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  1. #1

    Default Summer 2011 : 20 days in California


    2 years after our 3 weeks trip in the southwest (colorado, utah, wyoming, south dakota, colorado), we're planning going back in the usa, this time merely in California.
    FYI, I went in california - utah - nevada - arizona 5 years ago. So, we won't go the grand canyon np or in the death valley.

    We were thinging of a loop beginning and finishing in LA.
    We'd like to spare our time between nature and cities.
    Must do cities : LA / SF / Las Vegas / San Diego.
    Must do "nature" : Pacific coast / Yosemite / Sequoia / South Lake Tahoe.

    What do you thing of this trip? How would you schedule it?
    We've got many others ideas : anza borrego / mojave / joshua tree / redwood np / lassen np / Palm Springs / Sacramento / Napa Valley / Valley of fire, red rock and boulder dam near LV ...

    Could you tell us what you would do if you were us? :)

    Thank you.

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

    Default It's all good !

    I would do as I wanted to do, to be honest.

    Everything on your list is plausible and interesting in their own way. A lot will depend on the pace you want to travel at, and if you want [m]any extended stays in one place. Your trip will make a nice loop, and a lot of the places follow a 'natural' path to the next destination. You will have to pick and choose the places that are of the most interest to you, but it is places like Lassen and Redwood that are quite large extensions and time consuming, compared to the rest of your trip.

  3. #3

    Default Thank you

    Thank you for your answer.

    I agree with you about Lassen and Redwood. It adds many kilometers (sorry miles). Moreover, we'll visit Sequoia NP which looks like, I think, Redwood.

    Besides, I don't really know if Anza Borrego is a good location to visit in summer. Knowing we'll visit Johua Tree NP and Mojave in our way to Las Vegas (two deserts), Anza Borrego is maybe the one to put aside.

    For now, our loop could be somethink like that :
    D1 : arriving in LA
    D2 : LA downtown, Hollywood, Beverly, etc..., beach, Mullholland Drive at dusk. Do you think of a better location for a sightseeing of LA at night?
    D3 : SD (zoo, balboa park, downtown, La Jolla, Point Loma, ...)
    Do you think SD deserves 2 full days?
    D4 : SD?
    D5 : Palm Springs, Joshua tree (Can we easily find a campsite in this park arriving late afternoon during the summer?)
    D6 : Mojave, Las Vegas. Is Lake Havasu deserving a detour?
    D7 D8 : LV + Hoover dam + Valley of fire.
    D9 : Road to Sequoia + Calico, Edward Base. Same question than Joshua Tree : is there any tent site available on a late afternoon summer IN the park?
    D10 : Sequoia and Kings.
    D11 D12 : Yosemite (if you think of a breathtaking day hike...). +way up South Lake Tahoe at the end of D12.
    D13 : South Lake Tahoe
    D14 :Sacramento (what s the best things to do in this city?) + Napa Valley
    D15 : Point Reyes, Sonoma, SF.
    D16 : SF.
    D17 : SF (berkeley + alcatraz)
    D18 : Silicone Valley up to Monterey.
    D19 : Monterey down to ?? Santa Barbara? Big Sur. What are the best things on the Coastal road
    D20 : Santa Barbara LA

    As you can see, we're kind of short in 20 days...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Looks good.

    I think your trip looks fine. Some decisions you can make on the move, such as, if you leave SD early enough you could drive through Anza Borrego desert park on the way to Palm Springs, see how you feel at the time, the same could be said of Lake Havasu, but you won't want to over stretch yourselves. It's possible you could visit the Hoover dam on the way to Vegas and then have a little time in Death valley during your stay, it's hot but the landscape is incredible !

    From Sequoia you will approach Yosemite from the South on CA 41, I would 100% recommend heading up the Glacier point Rd to Glacier point, the views are something else, and from the top looking down into the valley it is jaw droppingly beautiful ! Continue and explore the valley floor where you will find many places to stop and take a stroll while being amazed at all around you. When you leave for Tahoe, leave a nice amount of time to drive over Tioga pass [CA120] to Mono Lake/Lee vining, and admire the views and again, to stop for a stroll.

    I know nothing of Sacramento but even so, what is it that made you decide to stop here. Do a little research to find what is "best" to suit your interests, but this could be a good opportunity to gain that extra time you need, it is "only" around 250 miles from Tahoe to SF via Napa and Point Reyes.

    National parks are very popular when it comes to camping and during the summer Month's fill up quickly, and quite often the non reservable "walk in" options are gone early morning so I would personally recommend booking as early in advance as you can. [Usually 5 or 6 Months in advance is the earliest you can do so]. During the peak of the season these can sell out within hours of the booking window opening. You can find all the info by clicking on the map and then the park in question on the nps website.

  5. #5

    Default San Diego to Page


    I'm back on this forum for a question about my 2011 summer trip :

    We'll be in San Diego on saturday 07/30, and we'll be around Page on thursday 04/8. That means we have 4 days (sunday, monday, tuesday and wednesday) to drive from San Diego to Page.

    Of course, we have some ideas about where to go and what to do during these days. But I'd like to have yours!!

    You have to know that :
    - we don't want to go to Grand Canyon South Rim (visited a few years ago),
    - we'll visit Vegas and Los Angeles later in our trip.
    - we're a young couple, so no problem about driving.

    Thank you. Then I'll tell you my idea.

    Mod Note] Threads merged, please keep all questions regarding this trip here, thanks.
    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 02-27-2011 at 02:27 AM. Reason: Merged threads

  6. #6

    Default San Diego trip

    Ok, here's what we decided :

    d1, d2 : san diego
    d3 : road to phoenix on I8, any interesting spots in or around phoenix?
    d4 : apache trail, sedona, night in flagstaff
    d5 : page, antelope canyon...
    d6 : page and grand canyon north rim. Night in the nps campground
    d7 : zion
    d8 : states parks near saint george, valley of fire, hoover dam, vegas
    d9 d10 : vegas, red rock canyon
    d11 : road to bakersfield : mojave down to amboy crater, road 66 uo to barstow, calico?
    d12 : sedona, night in fresno
    d13 : yosemite, night in the park
    d14 : south lake tahoe, night in sacremento
    d15 : napa, sonoma, point reyes, sf
    d16 : sf
    d17 : sf, sillicone valley, monterey
    d18 : coast up to santa barbara
    d19 : la
    d20 : la
    d21 : la, why not palm springs for the night
    d22 : san diego et airport at 6pm

    What do you think of it?

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

    Default If you are happy......

    The most important thing is what you think !

    Noticeable absentee's are Monument valley and Bryce canyon that I would give up other places for in a heartbeat, but that's me. I also think you will regret not having more time in Yosemite, what with the drive from Fresno and then having to depart early for an 8 or 9 hour drive to Sacramento with a 'glimpse' of Lake Tahoe thrown in. The nights in Phoenix and Bakersfield could help compensate here but like I mentioned, it's what you think that is important, your trip is 'doable' and I am sure you will have a great trip !

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