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Old 04-19-2014, 06:59 AM   #15
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Thank you NERDFEST for your input. I know we are going to have a great time. My kids are also wonderful when it comes to long road trips. I do have on my list to get the bunk covers. I also plan to switch it up from time to time and do a Hotel or two. If you have any other ideas or tips please let me know. Every day that passes I find out more things that I need to get this trip going!

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Old 04-19-2014, 08:45 AM   #16
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I've been doing more thinking about your trip. I suggest traveling the US highways, except around large metro areas; you will see more of America. Since your necessities are following you, you can use shopping centers, etc. for pit stops. I found these roads to be smoother, less traffic, gas is cheaper, and the small towns usually only have 1-2 red lights. One of my favorite memories, so far, is going through a town advertising a diner that was home to the world's largest pancakes. I ate part of one while another customer (in his late 70s) ate a stack of three. According to the waitress, he does this about once a month.

In case you aren't aware, most trailer tires are rated for 65 mph max. Watch the speed on the interstates.

Your kids are probably hand held computer literate. Have them check the towns you are passing for any history, etc.

Even if you stay with your original plans, if the first part of your trip takes more time than planned, you can always modify the last part and head home on a more direct route.

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Old 04-19-2014, 09:03 AM   #17
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Thank you BBQ JUDGE !!
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Old 04-19-2014, 11:36 AM   #18
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I may be a bit late to this thread, but I've been out West 10+ times (since 1978). These are things one can pick and choose from.
Western USA Trip Suggestions

Northern Western Route
1. Mitchell, SD – The Corn Palace, Ancient Indian Museum
2. Exit 131 The Bad Lands NP – Good hiking shoes, take water and wear a hat.The ground can be brittle, be careful on the accents and descents.Go to the ranger talk, and hour after sunset, at the southern entrance.Take a flashlight.It is so black the sky will be full of stars.Easterners don’t know what a sky full of stars looks like.It is so dark, one can not see the hand in front of their face.If you are lucky, you can see a Russian spy satellite as it flies over head.
3. Exit 131 -Minute Man Missile NHS – Only six people per tour.Make reservations via the web site.See the control complex where the officers turned the keys to launch our missiles.See a missile silo with a Minute Man missile in the silo.
4. Exit 110 – Wall Drug
5. Black Hill area -There are many things to do in this area:
a. Mt Rushmore NM
b. Crazy Horse Memorial
c. Ice Cave
d. Jewel Cave NM
e. Mammoth Dig Site
f. Wind Cave NP
g. Custer State Park Drive through – many buffalo/praire dogs
h. And much more
6. Devils Tower NM Wyoming – Do not take the RV to the monument.There is no room in the parking area.
7. Medicine Wheel NHS – Do not take the RV to the Wheel.Route 14 is very steep and winding.1 ½ miles walk to the Wheel.Have good hiking shoes.Dress warm the Wheel is at 10K’ above sea level.Snow year around.
8. Little Bighorn Battlefield NM – Custer’s last stand.See where each man died.
9. Glacier NP – Stay on the east side at St. Mary.The KOA is very convenient.Good hiking shoes are needed.Hike with bear spray and bear bells.This is my favorite NP
10. Mt. St. HelensNVM – Do the north road route first.This is where the visitors center is located.The next day do the south road.This is where the largest lava tube I have ever been in is located.One flashlight per person is required.
11. Craters of the Moon NM – Idaho.Good hiking shoes are needed.The Lava rock will tear upi a pair of sneakers.There is a KOA a few miles from the NM.
12. Yellowstone NP - Old Faithful and area take a full day to see.

Central Western Route
1. Omaha, NE – SAC Air Museum If you have never seen a B-52 bomber, this is your chance.The plane is huge.Two bomb bays.It can drop hundreds of conventional bombs.
2. Rocky Mountain NP Stay on the east side of the NP.Consider taking Fall River Road up to the Alpine Visitors center.Have lunch at the visitors center (about 12K’ elevation, snow year around).Take Trail Ridge Road down to the park entrance.On both roads there are many pullouts to sight see.Low landers, take it easy.The air is about as thin as one can breathe.
3. Arches NP UT.
4. Salt Lake City, Ut.Go to Antelope Island State Park.Pick one of the beaches and swim in the Great Salt Lake.
5. San Francisco, CAThere is pay parking buildings (2011) along the Embarcadero.The Alcatraz ferry pier has limited handicap parking.
6. Redwood NP, Northern CA.There is no easy way to get to the trees.They are between Eureka and Crescent City.The trip is worth it.Drive the coach only on the main roads.
7. Death Valley, NP
8. Las Vegas, NV Self explanatory.The kids can be in a casino as long as they keep moving (passing through).Some casinos have a lite food restaurant in the center of the casino.When eating the kids can watch, the adults play the games.Make sure you see Hoover Dam (the complete tour not the short tour).
9. Grand Canyon NP
10 . Monument Valley, AZ
11. Valley of the Gods, UT
12. 4 Corners Area - At the 4 corners, put one hand and one foot in each state
13. Mesa Verde NP, CO
14. Pikes Peak, CO The train is nice, driving up is much better.
15. Dodge City, KansasOld west town.

Southern Western Route
1. San Antonio, TX – The Alamo, Tour Old Missions
2. Carlsbad Caverns MP, NM Watch millions of bats leave the cave (you toured earlier in the day) at sunset.
3. Roswell, NM – Where aliens crashed in 1947?
4. White Sands NM, NM
5. Gila Cliff Dwellings NM Good hiking shoes are needed to reach the cliff dwellings.
6. Tombstone, AZ – Old west town, Silver mine, Boot Hill, gun fight at the okay coral, ride in a real stage coach, etc.
7. Saguaro NP – The section on the west side of Tucson.
8. Joshua Tree NP, CA
9. Los Angeles, CA and area
10. Amboy, CA – Amboy Crater, hike to and into a cinder volcano crater.
11. Meteor Crater, AZ – There is a CG at the exit for the crater.
12. Petrified Forest, AZ
13. Painted Desert, AZ
2005 Newmar KSDP 3910 + GMC ENVOY XUV 37K lbs Moving Down The Road
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Old 04-19-2014, 05:12 PM   #19
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I have lots of lists and adventures from last year on our travel blog: www.rollingnerdfest.com.
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Old 04-19-2014, 06:17 PM   #20
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Gary that is a great list I will have to keep it for future reference!!
Tony & Ruth........... FMCA#F416727
Newmar Dutch Star 4320, Spartan MM Chassis, Cat C9, Jeep Grand Cherokee,with Hemi, hooked up with a Blue Ox Aventa LX, and Brake Buddy.
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Old 04-20-2014, 11:55 AM   #21
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GaryKD thank you very much for the info! You are def not too late as I am leaving in the middle of June. Your info is def appreciated ! This is my first cross county rodeo so ANY and All advise is super appreciated !

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