1. Are you a current member with account or password issues?

    Please visit following page for more information

    Dismiss Notice

Help me plan a US road trip

Discussion in 'Travel' started by ?uesto, Feb 22, 2014.

  1. ?uesto

    ?uesto Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2010
    Messages:
    508
    Likes Received:
    344
    My girlfriend and I are looking to travel the country this summer and we just want any advice you all have to offer.

    We'll be starting in South Florida and we'll either go up the east coast or across the Gulf of Mexico (New Orleans is a must) and get to Lake Tahoe (final destination). We'd like to do this as cheaply as possible, so we'll be staying with friends and family in New York, Tennessee, Colorado, and California and we plan on camping at state parks in between. We're planning on Yellowstone, Yosemite, Grand Canyon, and Rocky Mountains (at least 3 of those). I'd also love to take my dog unless enough people think it's a horrible idea.

    Any route suggestions? Must see destinations? Anyone advise against taking my dog with us? Anything else you all have to offer?

    Thanks!
     
  2. al66pine

    al66pine Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2010
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    211
    ?uesto
    Before offering suggestions, we'd like to know (cut and paste from my post)--
    places/activities you've loved = ___
    places/activities you've liked =
    places/activities you've disliked =
    places/activities you've hated =.
    Ditto gf =__.

    Places you've dreamed of going =__.
    Ditto gf = __.

    Besides the nat pks, what else is of interest to you & gf?
    Art museums? hist/natural museums? cities & hist or ethnic neighborhoods?
    Shopping for edc? watching artisans create edc? or edc factory tour?
    Casinos & gambling? Live perf like theater, music?
    Geo cache? Railroad buff? photography?
    Outdoor sports - canoe, raft, surf, water-ski? Horseback ride?

    If you want to include Yellowstone, Yosemite, Grand Canyon, and Rocky Mountains
    (been to all multiple times and w/go again),
    guessing you both like The Great Outdoors.
    Is it more viewing from the car, or out hiking on trail for 10-15 mi/day?

    Now find some overlap in those places and activities, for the longest pt of your trip.
    Then one or two special places/activities for you, that she could pass on; ditto for her.

    How much time do you have? 1 mo, 2, 3?
    Will you two drive the entire trip?
    Aside from couch-surfing w fam friends, Tent-camp?

    What an adventure this will be.
     
  3. al66pine

    al66pine Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2010
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    211
    Oh, the dog.
    Does dog have exp w overnight travel? Extended travel?
    Interior dog or backyard dog?
    If most of your trip is in cities, is dog accustomed to getting in and out of car all day?
    If more time in parks, check web for park-specific rules.

    Summertime, so dog may not be able to stay in car for more than a few min, in most places.
     
  4. hunter s gatherer
    • In Omnia Paratus

    hunter s gatherer EDC Junkie!!!

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2013
    Messages:
    751
    Likes Received:
    1,396
    I'm going to say weave around I40 to I25 and hit Santa Fe. At 7000 ft sits at the foot of the Sangre de Cristos (Southern end of the Rockies). From Santa Fe you could go north to Durango and the Million Dollar Highway putting you in the heart of the CO Rockies ending around Montrose where you could cut left across UT.
    If you keep to 40 at Albuquerque, in AZ do Canyon de Chelly, quick stop at the Petrified Forest, next huge Meteor Crater near Winslow. At Flagstaff detour south to Sedona or north to the Grand Canyon.
     
    mud80 and al66pine like this.
  5. ?uesto

    ?uesto Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2010
    Messages:
    508
    Likes Received:
    344
    My responses are in bold.





    Again, thanks for the help so far! Looking forward to what others have to say.
     
    al66pine likes this.
  6. al66pine

    al66pine Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2010
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    211
    I agree w the good ideas in ^^^HunterGatherer's post^^^.
     
  7. CatherineM
    • In Omnia Paratus

    CatherineM Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2011
    Messages:
    3,949
    Likes Received:
    8,377
    Lots of dinosaur museums in Colorado. Loved the one in Denver and bolder.


