip as possible (they want to spend as much time in Cali as they can before heading home).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default There are One or Two Things on That Route

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    As it happens, the most time efficient route between St. Paul and southern California (I'm assuming somewhere in the L.A. area) is also chock full of great places to stop and gorgeous scenery to drive through. Basically, you'd head down I-35 to Des Moines and pick up I-80 west, use I-76 to cut over to I-70 at Denver and then take I-15 south into California. Along this route you'll be following the old Oregon Trail, pass close enough to Rocky Mountain National Park that it would be worth the detour, drive one of the most beautiful stretches of interstate Highway (I-70 through Colorado) that exists, hit Arches National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Zion National Park, and of course Las Vegas. From Las Vegas, you can (if you push it) see the Grand Canyon on a day trip, but it will take all day. At a minimum, this drive is going to take you 4 days, but that would preclude seeing the Grand Canyon and wouldn't leave much time to see many of the other great places you're going to be driving by. Try to talk your friends into taking a couple of more days for this trip. I'm sure that even as a native Californian, you'll agree that there's nothing in L.A. that is going to compare to those sights.

    As to keeping expenses down, try having a look at these tips and be sure, if you plan on stopping at more than a couple of national parks, to get a National Parks Pass.


  3. Default

    Thanks. That was definitely the route we were thinking about taking. A couple of my fellow drivers are fairly inexperienced - are there any stretches of road that could prove tricky?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Québec, Montreal, Arizona, California, France

    Default Mountains Roads and Big Cities

    Hi Indianna Gurl,

    A couple of my fellow drivers are fairly inexperienced - are there any stretches of road that could prove tricky?
    If you follow AZBuck's suggestions, the road will be fairly flat until you reach the Rockies west of Denver. I-70 can be a little scary if you're not used to drive on mountain roads so maybe you should save that stretch for you if you are the most experienced driver among your group. Anyway, that particular stretch of I-70 is so picturesque, I doubt there'll be protesters, they will all want to have a look around without having to worry about driving.:-) Also bigger cities can be more tricky, especially as you get closer to the west coast. If you stay on interstates and highways, avoid unmarked dirt roads and drive carefully you shouldn't have any trouble.

    Drive safe!


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