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Going West

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by Sigraph, Oct 7, 2009.

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  1. Sigraph

    Sigraph TS Member

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    My wife and I are planning a trip out west next April to celebrate my 50th.
    I'd like some input on scenic routs, etc. We're going to drive each day, and stop wherever we land and take in the sights. Besides Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon, I'd like some input from you guys here on this site. I've been to Cheyene wyoming before, and loved the view of the mountains, been to Vegas for my first and last time, and seen the Hoove Dam, but never traveled out west. I see beautiful scenic highways on movies & such, but have no idea where they are.
    we'll probably leave an a Saturday and return home the following weekend.
    Thanks in advance - Eric
     
  2. Pocatello

    Pocatello Active Member

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    Saturday to the following weekend is a pretty short time span to see much, especially if you want to do much seeing versus driving.

    What is your starting point? It makes a difference if we are talking about VA versus NE, say, and whether you plan on driving from home versus flying.

    One nice loop would be the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef, and Arches/Canyonlands.

    A second nice loop would be Jackson Hole/Grand Teton, Yellowstone, Bozeman. Missoula, Kalispell, and Glacier.

    A third would be Mesa Verde, Durango, Silverton, Ouray, Rocky Mountain National Park.

    If you're flying, Sequoia/Kings Canyon, Yosemite, Lake Tahoe would be a good trip.
     
  3. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

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    The Sawtooth mountains in Idaho are a scenic wonder, locate Stanley ID on a map for proximity.

    Death Valley should get on your short list also. If you get down that far south then a stop at Lone Pine CA and check out the Alabama Hills which is where a lot of the westerns were filmed.

    If you want to get way off the beaten path there are tons of ghost towns in Nevada including several pony express stations and military forts.
     
  4. V10

    V10 Well-Known Member

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    I'll second Pocatello's recommendation for the Grand Canyon/Zion Canyon/Bryce Canyon/Arches/etc loop. That is probably the most unique landscape that you will find in this country.

    Basically, get a map of Utah and plan out a trip to hit all the National Parks in the southern part of the state. Don't forget to include the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.

    And if you plan things right, you can shoot an ATA registered shoot at Purgatory Clay Sports (Hurricane, UT) on April 17 - 18, 2010.
     
  5. bridgetoofar

    bridgetoofar TS Member

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    Be aware that many of the Northern parks are closed in April. Yellowstone, Glacier and a few other areas could be snow problems. At that time of the year I would stick with Utah, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico.
     
  6. Pocatello

    Pocatello Active Member

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    Sorry, I overlooked your April reference. The northern parks will definitely be out then, and the Colorado trip wouldn't be ideal. However that's the best time of year for the Utah parks.
     
  7. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

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    Missed the April reference too. Canyon lands and Death valley would be much better. Maybe get in some Striper fishing at Lake Powell.
     
  8. Big Heap

    Big Heap TS Member

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    Don't miss Bryce Canyon - it might look like this in April.
     
  9. KK

    KK TS Member

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    If you are going the distance and ending up on the California coast don't miss the 100 mile stretch of "US Hwy 1" that runs between Monterey Bay and Cambria. It is A breath taking and beautiful trip with lots of great things to see and do at both ends. Hearst Castle is at the south end of that jaunt and it is beyond imagination for everyone to see. If you should do that trip I would get advanced motel reservation at both ends because both areas are extremly popular with local,foreign, and interstate travellers. If you try to wing it any time of year you may find yourself driving for miles to find a place to sleep. Stay in Monterey on the north end of your trip and Cambria on the south end. Monterey has a lot of history, great food, wine tasting, and accommodations. Cambria to the South has quietly become another vacation destination in the last fifteen years and it also has nice acommodations, good food, excellent beaches, and of course it has Hearst Castle just 12 miles to the north. You could easily make as much as a four day trip out of that 120 mile stretch of Hiway and I don't think you will be at all disappointed if you did take that much time. KK
     
  10. V10

    V10 Well-Known Member

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    The link above shows what I had in mind.

    They mention doing it in a week, but that two is better. That's the problem with what you are attempting. There is a lot to see no matter where you go in the West. If you decide to try the Utah "loop," you might want to not go as far east as Canyonlands this time around. Just take in Zions, Bryce, Capitol Reef, and the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Some folks say that the North Rim is more beautiful than the more easily accessible South Rim. It's also much less crowded.

    Your best bet is to make your coming trip the first of many.

    No matter where you go, you'll have a lot to see and do.

    Enjoy.
     
  11. Sigraph

    Sigraph TS Member

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    Thanks guys - I appreciate the input.
    I'll do a lot of research and use my gps to reference driving times etc.
    Probably try and get back on the following Saturday. I guess about 4 days of driving out, and 4 or 5 days on the drive back (or the opposite).
    I'll research all your suggestions.
    Thanks again - Eric
     
  12. cubancigar2000

    cubancigar2000 Well-Known Member

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    as far as out west goes, Lake Tahoe is very hard to beat
     
  13. Go Fish

    Go Fish Member

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    When the wife and I went out west we flew in Vegas, rented a car and drove around for two weeks. We ended our trip in Denver, left off the car and flew home. Saw a lot of scenery during these 2 weeks and didn't have to spend half our time driving out & back. Good luck on your trip.
     
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