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Road trip USA Nat'l parks



 
 
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  #11  
Old October 11th, 2011, 11:11 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Panawe
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 13
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks

On Tue, 11 Oct 2011 22:59:46 +0100, Graham Harrison wrote:

"Panawe" wrote in message
m...
On Mon, 10 Oct 2011 15:25:06 +0100, Graham Harrison wrote:

"Panawe" wrote in message
m...
Hi,

Advice please. I am planning a road trip (fly-drive from UK and stay
in hotels/motels) to the western US next year and I have a number of
questions.

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone
Nat'l parks (and others if feasible).

I don't like cities.

I am planning on 14 days, is this long enough?

Should I buy a package holiday or just book fly-drive and stay
wherever I end up?

If I book a package could someone recommend a good tour operator?

What's the best time to do this? I was thinking of October 2012.

Are there any hotels that I should not miss?

Are there any events I shouldn't miss?

Can someone recommend a book?

Any possibility of an astronomy event, star-watching party?

Thanks in advance, I realise I've asked a lot of questions.

--
Panawe

Yellowstone and Yosemite are probably 2 days drive apart and if the
road over Touolmne in Yosemite has closed by then possibly 3 days so
14 days is doable but you're going to need to keep moving if you're
going to do anything more than spend a night in each of them (which
would be silly).

I went to Yellowstone in September this year and previously in October
a few years ago. Weather on both occasions was lovely but the week
before we arrived in October we were told it had snowed and it has
been known to snow in July (but unusual).

Accommodation in and around ANY National Park is at a premium; book
early and BOOK. You're also going to be in some of the least
populated parts of the US where towns with motels I'd stay in can be
80/90 miles apart. Staying in the parks is an experience - expensive
and sometimes surprisingly basic but I do it because it saves the
hassle of driving in and out every day. In Yosemite THE hotel is the
Awanhee. In Yellowstone there are 3 Old Faithful, Mammoth and Lake
and I wouldn't like to pick one over the other. That's not to say I
recommend any of those 4 - never stayed in any of them but visiting
each is worthwhile.

I like the Moon series of guidebooks but Lonely Planet or Rough Guide
also work. A Rand McNally road atlas can be useful - Amazon sell
them in the UK. Make sure you understand the scales - each
page/state is different.

I would investigate flying to San Francisco and back from Denver -
both routes are operated non-stop. The fare will simply be half of
each round trip. However, that means paying a one way fee for your
car. I'd book a couple of nights in San Francisco to get over jet lag.
I'm not a fan of cities but San Francisco is one that I like.
Parking in San Francisco is like any city - bad and expensive. Book
the car for the day you want to start driving not the day you arrive -
even though you'll be a pedestrian it will also give you time to
acclimatise to traffic on the wrong side. Public transport is pretty
good. Make sure you visit Alactraz - book in advance. Have a read
of their highway code
http://dmv.ca.gov/pubs/hdbk/driver_handbook_toc.htm - there are some
things we don't have.

Go south to Monterrey (use highway 1 through Half Moon Bay) and see
the aquarium and whales. Now head for Yosemite; you could go via
Pinnacles. Next north to pick I-80 east as far as Well, Nevada. Go
north to Twin Falls and on towards Sun Valley to turn right and make a
stop at http://www.nps.gov/crmo/index.htm then on to Yellowstone.
From Yellowstone I think I'd head south through Grand Teton and
Jackson to I80 at Rock Springs, Rawlins then south to come over the
Rocky Mountain NP for a last night in Boulder CO before flying home
from Denver. You need a minimum of 2 nights in Yosemite and 3 in
Yellowstone and that's an absolute minimum. In Yellowstone you need to
get up early (like before dawn) to get into the prime wildlife spots
when the animals are actually about and then go on to have breakfast.

(That said THE way in/out of Yellowstone for me is the North East
entrance through Cooke City and up to Billings).

(Boulder is a small university city with a pedestrianised downtown.
The path along Boulder Creek leads directly to the edge of the
Flatirons. We stayed in the Quality Inn on Arapahoe which is within
easy reach of both on foot. Visit the Chautauqua there if you have
time).


Hi,

I'm blocking in the holiday. Here goes....

