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  1. Default Road Trip - SF to LV via Yosemite

    Hi there,

    I'm planning a trip to SF & LV in Nov 08. I'll arrive in SF on 1st Nov, and my planned itinerary is as follows:-

    01 Nov - SF
    02 Nov - SF
    03 Nov - SF
    04 Nov - Check-Out of SF hotel in the morning. Depart on road trip to LV via
    Yosemite, Death Valley etc... (Overnight at along-the-way
    05 Nov - Enroute to LV (Overnight at along-the-way hotels/motels)
    06 Nov - Enroute to LV (Overnight at along-the-way hotels/motels)
    07 Nov - Arrive at LV (possible before 3pm)
    08 Nov - LV
    09 Nov - Check-Out of LV hotel in the morning. Depart on road trip to Grand
    Canyon. Either stay one night at Grand Canyon area or return
    back to LV.
    10 Nov - LV
    11 Nov - Check-Out of LV hotel. Drive back to SF in shortest route.
    12 Nov - SF
    13 Nov - End of Trip.

    As it's my first time visiting the US, can the gurus please help:-

    1) Advise/suggest the itineraries for the road trip (04 Nov - 07 Nov);
    2) Any other short day trips nearby LV?;
    3) The shortest drive route back to SF from LV?

    A more detailed explanation on the routes/roads/highways to take, places to stay, things to do, are very much appreciated. Thanks a million in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default A popular, but fantastic road trip.

    Hello and welcome to the R.T.A. forums.

    Here's a couple of answers for you.

    1] A lot will depend on whether the Tioga pass [120] remains open or not when you travel. This lovely mountain route crosses the sierra's from Yosemite but closes this time of year when the snows come. Here is a list of the opening and closing dates for the last few years.
    After travelling from S/F you will want to spend the night in Yosemite and a good part of the following day to explore [if not another night here] before making headway towards Death Valley. If Tioga is open then I would leave the park this way and head South on the 395 and look to be stopping between Bishop and Lone Pine. This will set you up nicely for crossing D/V on the 190 to Death Valley junction and onto Pahrump to connect with the 160 into Vegas.

    If the Tioga is closed then you will need to leave the park by the South entrance towards Oakhurst and Fresno on the 41 [A possibility is to take the 180 from Fresno onto the Generals highway to the Giants forest, home of the giant Sequoia trees] and then to Bakersfield on the 99 before crossing the Southern end of the sierra's towards D/V. An option here would be to head on the 178 through Kern canyon and stop over near Lake Isabella. [Kernville is a lovely little town] You can then link up with 190 across D/V/ by way of the 395 or by going through Ridgecrest and Trona on the 178.

    2] Check out this link for days out from Vegas.

    3] The quickest way back to S/F will be I-15 and I-5, but expect this "short trip to take around 12 hours with stops for lunch and gas e.t.c.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default ideas

    Just one clarification on Dave's excellent advice, When heading between Vegas and SF on the fastest route, between I-15 and I-5, you'll want to take CA-58 through Bakersfield. Its a nice quick trip through the desert, and over the mountains, into the Central Valley. The trip is a bit under 600 miles, so you could do it in one long 10-12 hour day.

    Since you're already planning to spend 2 days on this leg, you might want to take a trip out to the coast. From I-5, north of Bakersfield, take CA-46 over to Paso Robles/Morro Bay, spend the night somewhere in that area. Then you could take the Coastal route though Big Sur to Monterey and onto SF. I think you'll find that its a very scenic and enjoyable detour.

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

    Default Lots of ideas here

    Just go to this post. It has links to some of the best discussions about this particular trip. You should be able to glean many ideas just by reading through these. After you've had a chance to review the information, I'm sure you'll have more questions. Feel free to come on back here and let us help you tweak things to help you plan the best possible trip for you. Happy reading!

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