Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
PSA
Member Login

Arrow Left Previous Page
Page / 2
Posted: 10/8/2007 4:51:26 AM EST
Trying to start planning for a vacation out west next spring/early summer (wife and finances willing). I would like to fly into Denver then drive across Colorado down through Utah to Monument valley, then on to the Grand Canyon and back. Is this too much to do in a week's time and should I consider something else.

I really want to see the west. Just wondering what the best bang for my buck is.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 4:54:21 AM EST
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 4:54:34 AM EST
I lived in eastern New Mexico for three years and enjoyed the scenery very much. You can go from desert to valleys to mountains, all in a days drive.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 4:56:28 AM EST
One state in my life?

I hate to say it, but it'd be California. Beautiful cities (San Francisco), ocean beaches, startling mountain beauty (Yosemite), even desert.

Of course I'd never want to live there because of politics.

Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:01:07 AM EST
I'm originally from GA. I've seen all 50 states. I decided I will live out my life in Alaska.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:01:29 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/8/2007 5:02:37 AM EST by Mazeman]
Here's a trip I made: Fly into Salt Lake. The trip is a loop that includes eastern Idaho, southwestern Montana (check out Livingston), the Bear Tooth pass from Red Lodge Montana into Yellowstone, a few days in Yellowstone (also check out the firearms museum in Cody Wy), the Grand Tetons and back.

Not a lot of big cities in this loop, but absolutely gorgeous part of the country.

ETA: This is best for TWO weeks.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:04:26 AM EST

Originally Posted By Mazeman:
Here's a trip I made: Fly into Salt Lake. The trip is a loop that includes eastern Idaho, southwestern Montana (check out Livingston), the Bear Tooth pass from Red Lodge Montana into Yellowstone, a few days in Yellowstone (also check out the firearms museum in Cody Wy), the Grand Tetons and back.

Not a lot of big cities in this loop, but absolutely gorgeous part of the country.

ETA: This is best for TWO weeks.
That is pretty much the mirror image of what I am thinking about but it is about what I am looking for. What I am having a hard time in deciding is do I want to see t he more arid part of the west or the more forested/less arid portion.

I really want to see Monument Valley. I would also like to see Yellow Stone as well.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:04:56 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/8/2007 5:10:44 AM EST by METT-T]
I would skip Denver, too much driving on either end of your trip. It's a pretty drive but you're not going to be able to stop and enjoy anything.

Here's my plan for my next week-long vacation:

Fly into Vegas on Friday night, immediately rent a decent 4x4 and drive directly to Zion National Park. Next night at Bryce Canyon. Then go out into the Escalante, camp there for several days eventually making it thru to Moab and Arches. Head south through Monument Valley to the North Rim. End up back in Vegas by the next Friday night, party, fly out on Sunday.

Even that's a quick run. I spent four days camping in southern Utah last year and it wasn't nearly enough.

I took a month and change last year after I finished school, had a little money saved and some room on the cards. Went from VA to Chicago, then to Denver, then four days in southern Utah, then LA, then a couple days in Yosemite, then up the Oregon coast to Seattle, then down to Ranier and Mt. St. Helens, then to Pullman, Washington, then Idaho, Montana (Little Big Horn), couple days in the Black Hills in South Dakota, then back to VA. Not nearly enough time.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:06:54 AM EST

Originally Posted By METT-T:
I would skip Denver, too much driving on either end of your trip. It's a pretty drive but you're not going to be able to stop and enjoy anything.

Here's my plan for my next week-long vacation:

Fly into Vegas on Friday night, immediately rent a decent 4x4 and drive directly to Zion National Park. Next night at Bryce Canyon. Then go out into the Escalante, camp there for several days eventually making it thru to Moab and Arches. Head south through Monument Valley to the North Rim. End up back in Vegas by the next Friday night, party, fly out on Sunday.

