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Grand Canyon to Sante Fe

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1. Posted by DaveinMD (Respected Member 198 posts) 7y

In a few weeks we will be at the South Rim after spending 4 days in Sedona. We have an open agenda from the Tuesday when we check out of the cabin until we fly out of Albuquerque on Friday morning. My original plan was to make a bee line for Sante Fe and stay there. However I am now learing it is a full day drive and I am open to suggestions.

Seeing as this may be my only shot at the GC I am somewhat interested in the North Rim but not if it will take us too far out of the way. Maybe go to the North Rim and then stop off on the way to Sante Fe if a good place exists? Please excuse my ignorance but somehow I envision the drive from the Grand Canyon to Sante Fe to be not unlike a drive across the surface of the moon. But please fill me in if I am way off base here.

2. Posted by Ham Radio (Respected Member 284 posts) 7y

Dave,

Suggest the Amtrak Southwest Chief, train no. 4 from Grand Canyon (Williams) to either Albuquerque (arrive 1212pm) or Lamy (arrive 2pm, this is your motorcoach connection to Santa Fe).
Schedule http://www.amtrak.com/timetable/may09/P03.pdf

Both the train and the motorcoaches are reserved through Amtrak.
Web http://www.amtrak.com/
Phone 1-800-USA-RAIL

We have made this trip several times and the scenery is wonderful, especially when Amtrak is doing the driving!
There is food and beverage service onboard, so enjoy the ride.

3. Posted by DaveinMD (Respected Member 198 posts) 7y

Quoting Ham Radio

Dave,

Suggest the Amtrak Southwest Chief, train no. 4 from Grand Canyon (Williams) to either Albuquerque (arrive 1212pm) or Lamy (arrive 2pm, this is your motorcoach connection to Santa Fe).
Schedule http://www.amtrak.com/timetable/may09/P03.pdf

Both the train and the motorcoaches are reserved through Amtrak.
Web http://www.amtrak.com/
Phone 1-800-USA-RAIL

We have made this trip several times and the scenery is wonderful, especially when Amtrak is doing the driving!
There is food and beverage service onboard, so enjoy the ride.

While I love trains so much that we bought a house that backs up to RR tracks the problem is we will be renting an SUV that must be returned to Albuquerque. So I don't see this as an option. Is Flagstaff worth a stop? I'm guessing it will break up the trip as Flagstaff to Sante Fe can't be a full day of boring driving.

[ Edit: Edited on 19-May-2009, at 05:56 by DaveinMD ]

4. Posted by Ham Radio (Respected Member 284 posts) 7y

Flagstaff is worth the stop. Enjoy the drive.

5. Posted by Calcruzer (Moderator 1989 posts) 7y

Dave,

I sent you a suggested itinerary for your last 3-4 days. I'm suggesting a side trip past Lake Powell, on to Monument Valley with a short stopover at Canyon de Chelley before traveling on to Gallup, Albuquerque and Santa Fe.

Hope you enjoy your trip to the Southwest.

Enjoy

6. Posted by Ladymacwil (Full Member 170 posts) 7y

Dave,

The drive to Santa Fe is about 6 hours from the South Rim. (Funny you mention the drive being like something on the moon as you'll be passing nearby Meteor Crater...) >= ]

Once you drop off the RV in ABQ you can either take the Rail Runner up to Santa Fe which will take you in the Old Railyard District which is walking distance to most of the downtown area. There are shuttles you may also consider or renting a car. The drive from ABQ to Santa Fe is about 50 minutes.

Have a great time!

7. Posted by DaveinMD (Respected Member 198 posts) 7y

Quoting Ladymacwil

Dave,

The drive to Santa Fe is about 6 hours from the South Rim. (Funny you mention the drive being like something on the moon as you'll be passing nearby Meteor Crater...) >= ]

Once you drop off the RV in ABQ you can either take the Rail Runner up to Santa Fe which will take you in the Old Railyard District which is walking distance to most of the downtown area. There are shuttles you may also consider or renting a car. The drive from ABQ to Santa Fe is about 50 minutes.

Have a great time!

No RV, just an SUV that will be with us until we fly out of Alb. (Some day I've got to learn to spell that damn town's name).

Calcruzer has been an unbelievable help in sending me info. The problem is by the time we are ready to leave the South Rim our budget will probably be shot as I plan on blowing a lot of it on golf, baloon rides etc in Sedona. The option Calcruzer sent to me has us going to Lake Powell, then spending the night in or around Muoument Valley. While this is very intriquing and my wife is all over the idea I am concerned about the additional costs involved in both time as well as the cost of the additiona gas/lodging/park fees etc. We may be forced to just head to the Motel 6 in Sante Fe for something like $49/night. It may allow us the opportunity for 3 squares at this point in the trip.

Does anyone have an opinion regarding Monument Valley, Canyon de Chelley?

8. Posted by Ladymacwil (Full Member 170 posts) 7y

OOPS! Sorry Dave about the RV/SUV error... (Good....you'll get their faster with an SUV!)

