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Trip Approval ;)

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Trip Approval ;)

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:


WEDNESDAY - LAKE HAVASU CITY, AZ --just visiting relatives

Lava Cave 1 hr hike

option for trip to Wupatki, Sunset Crater loop (?)


Pine Flat Campground

hike West Fork Oak Creek Trail (6 miles, 2-3 hrs)

Cookstove Trail across from campground option


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?**


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


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??)


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.

tucson, az
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1. Re: Trip Approval ;)

If you're travelling with a 5 year old I really wouldn't skip the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum as most of it is a zoo.

tucson az
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2. Re: Trip Approval ;)

I take it this trip is this month. You will find quite a few of these places too chilly to be enjoyed: Lake Roosevelt, Chiracahuas as examples. Check some long term weather forecasts. Too much hiking for a 5 year old. I take it you have "clipped" a lot of information from online sources.

You have too much for me to make suggestions about what to trim. you have way more than you can actually do.

First, make sure you are actually going to have fun. Second, check out travel times and make realistic plans for what you can do. Some of the hiking adventures you have noted are several hours and as already noted too much for a 5 year old.

Pick the most significant things to you.

Ditto on Arizona Sonora Desert Museum. There are few places in the world like it. The desert mammals are in natural outdoor sessions. Have you ever walked through a bird aviary? Have you ever been to a humminbird exhibit where you can see them so close that they might even sit on you? I can't imagine a kid who wouldn't be enthralled.

Edited: 14 November 2012, 06:24
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3. Re: Trip Approval ;)

Thanks for the info on the museum. It was one of the ones I've been considering skipping. Taking both of your advice, we'll be sure to make the stop now. Thanks!

Yes, bob, you are right about there being a ton of things--so sorry to bombard you with too much info. Now you know how I feel! LOL. ...I WISH I would've copied and pasted all that. Unfortunately, I've been spending days researching all the recommended places to see and found these all to be the top picks from what I've read. Drive times are actually really nice. Now it's just a matter of chosing the best ones to fill our days. :)

As for my boy hiking, he'll be just fine. We love hiking and we do long hikes often. Heck, just a few months ago he hiked the entire Narrows in Zion. (Insert proud mamma face here.)

I too was a bit concerned about the temperatures, and I'm not entirely convinced we aren't going to freeze, but I did check the weather (we are leaving today so I was able to get accurate forecasts) and I've called the ranger station at each stop's area in which they've all said we will be fine and that it's actually a lovely time of year to visit. I sure hope they are right. ;)

Tucson, Arizona
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4. Re: Trip Approval ;)

I would agree with the others.Of all the things I wouldn't miss, it would be the Desert Museum. In spite of what you've been told, you are likely to run into some pretty cold temps, especially at night.

5. Re: Trip Approval ;)

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