Hotel San Francisco 04/09/12
Hotel San Francisco 05/09/12
Hotel Monterey 06/09/12
Hotel Monterey 07/09/12
Hotel Yosemite 08/09/12
Hotel Yosemite 09/09/12
Hotel Yosemite 10/09/12
Hotel Twin Falls 11/09/12
Hotel Grand Teton 12/09/12
Hotel Grand Teton 13/09/12
Hotel Yellowstone 14/09/12
Hotel Yellowstone 15/09/12
Hotel Yellowstone 16/09/12
and back to San Fran over 3 days.

What do you think?

I need a route back from Yellowstone to west coast, around Crescent
City, so I can use the coast road back to San Francisco.

Thanks in advance.




--
Panawe


I'd say you're being far too optimistic if you think you're going to get
from Yosemite to Twin Falls in a day. My feeling is that Winnemucca
(or maybe Elko)Nevada is as far as you'll get (the road over Tuolumne is
scenic, not quick) and you might then make Jackson the following night.
There's no accommodation in Teton that I'm aware of so you need to stay
in Jackson. Maybe simply pass through Teton en route from Jackson to
Yellowstone.

As for getting back to San Francisco I'd say Crescent City via CA1 (the
coast road) to San Francisco needs 2 days - you can probably plan to
catch the last flight from San Francisco if you stay no more than 100
miles north of San Francisco for your last night. However, that means
you might glimpse (but not see) the blue of Crater Lake, miss Lava Tubes
near Klamath Falls, will almost certainly miss Point Reyes and you'll
have no chance to ride the Skunk Train from Fort Bragg (to name but a
few sights).

It all depends on how much time you want to spend in the car and how
much out of it. My view is you're being much too optimistic for a 2
week trip.


Yes, I'm sure you're right. I was trying to get an itinerary blocked out
and then fiddle about with it (using the advice of yourself and others).
I'm already thinking of extending the holiday to three weeks instead of
two and I've ordered a couple of books (Lonely planet and Rough Guide)
that will alter my thinking. Please don't think I've forgotten your
original advice, I haven't, it's all very much a work in progress.
Anyway, the planning is half the fun

--
Panawe
  #12  
Old October 12th, 2011, 07:36 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Jeff Lanam
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 23
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks

On 10/10/2011 6:33 AM, Panawe wrote:
Hi,

Advice please. I am planning a road trip (fly-drive from UK and stay in
hotels/motels) to the western US next year and I have a number of
questions.

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone Nat'l
parks (and others if feasible).


As others have mentioned, your plans include a lot of driving. What they
haven't mentioned is that there is likely to be construction along many
of the roads, particularly in the mountains. The season for road
construction is very short in those area, so expect delays.

For whale watching, I can recommend the Oceanic Society trips. They
always have a naturalist along who can be very informative. Note that in
September, the whale migration is out around the Farallon Islands, 27
miles off-shore. This is an all-day trip. The grey whales, which
migrate along the coast, start doing so in December.
  #13  
Old October 12th, 2011, 05:33 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Panawe
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 13
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks

On Tue, 11 Oct 2011 23:36:38 -0700, Jeff Lanam wrote:

On 10/10/2011 6:33 AM, Panawe wrote:
Hi,

Advice please. I am planning a road trip (fly-drive from UK and stay in
hotels/motels) to the western US next year and I have a number of
questions.

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone
Nat'l parks (and others if feasible).


As others have mentioned, your plans include a lot of driving. What they
haven't mentioned is that there is likely to be construction along many
of the roads, particularly in the mountains. The season for road
construction is very short in those area, so expect delays.

For whale watching, I can recommend the Oceanic Society trips. They
always have a naturalist along who can be very informative. Note that in
September, the whale migration is out around the Farallon Islands, 27
miles off-shore. This is an all-day trip. The grey whales, which
migrate along the coast, start doing so in December.


Thanks, I've contacted the Oceanic Society. That expedition is a must,
thanks for the information!

As regards my itinerary - what would you suggest given that I want to get
the most out of my holiday? Should I leave Yellowstone for another time?
Even if I extend the holiday to three weeks?

--
Panawe
  #14  
Old October 12th, 2011, 06:34 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Lauri Nurmi
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks

On 2011-10-12, Panawe wrote:
On 10/10/2011 6:33 AM, Panawe wrote:

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone
Nat'l parks (and others if feasible).