CalCruzer is great, we often find ourselves "cross-posting" LOL

Both Monument Valley and Canyon de Chelley are beautiful, though Monument Valley a little more stark and Canyon de Chelley a little more out of the way. Either would be easier to get to than the North Rim.

BTW, even the locals refer to Albuquerque as ABQ when writing about the city, (Same as the airport code). If your going on a budget in Santa Fe I recommend seeing the "Miraculous Staircase" at Loretto Chapel, (A couple bucks) and then visit all the art galleries for free! Grab a drink at the bar and sit outside on the grounds of La Posada, on Palace, east of Pasea De Peralto, as the property is beautiful. To eat on the "cheap" go to Tortilla Flats on Cerrillos for authentic New Mexican food and to mingle with the locals. Nearer the Plaza I would recommend Del Charo, a pub on the corner of Alameda and Don Gaspar. It is part of the Inn of the Governor's Hotel and the pub/saloon sells the hotel restaurant food at a fraction of the regular menu prices with many meals for less than $6.00. Also, walk through La Fonda on the Plaza just to visit some of the wonderful shops there. Just plan on parking and walking everywhere once you are near the Plaza. There is a lot to see for free and it is a great area to walk around.

9. Posted by DaveinMD (Respected Member 198 posts) 7y

Quoting Ladymacwil

OOPS! Sorry Dave about the RV/SUV error... (Good....you'll get their faster with an SUV!)

CalCruzer is great, we often find ourselves "cross-posting" LOL

Both Monument Valley and Canyon de Chelley are beautiful, though Monument Valley a little more stark and Canyon de Chelley a little more out of the way. Either would be easier to get to than the North Rim.

BTW, even the locals refer to Albuquerque as ABQ when writing about the city, (Same as the airport code). If your going on a budget in Santa Fe I recommend seeing the "Miraculous Staircase" at Loretto Chapel, (A couple bucks) and then visit all the art galleries for free! Grab a drink at the bar and sit outside on the grounds of La Posada, on Palace, east of Pasea De Peralto, as the property is beautiful. To eat on the "cheap" go to Tortilla Flats on Cerrillos for authentic New Mexican food and to mingle with the locals. Nearer the Plaza I would recommend Del Charo, a pub on the corner of Alameda and Don Gaspar. It is part of the Inn of the Governor's Hotel and the pub/saloon sells the hotel restaurant food at a fraction of the regular menu prices with many meals for less than $6.00. Also, walk through La Fonda on the Plaza just to visit some of the wonderful shops there. Just plan on parking and walking everywhere once you are near the Plaza. There is a lot to see for free and it is a great area to walk around.

Wow sounds like you know the area well. Here's another general question regarding the entire region: a friend just got back from Sedona/Grand Canyon and told us that we should buy the year pass for the national parks rather than pay each time. The Grand Canyon enterance fee is something like $25/person and the year pass is something like $100. Do you think that is good advice? We plan on seeing a lot of parks in and around Sedona/Sante Fe (which is why we are renting an SUV instead of a compact). Do most of the parks require a fee that will be covered with our year pass if we choose to do so?

10. Posted by Ladymacwil (Full Member 170 posts) 7y

Well, actually Dave, I moved to Santa Fe five years ago from San Diego. Also, my parents had an apple orchard in Camp Verde so we went to the "big" stores in Sedona at least once a week. And even my Mom would tell us stories about being a kid and going to slide rock before most even knew of the place, so it was family tradition.

As far as the $100 pass, unless you live in the area and plan on returning to parks, I would skip that. For instance, if you plan on going to Bandelier, (Which I love, beautiful country and cliff dwellings), the fee is something like $3.00 a car load. If you went to Utah and were going to Bryce Canyon, Zion, drop down back into AZ to the North Rim and into CO to Mesa Verde, then yes, it would probably be worth it. With your itinery, Grand Canyon is the priciest with everything else being much, much, less. (Oh yeah, and about 7 miles north of Santa Fe on Bishops Lodge Road is Shidoni, an outdoor sculpture garden with a huge foundry on the premises and glass blowing artisans, again, it is totally free!)

Hope that helps.... (Oh yes, And my husband said to mention Rio Chama for their Nachos, a huge plate that serves 2 to 3 people for about $11.00), Next door is the Pink Adobe and across the street the oldest church in the US. If you go, make sure to poke your head in the Red Dragon saloon, they have a live tree growing inside through the roof there. Also, some of the residents you may bump into along the way would include, Gene Hackman, Alan Arkin, Ali McGraw, Patrick Swayze, Julia Roberts, Robert Redford....the list goes on and on. The cool thing about Santa Fe is nobody really cares what anyone does so it's considered rather a "safe-haven" for a lot of people.

When does your family plan on leaving, if I may ask? ( I'll let you know of any concerts coming up or live performance and gallery openings as a lot goes on through the summer here.)

LadyMacWilly ^..^ ~