    Sent by Owl Post
     
    al66pine likes this.
  8. Evilbunny

    Evilbunny Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2011
    Messages:
    1,042
    Likes Received:
    604
    d.l bliss when its open is the best spot for tahoe camping personally.
     
  9. ?uesto

    ?uesto Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2010
    Messages:
    508
    Likes Received:
    344

    Went to DL Bliss a few years ago. Definitely going back when I get there!
     
    al66pine likes this.
  10. flatblackcapo

    flatblackcapo EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Messages:
    2,902
    Likes Received:
    50,550
    What ever you do DON'T MISS YOSEMITE!!!!! And don't spend all your time in the valley,there is soooooo much more to Yosemite!
     
    al66pine likes this.
  11. IMWILSON
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • In Omnia Paratus

    IMWILSON EDC Wizard

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2010
    Messages:
    3,351
    Likes Received:
    9,461
    You absolutely HAVE to go to Memphis in May! Also see Graceland while you're there.
     
  12. al66pine

    al66pine Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2010
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    211
    Consider stepping up activities w dog now, before trip.
    On errands, in and out of the car, new terrain, some city, some rural-ish, some big open spaces, etc.
    Also if you can, multiple wk end trips, driving at least a couple hundred miles.

    See your vet for Rx for motion sickness and/or mild sedative.
    Better to be prepared for this possibility, than dog being sick in car, trying to find vet hundreds of miles from home.
    Try Rx at least once before summer trip, to see reaction, dosage, etc.
    Also your dog's usu. Rx, if any.
    Have copy of vaccination, rabies, etc. papers.
    in case of emergency, may need to board dog in kennel, e.g. you & GF sick or accident. Or dog sick.

    What if dog 'makes a break for it' a thousand miles from home?
    Is dog micro-chipped?
    Get dog tag made up w your cell # and gf's cell # on it.
    Take pix of dog, showing face,whole body,front, back, side.
    Make a word-doc file w Missing/Lost poster, w pix & info re dog, your cell #s, reward,
    leaving blank last-seen-info. Save this on your laptop, tablet, or thumb drive,
    ready to complete & print at Kinkos/fedEx, if needed, then post locally.
    I've seen an edcf thread about first aid kit for dogs. Maybe someone will chime in and link it.
    Hoping you do not need any of ^these^ worst case things.

    A 'locator' or flasher type light to attach to collar may help w your peace of mind for walks after dark.
    Plastic pick-up bags?

    Pack familar food,
    bowls, toys, leash, collar, and blanket/bed to comfort your pup.
     
    mud80 likes this.
  13. reppans

    reppans Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2011
    Messages:
    2,643
    Likes Received:
    4,199
    I just did a 7 week (last Sept/Oct) Nat. Park X-country trip with my dog in a campervan... it was epic. Summer can be a whole different story though - heat, crowds, kids. I traveled totally Ad Lib, but found I needed reservations to camp in the more popular NPs. You might be able to walk-in during weekdays at campgrounds outside of the parks, but I would reserve for Fri/Sat nights.... In an RV, I always had the option of free camping in Walmart/Cabela parking lots (but they certainly got their money's worth out of me :))

    The general rule in NPs is that a dog needs to stay within ~ 100 ft. of your car so parking lots and roadways are OK, but forget about taking a dog on good hikes. Course you can't lock them in cars either in that summer heat either, but being from FL, you know that. My camper has a thermostat controlled exhaust fan, and I was still constantly searching for shade -window shades and Reflectix are highly recommended. Dogs are still possible though - just wake up in the dark, and be at the trailhead at the crack of dawn, and you'll be able choose your parking (shaded, or know where the sun will rise), for a few hours sightseeing/hiking before doggy oven time. Outside of the NPs, there were tons of nice parks for dogs incl, dedicated off-leash fenced in areas. Also I believe all Nat. Forests are completely open to dogs.

    Get the book "Your Guide to The National Parks" by Micheal J Oswald... all sorts of great info, incl. best hikes, doggy day care, etc.

    clicky
    clicky
    clicky
     
    bigfoot and al66pine like this.
  14. wrath0r
    • In Omnia Paratus

    wrath0r EDC Junkie!!!