As regards my itinerary - what would you suggest given that I want to get
the most out of my holiday? Should I leave Yellowstone for another time?
Even if I extend the holiday to three weeks?


You could drive less and still visit three national parks if you
choose Yosemite, Death Valley and Grand Canyon (Arizona side). Hoover
Dam and Las Vegas are along the assumed route, and might also be worth
seeing.

-LN
  #15  
Old October 12th, 2011, 09:56 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Graham Harrison[_3_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 288
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks


"Panawe" wrote in message
m...
On Tue, 11 Oct 2011 22:59:46 +0100, Graham Harrison wrote:

"Panawe" wrote in message
m...
On Mon, 10 Oct 2011 15:25:06 +0100, Graham Harrison wrote:

"Panawe" wrote in message
m...
Hi,

Advice please. I am planning a road trip (fly-drive from UK and stay
in hotels/motels) to the western US next year and I have a number of
questions.

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone
Nat'l parks (and others if feasible).

I don't like cities.

I am planning on 14 days, is this long enough?

Should I buy a package holiday or just book fly-drive and stay
wherever I end up?

If I book a package could someone recommend a good tour operator?

What's the best time to do this? I was thinking of October 2012.

Are there any hotels that I should not miss?

Are there any events I shouldn't miss?

Can someone recommend a book?

Any possibility of an astronomy event, star-watching party?

Thanks in advance, I realise I've asked a lot of questions.

--
Panawe

Yellowstone and Yosemite are probably 2 days drive apart and if the
road over Touolmne in Yosemite has closed by then possibly 3 days so
14 days is doable but you're going to need to keep moving if you're
going to do anything more than spend a night in each of them (which
would be silly).

I went to Yellowstone in September this year and previously in October
a few years ago. Weather on both occasions was lovely but the week
before we arrived in October we were told it had snowed and it has
been known to snow in July (but unusual).

Accommodation in and around ANY National Park is at a premium; book
early and BOOK. You're also going to be in some of the least
populated parts of the US where towns with motels I'd stay in can be
80/90 miles apart. Staying in the parks is an experience - expensive
and sometimes surprisingly basic but I do it because it saves the
hassle of driving in and out every day. In Yosemite THE hotel is the
Awanhee. In Yellowstone there are 3 Old Faithful, Mammoth and Lake
and I wouldn't like to pick one over the other. That's not to say I
recommend any of those 4 - never stayed in any of them but visiting
each is worthwhile.

I like the Moon series of guidebooks but Lonely Planet or Rough Guide
also work. A Rand McNally road atlas can be useful - Amazon sell
them in the UK. Make sure you understand the scales - each
page/state is different.

I would investigate flying to San Francisco and back from Denver -
both routes are operated non-stop. The fare will simply be half of
each round trip. However, that means paying a one way fee for your
car. I'd book a couple of nights in San Francisco to get over jet lag.
I'm not a fan of cities but San Francisco is one that I like.
Parking in San Francisco is like any city - bad and expensive. Book
the car for the day you want to start driving not the day you arrive -
even though you'll be a pedestrian it will also give you time to
acclimatise to traffic on the wrong side. Public transport is pretty
good. Make sure you visit Alactraz - book in advance. Have a read
of their highway code
http://dmv.ca.gov/pubs/hdbk/driver_handbook_toc.htm - there are some
things we don't have.

Go south to Monterrey (use highway 1 through Half Moon Bay) and see
the aquarium and whales. Now head for Yosemite; you could go via
Pinnacles. Next north to pick I-80 east as far as Well, Nevada. Go
north to Twin Falls and on towards Sun Valley to turn right and make a
stop at http://www.nps.gov/crmo/index.htm then on to Yellowstone.
From Yellowstone I think I'd head south through Grand Teton and
Jackson to I80 at Rock Springs, Rawlins then south to come over the
Rocky Mountain NP for a last night in Boulder CO before flying home
from Denver. You need a minimum of 2 nights in Yosemite and 3 in
Yellowstone and that's an absolute minimum. In Yellowstone you need to
get up early (like before dawn) to get into the prime wildlife spots
when the animals are actually about and then go on to have breakfast.

