need help planning 1-week cross-country trip

Old Jul 3rd, 2002, 08:53 PM
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need help planning 1-week cross-country trip

Hey, recently a friend of mine from California and I decided to make a cross-country trip from California to Virginia, where we go to school. We think we will have about 7 days to make the trip, and were wondering if any of you have made a similar trip or know of places that we must (or shouldn't) see. We are entering our 2nd year of college and are up for about anything (including cheap places to stay). We're thinking about spending a day camping and hiking in Yosemite, as well as a stop to the Grand Canyon, but again are up for anything and our trip is subject to change (depending on what we feel like at the moment). All suggestions are welcomed and I look forward to hearing from you all.
Old Jul 3rd, 2002, 10:40 PM
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I hope the 7 days is for one way, because if you plan on doing a round trip in 7 days you won't be doing anything but driving!

Let's say it's one way. From Yosemite to Richmond, VA. (I just picked any city) it's 3,000 miles. That's going to take at least 3 - 4 very hard days of driving.

Yosemite and Grand Canyon are two very good choices and you will only have one other day to choose something to do.

Here are some ideas: Zion National Park, Bryce National Park, Arches and Canyonlands National Park all in Utah. Mesa Verde National Park and Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado, Canyon de Chelly and Petrified Forest in Arizona.

There's a lot to do and see out there. It also depends on which route you are going to take.

Old Jul 4th, 2002, 04:46 AM
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Figure close to 50 hours actual drive time if you followed a relatively straight line. Since you are not likely to do so if you want to visit certain places along the way you will have about four days to make these visits. With one day in Yosemite you can make quick visits to Las Vegas, Zion NP, North RIm of the GR. CAnyon, MOnument VAlley and Mesa Verde NP. By a quick visit we are talking half a day at most. It is not the best way to visit but you will have at least seen these places and it will whet your appetite to spend more time at them at a future date. The route I would follow is Yosemite exiting over TIoga Pass, drive through Death Valley to Las Vegas to Zion, North RIm, MOnument VAlley and Mesa Verde before heading for Virginia
Old Jul 5th, 2002, 03:15 PM
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Did a similar trip from Florida to Oregon, only I think we had 2 weeks. The last part was mostly driving. We took, and I would recommend the southerly route 10. Goes through Texas, Louisiana.

Places I was glad we stopped in Taos, Santa Fe New Mexico. I deeply regret driving in the dark from Santa Fe to Taos - think we missed some great scenery. Loved San Antonio (it was a surprise, don't much like Texas). There is a great water park just north of San Antonio that is wonderful and would give you some exercise. Houston was horrible but NASA is good, there is a theme park there too but being from CA you have those.

Lafayette Louisiana was fun. There is a living history museum close to there that is worth a stop. Cajun history, I learned so much, even if I couldn't understand much of what they were saying (accent). Ate frog legs and alligator at a wonderful restaurant down there - try to eat the food as you go - not just McDonalds! Stop at some of the plantation houses, they are great and so different from West coast architecture. We went to New Orleans, I didn't like it but am glad I went. Have some beignets - yum!

Those are the big things we saw. We saw more but I don't think you'll have time for much more than that.

Tips..... take a book and have the passenger read. Music can get old after a while. I chose Patrick McManus, he writes comedic outdoor stories (I'm from the northwest). I liked the short stories. Dave Barry might work too. If you do cross stitch or crochet take that. Try to take a cooler and get stuff at grocery stores to save on food - eat breakfast/lunch out of the cooler and then splurge on dinner and as I said try to eat the local food it is fun and I found some stuff I liked and am now cooking for myself. I highly recommend air conditioning! In early June it was 104 in New Mexico and we would have baked without it. Invest in a AAA membership to get the maps and for the protection if you break down. Get maps ahead of time even if you decide to play it all by ear. If there are certain places you want to stay then get reservations otherwise play it by ear - Super 8 are everywhere and won't be too expensive to split. You might try hostels, it isn't my style but might work for you.

If you have any specific questions feel free to send me an e-mail. Have fun, be safe and drive carefully!
Old Jul 9th, 2002, 03:38 AM
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Agree with the other poster that 1 week will be quite tight if you want to stop at 2 or more places and spend the night. When I did the trip, I especially enjoyed driving around Lake Tahoe (be a mountain pass that goes to Reno).
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