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Old 06-09-2005, 08:46 AM   #1
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Travelling along I55 - I44 - I40. What can I expect to find in terms of construction and general back traffic backups? Leaving next friday morning, the 17th.
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Old 06-09-2005, 08:46 AM   #2
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Travelling along I55 - I44 - I40. What can I expect to find in terms of construction and general back traffic backups? Leaving next friday morning, the 17th.
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Old 06-09-2005, 07:54 PM   #3
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Having driven from Terre Haute,IN to the Grand Canyon a few times, I stopped using I44(toll road in OK). It is seemingly always under construction somewhere, and if not, it is rough pavement the rest of the way. The MO section is better. I began continuing South on I57 to I40 and found the extra driving time and mileage is worth the effort. I think the last time I used I44 and the bypass around OK city, the tolls were about $27. Current tolls should be found on the OK state website.
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Old 06-10-2005, 05:54 AM   #4
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I've been to the Grand Canyon a number of times. I'm assuming that you are planning on the south rim, based upon your intended route. We've initially traveled that route, but no more. It's more of a boring route and you have to deal with the tolls and the rough pavement in OK. I find the following way is much better:

Take I-80 west instead of I-55 south. Going through Nebraska is much better than Illinois and Oklahoma. It's more scenic and there's lots of really nice rest areas and campgrounds along the way. When you get to Julesburg, NE take I-76 southwest through Denver. In Denver I-76 ends at I-70. Take I-70 west through Colorado. You are now going to see some great scenery along I-70 as the Colorado river lies at your left side most of the run. Don't be afrid of the mountains. There are all kinds of vehicles on I-70, including trucks and almost any RV you can imagine. Just use your head coming down some of the major grades and you'll be fine. It won't be a white knuckle ride and you'll really see some awesome scenery along the I-70 corridor. Once you cross the Utah state line (be sure to watch for golden eagles in this area) get off at exit # 212, near the ghost town of Cisco. Drive alongside the Colorado River red rock country (real John Wayne scenery) until Moab. Stay there that night and check it out. You'll probably be more impressed with the Moab area than you will with the Grand Canyon.

Leaving Moab, you'll head south on US-191 to Bluff. At Bluff take US-163 towards Kayenta. Keep your camera handy because you'll be passing through Monument Valley. Continue on until US-89, where you turn south until AZ-64, which takes you right into Grand Canyon Nat'l Park. Your first good view of the park should be at Mather Point. As you walk down the path through the trees the overlook opens up on a very impressive opening spread of the canyon.

We will be leaving tomorrow morning on a route very similar to this except we will be picking up the north rim this time and spending 4 weeks while we tour Zion, Moab, Kanab, and lots of Colorado. This route may add an extra day to the trip but it's not so much due to the extra mileage (which isn't really that much) as it is to the fact that you are pit stopping more often on the way to see things of interest. All in all, you'll find this route to be much more enjoyable compared to the more lifeless terrain on the old route 66 version.

If you want to save some time on the return route I'd head for Flagstaff after leaving the canyon. Then west on I-40 until Albuquerque, then north on I-25 to Denver. At Denver, pick up I-76 again and just reverse your route all the way home. It'll be a great trip and you'll really enjoy the "on the way" stuff as well as the Grand CAnyon itself. Have a great trip.
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Old 06-10-2005, 06:14 AM   #5
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OK Cruzer,
very good info.
I am going to flagstaff, south rim (a few days), zion/north rim, bryce. haven't decided which way to come back yet...either via Salt Lake City or Denver. Destinations camp sites are booked...but nothing booked along the way...looks like I'll avoid I44...
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Old 06-10-2005, 08:58 AM   #6
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You may see me out there. We leave tomorrow AM. Zion, Bryce Canyon, Kanab, Moab, Cortez (Mesa Verde), Ouray, Idaho Springs (actually Echo Lake up on Mount Evans), Estes Park. We be bopping around that area over the next 4 weeks. There's plenty to see. We're giving up the south rim this time because we've seen it plenty of times and by staying in Kanab we can pick up the north rim without the big detour to the south rim but either rim will give you a great view.
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Old 06-10-2005, 10:59 AM   #7
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Cruzer,
How will I know which "Bear" is you? LOL
Answer: the one driving the "BUS" eh?

We just might run into each other. We'll have the green trailblazer with MI plates.
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Old 07-04-2005, 03:58 PM   #8
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Just got back...Didn't see Cruzer...But I did meet up with a camper at Zion, that had the same camping spot I had when I was at Flagstaff...Small world isn't it?

What a beautiful part of the country...returned on I80 via Salt Lake City...

Colorado Springs
Albuquerque (spell that right?)
Flagstaff
Sedona
South rim
North rim
Zion
Cedar Breaks
Coral Pink
Bryce
Escalantes...and others...I am tired now.


4400 miles on the MH
1200 miles on the toad
?? miles on foot...whew...
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