(That said THE way in/out of Yellowstone for me is the North East
entrance through Cooke City and up to Billings).

(Boulder is a small university city with a pedestrianised downtown.
The path along Boulder Creek leads directly to the edge of the
Flatirons. We stayed in the Quality Inn on Arapahoe which is within
easy reach of both on foot. Visit the Chautauqua there if you have
time).

Hi,

I'm blocking in the holiday. Here goes....

Hotel San Francisco 04/09/12
Hotel San Francisco 05/09/12
Hotel Monterey 06/09/12
Hotel Monterey 07/09/12
Hotel Yosemite 08/09/12
Hotel Yosemite 09/09/12
Hotel Yosemite 10/09/12
Hotel Twin Falls 11/09/12
Hotel Grand Teton 12/09/12
Hotel Grand Teton 13/09/12
Hotel Yellowstone 14/09/12
Hotel Yellowstone 15/09/12
Hotel Yellowstone 16/09/12
and back to San Fran over 3 days.

What do you think?

I need a route back from Yellowstone to west coast, around Crescent
City, so I can use the coast road back to San Francisco.

Thanks in advance.




--
Panawe


I'd say you're being far too optimistic if you think you're going to get
from Yosemite to Twin Falls in a day. My feeling is that Winnemucca
(or maybe Elko)Nevada is as far as you'll get (the road over Tuolumne is
scenic, not quick) and you might then make Jackson the following night.
There's no accommodation in Teton that I'm aware of so you need to stay
in Jackson. Maybe simply pass through Teton en route from Jackson to
Yellowstone.

As for getting back to San Francisco I'd say Crescent City via CA1 (the
coast road) to San Francisco needs 2 days - you can probably plan to
catch the last flight from San Francisco if you stay no more than 100
miles north of San Francisco for your last night. However, that means
you might glimpse (but not see) the blue of Crater Lake, miss Lava Tubes
near Klamath Falls, will almost certainly miss Point Reyes and you'll
have no chance to ride the Skunk Train from Fort Bragg (to name but a
few sights).

It all depends on how much time you want to spend in the car and how
much out of it. My view is you're being much too optimistic for a 2
week trip.


Yes, I'm sure you're right. I was trying to get an itinerary blocked out
and then fiddle about with it (using the advice of yourself and others).
I'm already thinking of extending the holiday to three weeks instead of
two and I've ordered a couple of books (Lonely planet and Rough Guide)
that will alter my thinking. Please don't think I've forgotten your
original advice, I haven't, it's all very much a work in progress.
Anyway, the planning is half the fun

--
Panawe


It's always a balance between the amount of time you spend driving versus
the amount of time you get to spend in the places you've driven to and with
all the planning in the world sometimes you get it wrong. Our holiday this
year is a case in point. We got everywhere (simplistically
Seattle/Boise/Yellowstone/Havre/Glacier/North Cascades/Seattle) but we
probably spent too much time in the car. You'd think I'd know by now!

My own view is that going to the west you need three weeks. The distances
are large but it's also about making the most of the airfare you have to
shell out.

Beware of Labor Day, which is the first Monday in September. Elements of
the US tourist industry seem to believe all tourism stops that weekend and
they close down. It's not the whole country by any means but just make
sure any "attractions" or museums you want to visit are going to be open
when you get there.

And you always find new things. This year I discovered US30 alongside I80.
The speed limit was 10mph slower and I had to keep slowing down through
towns. On the other hand there was MUCH less traffic, the towns provided
some relief from just driving and the road parallels the Union Pacific main
line so I kept meeting trains. I80 is by no means the only interstate to
have an ordinary road alongside.

Do consider a one way trip. I realise that the one way fee on the car is a
barrier but even allowing for the slightly zig zag profile the trip could
adopt I reckon it will release time from simply not having to drive all the
way back to the west coast.


  #16  
Old October 13th, 2011, 01:46 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Panawe
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 13
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks

On Wed, 12 Oct 2011 17:34:52 +0000, Lauri Nurmi wrote:

On 2011-10-12, Panawe wrote:
On 10/10/2011 6:33 AM, Panawe wrote:

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone
Nat'l parks (and others if feasible).


