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  1. Default Routing: Denver--->Grand Canyon--> Los Angeles

    This is going to be a fast trip, unfortunately... the goal is to leave on a Sunday morning in and arrive sometime Monday night in Los Angeles. The trip is also in early January, so a route with less volatile weather and safer roads would be preferable.

    Which routing would be best?
    I-25 south to Albuquerque, then I-40 west to Winslow or Flagstaff, AZ for the night, stopping by the Grand Canyon the next day, and then finishing the drive to Los Angeles via I-40 and I-15 in the afternoon/evening


    2) I-70 west into Utah, then US 191 and US 163 south through Utah followed by US 160 west through northeastern Arizona, spending the night in Kayenta or Tuba City. Visiting the Grand Canyon and then continuing on to LA the next day.

    I guess I am concerned about I-70 through the Rockies in January, as well as the quality of the US Highways through Utah and Arizona... it does seem like that routing would be shorter, but wouldn't the all-interstate route be a lot faster? I also wonder if there might be less accomodation options available in the Navajo Nation as compared to along the I-40 corridor...

    Any help would be appreciated :)

    Also: The car I'll be driving is a 1996 Honda Civic, if that makes a difference.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default No time for the Grand Canyon!

    Quote Originally Posted by just_lindsay View Post
    This is going to be a fast trip, unfortunately... the goal is to leave on a Sunday morning in and arrive sometime Monday night in Los Angeles.
    I-70 to I-15 is the best route for this trip -- Welcome to the Great American RoadTrip Forum! Obviously you will need to check the weather and road conditions before you leave Denver, but if winter weather is a possibility on your trip than I would much rather drive on I-70 (with Colorado's superb highway department services) than I-25 and I-40 -- do you remember the news reports about I-25 last year?

    Here are some winter driving tips. And here is a field report about I-70 in eastern Utah.

    You really don't have time for a stop-over at the Grand Canyon. I would suggest that you stay overnight in St. George or Las Vegas on Sunday and reach LA on Monday.

    It is about 1020 miles between Denver and LA -- with normal winter driving conditions, you can expect it to take you a minimum of 19 hours to cover this distance (along I-70/I-15) so you will really need all of those two days to make this trip.

    If the passes are snow-bound, (along I-70) when you leave Denver -- rather than going south I would head north on I-25 to Cheyenne and take I-80 to I-15. This is a much easier -- all-weather route -- it is a little bit longer at 1230 miles (about 210 miles longer) but if the roads are open and relatively dry, you can usually average a little faster speed. I would peg this route at about 21 hours -- but it can be a much easier 21 hours than the drive over the passes on I-70....

    If the Grand is required.... you must add another day for the trip. Following the US Highways in option 2 is certainly doable -- but you may hit heavy winter weather in parts of this trip -- where your average speed will dip into the 30's (mph).

    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 10-24-2007 at 08:41 AM. Reason: more information

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