So before I start, let me say that I know I have a ton of stuff here and I'm not finished with this trip, but we are leaving tomorrow (!!) and I've got to get some packing done. I expect we'll wing some of this and figure it out along the way as you all give me some input.
Also, we technically have until Saturday the 24th to return home, but this trip looks to me like we could certainly skip a night somewhere and make it home in time for Thanksgiving--which would be a bit nice. BUT, if you guys are going to tell me that some of these sites shouldn't be skipped than we are all for taking all the time we need. So, here's a very tentative plan with a lot of options:
TUESDAY - LEAVE RIVERSIDE
WEDNESDAY - LAKE HAVASU CITY, AZ --just visiting relatives
Lava Cave 1 hr hike
option for trip to Wupatki, Sunset Crater loop (?)
THURSDAY - SEDONA, AZ
Pine Flat Campground
hike West Fork Oak Creek Trail (6 miles, 2-3 hrs)
Cookstove Trail across from campground option
FRIDAY - COTTONWOOD, AZ
Lo Lo Mai Springs Campground (maybe)
Tuzigoot National Monument (allow 1 hr for ruins)
Montezuma Castle and Well (about 1 1/2 hr)
alternative trip options Fort Verde, Jerome (check out the town), Riordan Mansion, Dead Horse Ranch (has campground too) **any opinions on if it's advised to make sure we see any of those options?**
SATURDAY - LAKE ROOSEVELT, AZ
Cholla Campground (looks ugly, sure wish we could find better option. Maybe stay up at Dead horse Ranch instead?)
Tonto National Monument - 10:00am tour 3-4 hrs
Besh-Ba_gowah Archaelogical Park (worth the stop?)
SUNDAY - CHOCISE, AZ - **I am considering skipping chiricahua altogether unless someone says we shouldn't**
Bonita Canyon Campground
Chiricahua National Monument Wilderness
Tombstone, OK Corall
Bisbee, AZ - options: Bisbee Trolley, Queen Mine Tour, Museum, Coronado Cave, Hike Coronado Peak Trail, Shady Dell RV
MONDAY - BENSON
Kartchner Caverns State Park Campground
Bog Springs campground option too
Colossal Cave Mountain Park (plan to skip this)
Saguaro National Park - Valley View Overlook trail, Signal Hill Picnic Area for petroglyphs, Douglas Springs Tail (?)
Sabino Canyon Tours (worth taking time to see??)
Mission San Xavier del Bac (worth taking time to see??)
TUESDAY - TUCSON, AZ
Catalina State Park Campground (hookups) - hike Canyon Loop Trail
Picacho Peak State Park - hike Hunter Trail (2-4 hrs) is this place even open??
sidetrip options to Biosphere 2, Casa Grande Ruins, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum--could gladly skip all of these.
WEDNESDAY - APACHE JUNCTION, AZ **Should we skip this area as well and just come home for Thanksgiving??**
Lost Dutchman State Park Campground (hookups)
Treasure Loop Trail, Discovery Traill?
Goldfield Ghost Town - train ride, underground guided mine tour
I feel like there are A LOT of ancient ruins. Maybe I could get some help weeding some of them out that may be a bit disappointing. Also wondered if Goldfield might feel redundant on a weekday after already spending time in Tombstone?
We are traveling by RV. We are very active, in our 30s and have a 5 year old that keeps us moving right along. ;)
As always, I welcome opinions and criticism. Thank you so very much for taking the time to read through all of this.