As regards my itinerary - what would you suggest given that I want to
get the most out of my holiday? Should I leave Yellowstone for another
time? Even if I extend the holiday to three weeks?


You could drive less and still visit three national parks if you choose
Yosemite, Death Valley and Grand Canyon (Arizona side). Hoover Dam and
Las Vegas are along the assumed route, and might also be worth seeing.

-LN


Thanks to everyone for advice.

I'm listening and I'm wondering now about 14 days fly-drive out of San
Francisco followed by a week's package tour (a holiday within a holiday!)
to Yellowstone flying to and from SFO. I could have a rest from driving
on the Y'stone tour.

What do you think?

Or I could do the grand tour from Seattle to SF via.... stop it!

--
Panawe
  #17  
Old October 13th, 2011, 07:07 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Graham Harrison[_3_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 288
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks


"Panawe" wrote in message
m...
On Wed, 12 Oct 2011 17:34:52 +0000, Lauri Nurmi wrote:

On 2011-10-12, Panawe wrote:
On 10/10/2011 6:33 AM, Panawe wrote:

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone
Nat'l parks (and others if feasible).

As regards my itinerary - what would you suggest given that I want to
get the most out of my holiday? Should I leave Yellowstone for another
time? Even if I extend the holiday to three weeks?


You could drive less and still visit three national parks if you choose
Yosemite, Death Valley and Grand Canyon (Arizona side). Hoover Dam and
Las Vegas are along the assumed route, and might also be worth seeing.

-LN


Thanks to everyone for advice.

I'm listening and I'm wondering now about 14 days fly-drive out of San
Francisco followed by a week's package tour (a holiday within a holiday!)
to Yellowstone flying to and from SFO. I could have a rest from driving
on the Y'stone tour.

What do you think?

Or I could do the grand tour from Seattle to SF via.... stop it!

--
Panawe


Well, last year I participated in a Gray Line Alaska tour (Yukon and
Alaska). It's the first time I ever went on something like it. I'm in 2
minds. It was nice not to have to keep driving. It was incredibly
frustrating to go past things I wanted to look at and I didn't have enough
time (even if I could have found transport) to explore the outskirts of
Whitehorse or Fairbanks. The big benefit was when we got to Dawson and the
road across to Tok was washed out. They simply hired a plane and away we
went!

On balance I would only do it again if I couldn't find a way of doing the
journey under my own steam.

I had wondered about a tour for you from San Francisco to Yosemite and
Monterrey. Gray Line only do each as a one day tour (forget it). You
might be able to stitch one or more Tauck Tours together with flights (or
maybe even Amtrak) between e.g.

http://www.tauck.com/tours/usa-tours...-yys-2012.aspx
http://www.tauck.com/tours/usa-tours...r-ca-2012.aspx

Or maybe Globus http://monograms.com/us-vacations/ but I'm not sure how
you'd book some of the tours on that page. Globus are part of the same
company as Cosmos and they seem to want me work work through Cosmos because
I live in the UK and that is the page for people who live in the US. I've
no doubt it's doable but it might be a slight struggle.

It is pretty easy to organise a trip using car hire and motels. The trick
is not to do too much driving and to allow the occasional "rest day" if only
because you need to find a launderette (many motels have a machine). If
you want help try someone like http://www.nahighways.co.uk/. Anything you
see on their website can be changed/extended/shortened/sent places they
don't normally list - the tours they list are examples; they can be booked
but they don't have to look like that. I've never used them, I had a
professional connection with them some years ago and they seemed competent
but there are other similar specialists around.

By the way, what part of the UK are you in? I keep assuming you're flying
from London and that doesn't have to be the case.




  #18  
Old October 13th, 2011, 07:15 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
jim davis
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks

Where you flying in to? Suggest San Francisco or Seattle. 14 days is
limiting as you are talking 1000s of miles and 500 a day driving is
about tops. A couple of days in Yosemite is minimum. So much to see and
so big. The drive on highway 1 down the Pacific coast is unbelievably
beautiful but would take 2-3 days minimum. Lots of great small places to
see, eat, etc. Whale watching IMHO is best in Hawaii. Could you squeeze
that in?
So much more to say as I lived in Hawaii then Northern California 30+
years and later retired to Washington on the Pacific coast. Any
specific questions let me know. Jim

On 10/10/2011 6:33 AM, Panawe wrote:
Hi,

Advice please. I am planning a road trip (fly-drive from UK and stay in
hotels/motels) to the western US next year and I have a number of
questions.