Even that's a quick run. I spent four days camping in southern Utah last year and it wasn't nearly enough.
I would still like to see a good part of Colorado. Would there be another city to fly into that would cut my travel time?
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:07:27 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/8/2007 5:11:09 AM EST by jvic]
It depends how much time you want to spend driving versus seeing the sites. Out and back might be tough in a week. Fly into Denver and out of Phoenix or Salt Lack City might be more doable. How many places do you want to see and how much time at each location?

Edit: You could fly into Gunnison, CO and travel west from there on US50. Hit Black Canyon of the Gunnison near Montrose. Maybe swing down to Mesa Verde (stop in Ridgway or Ouray for lunch) The Million Dollar highway south of Oray is very pretty. Then either over to Moab/Arches or down to the highway over to the Grand Canyon.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:09:04 AM EST

Originally Posted By jvic:
It depends how much time you want to spend driving versus seeing the sites. Out and back might be tough in a week. Fly into Denver and out of Phoenix or Salt Lack City might be more doable. How many places do you want to see and how much time at each location?
Ehh I just want to be able to drive around and look at scenery.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:09:31 AM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
I would still like to see a good part of Colorado. Would there be another city to fly into that would cut my travel time?


Check out either Grand Junction or Montrose in Western CO
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:10:18 AM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:

Originally Posted By Mazeman:
Here's a trip I made: Fly into Salt Lake. The trip is a loop that includes eastern Idaho, southwestern Montana (check out Livingston), the Bear Tooth pass from Red Lodge Montana into Yellowstone, a few days in Yellowstone (also check out the firearms museum in Cody Wy), the Grand Tetons and back.

Not a lot of big cities in this loop, but absolutely gorgeous part of the country.

ETA: This is best for TWO weeks.
That is pretty much the mirror image of what I am thinking about but it is about what I am looking for. What I am having a hard time in deciding is do I want to see t he more arid part of the west or the more forested/less arid portion.

I really want to see Monument Valley. I would also like to see Yellow Stone as well.


I prefer the mountains and forest.
You can probably spend at least 3 days in Yellowstone. It's huge, and quite varied: geysers, flatlands, mountains. The wild life there is incredicble (bison, antelope, moose, black bear, grizzly, wolves, elk, etc.). If you get bored (unlikely), you can make side trips to Cody, or up the beartooth pass. I think one night in Grand Tetons is fine. It's beautiful, but not as much else around, unless you want to go hiking or boating there.

Also, there are ghost towns in the area that are fun to check out.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:10:35 AM EST

If you could only visit one state out west in your life which would it be?

I'm living in that place.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:10:38 AM EST
I would say Colorado...........I went there 2 years ago, and when you take the Rocky Mountain National Park, Royal Gorge and Pike's Peak, not to mention all the places in between, it's really beautiful.......too bad it's so expensive
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:11:37 AM EST

Originally Posted By Mazeman:
Also, there are ghost towns in the area that are fun to check out.
ooooo now that sounds like fun.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:16:40 AM EST

Originally Posted By shootemup:

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
I would still like to see a good part of Colorado. Would there be another city to fly into that would cut my travel time?


Check out either Grand Junction or Montrose in Western CO


Yeah, the Denver to Grand Junction leg has some beautiful scenery, but you'll be too busy driving to watch it. It's not like rolling down 81 out there.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:18:29 AM EST
Wyoming, and I would get lost permanently somewhere in that state.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:18:33 AM EST

Originally Posted By METT-T: It's not like rolling down 81 out there.
Do tell. I figured most of the sightseeing could be done from the windshield.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:19:28 AM EST
the trip you plan/want.. 2 weeks

want to see CO, Denver is almost your only choice. Colorado Springs would be next, but flight availability cuts that down considerably.

all the other little airports in CO are basically fed from DEN or COS.


There is lots to do here. you would be quite busy trying it in one week for CO.

when you have a better Idea of your time line, stop by co-ar15.com and let us know you're coming and we can probably help you out when you get here.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:19:34 AM EST
One other thought (a bit more costly) is to fly into one city, and out of another.