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2013
    Messages:
    1,116
    Likes Received:
    3,800
    During the summer, I'd suggest visiting Acadia National Park. There are some great camping areas, hikes, fun night life in Bar Harbor, etc. Cadillac Mountain is the first place in the continental US to see the sunrise. Great lobster. And lots of eagle sightings.
     
  15. ?uesto

    ?uesto Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2010
    Messages:
    508
    Likes Received:
    344
    I'll try to make that when I'm there. Last time we were there it was early-March, and it was cold (at least for a Florida boy). You could tell why they sang the blues out there. Definitely gotta see Graceland too. Wasn't able too last time I was there. I'd also like to see the Gibson guitar factory, but that may start to be a bit much, musically for the girlfriend (plus, I'm a drummer). Hahaha



    Taking him to the dog park today and then out west later this evening. I'll try to start the weekend trips next week or the week after. Spring Break I'll have to drive somewhere far with him too. I'll definitely talk to the vet about motion sickness Rx too. I'll have to see how he does on those long drives first, but definitely something I'd rather have and not need than need and not have. He is microchipped and I already have some "Lost" posters made up of him. I've also already have a first aid kit made up for him that I put together using that very thread. Also in there are copies of vaccination/registration info, pictures, spare leash and collar, 3 days worth of food, and collapsible bowls. That thing's always in my EDC bag if he's with me.





    Great to know! Thanks for the info and the links. I'll have to see which ones need reservations closer to the summer and then make them (or make a few if they allow it, so as not to be restricted to that time slot). Unfortunately, with my coursework (pre-law), I don't have time to read much outside of what I have to read for my classes (few hundred pages a week). I read what I can while on the toilet or waiting in line at the supermarket, but maybe I'll outsource that to my girlfriend. Hahaha
     
  16. kertap75

    kertap75 EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Messages:
    6,492
    Likes Received:
    19,872
    I'm not sure where in upstate New York you will be staying but there is lots to do and see. Wine region in the finger lakes. For history buffs there are some revolutionary war battlefields like Oriskany. If you like waterfalls we have one of the best in the world ;). In fact the finger lakes region has a lot of smaller ones that are fun to explore. The baseball hall of fame is near Albany and is worth stopping at if you are a baseball fan. I'll probably think if a hundred things I should have suggested tomorrow lol. Have a fun trip!
     
  17. KenW.

    KenW. Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2014
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    53
    Utah has more National Parks than any other State. Just don't plan on drinking much alcohol though.
     
  18. ?uesto

    ?uesto Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2010
    Messages:
    508
    Likes Received:
    344

    We'd like to check out the parks up there. We've both been to Minnewaska State Park in New Paltz, so we'd love to go there together and maybe check out Buffalo and Albany. She's got family in Hyde Park too, so we'll probably go there.



    I love Utah, but I have an ex-girlfriend in Salt Lake City. I know this girlfriend probably won't want to be anywhere in the state for too long. But yeah, I've seen the mountains (in the spring and fall) and would love to visit some of the parks. I thought downtown SLC was kind of cool too. I know Route 66 avoids Utah, so she may just tell me to stay on the highway as we pass the signs for Utah. ;)
     
  19. al66pine

    al66pine Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2010
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    211
    Snipped from your post, ?uesto
    Taking him to the dog park today ....weekend trips next week . talk to the vet about motion sickness Rx too...
    ... microchipped and "Lost" posters ...a first aid kit made up for him that I put together using that very thread...
    copies of vaccination/registration info, pictures, spare leash and collar, 3 days worth of food, and collapsible bowls. That thing's always in my EDC bag if he's with me.

    What a good Doggy Daddy you are - to have those thought of those things already!
    Congrats on your puppy-prepping.

    Now I can think more about ideas for you & gf.
     
  20. hunter s gatherer
    • In Omnia Paratus

    hunter s gatherer EDC Junkie!!!

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2013
    Messages:
    751
    Likes Received:
    1,396
    The Florissant Fossil Beds near Co Springs and of course the Garden of the Gods is an awesome detour.
     
    al66pine likes this.