I am planning a month long trip for Summer '10. Want to see interesting places, pretty drives, mountains, lakes. Will be traveling with my 78 yr old mother and 14 yr old daughter who has Down syndrome. Can't do much walking.
Seeking ideas. Thinking about flying into Las Vegas and renting a car there. We enjoy rustic, almost camping, type lodging. Mostly we'll be driving around, looking at views/animals, pulling over to play in streams, etc. Bqack roads are great.
Any help will be appreciated.
When you first get to Las Vegas, rent a car and head out to Bonnie Spring--it's an old western town in Red Rock Canyon 16 miles west of town. Here's a website:
From Las Vegas head out north to Zion, then north to Bryce Canyon, and then cut back north to Salt Lake City. Take the main freeway north to Brigham City, then cut west on Hwy 83 out to the "Golden Spike National Monument where they merged the railroads from the west and east back in the 1860s. On the way, you'll pass the factory where they built the gigantic rockets that sent man to the moon--and they have a display of them out there. (I used to work there)
Go back to Brigham City and take the freeway north into Idaho, turning right on Highway 30 east. Go about 20 miles to the small town of Lava Hot Springs. Spend the night and relax in the giant hot springs there (used by the Indians back in the 1600s through 1890. The town has a really old-time look.
Next head east through Soda Springs (stop and see the springs with the healthy soda in it (and get a drink) and then stay on 34 heading northeast up into Wyoming near the old stud ranches on Highway 89 south of Jackson (also known as Jackson Hole).
Next drive up to Jackson Hole, taking note of the people doing white water rafting down the Snake River at this point. In Jasper, a ski town and old west town, visit the old saloons downtown and get some good barbeque.
Next head on north through the Grand Tetons and into Yellowstone. Focus on the geysers and buffalo and nature scenes here, then head back south, and go see Fort Bridger (east of Evanston)--one of the main stops on the Oregon Trail. Head east from here to Flaming Gorge National Monument, and then go south into Colorado and visit the Dinosaur National Park. Go east and head through the Rocky Mountains National Park, then head south through Boulder and then on to Denver. From here head west through Vail, then take a detour to Aspen, then back up to Glenwood Springs, and go west through Moab, Utah. Visit the Arches National Park, the Canyonlands area, and then go down to the tiny town of Blanding. Just south of here, take highway 95 to Lake Powell, then double back to Highway 261 and go south to Mexican Hat, Utah. From here go south and west to get to Page, Arizona. Head north 5 miles back to Lake Powell. Get on the boat that goes to the Rainbow Bridge--it is worth the trip. Now drive south to either the north or south rims of the Grand Canyon, then return back to Las Vegas.
CalCruzer, Thank you so much. These are exactly the types of things we will like. Espcially the springs - I forgot how much fun they are. Many years ago we went to springs outside of Steamboat Springs - they were undeveloped - and we had a wonderful time.
Anybody know of any Mom and Pop type cabins or Motels?