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Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

Brisbane, Australia
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Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

Hello,

We are 4 adults travelling from South Rim Grand Canyon towards Denver in a hire car (not 4WD) and would like to see Bryce Canyon National Park, Monument Valley and Mesa Verde.

We have about 7 days to do the trip and are happy to do a mix of camping and other accommodation. Could someone please suggest the best route and are we missing something else worthy of seeing?

Thanks in advance!

Sedona, AZ
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1. Re: Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

The logical progression would be GCNP to Bryce, then to Page, Monument Valley, Mesa Verde and on to Durango and then across CO to Denver. When are you contemplating this trip? Do you have reservations yet at the GCNP?

Wickenburg, Arizona
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2. Re: Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

You don't need a SUV or 4WD, the roads are all paved between the major sites. Rentals aren't even allowed off-pavement, even 4WD vehicles, which is a bit of a joke.

Columbia, Maryland
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3. Re: Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

That's a lot to put into 7 days.

Take a look at Google maps for this route.

If I were to do that trip, I would start with Bryce. Then take 89 south to Kanab and pick up 89A around Marble Canyon, across Navajo Bridge to south 89. Note 89 is closed between Page and south to the junction of 89 and 89A so you can't take 89 through Page down to the GC. Then take 64 west into E Rim Drive of the south rim of the GC.

From the GC take US 160 to US 163 to Monument Valley. Then get back to US 160 via 162 which becomes 41 in Colorado or take US 191 south to US 160. Once back on 160 head east toward Cortez and Mesa Verde.

The Colorado forum can tell you what to see in Colorado. Trust me, there is a lot. I see you are from Austrailia. Things in the southwestern US are a long way apart like in Austrailia. It's a long way across Utah, Arizona, and Colorado. You'll be driving across a lot of desert like area. You'll feel like you are driving across the Austrailian outback.

A consideration to cut out some drive time would be to go to the north rim of the GC. Lodging there is harder to come by. THere is one lodge in the park, 1 about 15 miles outside the entrance (Kaibab Lodge) and one at Jacob Lake at the intersection of 89A and the entrance road. It's about 45 miles to the canyon from Jacob Lake. If you look at the route I gave you from Bryce, you go by the entrance road to the north rim.

Brisbane, Australia
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4. Re: Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

thanks for your advice. we are doing this trip from 24th april 2013 to 2 may,so we expect some cold temperatures. Not booked yet, but starting to search

Brisbane, Australia
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5. Re: Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

thanks for your advice. Yes the distances are large, I am starting to realize and you are right that it is similar in Australia. At this stage we will probably still aim for the south rim as I believe the north rim is not open in april (but that was a cool suggestion to cut out some miles by going to the north rim). The road closure you mentioned between page and the 89/89a junction is important. Do you know if that be closed during late April?

thanks again for your help

Sedona, AZ
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6. Re: Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

You are correct. The GCNP north rim is closed and inaccessible until mid May. That's part of why the dates are important. I must agree that this is an ambitious plan for you. And yes, Highway 89 will be closed from Bitter Springs to Page for a period that will probably include almost all of 2013.

Columbia, Maryland
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7. Re: Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

Yes, 89 will be closed. It is closed due to a section of the road collapsing recently. That section will have to be completly rebuilt.

8. Re: Advice needed on best route from South rim Grand Canyon

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