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  1. Default Summer road trip 2009


    Well we're 4 norwegians that is planing a road trip on the west coast of USA from August 26 - Sept 19. The plan so far is to fly to San Francisco and then rent a car (most likly an SUV) then start driving north torwards Seattle :)

    The goal of the trip is to experiance as much as the road can offer, like national parks, small towns, countrysides and ofcourse some big cities that we would like to see :)

    So far we've ordered our flight tickets and we allmost agree on which car to rent, so pretty much what i'm looking for is information about what we should not miss in our trip.
    So any tips is much welcome :)

    This is a link to our planned trip so far in googlemaps

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Some Tips, Then

    Velkommen! Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    An SUV would certainly be a comfortable car for the journey and should offer sufficient room for four full sized adults. But it will be noticeably more expensive than a standard full sized sedan both in the cost of the rental and in the cost of gas to feed it. And it won't take you anywhere that the sedan won't. Most roads in America are well paved and if you're getting the SUV with the idea that you will go off-road, I can assure you that your rental contract will forbid such activities. If cost is a consideration, then you should also be aware that there will be significant additional charges for each extra driver and for each driver who is under 25.

    As far as the outline for your trip that you have so far, I am amazed that you aren't going to Yellowstone National Park and the Grand Tetons. Yellowstone was our first national park and is still the crown jewel of the system and is only a little out of your way. A couple of other unique national parks that you could add without too much trouble are Dinosaur National Monument and Arches National Park.

    Small towns will be everywhere along your drive, so concentrate on exploring a few distinct large cities. On your route San Francisco, Seattle, Salt Lake City, and Los Angeles will each offer something unique and a set of distinctly different lifestyles and night life.


  3. Default

    Since you're traveling down the CA coast, be sure to visit Channel Island National Park. It's unlike anything else anywhere.

    You have basically three landscapes in your plan: coast, dessert, Pacific Northwest -- and you're heaviest on coast. If I were in your shoes, and if I were looking for an overview of America, I'd sacrafice some of that coastal trip and add in Yellowstone / Grand Tetons, which are mountain /geothermal. I'd do this because SanFran, LA, and San Diego -- though they are all very nice -- are not worlds different from one another. I'd rather give up some of those big city experiences to add in the mountain experience, and you'd be able to see the nation's best national parks. (And personally I love Grand Tetons more than its big brother, Yellowstone.)

    Before you commit to the SUV, you might consider a mini-van. A mini-van with captain's chairs (and the back seat folded down to nothing) gives a huge amount of luggage area, and the captain's chairs are quite comfortable for adults.

  4. Default best views

    someone said to me that the best views come if you drive south from seattle as obviously the americans drive on the right!
    it changed the planning for my journey

  5. Default nor-cal

    i think ive done this trip about a million times. Santa cruz(including capitola village), half moon bay, and moss beach are about an hour south SF. Very worth it though. great beaches etc.

    Mendocino is the best small town in all of california. it is north couple hours, and great camping in russian gulch.

    Portland, Oregon has a great night life.

    Be sure to stop and go swimming at mount shasta on the I-5 oregon california border.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Welcome amberino7.

    Hi amberino, thanks for dropping by and offering advice in your first post.

    Welcome to R.T.A and enjoy the forums.

  7. #7

    Default Epic

    Wow, this is an epic trip. I'm envious.

    So much to see.

    I'd adjust the route to include some of our major national parks and cities,
    then fill in sights in between.
    * Los Angeles, California
    * Las Vegas, Nevada
    * Grand Canyon, Arizona
    * Zion, Utah
    * Bryce, Utah
    * Salt Lake City, Utah
    * Grand Tetons, Wyoming
    * Yellowstone, Wyoming
    * Glacier, Montana
    * Seattle, Washington
    * Olympic, Washington
    * Crater Lake, Oregon
    * Portland, Oregon
    * Redwood, California
    * San Francisco, California
    * Yosemite, California

    The deserts, needless to say will be very hot.

    Echo everything mentioned about the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone.
    The Grand Tetons are spectacular.

  8. Default Thanks alot :)

    Thanks for all the great feedback so far, we're working on modifying our trip so we get a few of those nationalpark (ex yellowstone) and some of those cities mentioned into the route. We just have to be carefull not to put too many things in that we end up with not enough time to enjoy all the places we want to see aswell :)
    But when we're done with our edited plan i'll make sure to post it here so it's possible to get even more feedback.

    Another thing we are curious about is sports along the trip, we're all sports interested in watching some american sports while we're over there, and i guess it's a hard thing to give advice about as everyone is focused on their own teams and such, but if there is some teams/stadiums etc etc we should not miss on our way it would be very nice to know about :) (atm we're are googeling as much as we can to get as much info about the places we're visiting but it's hard to remeber/find/notice everything)

    Again, thanks for all the feedback so far as it helped out alot! :)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Some Sports Venues

    You'll be in the States for baseball season. Now this is a sport that is not much played in Europe, and it is fairly slow paced, but if you want to watch it in a relatively unique location, see if the Giants will be at home while you're in San Francisco. There is also soccer in the United States with teams in Los Angeles and Salt Lake City.


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