Author Topic: Road trip ideas  (Read 5742 times)

sunnyca

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Road trip ideas
« on: September 05, 2014, 01:01:51 PM »
Hi all!

I'm planning on going on a 2-week road trip with the dog in mid September, starting in Orange County, CA and going through Utah, Wyoming, Colorado, and Montana.  I plan on camping most of the time.  Does anyone have any suggestions for "must see" places/hikes/etc that are dog friendly?

gimp

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2014, 01:33:55 PM »
How long can you drive per day? How long are you okay with spending on one place?

Some are a bit out of the way.

Death valley, meteor crater, hoover dam, grand canyon (south and north side), monument valley, bryce canyon, salt flats near SLC, yosemite, sequoia national park, kings canyon national park, sequoia national forest, other parts of the sierras, yellowstone, the tetons, craters of the moon, redwood national / state parks and forests.

I haven't even been to half of these, but I've travelled a bit in that area. A few more upcoming soon. All the ones I've mentioned and been to are worth it, the others should be as well.

The farther per day you can drive, the more time you can spend at a specific place. I recommend a couple days in Yellowstone, and a couple days in the Arizona area, and a couple days in the Sierras, though not necessarily all on one trip. Also, after Yellowstone, if you swing to the coast (past craters of the moon), you can see Seattle and Portland, but more importantly, you can choose between (or see both of) several mountains in-land, and the beautiful coastline. (Washington, Jefferson, Rainier, Hood, St Helens, and probably a few more I am forgetting.) You can then follow the coastline south, break off a bit to see redwood national / state park, and continue following the coastline. It's an absolutely beautiful drive, especially as you'll be driving on the ocean-side lane heading south.

I don't recommend seeing all of those in two weeks, you'll just be exhausted and checking things off a list. Anyways, a simple path would be Yosemite for a couple days, a quick stop by the salt flats going north, Yellowstone for half a week, then over to the coastline.

Petunia 100

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2014, 02:14:15 PM »
I was on a road trip just this summer.  Saw some old favorites (Yellowstone, Mt. Rushmore) and some new-to-me favorites (Arches, Bryce Canyon).   I really loved Arches and the nearby town of Moab.   Breath-takingly beautiful, lots of marked trails for hiking.

Angie55

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2014, 02:18:19 PM »
I would think that up north in Yellowstone its going to start to be filled with snow by then. I believe all the campgrounds closed last week after Labor Day but I could be wrong. Its certainly dropping below freezing in the Mountains in Colorado already if not in the next week or two.

You are making me jealous because I thought that summer was over and I never got to go on any truly epic roadtrips.... I thought time had run out! Either way 2-weeks with lots of stops from California to Colorado and back seems pretty tight....

Jomar

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2014, 02:28:31 PM »
Devil's Tower in Wyoming is really cool. One of the campgrounds there screens Close Encounters of the Third Kind every night, and it's pretty eerie/surreal/fun. And then you're really close to the Black Hills in South Dakota, just a beautiful area.

JoJo

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2014, 02:35:52 PM »
Get the America the Beautiful pass for $80 and hit them all  - one itinerary is to head over to grand canyon, then head up thru monument valley to mesa verde, then up into utah for all 5 parks with death valley on the way home.


MountainBeard

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2014, 05:03:40 PM »
Depends how much zig zagging you're game for, or if you'd be making a big loop. 
In Utah:Moab is one of my all time favorite places, plus if leaving from OC you could hit Monument Valley, Grand Canyon, Zion, and Bryce. 

In CO: there's all sorts of stuff to see - I love the SW corner of the state, and if going that route, Mesa Verde, Silverton, Ouray, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, and Glenwood Springs should be on the list.  If you headed east across CO I'd add in the Great Sand Dunes, and head north to Denver

In WY: a few of the parks were already mentioned, some other favorite stops are Vedauwoo and Hudson (awesome steak dinner and you can camp just outside at Sinks Canyon)

Have fun!

lkell

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2014, 06:33:39 PM »
Another vote for Utah, arguably the most beautiful state in the country.

Moab is one of my favorite places but the entire southeastern part of the Utah east of I-15 and south of I-80 is uniformly stunning. Of the 5 National Parks the least known one, Capitol Reef, is my favorite and if you're going road trip, Utah Rt. 12 is, IMO, perhaps the most spectacular 100 miles in the US. I think everyone should drive Rt 12 at least once in their lifetimes. It zigzags through red rock moonscapes, 50 mile canyon vistas, up over the alpine Boulder Mountain and coming back down with the towering purple and bronze cliffs of Capitol Reef rising ominously on the other side. My preference is to drive it south to north (Bryce to Capitol Reef) but it's great either way. Pull over frequently and look a the views behind and ahead.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utah_State_Route_12
http://livewellnetwork.com/Motion/esisodes/Exploring-Utah-Route-12/8059447

There are lots of campgrounds all along Rt 12 on BLM land, most free. http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/grand_staircase-escalante/Recreation/camping/other_camping.html. Calf Creek is great.

