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  1. Default Specific questions concerning western trip

    We're making definite plans now for our two-week Western trip this summer, and I have many questions -- thanks to anyone who can provide answers!

    We're flying in to Vegas, and after renting a car we'll head out of town towards the north, our first destination being the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Since we're flying in, we'll need to stop for a major stock-up shopping trip: We'll need a cooler, sandwiches, breakfast foods, sodas, water. This is a major road, so we're bound to find a Super Walmart (or similar). Is there anyplace in particular that'd be a good choice (or any overpriced place we should avoid)?

    Has anyone done the cookout at the Grand Canyon Lodge (North Rim)? We'll be there on July 4 and thought this might be a fun way to celebrate the holiday. It's expensive though. Any other thoughts on other options for July 4 in this area?

    We've made reservations to stay in Custer State Park (in the Mt. Rushmore area), but it's pretty pricey. Any advice on a good, basic hotel that might be less expensive? We're fine with something along the lines of a Holiday Inn or Best Western, and if a breakfast could be included, so much the better.

    We want to see the Cody Night Rodeo. In general, I like to order tickets for things like this (so I can save time by not waiting in line for tickets once we're there), but I'd like to know if we're likely to find coupons for a dollar or two off once we're in Cody.

    In Yellowstone we want to see geysers, etc. -- all the geothermic stuff. Should we book a tour with the Yellow Busses, or do it on our own?

    Is the Wolf & Grizzly Center in West Yellowstone worth the drive?

    Has anyone been to the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar for LUNCH? It looks really cool online but the prices look high, and we'd want to be sure that it'd be appropriate for our teenaged daughters.

    We'll be traveling through Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, South Dakota, Wyoming, Idaho, and Utah. Are any of these states known for better gas prices than the others? (I'm asking because we live close to the state line, and our neighboring state has significantly lower taxes; thus, we always make sure to fill up when we go that direction.)

    What kind of weather can we expect the first two weeks of July? We're Southerners, so we're used to heat -- the humid kind of heat. Some of the cabins we'll be using at the national parks do not have air conditioning; should we buy a small fan for the evenings, or will it be cool enough to sleep comfortably? Does the west usually have much rain during this timeframe?


  2. Default Envy

    I must say I envy you on the trip you have planned. You will be covering a lot of territory in two weeks. I live in Colorado and Wyoming seems to have the cheapest gas around. Wyoming, Colo, New Mex and Utah. While in Cody, if at all possible try and spend a day at the Buffalo Bill Cody Museum. I say a day, and that is accurate. Some people have spent two days there. Well worth the time.

    In South Dakota if you stay away from the "touristy" areas, reasonable lodging can easily be found. Spearfish, Sturgis, and Custer for that matter, are good base camps for touring the sites. Black Hills is a must. Bad Lands is also worth while.

    If you go to the Tetons, avoid staying in Jackson high $$.

    As for weather, for the most part hot and dry. I was in the Idaho - Teton area this past 4th of July and it was very very hot up there. But it's a dry heat Ha Ha.

    Afraid that is about all the help I can give at the moment , enjoy!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default What Specifics I Know About

    Hopefully, Mark can offer some specifics, but a few years ago when I was using Las Vegas as a jumping off spot for my own trip similar to yours, I realized that northeast Las Vegas is a totally different world. This is the area around Nellis Air Force Base along NV-604, Las Vegas Blvd.. I found a low cost motel and several good and reasonably low cost grocery stores in the area, so that may fit your needs as well.

    My wife and I, on a separate trip, spent a few days at the North Rim. I recommend the Lodge for lunch when the views are better (more light) and the prices considerably lower than for dinner. I also usually recommend small town celebrations for the Fourth of July, but if you're going to be at the North Rim, then you're pretty much going to have to attend the park's festivities.

    I may be a bit prejudiced, since I'm a geologist and I'm not a big fan of tour busses, so I think you can do just as well at Yellowstone by reading up on its geothermal aspects beforehand and then taking the interpretive hikes with a good guidebook or even a pamphlet from the visitor's center. This also lets you set your own pace and ponder your own questions and thoughts. Then if you have any outstanding questions, check back in at a ranger or visitor center and go one on one with someone there.

    For gas prices, check Gas Buddy once or twice before you go. You're not necessarily looking for exact prices, which are subject to change, but for patterns of pricing differences between states and even areas within states.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Grocery Stores

    Quote Originally Posted by MrsPete View Post
    We'll need a cooler, sandwiches, breakfast foods, sodas,water.
    Here's an overview about grocery stores in Las Vegas. The best bargain for excellent quality is the Fresh-n-Easy brand --here is a map of their stores.


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