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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Full size car from Alamo.

    Summary of Charges
    (all prices in USD)
    $492.00 Weekly Rate (1 x 492.00):
    $123.00 Extra Day Rate (3 x 41.00):
    $202.71 Taxes and Fees:
    $817.71 Amount Due at Counter:

    People: 5
    Suitcases: 4
    Transmission: Automatic
    Air Conditioning: Included
    Mileage: unlimited

    Pick-Up Details:
    Tue, Sep 15, 2020 at 10:00 am
    McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS)
    2055 Alcoa Hwy, Alcoa, TN, US
    Hours: 07:00AM - 11:00PM
    Rental car counter and car available in the airport terminal. More Details

    Drop-Off Details:
    Fri, Sep 25, 2020 at 10:00 am
    Salt Lake City Intl Airport (SLC)
    776 N Terminal Dr, Salt Lake City, UT, US
    Hours: 07:00AM - 11:59PM

  2. Default

    Thank you for the things to think about and the research! To answer all of these questions will require a family meeting to vet out what is most important to all. I think my husband and myself are pushing for Yellowstone but maybe that is best done at another time when we can spend more time on the road and not have to be navigating airports with the virus protocols looming over us. I will update with the priorities and and final destination goals after we discuss. I just wanted to post so it didn't seem I have gone silent.

  3. Default

    Make sure to get your kids involved in the planning!

    How did you arrive at Yellowstone for your destination? Are you open to alternatives? If so, leaving from SLC, you could do a loop that includes Several great national parks that offer fantastic and very different scenery. Consider at least Arches, Zion and Bryce. You could easily spend 2 full days at each. There are so many other natural wonders in Utah. Part of Galaxy Quest was shot at Goblin Valley State Park. I just love that place.

    Your kids are at a wonderful age to go Geocaching. There are THOUSANDS of geocaches hidden throughout this area and many will take you to areas you would have missed.

    If you’re really adventurous, and if your rental car allows, you could explore the San Rafael Swell area. There are some really cool geocaches in that wilderness.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Adventure, History and Scenery Closer to Home

    We can sometimes get fixated on one aspect of a poster's request and engage in our own fantasies of what a perfect vacation trip can look like. I think something like that has happened here with most responders trying their darndest to get you to Yellowstone. But doing so will either make the trip far too long to be practical or far too expensive [5 airline tickets plus a car rental?] to be affordable. So, I'm going to return to my original suggestion that you look at something closer to home. I gave you three broadly defined areas of interest that all included a ton of historical sites from various time periods as well as enough scenery to make the drives between those sites interesting. I'll now go into just a little more detail, listing some of the major historic and scenic sites you might include on a RoadTrip through each of those areas:

    1) Mid-Atlantic: Great Smoky Mountains, Kitty Hawk, Fort Raleigh, Wallops Island, National Mall, Independence Hall, Blue Ridge Parkway

    2) Missouri and Kansas: Land Between the Lakes, Grant's Farm, Oregon Trail, Pony Express, Hannibal, Lincoln's Home, Mammoth Cave

    3) Deep South; FDR's Little White House, Kennesaw Mountain, Gulf Islands, Chalmette Battlefield, Vicksburg, Petrified Forest, Shiloh

    And again, remember that those are just the highlights! There are many more smaller sites, museums and scenic routes that can be included in whatever overall plan you eventually decide on. I've done similar RoadTrips with my two grandsons when they were roughly the same ages as your children and it's those experiences that have taught me that being outdoors and doing/seeing stuff, even if on a 'small' scale for adults, is much more rewarding and enjoyable for the kids than driving or flying hour after hour to get to some "must see" location at the end of the rainbow.

    Each of the above RoadTrips is built on the idea of a loop so that you aren't just using the same roads to a destination and then back home again. You will be constantly showing your children something new each day. And while I haven't checked in detail, each RoadTrip should take no more than four days total driving (in your own vehicle!), but with something to stop and explore each day you're on the road. And I haven't even touched on national forests, national wildlife refuges, or state parks.

    Finally, two more resources to be aware of and make maximum use of: If you do decide to visit a number of national parks and they have entrance fees, get an annual pass at the first one you come to. Then there's the Junior Ranger Program at most national parks. This is a great (and free!) activity that will entertain and teach your children about the park and earn them badges, certificates, or other souvenirs.

    So, as you say, now go talk amongst yourselves. We'll be here when you come back.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 08-01-2020 at 10:47 AM. Reason: Typos

  5. #15
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    No matter what you decide to do, I'd suggest two things:

    First, make sure that the places you want to go are actually OPEN. This COVID-19 has closed quite a few places. On AZBuck's lists above, for instance, Grant's Farm is actually still closed. However, White Haven, which was Julia Dent Grant's home and eventually she brought her husband there, is open to a small degree. However, it is in an area that is full of COVID cases. If you go, wear masks.

    Second, no matter where you go, have your children keep a journal. A composition notebook, a pencil/pen and some tape or glue, and a set time to write of their day's adventures will be a keepsake that will help them remember the trip for years. The glue/tape is to keep things like souvenir tickets or postcards (yes, they still sell them) of places they've been. Later, they can add photos that you've taken and had printed.


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