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Old 08-13-2008, 01:24 PM   #15
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Thank you for the info.

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Old 08-13-2008, 01:52 PM   #16
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We plan to be gone about 2 wks. Usually hookup camper. 4 lanes is better, just don't want steep grades if we can avoid them. Like to see from car and hike some.

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Old 08-14-2008, 05:31 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Blevi View Post
Great thread and great pictures! Great information for our upcoming trip!
I'm glad you liked the thread. It was a great trip and it was fun to do the thread. I hope you have a great time.
Brian & Donna
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Old 08-14-2008, 06:15 PM   #18
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Best way to do this correctly, would be to take me along as your tour guide.
Your opinion is valued, please not your opinion of someones else's opinion.
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Old 08-17-2008, 01:09 PM   #19
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TL, there is so much to see in southern Utah that two weeks is not enough. I think you have two alternatives: get a quick look at each NP (there are 5) or concentrate on one or two and come back another day for more.

If you want to avoid the Colorado passes, go through New Mexico, but with an F350 I think the passes won't be a problem. I-70 is built for large rigs and the passes don't have excessive grades. Of course it can snow (it did a couple of days ago, but didn't last very long). I think it's easier to get from Missouri to Utah on 70. I-40 through NM and Ariz. is a very, very busy truck route, I-70 is a bit less so. Utah 2 lane roads are generally good though the road from Cisco to Moab along the Colorado R., though beautiful, is quite narrow in spots. Independence Pass in Colorado is not for RV's and may have a length limit (if not, it should). It's got some very narrow parts with blind curves.

Most of the most spectacular parts of Canyonlands NP are only accessible with a 4wd, bike, or on foot. A full sized truck might have a difficult time there. We went all over the park years ago, but in smaller SUV's and pickups as well as hiking. There's still a lot to see there otherwise. Find a campground right away and set out in your truck to explore. Island in the Sky District has a road around it, but it's 4wd. The Maze District is only accessible by 4wd and is the most amazing place, but you'd need to bring a tent, sleeping bags, etc. and bring the truck only. It's a long drive just to get there. The Needles District is most accessible; the 4wd drive areas are also amazing. It's easy to spend a week each in the last two Districts.

It's hot in the summer, really hot. September is a little cooler, October and November are better. Weather can change quickly from warm days to snow hours later though that's unlikely until November. Don't worry about fall colors—almost all the trees are conifers except for aspen. Aspen generally changes in late September, but like the weather, is unpredictable. In southern Utah, you'll only see aspen on the high mountains.

Sounds like you're not familar with the West. It's dry—if you go hiking, bring plenty of water. Altitude may affect you—everyone reacts differently. There are long distances between places and often you have little choice of how to get there is some fairly direct way (those mountain ranges have a nasty habit of getting in the way). There are fewer campgrounds and a lot in Colorado start closing in October. Check the campground directories carefully for closing dates and call ahead if unsure. There are lots of state parks and federal lands with campgrounds, often without hookups, but one day boondocking from time to time will give you access to some wonderful places. The national forest campgrounds are open only for a few months these days as budget cuts are eliminating opportunities for recreational users.

The sights to see in the West are amazing. Some are hard to get to. Extra effort is worth it. Enjoy our part of the country.

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Old 08-17-2008, 01:23 PM   #20
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Trip to Utah

Thank you so much for your input. I have heard other people say that 2 wks. is not long enough as well. We are still in the planning stages, so we will see.
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Old 08-17-2008, 03:14 PM   #21
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Salina to Green River, Utah on I-70 is a pull and a drop either way, eastbound drop is
the most fun if you like smelling brakes burning. I would not pull it in any kind of heat.
"A settled wisdom, plus the itch to be elsewhere"
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Old 08-17-2008, 04:34 PM   #22
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Southern Utah

We left TN for the international in mid may and visited a dozen or so national parks on the way out to Reno and before heading for Bozeman.
This was our experience in the Southern Utah and nearby areas .The time frame was early June.
We are strictly boondockers and favor the government campgrounds whenever possible, so this may or may not fit your camping style. We consider private campgrounds the stop of last resort. In fact if its called a resort we don’t stop.
All the National Parks/ monuments we stopped at were worth seeing. Well, except one.
We tentatively allowed 2 days per stop
We hit these pretty much in this order.

Mesa Verde National Park

Four corners Nat. Monument.
This one is not worth going out of your way for

Monument Valley,
Scenic, The campground is not open due to construction. You can camp in a big parking lot but no water available. The scenic drive is beautiful but the road is very rough

Arches/ Canyonlands National Park
Arches was our least favorite national park. The park is pretty however it was so crowded by 10 am that there were no places to park at many of the stops. We left and came back the next day at daybreak and it was very pleasant until mid morning. We drove from there to Canyonlands which was not overcrowded.
The Campground in Arches is at the far end of the park. It is a pretty good climb.
We chose to use one of the BLM campgrounds on route 128 on the Colorado river.
The sites were huge and level right on the river. Just a couple miles from both Moab and the entrance to Arches and an easy drive to Canyonlands. We did a drive through of the campground at Canyonlands. It has few sites and the sites are extremely small.
We did not stop at Dead Horse Point.

Capitol Reef.. Very nice park, no entrance fee except for a scenic drive and the only National park campground on the trip with big level sites. Use the second loop.

Bryce Canyon. Scenic, get there early for a good campsite. Seem to recall the entrance fee was high,$25.00? We are old enough to not have to pay it.
We skipped Zion because we had been there before ( and had liked it)

I have no recollection of any particularly challenging roads or grades after we left Colorado. Our rig is similar in size to yours.

Some general info.
The parks were busy. Any cut back in travel here has been more than compensated for by foreigners taking advantage of the weak dollar . The parks were full of rental motorhomes and cars, Or else almost all the tourists wer from Ca and Co where the airports are.

Most National Park Campgrounds are old. Sites are usually not long and the only guy with a level worked at Capitol Reef.

We usually stopped by 2PM. Never had any problem without reservations. We try to stop a little earlier on Fridays to beat the locals and not move again until Sunday.

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Old 08-18-2008, 03:22 PM   #23
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I don't know when you are going but state tourist bureaus and local Chambers of Commrce will send you a wealth of info free if you just ask. Most can be requested on line and arrive in about a week or less (from Utah to NH - your mileage may vary), Moab sent me a nice booklet as a result of a request to the state tourism office. Also many state will also sen a free map and they are usually pretty good. Have a great trip - and tell us all about it.
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Old 08-18-2008, 05:38 PM   #24
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Utah is a real favorite of ours!

We did a Utah trip last month and had a great time!

First of all, you'll have no problem at all hauling a 25' with an F-350. We pulled a 28 ft with our F-150 without any major problems. It was a little slow going up one killer hill west on Rt 160 outside of Durango. Other than that one, the rest of hills on the trip were a breeze.

If you're going to the Moab area, don't miss Dead Horse State Park. We stayed there and loved it. It's a nice quiet campground with reservable sites. It's a great place to stay while visiting Canyonlands and Arches. The weather was really nice and not too hot when we were there (80's & low 90's). It's usually much hotter - we were lucky I guess. The pic attached is a view of Canyonlands from Dead Horse Point

Zion is OK, Bryce is spectacular. Consider going to Monument Vally. It's not as developed as most state and national parks but it's still absolutely beautiful and shouldn't be missed.

However you end up planning your trip I'm sure you'll enjoy it! When you return, we want to hear about it and see pictures!
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