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone Nat'l
parks (and others if feasible).

I don't like cities.

I am planning on 14 days, is this long enough?

Should I buy a package holiday or just book fly-drive and stay wherever I
end up?

If I book a package could someone recommend a good tour operator?

What's the best time to do this? I was thinking of October 2012.

Are there any hotels that I should not miss?

Are there any events I shouldn't miss?

Can someone recommend a book?

Any possibility of an astronomy event, star-watching party?

Thanks in advance, I realise I've asked a lot of questions.


  #19  
Old October 14th, 2011, 12:19 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Panawe
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 13
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks

On Thu, 13 Oct 2011 19:07:15 +0100, Graham Harrison wrote:

"Panawe" wrote in message
m...
On Wed, 12 Oct 2011 17:34:52 +0000, Lauri Nurmi wrote:

On 2011-10-12, Panawe wrote:
On 10/10/2011 6:33 AM, Panawe wrote:

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone
Nat'l parks (and others if feasible).

As regards my itinerary - what would you suggest given that I want to
get the most out of my holiday? Should I leave Yellowstone for
another time? Even if I extend the holiday to three weeks?

You could drive less and still visit three national parks if you
choose Yosemite, Death Valley and Grand Canyon (Arizona side). Hoover
Dam and Las Vegas are along the assumed route, and might also be worth
seeing.

-LN


Thanks to everyone for advice.

I'm listening and I'm wondering now about 14 days fly-drive out of San
Francisco followed by a week's package tour (a holiday within a
holiday!) to Yellowstone flying to and from SFO. I could have a rest
from driving on the Y'stone tour.

What do you think?

Or I could do the grand tour from Seattle to SF via.... stop it!

--
Panawe


Well, last year I participated in a Gray Line Alaska tour (Yukon and
Alaska). It's the first time I ever went on something like it. I'm
in 2 minds. It was nice not to have to keep driving. It was
incredibly frustrating to go past things I wanted to look at and I
didn't have enough time (even if I could have found transport) to
explore the outskirts of Whitehorse or Fairbanks. The big benefit was
when we got to Dawson and the road across to Tok was washed out. They
simply hired a plane and away we went!

On balance I would only do it again if I couldn't find a way of doing
the journey under my own steam.

I had wondered about a tour for you from San Francisco to Yosemite and
Monterrey. Gray Line only do each as a one day tour (forget it). You
might be able to stitch one or more Tauck Tours together with flights
(or maybe even Amtrak) between e.g.

http://www.tauck.com/tours/usa-tours...yoming-travel-

yys-2012.aspx
http://www.tauck.com/tours/usa-tours...lifornia-tour-

ca-2012.aspx

Or maybe Globus http://monograms.com/us-vacations/ but I'm not sure how
you'd book some of the tours on that page. Globus are part of the same
company as Cosmos and they seem to want me work work through Cosmos
because I live in the UK and that is the page for people who live in the
US. I've no doubt it's doable but it might be a slight struggle.

It is pretty easy to organise a trip using car hire and motels. The
trick is not to do too much driving and to allow the occasional "rest
day" if only because you need to find a launderette (many motels have a
machine). If you want help try someone like
http://www.nahighways.co.uk/. Anything you see on their website can be
changed/extended/shortened/sent places they don't normally list - the
tours they list are examples; they can be booked but they don't have to
look like that. I've never used them, I had a professional connection
with them some years ago and they seemed competent but there are other
similar specialists around.

By the way, what part of the UK are you in? I keep assuming you're
flying from London and that doesn't have to be the case.


Hi Graham,

I'm in the Midlands so would prefer to fly from Brum. It's a changing
situation, now I'm thinking of leaving Yellowstone to another year and
looking at fly-drive to San Francisco (2 nts) then Monterey (2 nts) to
get the whale trip in, then Sequoia, Kings Canyon, Yosemite, Lake Tahoe,
Crater Lakes, Redwoods NP and back to SF over 14 days. Except I've missed
Death valley which I'd have to do after Monterey and before Sequoia (bit
tired at the moment). Far more sensible, haven't done the fine detail yet
and any advice on routes welcome.

