My first post here, but I've been reading on a regular basis for the last month. I'm afraid this is long..sorry. My husband and I have done several road trip vacations in the last few years, but have always needed to stay fairly close to home because of time constraint.
We are leaving in one month on our trip...this time with three kids along for the ride (13,12,and 5). We'll be driving the MN to CA part in two different legs. First, an all night drive to Littleton, CO. Then staying there for a couple of days with relatives. Second part of that marathon will be from CO to Chino, CA. We drive these distance on a regular basis in a one shot deal when we travel to Texas. Our drive home from CA will be far more laid back, with several days in the Yellowstone/Cody area.
I have one main concern:
The drive from Colorado to California. Mileage is the same as some of our regular all night driving marathons, but I'm assuming the terrain is going to slow us down. I'm wondering if we should try and break up that part of the trip. Husband says no....I'm still worried about it. It's about 1000 miles.
Second, not a concern...but some help??
We're driving up through Utah to the Yellowstone area, and then over to the Black Hills area on our way home. I've seen all of this...20 years ago. My family has seen none of it. We love side trips, and I've seen numerous options on the web. I just can't decide which would be worth the detour.
Scenery, local pubs and food stops, friendly family owned motels/campgrounds are our favorite. We're booked in chain hotels now..but prefer the local owned ones. We are seasoned tent campers and will have stuff with for that option as well.
Right now I just have the obvious stops planned on the obvious interstates. I'd like to change some of this before we leave. Or at least find some unique places to side trip from the chain hotel.
1st stop - Cedar City, UT (one night)
2nd stop - Pocatello, ID (one night)
3rd stop - West Yellowstone (two nights)
4th stop - Gardiner, MT (two night)
5th stop - Cody, WY (one night)
6th stop - Deadwood, SD (two nights)
7th stop - Mitchell, SD (one night on the way home)
I know this is a horribly tall order...but any suggestions would be extremely helpful.