I have been trying to plan some sort of road trip, which is now going to be shortened and taken a month earlier then planned. I am only going to have about 10-11 days (possibly 14 days), and would like to see as much as possible.
I am going to fly out to the southwest, or really anywhere out west where a good place to begin would be. It has to be somewhere Soutwest airlines flies though. I would really like to begin in Arizona and go through Utah. I am kinda sad because originally I was gonna get up to Wyoming as well, and possibly Montana, but now that will not happen due to time constraints.
I guess my questions are...what is the best plan for a ten day road trip. I have places I want to see, etc, but I am having trouble figuring out how much time to allow at each place, etc.
I am up for anything. I am going to buy the National Parks pass, because I plan to see a lot of parks on the way.
I really could use some help.
Does it make sense to begin in Arizona or Utah?
Thanks in advance!
Start in AZ!
Assuming first this will be a one-way trip... Considering only the driving, you could get from Phoenix to Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef, Grand Teton, Yellowstone and S. Montana in less than 6 days driving time.
My opinion, you could spend a day EASY at all of these places -- so between the driving and the sight-seeing, you've got about 12 days. Since you only want 10 -- you can cut down the visiting time at a couple of them, or concentrate on a narrowed selection.
Your flights would work out OK -- you could start in PHX and end up in Boise, Salt Lake City or Spokane. All are SWA cities. If you'll select your destinations, we can help you more with the details if that would be a help to you. (However, if you will start and end in the same city, it'll probably only be possible to see some parks on one end or the other -- out of Phoenix, you could do Grand Canyon and Southern Utah, for example.) Bob
That route sounds perfect. I was planning on starting in Pheonix. Now here is the dilema. I will have a friend with me for the first half of this trip, and then I have to drop her off at a airport along the way, so it has to be a planned destination and day and along the way or at least not toooo far out of the way. Probably in Utah. I would then pick up my Mother who is flying out from Baltimore for the second half of the trip. St. Lake City....is that too far of the path of this route? It seems like it...? I would love to make it to Montana. My mom wants to get there as well b/c she has a friend there, but I am unsure of where this person is so I need to find that out.
So for the first half of the trip I would spend my time in Arizona and Utah, and then the second half is up in the air as far as where to go, etc. Except I know Montana and would really like to get to Yellowtone. I believe Glacier is too far.
BTW as you may be able to tell and to answer your question this is a one way trip. Transportation is looking to be rather expensive as well! $800 last time I checked. Is this too high for two weeks?
What is there to do in Montana? This would be the next stop after Yellowstone, and not going to far north.
I think Salt Lake City is a good midway staging point. The trip falls naturally into two sections anyway -- one below Salt Lake and the other north of it (Wyoming and Montana). Yes, the airfares will not be too cheap, but do I think it's worth it? Absolutely, I do. Be sure to shop around to get the best rate on a one-way car rental -- if you're careful and thorough about "shopping" for rates, you can save some money on that expense.
On the way to Wyoming, be sure to drive through Logan and the Bear Lake area. Logan is very pastoral and picture perfect -- and Bear Lake was the site of several mountain mens' "Rendezous" back in the 1820s and 1830s.
In Wyoming and Montana, there are a multitude of things to see -- you could see some of the old Oregon Trail sites -- South Pass for example (not much there, but it is a historic place). Fort Washakie (claims to have Sacajewea's grave, although I am skeptical about that), the Medicine Wheel monument (in the Bighorn Mountains), and of course Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons.
In Montana, there's Little Bighorn battlefield, old Fort CF Smith, some sites associated with the Nez Perce War of 1877 (Chief Joseph and his people), Bighole Battlefield for example, and Lewis and Clark -- Pompey's Pillar, for one, is the only place along Lewis and Clark's route where actual physical evidence of their passing exists -- Clark carved his name into the rock and you can see it today. There are more but I do not have my map with me today.
I especially like the areas around Missoula, and Great Falls. Also, the old west history of Virginia City and Red Lodge would be an attraction for me. You won't have time to do all of these -- but you could pick one or two and work them in, depending on where your passenger needs to go to see her friend. Bob
Thank you for all the help! It looks like my Mother's friend lives in Bozeman, MT, so that is only about 80 miles from Yellowsotne. Give or take a few miles. If all works out I may have a full two weeks now. I would hate to be in Montana and not get to Glacier National Park. It is somewhere I have wanted to visit for at least 6 years now...and being in the same state as the park but not visiting would be a huge regret.
Is there anything on the way to the Park worth seeing that you or anyone else knows of?
Is there anything else to see in Wyoming on the way to Grand Teton and Yellowstone?
The planning of the trip is coming along nicely...now just have to plan accommadations along the way.