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Vegas, Zion, Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Sequoia - in 9 days?

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Nov 28th, 2013, 05:40 PM
  #1
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Vegas, Zion, Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Sequoia - in 9 days?

My husband says "let's go to the Grand Canyon" for our 20th anniversary. Well in doing all my research, I learn the location (and existence!) of Sequoia and now I just can't imagine being so close and not seeing the trees...

We fly into Vegas April 10th, arriving at 11:40am. We are to return home April 18th, leaving at 10:55pm. These are the only plans I have set so far. Got airfare from Maryland for $300 a piece.

I've tried to map loops to keep us going in one direction without backtracking and was hoping I could figure 8 these in...

I've even thought about flying into someplace in California and starting there...

My initial plans were touring completely just east of Vegas, but after discovering Sequoia...
Most years we vacation in the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee, so this area seems more like us than the things east of Vegas, but I also know I need to see these places during my life!

Can they be done in 9 days without my entire family (two kids, 11 & 12 and DH) hating me from all the time on the road?

Thank you so much for your time! I look forward to the replies!
MrsGilroy is offline  
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Nov 28th, 2013, 07:51 PM
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Subtract Sequoia and it can BARELY be done in nine days. Add that place and it becomes impossible.

And I say that as someone who's done trips that are basically, "If it's Tuesday, this must be Yosemite."

Fly into Vegas, use that as the center of your loop, and end up in Zion. If you still have time to kill, check out Bryce.

Although you will need reservations in Vegas and at the Grand Canyon, in April you will basically be able to drive into almost any town in that area and find bargain lodging. In other words, you'll be able to have a VERY flexible schedule after you leave the Canyon.
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Nov 28th, 2013, 08:20 PM
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Sequoia should be saved for another trip. We were there one april and there was snow on the trails.

The loop from Vegas can be done in either direction, so look for lodging in Grand Canyon (one or two nights) then plan your direction on if that fits into the beginning or end of the loop. We have done the loop and also done a night in Page (with a half day smooth water raft ride on the Colorado and a trip through Antelope Canyon one night) and a stop in Bryce (snow was on the trails, but the views from the overlooks were fantastic one night) and a couple of nights in Zion.

I really like staying in the parks, but with kids I would look for some motels/hotels with an indoor pool for them. Look in Springdale for Zion, Tusayan for GC, Ruby's or BW for Bryce.

The north rim of GC will not be open, so you will have to go to the south rim (my favorite) and maybe stop at Hoover Dam on the way to or from GC.

On the way to or from Vegas/Zion you could stop at Valley of Fire State park.
emalloy is online now  
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Nov 28th, 2013, 09:54 PM
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>> I just can't imagine being so close and not seeing the trees...<<

You need to understand the geography. You will be sort of close . . . as the crow flies. But by road it is a hellacious looooong drive. You can't reach Sequoia/Kings Canyon from the east (Las Vegas side) without going all the way to Bakersfield and then north to S/KC. It is a 6 to 7 hour drive each way. So to even get a glimpse of Sequoia would eat up the best part of 3 full days. 1 day to get there, 1 day to see a bit and a day to drive back.

No, you don't have enough time. Either do a CA trip (Sequoia/Kings Canyon, Yosemite, the coast) . . . or . . . do a Vegas, Zion, Grand Canyon trip.
janisj is offline  
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Nov 29th, 2013, 05:25 AM
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For all of the above reasons do not include Sequoia with the rest of your trip. It's too much out of the way, there will be lots of snow, and you don't have enough time.

Bryce would be a nice addition. So would Valley of Fire State Park.

Save Sequoia for another trip. And there are many other great places in the Sierra Nevada that you can add to that trip.
Shanti is offline  
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Nov 29th, 2013, 09:27 AM
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I have traveled from Vegas to Sequoia in the winter(yes, you could easily be required to have chains on your car, just to enter Sequoia NP). Really, it isn't close. We did this coupled with a Death Valley Trip one year. Very amazing place, but just know what you are getting yourself into. I agree with others, save it for another trip.

It depends on what you want to do at Bryce and Zion as whether or not it is an excellent time. If The Narrows is high on your list to hike-then just know that the river will probably be flowing to much/high. I am not sure how much snow would still be at Bryce, but would think would be nice. GC, would iikely be perfect at the rim.

Personally,
I would spend only 1 full day and 1 night at the GC

1 Day/1 night is plenty enough of Vegas, unless you like to gamble

A couple of days each at Bryce and Zion-unless you are doing some serious hiking.

You might want to drive HWY 12 all the way to Capitol Reef NP.

Death Valley is an odd/interesting place that you might consider doing too.

Buy a National Park Pass, if you plan on doing more than 2 parks and you will save money. The pass is good for an entire year at all Parks, Monuments, Battlefields, Memorials, Rivers, Seashores, etc.

The full tour at the dam is worth doing.


I would suggest doing a Yosemite/Sequoia trip sometime about the 1st or 2nd week in June.

I am somewhat of a National Park nut, I've been to the Smokey's several times. The parks in the west blow away most of the parks in the east, IMOP. They aren't even close.
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Nov 29th, 2013, 09:30 AM
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Let me add one more thing. Your kids would likely love Arches/Moab area. April is perfect(don't go during "jeep week").

In Zion or Moab consider canyoneering. Your kids would love it. In Moab, I like www.deserthighlights.com Zion Adventure Company in Springdale also leads guided trips there.
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Nov 29th, 2013, 12:34 PM
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Several times a week Allegiant Airline has a flight to and back from Fresno (FAT). This woluld be the only way I would consider going to see the western side of the Sierras (Yosemite or Sequoia). There are large Sequoias in Mariposa Grove in the south end of Yosemite.
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Nov 30th, 2013, 06:04 AM
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tomfuller,

The Mariposa Grove road, may or may not be open in spring. The past couple of years it hasn't even closed at all. When we were there a couple of years ago in late May, it was closed until the day we left.
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Nov 30th, 2013, 07:30 AM
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The good news is now you already have a plan for next year's vacation... California!
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