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15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

London, United...
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15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

Hi,

Myself and a group of friends will be embarking on a 15 day road trip along the west coast of America in June. The itinerary is currently:

Day 1

Seattle

Day 2

Seattle

Day 3

Drive to Portland

Day 4

Drive to Medford via Crater Lake

Day 5

Drive to Eureka via Crescent City/Redwood NP

Day 6

Drive to San Fran

Day 7

San Fran

Day 8

Drive to Yosemite

Day 9

Drive to LA

Day 10

LA

Day 11

Drive to Vegas

Day 12

Vegas

Day 13

Drive to Grand Canyon

Day 14

Drive to Vegas

Day 15

Vegas

I'm just wondering if anyone has any advice on the following:

- Day 4 will be quite long. We need to get from Portland to Medford, but we'd love to see Crater Lake on the way. Can anyone recommend a Crater Lake itinerary if time is limited?

- Day 5 will see us heading along the 199 from Medford to Crescent City, then down the 101 to Eureka. Does anyone have any suggestions on an itinerary for this day? Is the Tall Trees Trail worth doing?

- Day 11 is the drive from LA to Vegas. Is a de-tour via Death Valley worth the extra drive time?

Any other comments/suggestions on the overall itinerary is most welcome!

Cheers.

Washington State
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1. Re: 15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

Hi

On Day 11, how about driving directly to the Grand Canyon? Then you would just stay in Las Vegas once.

It sounds like Las Vegas is a priority for you. You're only allowing enough time for afternoon visits of some other terrific places, but if you really want to enjoy Las Vegas, then your itinerary makes sense. Many folks would drive along the Oregon Coast; or spend more than a day in San Francisco (abbreviated SF) or L.A.; or more than an afternoon in Yosemite NP or in Portland.

I'm guessing you don't have any lodging yet. Hmmm.

London, United...
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2. Re: 15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

Hi PacificNWFamily,

Thanks for your suggestions.

We did consider driving straight to the GC from LA, but it looks like it would be 7-8 hours without stops! We decided to do a couple of stops in Vegas (two different hotels!) to break it up a bit. And you're correct - Vegas is the main attraction for us.

I agree that some stops are a little short - we'd love to spend a lot longer in all the places we're visiting, but unfortunately work commitments limit us to just 15 days.

I'm hoping we should get a bit of time in Yosemite. We plan on getting an early start from SF to arrive in Yosemite at mid-day, and we've booked accommodation in the park itself, so we get to spend the following morning there as well.

If you had 24 hours in Yosemite, what would be your itinerary?

Boston...
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3. Re: 15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

So the Grand Canyon is just sort of a drive-thru? Pity, but if Las Vegas is the main attraction, it makes sense...

As for your question about Death Valley, it is definitely worth the detour. Even if you're not a big nature lover, the scenery there will blow your mind: rivers of salt, towering sand dunes tall as houses, rocks that move on their own and leave tracks on the desert floor...

The drive from Grand Canyon to LA might seem long, but you can do much of it along Route 66, so it's not exactly boring.

Washington State
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for Yosemite National Park
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4. Re: 15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

Here is a link to the Yosemite NP forum page: tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g61000-i315 Read the relevant Top Questions and Trip Ideas on the right side of that page (full TA website not the mobile app) and then post a question there. You'll get replies from a variety of folks who know & love Yosemite. (They won't see your Yosemite questions if you just ask them here.)

Do the same for other destinations that interest you.

Seattle, Washington
Destination Expert
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5. Re: 15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

>> - Day 4 will be quite long. We need to get from Portland to Medford, but we'd love to see Crater Lake on the way. Can anyone recommend a Crater Lake itinerary if time is limited? <<

In June there's a real risk that the rim road around the lake will still be closed due to snow. Given the overall frenetic pace of this trip, I'd strongly suggest dropping Crater Lake, and substitute it with a day in the Columbia Gorge and on Mount Hood just east of Portland. The Gorge is a natural wonder and you can easily combine a day in the Gorge with a drive up to Timberline Lodge on Mount Hood.

>> - Day 5 will see us heading along the 199 from Medford to Crescent City, then down the 101 to Eureka. Does anyone have any suggestions on an itinerary for this day? Is the Tall Trees Trail worth doing? <<

Do you have family or an appointment in Medford? Grants Pass is where US 199 takes off, and if you're starting the previous morning in Portland, you could easily get as far as Crescent City that night (not an easy drive, not a killer) which could conceivably allow you to capture an extra day farther south. Regardless, you want to spend as much time in the redwoods as possible. I've taken numerous British friends on western road trips and universally they've proclaimed the redwoods to be the highlight of the trip. Visit as many groves as possible. Also look at Ferndale as an overnight option in lieu of Eureka.

>> - Day 11 is the drive from LA to Vegas. Is a de-tour via Death Valley worth the extra drive time? <<

It's a very long detour and in June it will likely be extremely hot. I am not a big fan of DV in the summer. Why not take an extra day in the LA area?

>> Any other comments/suggestions on the overall itinerary is most welcome! <<

Brutally frank, etc...

One night in LA is like one night in London. Exactly what do you expect to accomplish?

I'd drop Yosemite and adjust the whole drive accordingly. The pace is such that you won't have time to see much of anything except the inside of your vehicle. You're passing through some of the most beautiful and unique landscapes in the world, and some of the most interesting cities, and you're doing it as if you're in a road race. What's the point?

I'd also STRONGLY suggest that you consider reversing the route, especially if you're coming straight from the UK. Las Vegas is a great place to work off jetlag - 24 hour city and all that, and the longer you wait to get to the Pacific Northwest the better - summer usually doesn't start in Seattle until the first or second week in July. And frankly, nobody wants a bunch of drivers navigating highways, driving on the "wrong" side of the road, while their body clocks are off by eight hours. Just sayin'.

Edited: 27 March 2014, 14:55
Tacoma, Washington
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6. Re: 15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

As others have said.....

1. crater lake road around may not be open at the time of your visit and may only be restricted to where the lodge is and that is it. alternate is to drive the southern Oregon coast from Bandon down to Redwoods.

2. Death Valley in June----why?????? Its too hot.

You need to do Grand canyon before Vegas to save some driving time. If you are worried about the longer drive then stop and overnight in Kingman.

3. Summer starts later in the NW. If you reverse the trip would be better.

4. I would skip LA and just drive from Yosemite to Vegas. This will allow you to add a day somewhere else.

5. Only one day in SF???

6. Pass through Portland??

day 1 fly into Vegas

day 2 Vegas

day 3 drive to South Rim for overnight

day 4 Grand canyon AM, PM drive to Fresno

day 5 Yosemite

day 6 Yosemite AM, drive to SF in afternoon, night in SF

day 7 SF

day 8 SF

day 9 drive to Eureka

day 10 redwoods..night in Crescent City/Brookings, OR

day 11 southern Oregon coast to Bandon/Coos Bay then inland after sunset

day 12-13 Portland/Columbia Gorge

day 14-15 Seattle

7. Re: 15 day trip from Seattle to Vegas!

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