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  1. Default South California, Nevada, Arizona Utah Road Trip

    Hi All!

    I'm planning this road trip with my girlfriend for this July-August. See attached for Road map. The general plan is LA > Bishop > Vegas > Grand Canyon (Via William AZ railway), Zion National park and back to LA.

    Few questions

    1. I'm a little concerned the heat in death valley may be too hot for the Dodge Challenger i'm renting along with us. The hottest it gets in the UK is around 90 Fahrenheit. Is Death Valley safe with precautions? (Loads of water)

    2. Any recommendations of places to visit along the route?

    Thanks! :)
    Attached Images Attached Images

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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    What's your thinking for going all the way up to Bishop? If you're going to go that far, then it would seem strange that you wouldn't also visit Sequoia and/or Yosemite National Parks (note that Bishop is on the wrong side of the Sierras to use as a base to visit either of these parks.)

    It's also strange that you're mapping yourself of going from Zion back to Vegas, instead of going directly to the Grand Canyon.

    How much time do you have for this trip? There are many other things in the area you might also consider, if you have the time.

    Death Valley will be very hot, but it's certainly not the car you have to worry about. The car will be able to easy handle any conditions you'll throw at it (also keep in mind, you probably don't know the exact model of car you're getting, because "or similar" is typically in the language of any standard car rental). You will have to be careful about your own bodies, limiting your time outdoors in the middle of the day, and as you mentioned, making sure to drink a lot of water throughout your visit.

  3. Default

    Hi Michael,

    I originally planned to stay in Lone Pine but couldn't get a hotel. Then I started looking at the idea of popping up to Mammoth Lakes in the day before the drive to Vegas. Looks like a nice old fashioned area.

    I've booked a hotel in Vegas most of the time we spend in that area. Just going to head to the Grand Canyon for a day trip. I know its a long day as the drive from/to Williams, AZ is around 3 hours but as its the first Saturday of the month the train will be a steam train! Great experience.

    The final route is from Vegas to Zion and then Zion back to LA which is why it doesn't connect to the grand canyon.

    Thanks for the feedback :)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    You never answered my questions about how much time you have or if you considered Yosemite.

    You're really adding a lot of unnecessary miles with this plan - which means you'll spend a lot more time driving rather than seeing the many great things you could see. Going Death Valley-Vegas-Zion-Grand Canyon-LA would be much more efficient and save you about 500 miles of driving- which is a full day on the road.

    We strongly recommend against making the Grand Canyon a daytrip from Las Vegas. Williams is more like 4 hours from Las Vegas - so to take the train, you're going to have to leave around 4 am - and you're not going to get back until at least 10pm, and for all of that, you'll only have about 2-3 hours at the Canyon itself.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.


    I have to agree that your trip could be a lot less back and forth and create a really nice loop while covering less miles. Are you sure your lodgings can not be changed or cancelled ?

    As for your rental in Death valley, no problem.

  6. Default

    Hi Michael,

    I wanted to go to Yosemite originally but found the drive from LA and to Vegas would have been very long. I've also been there once before when I was younger so wasn't too bothered about it.

    You're right about the day trip to grand canyon. We should of booked a hotel in William AZ to break it up a bit more. I'd rather not change any hotels now though as its too much of a pain. The trip is around 1,700 miles total which isn't too bad for me. I do 6-7 hour drives multiple times a year and really enjoy it.

    Any advice on places to stop along the way?


  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    You're certainly not the first person whose come here saying they want to build their trip around hotel reservations, rather than build their hotel reservations around their trip, but it's really an approach that I will never understand. In your case especially, you've apparently decided that spending 15 minutes changing your hotel reservations too big of a hassle, but the 10 hours worth of extra driving (all of it backtracking) is not a big hassle is just bizarre to me. It's your trip, so do as you wish, it's just a strange way to want to spend your time.

    As far as extra places to stop along the way, certainly there are a lot of places you could potentially stop, but as it is, you're doing so much extra driving that you barely have time to see the main destinations of your trip. I can't see how adding more stops - and taking away even more time from those short hours you'll have at the Grand Canyon, Zion, and Death Valley would make any sense either.

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