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  1. Default Western Adventure

    Hi Peeps,

    My girlfriend and I are heading out to California and the Southwest in August. We were hoping that some people that know the regions well could give us some advice...

    Here is our itinerary...

    4th August arrive LAX

    5 days LA -> San Francisco
    - Big Sur
    - Gold Country
    - Vineyards

    3 days San Francisco

    Fly to Denver

    3 days in Mountains around Colorado
    - Boulder
    - mountain biking
    - hot springs

    3 days across South Utah
    - Dead Horse Point
    - whitewater rafting Colorado River
    - Highway 12
    - Hopefully Monument Valley if we have time

    2 days in Las Vegas

    3 days on beaches in San Diego and the OC to chill out.

    How does that sound? Too much or too little? Any other highlights that we should definitely see or do along the way? Will finding accomodation be a problem if we are not booking ahead? Will we be kidnapped by aliens?

    Thanks very much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Welcome!

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America Forum!

    The time seems reasonable to me.

    Getting accommodations really depends on where you're planning to stay. At that time of year, unless there is some big event going on nearby, you shouldn't have too much trouble finding a hotel/motel to stay at anywhere in the country. If you are planning on doing some camping, I would recommend setting up some reservations in advance, especially if you're going to the more popular state and/or National Parks.

    I also don't think you will be kidnapped by aliens.

  3. Default

    If you plan on staying in the Big Sur area, it would be a good idea to make a reservation. On of my favorite beaches in the Big Sur area

    Carmel is also a great place to stop (not too far north of Big Sur) and check out 17 mile drive. You can also walk along carmel beach and out to where Pebble Beach meets the ocean.
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 06-27-2007 at 11:25 PM. Reason: Preferred URL Format herein

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Keithville, LA

    Default Sounds Good

    Definitely be on the lookout for aliens, though. They're rampant this time of year. :)

    Otherwise, it looks like a well laid out and enjoyable trip. Please report back afterwards and let us know how it went. I'm very nosey.


  5. #5

    Default If it were me...

    Ignore me at will but, if it were me, I'd probably look to steal one of the first eight days, between arriving at LAX and departing San Fran, and add that to the Utah section of the trip. Make Monument Valley a must, it's very cool, and maybe check out Zion National Park on your way into Las Vegas.

    How are you getting from Las Vegas to San Diego? Flying or driving?

    What are your plans from there? Are you planning on flying out of San Diego or heading back up the coast road to LAX? I really enjoyed the drive from San Diego back up to LA - it's quite different to the drive through Big Sur, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. We stopped overnight in Long Beach before our return flight and found the atmosphere in the area very welcoming. The old Queen Mary is in Long Beach and has been turned into a hotel - we didn't stay there but I wish we had now!

  6. Default Western adventure -

    Hi Folks,

    A few weeks bag I posted the first post in this thread, and got some very helpful replies - so first off I'd like to thanks all those who offered their advice. I would have said thanks earlier, but life is very busy...

    Anyway, we now have 17 days until we travel, and there are still a few gaps and unanswered questions in the itinerary, so I was hoping some of you guys would be so kind as to help out again...

    Here's the plan at the moment:

    Day 1 (arrive from London) Santa Monica (booked)
    Day 2,3 Santa Barbara - Blue Sands Motel (booked)
    Day 3,4 Big Sur - Treebones Resort camping (booked)
    Day 4,5 Santa Cruz and/or Monterey Peninsula (?)
    Day 6,7 San Francisco - staying with a friend in Berkeley

    Day 8 Fly to Denver (booked)
    Day 9 Drive via Leadville to Ouray - 8 hr drive I know, but we're prepared (I hope :))
    Day 10 Ouray -> Durango. Million Dollar Highway. Mountain biking in afternoon if time.
    Day 11 Durango - rafting Upper Animas

    Day 12 ? Monument Valley ?
    Day 13 ? Highway 12 ?
    Day 14 ? Zion NP ?
    Day 15 ? (Arrive Las Vegas at 7pm)

    Day 16 Las Vegas

    Day 17,18,19 Beaches in SoCal
    Day 20 Depart LAX

    * Campsites close to Santa Cruz? I'd like to do some surfing if possible, but gf might go and wander around in town...
    * Recommendations for campsites in Durango and Ouray?
    * Companies for rafting out of Durango? Should we even go from Durango?
    * The Utah stage is still pretty vague. Can anyone give some advice on a good route through here? Is camping going to be out of the question this time of year due to the temperatures?
    * Hotel, motel in Las Vegas? Don't want to gamble, just wander around and look at the crazies...
    * Beaches for camping in SoCal? Or should we splash out and get a hotel in town? (Thinking Laguna Beach or San Diego)

    All recommendations, advice, comments and ideas are much appreciated!

    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 07-18-2007 at 08:54 AM. Reason: Merged post back into the original thread

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Camping in the heat

    Weather-depending, camping in the heat can be a challenge to say the least. You may want to watch the weather report as you get closer to your Utah leg to see exactly what the temperatures are going to be. Even so, the nighttime temperatures can be quite comfortable, even when the daytime temps are on the upper reaches of the thermometer, such as a high of 100 and a low of 60.

  8. #8

    Default Some Inputs

    We use to camp in San Clemente. You can walk to the beach from the campground, but all the campgrounds along the west coast are busy during the summer months.

    I don't know anything about Durango, but if you go there and then want to do Monument Valley....

    Durango to Monument Valley: Mesa Verde National Park doesn't take that long to visit. Be sure to stop at four corners; there's nothing there and there's a fee, but you do get to stand in four states.

    I'm not a fan of Monument Valley; it's scenic, but access is limited. UT Hwy-12 definitely looks like fun, but it will take time to get there. To get to Hwy-12, you could drive through Valley of the Gods (it looks just like Monument Valley). Note: It is a major climb to get onto UT Hwy-261. We enjoyed Natural Bridges Natl. Mon. The long drive on UT Hwy-95 to get to UT Hwy-24 is scenic all the way. UT Hwy-24, which can be used to get to Hwy-12, passes through Capitol Reef Natl. Park.

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