After Rt. 12, head west on Rt 24 through Capitol Reef's Towering cliffs and if time, take a detour to otherwordly Goblin Valley http://www.utah.com/stateparks/goblin_valley.htm.

If you head into Moab and really want to push the limits of the scenic driving and you're not a white-knuckler, take Potash Road to the Shafer Trail up into Canyonlands NP.

Head out of Moab up Utah Rt 128 along the Colorado River and enjoy Castle Valley. Negro Bill Canyon and Fisher Towers are great free hikes along 128.

http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/moab/recreation/hiking_trails/fisher_towers_trail.html
http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/moab/recreation/hiking_trails/negro_bill_canyon.html

I think all these are dog-friendly though they may require a leash until you're in the backcountry.

Rt 128 will take you to I-70 and then you can head to Colorado or Wyoming or wherever else you may have time to visit. But IMO there is nothing like the vast red rocks of the high desert Colorado Plateau.

Have fun!

surfhb

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2014, 07:40:49 PM »
As you drive out of Zion and Bryce make sure you drive down the Burr Trail outside Boulder Utah.   

I'm in OC too...take me with you!  :). Have fun

http://youtu.be/toMDGigG-i8
« Last Edit: September 05, 2014, 07:49:04 PM by surfhb »

sunnyca

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2014, 09:10:52 PM »
These are all awesome suggestions, thank you SO much!!!  I'm planning on focusing most of my time in Utah, Montana, and Wyoming (since these are new states for me)- and Colorado, if there's time.  I have an Outback, so I'll definitely try the Potash Road- I'm not *too* much of a white-knuckler. :)

 

SingleMomDebt

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2014, 10:20:05 PM »
SunnyCA, you can use Roadtrippers website and app to help plan your trip, too. Totally jealous! Have fun! Like surfhb says, "take me with you!"haha. Hope you'll share the updates!

Seppie

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2014, 10:24:32 PM »
If I had to choose to see only one (between Grand Canyon, Zion, and Bryce) I would pick Zion, hands down. It's my favorite of all the national parks I've visited. Moab is also awesome, but don't spend so long in Utah that you never make it to Colorado. So many great places here to hike and camp!

sunnyca

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2014, 11:09:18 PM »
Awesome- I'd never heard to roadtrippers before.  It looks great!

I'm planning on spending a day volunteering at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, UT- it's supposed to be one of the best animal rescues in the world.  Looking forward to it!!

I'll definitely post pictures of the trip- not leaving until the 20th, though.  Can't wait!!

Petunia 100

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2014, 11:28:07 PM »
Awesome- I'd never heard to roadtrippers before.  It looks great!

I'm planning on spending a day volunteering at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, UT- it's supposed to be one of the best animal rescues in the world.  Looking forward to it!!

I'll definitely post pictures of the trip- not leaving until the 20th, though.  Can't wait!!

I spent the night in Kanab on my road trip!   I did not know about the animal sanctuary.  :(

sunnyca

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2014, 11:34:36 PM »

I spent the night in Kanab on my road trip!   I did not know about the animal sanctuary.  :(

Bummer!  You'll have to check it out one day.  It looks awesome!

http://bestfriends.org/The-Sanctuary/Visiting/

FrugalInTheBigSky

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #15 on: September 05, 2014, 11:47:05 PM »
Spend the entire 2 weeks in Montana. Extra time to spend in Glacier and Yellowstone (ok, technically WY). I live here and can barely leave to go other places. Look us up if you need a place to crash, or specific recommendations.

G-dog

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Re: Road trip ideas
« Reply #16 on: September 06, 2014, 08:09:43 AM »
We travel with our dogs, often in these areas (but don't camp).  Dogs are not allowed on most trails/areas of national parks. They are allowed on the rim trail of the Grand Canyon, but not in the canyon. I don't know if there is a compound on the rim. They are allowed around the Farview Lodge in Mesa Verde (and in the lodge), so they may be allowed in the campground.

Check out Great Sand Dunes near Alamosa, CO. Dog friendly - check and see if they can stay in the campground.

Now, I think dogs are allowed in most of the public access National Forest areas, many of which have lots of campgrounds! These are often in the surrounding areas do National Parks, so you can find something in the area.  Also state and county parks.....

So many beautiful things to see!  You cannot go wrong on this trip!