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French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

Pasadena, California
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French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

This post is not too easy to translate.

But in brief, this young French person will be doing a business internship in SF, from May 5-July 5. She/he would like to visit Yosemite, DV, LV and the Grand Canyon. Flying in and out of SF. (As far as I know, this trip is not possible, unless she uses a tour service such as Green Tortoise, which does run tours out of SF to both Yosemite and DV. That was going to be my suggestion, as well as seeing if there are DV tours/day trips available from Las Vegas.) Anybody have other ideas on how a young visitor without a car, and on a tight budget, might visit those places?

She'd like to add just a few days to the trip, as far as I can tell (I'll ask).

She has the idea that she can take a bus everywhere, including sleeping on the bus. She seems to think that she'd like to:

"Starting 6 evening in SF. Take a bus to Yosemite Park, leave after eating in the evening, sleep on the bus to save hotel money, go to Death Valley to spend day 8. Then take a bus to Las Vegas and stay two days with overnight stay in a hotel .

My problem here is ,are there bus routes that go where I want at night ? If yes then I find or can you give me a price range ? Could I find safe place to deposit my suitcase for the excursions ? What price do you think this type of Road -Trip can be done?

Do you think my viable route or not ?"

LA
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1. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

The routes she wants do not exist.

There is no bus in Yosemite that will allow her to sleep on it.

She needs to find a tour to join.

Edited: 21 January 2014, 21:44
LA
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2. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

There is no bus from Yosemite to Death Valley.

There is no bus from Death Valley to Las Vegas.

She would need to bring camping equipment to camp in Yosemite and find some safe paid hotel room in Death Valley. It will be abour 40degrees at midnight in Death Valley and totall unsuitable to camping at lower elevation.

Surely there must be a guidebook in French that will set her straight.

Washington State
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3. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

I think a basic camping trip might be the best fit for her limited budget. Green Tortoise is a good option.

Here is a seven day Las Vegas to San Francisco trip offered by Intrepid Suntrek intrepidtravel.com/us/…vegas-san-fran-69838 (They call it SanFran. Ugh!)

Here is one from TrekAmerica trekamerica.com/tours/w1s.html

I don't know of any public transit from Yosemite to Death Valley. And DVNP really cannot be seen without a vehicle.

She could take public transit (Amtrak + YARTS) to Yosemite Valley and camp. Then take public transit back. Another weekend, fly to Las Vegas and find a tour (?) to Death Valley.

Long Barn...
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4. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

The public transportation system here is not as comprehensive as in Europe. It is possible to use Amtrak to get from San Francisco to Yosemite by using a combination of bus and train, but overnight lodging will be needed. To continue the trip to Las Vegas Amtrak can also be used from Merced to Las Vegas. I don't know of anyway to get to Death Valley using bus, but perhaps someone else can help. Getting from Death Valley back to San Francisco is a major problem.

San Francisco
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5. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

There is no public transit or common carrier service to or within Death Valley at all, and limited service to Yosemite via YARTS from Merced (all year) and Sonora and Mammoth Lakes (summer only). While Yosemite Valley has a park shuttle provided by the National Park Service, Death Valley does not.

Pink Jeep Tours runs Death Valley day tours from Las Vegas that last about 9 hours.

pinkjeeptours.com/las-vegas/…

It would be wonderful if there were better transportation options, because many people would love to take a train or bus to make a multi-park tour. Unless he/she is in a position to hire a car (and it sounds like finances are an issue), this trip is going to be very challenging.

Pasadena, California
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6. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

Thanks, everybody!

I'll convey the info, and the suggestions regarding Pink Jeep, Intrepid Travel and Trekamerica, as well as Green Tortoise.

Los Angeles
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7. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

Europe doesn't really have a Death Valley next to mountains like the Sierras to try and put public transport into. It is entirely possibly to get between major cities in the West - but DV, especially, is a huge isolated...desert, fragile and prone to extremes, it is not bus territory (although some tours do go there from Vegas...they certainly don't go out on the dirt roads to some of the sights that people think they're going to see, like The Racetrack).

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8. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

This is true, Biscuit.

Even in Yosemite National Park, YARTS goes only to destinations in Yosemite Valley and intermediate ones enroute there, and the NPS shuttles travel only within the Valley. There aren't a lot of options for Hetch Hetchy, Evergreen Lodge, Wawona, and other places outside the Valley or the YARTS service areas. Yosemite Valley is a compact place, not even 10 miles long, so it's practical for the NPS to run buses just there.

Death Valley is the size of Lebanon and Luxembourg combined, or the state of Connecticut. It doesn't have a Yosemite Valley type of central area where shuttles would be practical. The Furnace Creek area, the short jog to Zabriskie Point, and the 17 miles of Badwater Road containing Devil's Golf Course, Badwater, Artist's Drive, and Golden Canyon come closest, but that area is bigger than Yosemite Valley. Since most Death Valley visitors come in private vehicles and drive around the park, or are members of bus tours, there might not be tons of takers for such a shuttle. But if there were common carrier service to DV like YARTS or Greyhound, bringing in large numbers of overnight visitors without cars, I could see a demand for in-park NPS shuttles.

Edited: 22 January 2014, 02:12
9. Re: French student, Yosemite-Death Valley-Vegas by bus?

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