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  1. Default Vancouver BC - to Grand Canyon - Vegas, Sequoia, Yosemite

    But not necessary in that order, Our initial plan was to drive down to Disneyland and take a day trip to Las Vegas. With the cost of fuel and the frequent "deals" on flying down to Anaheim we decided to make this trip about natural wonders.

    About us. Hubby and I have made speed trips in sedans from Fresno to Vancouver in 24 hours, so we are accustomed to long hours on the road. Our kids to well for four hour spells at a time.

    Our gut instinct was to take I-5 down to CA and cut over where ever. But I have read about others going through SLC. From there it is a little sketchy for me. From the maps I have looked at - it seems like SLC to Vegas and from Vegas to Grand Canyon would be the most feasible. This would also give the kids a break in Circus Circus for a "commercialism" break. Is there another route that would prevent us from doubling back? RT 89 for instance?

    We are driving a SVC and will be eating a lot of RV prepared meals - I was wondering if someone could direct me to fail safe meal ideas that are kid friendly.. I don't seem to have much luck in finding this in my searches.

    This site is awesome and I will be checking back on it when I am on the road... Thanks for reading my long winded thread.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default No Backtracking

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    I put your itinerary in some mapping software which has a function to optimize stops along the way and it claimed that the Grand Canyon (by way of SLC and US-89) should be your first stop. There are a couple of theme parks in the Salt Lake area if you want to break up the trip down. Since you plan to make this trip as much about natural wonders, though, be sure to visit gthe Great Salt Lake itself and then take a short detour to get on US-89: Continue south on I-15 to Parowan, UT and then take UT-143 south through Cedar Breaks National Monument to UT-14 east to US-89 south through the Grand Staircase-Escalante. You can then continue westward after the Grand Canyon to Las Vegas and then up the west side of the Sierra Nevada to see Sequoia and Yosemite. On the way home, consider stops as well at Crater Lake, Mount St. Helens and Mt. Rainier.

    Sorry, I can't help you on the food front. My wife claims my sole sustenance is "brown meat and gravy".


  3. Default

    thanks AZ.. It is really tricky for me as my DH is a vegetarian, my oldest is a goat (eats EVERYTHING) and my youngest eats like a bird at best.

    I have a link to the RV we are renting, when I say we are renting a van most people think Caravan type deal. we will have our dvd player, Nintendo ds, card games and will be eating and driving.

    We are leaving early evening on May 15 and DH will drive through the night I will spell him off early morning and hopefully by May 16 evening we will stop over for a night in SLC. I really want to avoid theme parks until after Grand Canyon, I am scared the boys will roll their eyes after an adrenaline rush on rides. I have a surprise up my sleeve that if I can save enough money by cooking and packing food in our kitchen instead of going out and miss theme parks .. I would take them on a helicopter ride down into the canyon... shhhh don't tell anyone.

    As for food, I was going to stick to spaghetti, cold sandwiches, and perhaps vegetarian Chilli
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 05-03-2008 at 07:42 PM. Reason: Preferred URL format herein

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula

    Default I can't really top AZBuck's route advice

    So I'll help with the food. Here's the type of food I pack in a cooler and eat on the road. Now, this is in a little car. If I had a small kitchen, it would be easy to do an even bigger variety of quick, easy to fix, nutritious meals. Nothing wrong with spaghetti, sandwiches, and vegi-chili but that would get old real fast. It's not hard, time-consuming or expensive to eat a bigger variety even from your car. With a small kitchen, having some variety should be a snap. If you don't want your family to get bored so you can save for your surprise, you might want to put more thought into this.

    I think your first day is a bit much. Especially if you're not used to driving an RV. I find driving these types of rigs more tiring than any car to drive. Allow yourself some flexibility to pull over for the night if the going is more tiring than you think it will be. I just think it's a mistake to start out with such a long haul and get weary right out of the gate. I would save those type of marathon drives for on the way home, if need be.

  5. Default

    funny you say that about the first day, I was just pondering taking the I-90 - I was told by a friend that this is faster. Hopefully this is true....

    The hubby has experience driving big vehicles - this is why he is driving at night as I refuse to. I am okay on highways and have driven from Vancouver to Portland solo straight through the night in a campervan.

    I am still confused if the fridge will work while we are driving, I will sort this out when we have it in our possession. My biggest hurdle is trying to sort out what I can bring from Canada food wise. Our brands are different and there are a lot of things that aren't allowed over from Canada. Pop Tarts are universal though!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula

    Default I-90 to Grand Canyon?

    Your friend is wrong. I-90 goes east, not south. Taking I-90 before it meets up with I-15 to take you south adds 150 miles to the trip. Now, that's not a lot and if you'd rather go that way because you want to see things along that route, then go for it. But there is no way it's faster. Going that route is all on interstates until close to the Grand Canyon but so is the quicker route I'm giving you below. So you will be able to drive at roughly the same speeds on each route. So driving speed wouldn't make your friend's recommended route faster either.

    The quickest way from Vancouver BC to Grand Canyon would be to take I-5 to Seattle, take I-90 to Ellensburg, then I-82 through Yakima and Kennewick to Oregon, then I-84 to just north of Salt Lake City where I-84 veers east. At this point, you'll merge onto I-15 and go south until you get a few miles past Beaver, UT. AT this point, you'll take Hwy 20 over to meet up with US-89. Take 89 through Kanab UT and Page AZ until you'll take 64 heading west at Cameron AZ. 64 will take you into the Grand Canyon - South Rim.

    This is just over 1500 and will take you three long days.

    Most food can't come over the border. From what it says, I think canned goods would be OK and maybe some other packaged foods. I was under the impression that the exchange rate was in your favor so that purchases in the US are actually cheaper for you. My son goes to college in Bellingham and works at Bellis Fair Mall and tells me that Canadians are shopping there like crazy because of the favorable exchange rate. If so, then why not stop at a grocery in the US to stock up?

    I have never heard of an RV that does not have a refrigerator that works while you're travelling on the road. You should have no problem keeping food cold. Most even small freezers that work while traveling as well.

    BTW, Vancouver to Portland is only just over 300 miles. It's a bit over 950 miles to Salt Lake City. (Just to give you a comparison of how much farther it is so you can get a better idea of what you're planning to do.)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.


    depending on what time scale you have and the fact you want to see some natural wonders i agree with the route judy set out between SLC and G/C.and if you have the time you could take side trips to bryce canyon and zion n.p. which are 2 wonderfull places.both have good campsites [may need to check on vacancies].if you then went through page as suggested there is an r.v park at cameron trading post which is within 45mins of the desert view drive east entrance to the grand canyon village,which has spectacular views all the way along as well as the watchtower near the entrance.
    you can then leave by the south entrance towards vegas.from vegas you could take a detour across death valley and cross the southern end of the sierras by lake isabella before heading to the sequoias. you could possibly drive up the generals highway from three rivers,it's very scenic but quite a work out in the r.v. but we felt it was worth it. a lot will depend on your time scale.
    the fridge and freezer will continue to work whilst travelling,it automatically switches to the battery power that is being charged by the engine when on the move. it is also quite normal to have a generator which can be used if your not on a mains supply.

    we took a 45 min flight across the grand canyon [did'nt land] from grand canyon airport in tusayan and loved every minute of it,well worth it!

    have you accomodation in vegas? we stayed here which is not the cheapest but a lovely resort. although close to the airport,we were out from early untill late and had no real probs from aircraft noise but it could be annoying if you stayed on site.
    have a great trip!

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