Denver to Phoenix

Old Jan 17th, 2014, 06:28 AM
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Denver to Phoenix

I have a question about the drive from Denver to Phoenix. Are the interstates, I-25 and I-17, the best way or would you recommend something else? By best, I don't mean the quickest but the most scenic with interesting places to stop and stay. We've got 3-4 days to make the trip and will be doing this in late July.
We're an early '60's couple and after hiking Cape Breton Island, the only hiking we're interested in this summer would be something very easy. We'd like very much to go through Colorado Springs for Pikes Peak.
We're interested in your suggestions for both routes and attractions. Thanks everyone.
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Old Jan 17th, 2014, 06:38 AM
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We drove back from the Phoenix area last year on I 40 across to Albuquerque and then I 25 north to Denver. Winslow, Arizona is such a fine sight to see that we stopped on the corner for some pictures and to stretch our legs. There is not alot to see that whole stretch but ABQ has things to do as does a stop in Santa Fe. Seems like the drive from Denver to Phoenix was 14-15 hours.
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Old Jan 17th, 2014, 10:46 AM
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Go west on I-70 and then south on US 191 to Moab Utah. Spend the next day at Arches NP and maybe a small part of Canyonlands NP.
Drive through Monument Valley and spend a night at Kayenta or Tuba City.
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Old Jan 17th, 2014, 11:28 AM
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If you have 3-4 days to make that trip the interstate is certainly not the way to go.

After Colorado Springs, head west to Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park - it is similar to Royal Gorge in appearance but deeper and without all the tacky touristy crap. From there, head to SW Colorado (Telluride, Durango) and enjoy the mountain scenery. You could visit Mesa Verde since you're relatively close, or head west to Monument Valley. Either way, visit the Grand Canyon after that and then head to Phoenix via Sedona and Oak Creek Canyon.

An alternative to the Grand Canyon/Sedona route would be to drive through the Tonto National Forest along the Mogollon Rim. It is higher elevation than most of Arizona, forested with several lakes and not at all what people expect to find in that state. You could visit Tonto Bridge State Park, then head south and make a bit of a loop going over the Roosevelt Dam, then head to Globe (stop at Tonto National Monument on the way) and then drive to Phoenix with a stop at Boyce Thompson Arboretum.
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