I've done that before out west, rather than a loop.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:21:20 AM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:

Originally Posted By METT-T: It's not like rolling down 81 out there.
Do tell. I figured most of the sightseeing could be done from the windshield.


You're really much better off staying a couple days at some places. You can explore, get a feel for the place, and relax.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:21:43 AM EST
I'm gonna throw my vote to flying into vegas, because if finances are an issue, you will find the cheapest fares and best rental rates. You can also include SoCal if you want to loop west towards the coast, and of course, the Grand Canyon, and Hoover Dam are not far off. 10 days is not a lot for the amount of territory that is awesome from Vegas, Denver, or SLC. No matter what you choose, you won't be dissapointed. Hard to go wrong with any of these options.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:24:49 AM EST
Southern Utah for sure. You can see Zion, Bryce, Arches, & Monument Valley easily in a week. You might even have enough time to hit the north rim of the Grand Canyon while you're in the Zion/Bryce area.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:24:55 AM EST
Ohio.

The thought of the mighty Cuyahoga River enveloped in flames has always captivated me.

Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:26:01 AM EST
Utah.

With a 4x4, and off the road.

MOAB, Utah. It's like nowhere else.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:28:02 AM EST
With all that there is to see and do, I really don't understand why my wife is so caught up with visiting other countries.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:28:22 AM EST
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:29:45 AM EST

Originally Posted By 50cal:
How about the Dakotas or Wyoming?
Wyoming....possibly. However I want to stick to the Rocky Mountain states and/or the Great Basin.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:32:53 AM EST
My in-laws just got back from a two-week trip to a ranch in Wyoming. My father-in-law is now convinced that Wyoming is what Heaven looks like.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:33:08 AM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
With all that there is to see and do, I really don't understand why my wife is so caught up with visiting other countries.


Especially with the exchange rates right now!
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:37:59 AM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
With all that there is to see and do, I really don't understand why my wife is so caught up with visiting other countries.


Women always want to do that because they believe life is like some trashy novel and they will meet Fabio in a cafe in Venice.

That being said, I would take a spouse to Europe and trade her in on an import.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:39:47 AM EST

Originally Posted By Merrell:

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
With all that there is to see and do, I really don't understand why my wife is so caught up with visiting other countries.


Women always want to do that because they believe life is like some trashy novel and they will meet Fabio in a cafe in Venice.

That being said, I would take a spouse to Europe and trade her in on an import.
She more of prefers tropical locations. After the shit we went through on our Honeymoon and the damn medical bills that we are still trying to get straight no thanks.

I would consider Ireland or Scotland, other than that my ass is staying in the good ole US of A
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:40:29 AM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
Trying to start planning for a vacation out west next spring/early summer (wife and finances willing). I would like to fly into Denver then drive across Colorado down through Utah to Monument valley, then on to the Grand Canyon and back. Is this too much to do in a week's time and should I consider something else.

I really want to see the west. Just wondering what the best bang for my buck is.



I just did the same trip this Summer -- Denver to Vegas, seeing everything along the way. One week is an adequate amount of time to do the whole thing in my experience. Incidently, this is THE trip to do, in my opinion. I've done 4 separate week long trips out west, going between most combinations of large cities out west (Vegas to Albuquerque, Vegas to San Diego, Vegas to Phoenix and Devner to Vegas). Southern UT is THE place to go if you can only see one area.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:43:01 AM EST

Originally Posted By mr0w1:


I just did the same trip this Summer -- Denver to Vegas, seeing everything along the way. One week is an adequate amount of time to do the whole thing in my experience. Incidently, this is THE trip to do, in my opinion. I've done 4 separate week long trips out west, going between most combinations of large cities out west (Vegas to Albuquerque, Vegas to San Diego, Vegas to Phoenix and Devner to Vegas). Southern UT is THE place to go if you can only see one area.
Awsome! As far as expense, would you rate it as economical, moderately priced or expensive as hell? I figure aside from car rental and plane fair it can't be that expensive.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:44:54 AM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:

Originally Posted By 50cal:
How about the Dakotas or Wyoming?
Wyoming....possibly. However I want to stick to the Rocky Mountain states and/or the Great Basin.



the NW corner of Wyoming is awesome.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:49:50 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/8/2007 5:54:54 AM EST by Mazeman]
Here goes. A little too much driving for my taste, but do-able:

Day 1: Fly into Bozeman, MT. Either spend the night there (and see the museum of the Rockies in the AM), or, if it's early enough, drive on to spend the night at The Murray Hotel in Livingston MT.

