Nevada, Utah and California

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FrankvandenBergh
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Posted Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:12PM

In May/June I will be going for my vacations to Los Angeles from where I head to Vegas, Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Monument Valley and on to San Diego. Back here on my couch in the Netherlands I'm trying to get things planned. 


Any tips or ideas anyone? To get of the beaten track and not to miss the best things? I'll be goinh for 3 weeks...
JasonDoiy
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Posted Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:18PM
in Grand Canyon, steer clear of the "Sky Walk" if you want photos. They have a very, very strict policy on cameras. Technically it's not even part of the Grand Canyon Park.
viennetta
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Posted Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:28PM

If you have the opportunity on your way to Vegas, I'd drive through Death Valley. It's amazingly beautiful and very big as far as National Parks go. We only had a few hours there each time, but you could definitely spend days.


Utah is one of my favorite places and it calls me back repeatedly to explore - while you're in the southeastern corner of the state visiting Monument Valley, you might want to check out Mexican Hat at sunset (I like to stay at the San Juan Inn, next to the river), Valley of the Gods loop road (like a mini Monument Valley with free camping if you're into that), and the Grand Gulch (pictographs and ruins). In addition, if you have more time, take a drive up 191 to Canyonlands (the Needles are absolutely amazing), past the Church Rock and Looking Glass Arch, check out the petting zoo and vintage memorabilia at Hole 'N The Rock, all the way up to Moab and Arches National Park. If you do end up going to Moab, the Eklectic Cafe is my favorite place to get breakfast and lunch. Goblin Valley State Park is lovely, too, but that may be a bit out of your way.  


I've never stayed in Monument Valley proper, since the hotels in surrounding areas are quite a bit cheaper, but if you have a decent budget it might be nice to stay at Goulding's Lodge and wake up surrounded by beauty.


I've been to all of these places with my little 2 wheel drive Corolla, but the bumpy dirt roads have definitely taken their toll on my car. I'd recommend renting a vehicle with 4 wheel drive, but sometimes when it's raining certain roads can be unpassable even with the most rugged of vehicles.


Have fun on your trip! It sounds like a great adventure.
Zuki
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Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013 2:50AM
We have been to all these places and have visited the Southwest on many a family road strips.  I agree with viennetta, Mexican Hat is perfect and only about 15 minutes from Monument Valley visitor center.  We stayed at the "Hat Rock Inn," had that southwest look and feel, near the river and the prices were right.  Make sure you take the dirt road drive down into monument valley from the visitor center, dusty, bumpy dirt road but spectacular with stops along the way for pictures and scenic awe.  It will take you about 2 hours to make the drive at a leisurely pace.

While at Grand Canyon, depending on where you are staying, (we stayed in Williams one time and another in Flagstaff) stop at the Wupatki National Monument and see the many Pueblos there, you will not regret it if you like to step back in time a little seeing the ruins of the Indian nations.  It's off Highway 89 between Flagstaff and Grand Canyon. The drive will take you a few hours as there are many sites to visit at the park.  Just behind the visitor center you will see the main complex (Wupatki Pueblo) with ancient stadiums and a blow hole that sprays cool air into the hot dessert climate from underground caverns.

 Have a great trip, I'll post more info if I think of anything else.
FrankvandenBergh
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Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013 3:25AM
Thanks already people! I'm getting more and more excited to go!
GaryAlvis
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Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013 6:02PM
I've been on four photo treks in that area in past years. If you're going to Bryce I would reccommend the short drive to Escalante. The stretch of road from Escalante to the little town of Boulder is considered by some to be one of the most beautiful stretches of road in the US. I concur. If you get to Boulder and take the Burr Trail to Long Canyon. You won't be sorry. There is eye candy around every turn.
FrankvandenBergh
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Posted Mon Feb 11, 2013 4:12PM

Never would have found Mexican Hat!  Booked it for two nights. Planning is going well and is fun! What's a good planning for the Grand Canyon? 2/3 nights?


 
inhauscreative
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Posted Mon Feb 11, 2013 4:59PM
Utah is great, Bryce, Zion, Moab, Antelope Canyon!!! Grand Canyon is kinda a Chevy Chase thing for Me, drive up, look, see, leave, so much more unique stuff to see...
Zuki
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Posted Mon Feb 11, 2013 9:21PM
Posted By FrankvandenBergh:

Never would have found Mexican Hat!  Booked it for two nights. Planning is going well and is fun! What's a good planning for the Grand Canyon? 2/3 nights?


 


Stay in Williams.  From there, the Grand Canyon is a straight shot North, about 40 minutes drive on HWY 64.  You will need a couple of days to see the important spots.  You can use the third day to visit Wupatki national monument about 1 hour east on 40 and then North on 89.  Spend the whole day there, or you can split the trip with "Meteor Crater" about 1 hour east on HWY 40 towards Winslow.  Within driving distance is also Sedona, if you are interested in a strange and colorful Southwest new age touristy town.


Have fun!
redhumv
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Posted Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:16PM
Frank are you flying into SLC and then heading home from SAN? I'd be happy to chat with you if you have any questions. I currently live in SLC, Utah and have traveled throughout most of Nevada, Arizona and I used to live in San Diego. Feel free to email me at todd.keith@gmail.com if you questions. There is great locations here around Salt Lake City and spring is the best time of year to travel down through the state and out to Southern California. Here in Utah you could check out Park City, Moab/Arches National Park, Zions/Bryce Canyon, Lake Powell/Grand Canyon then into Arizona Buckskin Canyon, Sedona, Jerome over to Valley of Fire in Nevada and Vegas, Death Valley, Palm Springs and lots of great spots in SoCal.
FrankvandenBergh
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Posted Sat Mar 2, 2013 2:41AM
Posted By redhumv:
Frank are you flying into SLC and then heading home from SAN? I'd be happy to chat with you if you have any questions. I currently live in SLC, Utah and have traveled throughout most of Nevada, Arizona and I used to live in San Diego. Feel free to email me at todd.keith@gmail.com if you questions. There is great locations here around Salt Lake City and spring is the best time of year to travel down through the state and out to Southern California. Here in Utah you could check out Park City, Moab/Arches National Park, Zions/Bryce Canyon, Lake Powell/Grand Canyon then into Arizona Buckskin Canyon, Sedona, Jerome over to Valley of Fire in Nevada and Vegas, Death Valley, Palm Springs and lots of great spots in SoCal.



Hi Todd. Send you a mail. Hope adress is correct.


 

(Edited on 2013-03-02 02:42:03 by FrankvandenBergh)
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