I can't make my mind up whether to book a tour through a company or do it
myself via the 'Net. You'd think doing the donkey work myself would work
out cheaper but I'm not so sure.

Thanks for the input.

--
Panawe
  #20  
Old October 14th, 2011, 02:26 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Graham Harrison[_3_]
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Posts: 288
Default Road trip USA Nat'l parks


"Panawe" wrote in message
...
On Thu, 13 Oct 2011 19:07:15 +0100, Graham Harrison wrote:

"Panawe" wrote in message
m...
On Wed, 12 Oct 2011 17:34:52 +0000, Lauri Nurmi wrote:

On 2011-10-12, Panawe wrote:
On 10/10/2011 6:33 AM, Panawe wrote:

I would like to go whale-watching and see Yosemite and Yellowstone
Nat'l parks (and others if feasible).

As regards my itinerary - what would you suggest given that I want to
get the most out of my holiday? Should I leave Yellowstone for
another time? Even if I extend the holiday to three weeks?

You could drive less and still visit three national parks if you
choose Yosemite, Death Valley and Grand Canyon (Arizona side). Hoover
Dam and Las Vegas are along the assumed route, and might also be worth
seeing.

-LN

Thanks to everyone for advice.

I'm listening and I'm wondering now about 14 days fly-drive out of San
Francisco followed by a week's package tour (a holiday within a
holiday!) to Yellowstone flying to and from SFO. I could have a rest
from driving on the Y'stone tour.

What do you think?

Or I could do the grand tour from Seattle to SF via.... stop it!

--
Panawe


Well, last year I participated in a Gray Line Alaska tour (Yukon and
Alaska). It's the first time I ever went on something like it. I'm
in 2 minds. It was nice not to have to keep driving. It was
incredibly frustrating to go past things I wanted to look at and I
didn't have enough time (even if I could have found transport) to
explore the outskirts of Whitehorse or Fairbanks. The big benefit was
when we got to Dawson and the road across to Tok was washed out. They
simply hired a plane and away we went!

On balance I would only do it again if I couldn't find a way of doing
the journey under my own steam.

I had wondered about a tour for you from San Francisco to Yosemite and
Monterrey. Gray Line only do each as a one day tour (forget it). You
might be able to stitch one or more Tauck Tours together with flights
(or maybe even Amtrak) between e.g.

http://www.tauck.com/tours/usa-tours...yoming-travel-

yys-2012.aspx
http://www.tauck.com/tours/usa-tours...lifornia-tour-

ca-2012.aspx

Or maybe Globus http://monograms.com/us-vacations/ but I'm not sure how
you'd book some of the tours on that page. Globus are part of the same
company as Cosmos and they seem to want me work work through Cosmos
because I live in the UK and that is the page for people who live in the
US. I've no doubt it's doable but it might be a slight struggle.

It is pretty easy to organise a trip using car hire and motels. The
trick is not to do too much driving and to allow the occasional "rest
day" if only because you need to find a launderette (many motels have a
machine). If you want help try someone like
http://www.nahighways.co.uk/. Anything you see on their website can be
changed/extended/shortened/sent places they don't normally list - the
tours they list are examples; they can be booked but they don't have to
look like that. I've never used them, I had a professional connection
with them some years ago and they seemed competent but there are other
similar specialists around.

By the way, what part of the UK are you in? I keep assuming you're
flying from London and that doesn't have to be the case.


Hi Graham,

I'm in the Midlands so would prefer to fly from Brum. It's a changing
situation, now I'm thinking of leaving Yellowstone to another year and
looking at fly-drive to San Francisco (2 nts) then Monterey (2 nts) to
get the whale trip in, then Sequoia, Kings Canyon, Yosemite, Lake Tahoe,
Crater Lakes, Redwoods NP and back to SF over 14 days. Except I've missed
Death valley which I'd have to do after Monterey and before Sequoia (bit
tired at the moment). Far more sensible, haven't done the fine detail yet
and any advice on routes welcome.

I can't make my mind up whether to book a tour through a company or do it
myself via the 'Net. You'd think doing the donkey work myself would work
out cheaper but I'm not so sure.

Thanks for the input.

--
Panawe


 




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