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National Parks - planning help appreciated

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Hi Fodorites :-)

We are planning our first trip to the USA in Sept / Oct this year and we are keen to spend time in the beautiful National Parks. I have searched this forum and found some good advice, and looked on the National Parks sites as well, but I am having trouble getting my head around the best way to actually structure the trip.

I guess, more specifically my questions would be...

How long should we allow for the different parks? We will be away for 6 weeks (we'll hire a car), want to see Vegas and San Francisco, and Zion, Bryce, Yelllowstone, Yosemite and the Grand Canyon. We dont want to short change the parks (ie dont want to do the Grand Canyone in a day trip from Vegas). We enjoy (shortish) hikes and are avid photographers. I know asking 'how long' is a bit hard to answer, but a rough guide would be good.

Is there a logical way to see the parks, combined with San Fran and Vegas?

Are we better off flying into a closer city, rather than driving to Yellowstone?

What is accomodation availability like mid Sept - Oct?

Thanks, any help appreciated :-)

Thanks

Cathy

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