Day 2: If you haven't stayed in Livingston, have lunch there. Continue west to Red Lodge, MT and then over the Bear Tooth Pass into Yellowstone. Explore some of Yellowstone in the late afternoon/evening. Stay in one of the more southern hotels/camps within Yellowstone. That way, you get to see some of the park as you're going to your destination, and have a shorter drive on Day 5.

Day 3 and 4: Explore more of Yellowstone. There's a huge amount to see. Consider side trip to Cody.

Day 5. Big driving day (10 hrs). You will drive by the Grand Tetons (maybe lunch?). Go to some destination in southern Utah (Zion, Bryce, Monument..).

Day 6 and 7. Other destinations in southern Utah.

Day 8. Fly out of Vegas

That's 8 days, 7 nights. If you can extend it a day, a night in Vegas is cool. Maybe catch a Cirque du Soleil show.

ETA: If you go over the Bear Tooth pass, make sure it's open! Due to snow, it usually doesn't open until early summer (times vary).
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:49:51 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/8/2007 5:51:04 AM EST by shootemup]

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:

Originally Posted By Merrell:

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
With all that there is to see and do, I really don't understand why my wife is so caught up with visiting other countries.


Women always want to do that because they believe life is like some trashy novel and they will meet Fabio in a cafe in Venice.

That being said, I would take a spouse to Europe and trade her in on an import.
She more of prefers tropical locations. After the shit we went through on our Honeymoon and the damn medical bills that we are still trying to get straight no thanks.

I would consider Ireland or Scotland, other than that my ass is staying in the good ole US of A


After just spending a month in Italy, driving all over the country, there is some reason.

There is something to be said about walking around a city built 2000+ years ago by man(Pompeii).

The natural beauty out here is great, but there really is no human history here as old as Europe.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:49:54 AM EST
Dude if your into the west, Arizona is best.

N. AZ
grand canyon
monument valley
canyon de chelly
hubbell trading post
walnut canyon
meteor crater
petrified forest
painted desert
route 66
hotel la posada

S. AZ
tombstone
bisbee
jerome
old tuscon
apache junction
with all the colleges we have some of the hottest girls wandering our airports.

all this can be done very inexpensively, ask me how I know?

On a side note I went on a wagon train ride for 5 days in wyoming, life changing is all I can say.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 5:58:12 AM EST

Originally Posted By HeckThomas:
....

S. AZ
tombstone
bisbee
jerome
old tuscon
apache junction
....



If you're in the area, sure.. but don't go out of your way for some of that.
When I was stationed at Ft. Huachuca, I hit some of those places.. Tombstone was a HUGE let down.. that place is SO touristy! Bisbee is not as bad... long drives out of the way if you ask me (and I know you didn't)
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 6:01:26 AM EST
Utah. Bryce Canyon, Zion, Arches, and a lot besides.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 6:02:53 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/8/2007 6:04:37 AM EST by mr0w1]

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:

Originally Posted By mr0w1:


I just did the same trip this Summer -- Denver to Vegas, seeing everything along the way. One week is an adequate amount of time to do the whole thing in my experience. Incidently, this is THE trip to do, in my opinion. I've done 4 separate week long trips out west, going between most combinations of large cities out west (Vegas to Albuquerque, Vegas to San Diego, Vegas to Phoenix and Devner to Vegas). Southern UT is THE place to go if you can only see one area.
Awsome! As far as expense, would you rate it as economical, moderately priced or expensive as hell? I figure aside from car rental and plane fair it can't be that expensive.


