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  1. #1

    Default DC to Park City, Utah in August with 2 kids (8 & 10)

    We would love some tips on taking a road trip between DC and Park City, Utah this August with our kids, who are ages 8 and 10. We would like to take 3 days to get to Park City and maybe 5 days on the way back (we will stay in Park City for about 10 days in between). We are outdoorsy people who love to hike and enjoy nature; we do not like anything too touristy. We also like to stay in nice places; no strange B&Bs. :-)

    Any advice would be appreciated - Where should we stop? What should we see? Where should we stay? What routes should we take?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default recommendations

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I would strongly encourage you to take at least 4 days each direction. While its not impossible to cover this distance in 3 days, you're looking at nearly 700 miles a day, which works out to 12-13 hours minimum on the road every day. That's really on the top end of what you can do safely, but its going to make for a pretty miserable time for your kids, as there will be no time to make any stops (even short ones) for a fun break along the way.

    Here is a great article about family trips
    , with one of the best things being the recommendation to stop every couple of hours to let the kids run off some energy. It is easy to find place to take a break, which can be as simple as pulling into a city park - but also you can almost always find a good state park relatively close to the interstate that will provide some excellent natural beauty on top of everything else. Here are some examples of what we are talking about.

    As far as picking a route, there are several choices (basically involving I-80 or I-70) that will work just fine for the direct trip, but I think you need to figure out what it is you want to see. You're traveling across the 3/4 of the US, so your options are pretty unlimited. I'd probably go one route there (perhaps up to Cleveland and Chicago, and across I-80) then back another way (perhaps go down to I-70 in Colorado). But really, you need to at least figure out the major things you'd like to visit along the way. Once you've got a better idea of your own trip, then we can help you fill in the gaps.

    Most B&Bs are designed as more romantic adult getaway type places, so they tend to be very nice, but they would be a poor choice for a family trip. You really shouldn't have any problem finding a whole range of motel classes no matter where you end up stopping for the night.

  3. #3

    Default Some water, some bones, and some ice

    Hello Stacy,

    I wholeheartedly concur with MM as to at least 4 days to make the trip even without stopping for more then necessary stops on either the out or back leg. Especially with the kids, trying to do it in 3 days could lead to a mutiny.

    If it were myself, I'd use the adrenaline on the outbound leg to just get Park City in the 4 days allotted and would save my stops for the return trip. While in PC, I suppose you're aware of the extensive hiking and single-track mountain bike trails all over Summit County. I believe there's a long stretch of rails-to-trails over near Wanship, too. The Alpine Loop takes you past Robert Redwood's Sundance Resort and over the Wasatch Range past the Timpanogos Caverns.

    On the return trip, I'd short-hop to Dutch John, UT and grab a half-day or a full-day raft trip down the Green River, starting at the base of the Flaming Gorge Dam. Then over to Dinosaur National Park (Nat Monument?) for some bones. Close to Steamboat Springs is Strawberry Hot Springs for some soaking and an overnight in a nice town. Capping off the Colorado stops prior to the slog back across the country on I-70 would be a trip over the Front Range on Trail Ridge Rd (within Rocky Mountain National Park). The TRR reaches +11,000' elevation and for several miles is very much on top of the world, with lots of pull-outs offering short hikes. On the Loveland (east) side the town of Estes Park is a great place to overnight.

    Have fun planning and taking your RoadTrip!


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