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  1. Default Some input on roads from Phoenix to Denver

    Hi all!
    I'm from NYC.. looking for some great open roads in the Southwest. I decided kinda spontaneously to fly out to Phoenix (actually.. tomorrow night). I'd be driving up to Denver. I'm doing this trip from Monday-Friday. Obviously, I will need the abbreviated version of all these places due to time constraints. Just looking for some great routes, beautiful sunsets, and amazing views in an area of the world I have yet to explore.
    Some sidenotes. I'm a female in my early 20's and doing this independently... so, while freedom and the open road is something I always crave, I'm looking for safety, as well. I'm not sure I want 100-mile roads alone without gas stops, motels in the middle of nowhere (basically, anything that reminds me of the movie, "Psycho"), or anything of that general nature. However, at this point.. I'm trying to keep my mind open to anything... except knife wielding motel owners. Any help would be appreciated! Thanks!

    OH.. another quick question is what car I should rent while down there.. thanks!

    Last edited by wakeupngo; 11-04-2007 at 01:10 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default The Sunsets Unlimited Route

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    For my money, if I were looking to make the drive from Phoenix to Denver with 4 or 5 days (one-way, I'm assuming) and were looking for scenery, here's the route I'd take:

    Use I-10 west out of Sky Harbor and I-17 north out of Phoenix and then about 10 miles past Camp Verde, take the exit for AZ-179 into Sedona. At Sedona, take AZ-89A up through Oak Creek Canyon to Flagstaff. That will set you up to use US-180 north into Grand Canyon National Park and east along the south rim of the Canyon to Cameron. Here take US-89 north and US-160 east to Kayenta. Next it's north on US-163 through Monument Valley. Now use some connecting back roads, UT-262 and CO-41 to head back down into Colorado (near Four Corners) and rejoin US-160 east to Mesa Verde National Park. Continue on to Durango and take US-550, the Million Dollar Highway, north to Montrose. US-50 will then take you east through the Black Canyon of the Gunnison to Poncha Springs where you will connect with US-285 around the west side of Pike's Peak and into Denver.

    I don't think you can find a more scenic route between Phoenix and Denver, and there's not a Psycho-typespot anywhere along it. As for a car, I'd get the smallest sedan you're comfortable in. You won't need anything special in the way of off-road capability, and even the smallest cars today have the horsepower necessary for the mountains. A smaller car will give you better mileage and be more fun to drive I would think.


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