The actual trip went like this -- my fiance and I drove my Jeep from here in GA to Denver. The gas to drive out there and back was cheaper than just renting a 4wd SUV one way from Denver to Las Vegas (assuming you can even rent 4wd's anymore -- they didn't want to let us the time we did Death Valley). It cost about $400 in gas out there, $400 back (not including gas spent on the actual trip itself).

Picked up my parents in Denver (they flew), and we did the trip from Denver to Las Vegas, hitting Arches, the Moab area, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Hole in the Rock at Lake Powell, Bryce Canyon, Zion, and the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. When we got to Las Vegas we dropped my parents off, and my fiance and I did the South Rim, Meteor Crater, and Petrified forest on the way back. We spent a week doing the Denver/Vegas leg, and then another week just me and the fiance doing the South rim, etc., and trip back home.

My mother told me it cost them about $1000 bucks total. It cost me about $800, and my fiance about $300. We camped a little less than half the time. It just worked out that way how we split the cost. We could have cut costs by driving a car instead of an SUV, but to get to the really fun places, you need a 4wd. Also, we could have no eaten out as much, but even as it was we ate out only rarely.

Maybe I'll cull through my 6 gigs of pics that I took and post some of them, if you're interested.

Any other questions, just ask.


ETA: I didn't actually answer your question. All in all, I'd rate the trip as an excellent and worthwhile expenditure of money, and I feel like I got a lot of bang for my buck. If you travel smart, it's not all that expensive at all, relatively speaking.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 6:14:58 AM EST

Originally Posted By Mazeman:
Here's a trip I made: Fly into Salt Lake. The trip is a loop that includes eastern Idaho, southwestern Montana (check out Livingston), the Bear Tooth pass from Red Lodge Montana into Yellowstone, a few days in Yellowstone (also check out the firearms museum in Cody Wy), the Grand Tetons and back.

Not a lot of big cities in this loop, but absolutely gorgeous part of the country.

ETA: This is best for TWO weeks.


Did basically the same loop on my motorcycle a few years back. I also did Glacier national park and the canadian side of Niagra falls on my ride home. My most memorable trip ever!!
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 6:17:43 AM EST
Fly into Grand Junction, then tour Utah and the Grand Canyon, and leave via Denver. It is a lot to do in a week, but can be done.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 6:19:36 AM EST
Washington or Oregon
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 6:19:40 AM EST
CALIFORNIA

is the best place to visit, lots of attractions, good food, lots of history

Link Posted: 10/8/2007 6:26:00 AM EST

Originally Posted By Conspiro-Agnew:
I'm originally from GA. I've seen all 50 states. I decided I will live out my life in Alaska.


I am with you, what do you do for a living there?
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 6:29:42 AM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
Trying to start planning for a vacation out west next spring/early summer (wife and finances willing). I would like to fly into Denver then drive across Colorado down through Utah to Monument valley, then on to the Grand Canyon and back. Is this too much to do in a week's time and should I consider something else.

I really want to see the west. Just wondering what the best bang for my buck is.


How you could possibly mention an "ultimate trip through the West" without Montana is a travesty!!!!!!
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 10:04:55 AM EST

Originally Posted By kill-9:
California. It's a great place to visit.


I hate to say it, but I love Northern California. If only the state wasn't run by a bunch of ex-hippies.

One thing for the OP to keep in mind: Weather. If you're going to be in Arches/Canyonlands/Zion, then you should go before Memorial Day because it gets hotter than hell in the summer there. But if you go then you might not be able to hit the North Rim of Grand Canyon because there's usually still snow there that time of year.

Similar to the Yellowstone/Montana loop. Best time is around late June/early July, because that's when all the wildflowers are out. Problem is that's when all the tourists show up, too. Go any time before Memorial Day and it's often cold and snowy.

Plus you have variations in the climate just by going up and down the mountain. I've personally found it's best to do the desert/red rock vacations in the spring or fall, and the mountain/forest ones in the summer.
Arrow Left Previous Page
Page / 2
Top Top