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Old 04-21-2011, 07:42 AM   #1
DCLInauguralXmas
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Looking for ideas: Midwest to Vancouver to Anaheim

We are taking ten days to travel from midwest to Vancouver, 5 days down the west coast, and 7 days the southern route to the midwest. We will be traveling with 2 adults, 2 college age, and 2 teenagers and we will be traveling in a 31 foot motorhome. We plan to visit Mt. Rushmore, Yellowstone, Mt. St Helen, Yosemite, Monterey Bay Aquarium, & the Grand Canyon for sure. We are looking for family activities and sites to see along the way.
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1974 - 1985 X Mas at WDW - Fort Wilderness 1984 1st trip to DL - offsite, 1986 Honeymoon at WDW - offsite, 1990 back to DL - offsite, 1993 1st trip to WDW with kids age 2 and 1 - offsite, 1995 - WDW offsite
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2000, 2002, 2004, 2006 - X Mas at WDW - Port Orleans
2008 - 10 year celebration of our first DCL Xmas Cruise - 7 night western Magic
2010 - August off site, November All Star Movie
2011 - January Fort Wilderness Villa
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Old 04-21-2011, 10:02 AM   #2
jdb in AZ
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Sounds like an epic journey that needs a trip report for all the memories and to give the rest of us ideas.

I would include the Crazy Horse Memorial, Custer's State Park,http://www.travelsd.com/Attractions/...FQ075QodkwXyHA

The Mammoth excavation site http://www.mammothsite.com/


Glacier National Park, Jackson Hole, Solvang, Hearst's Castle, Vega$ (even if it's just to see the lights at night) Zion's National Park, Bryce Canyon, the four corners monument (not a must-see, but if you're in the area it's fun to put yourself in four states at the same time), Rocky Mtn National Park

Edited to add: If your travels take you up to Alberta, Canada, the Royal Tyrrell dinosaur museum is fascinating -- even my kids (then teenagers) enjoyed it.

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Old 04-21-2011, 10:03 AM   #3
GrandBob
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So, 22 days total? What a great trip! Want to take me along?

Of course, you must take the coastal route, US 101, down the Washington and Oregon coast. Such great scenery! And then, once you get into Northern California, switch to Highway 1 down the Mendocino coast, past Fort Bragg and Mendocino. BTW, in NorCal, I think that Humboldt Redwoods State Park is even better than Redwoods National Park.

Yosemite will take you out of the way of your coastal route. But it's a detour well worth it. If you haven't made reservations there yet for your RV, do it now! This page indicates that they take reservations 4-5 months in advance, and they book up within minutes. When are you going?

Anyway, once done with Yosemite, you'll likely want to head back to the coast to Monterey. After spending copious amounts of time here (Aquarium, Point Lobos, 17 Mile Drive, Carmel, Cannery Row, etc, etc), you'll then want to head down the Big Sur coast on Highway 1. Stop for lunch at Nepenthe's -- expensive, but wonderful views. Do some hiking in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, or Molera State Park. While there, ask for directions to Pfeiffer Beach, one of the prettiest beaches I've ever seen. Then head down the coast, stop at San Simeon, and tour the Hearst Castle. You'll want to get reservations for that tour as soon as you know your dates.

Have a wonderful time!

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Old 04-21-2011, 11:12 PM   #4
DCLInauguralXmas
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Awesome!

Awesome, suggestions. I cannot wait until we depart for our excellent adventure!!! We are actually going to be gone 31 days +/- a few, we are going to squeeze in a 7 night disney cruise to alaska and a few days at Disneyland, while we are at it.

The hardest part about trips like this is not knowing how much time you will spend in each are -- thereby making it hard to make reservations ahead of time.

I cannot wait to plot these new suggestions into our route, if you think of any other "must dos" please pass them along.

Will 101 and 1 be too congested or narrow for motorhome travel during late june?
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1974 - 1985 X Mas at WDW - Fort Wilderness 1984 1st trip to DL - offsite, 1986 Honeymoon at WDW - offsite, 1990 back to DL - offsite, 1993 1st trip to WDW with kids age 2 and 1 - offsite, 1995 - WDW offsite
1998 - Inaugural Christmas Cruise on Magic - with all four kids youngest twins 10 mos old.
2000, 2002, 2004, 2006 - X Mas at WDW - Port Orleans
2008 - 10 year celebration of our first DCL Xmas Cruise - 7 night western Magic
2010 - August off site, November All Star Movie
2011 - January Fort Wilderness Villa
2011 - Wonderful Alaskan Cruise Wonder in Roy Disney suite
2012 - New Y"Ears" Eve on the Fantasy
2013 - Christmas and New Years on Magic B2B2B
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Old 04-22-2011, 05:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCLInauguralXmas View Post
Will 101 and 1 be too congested or narrow for motorhome travel during late june?
101 will be just fine. It's a wide modern highway.

Highway 1 down the Big Sur coast will be a little hairier. It's twisty, and much of it is on top of a cliff with steep dropoffs. Still, I see motor homes on this route all the time. It just depends on how nervous you might get. But for a good driver, no problem.

Are you talking about this June? I'm not sure you'll get any camping spot within Yosemite at this late date, but you should start looking ASAP.

-Bob
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Old 04-23-2011, 03:04 PM   #6
DCLInauguralXmas
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anyone with suggestions for the coasts of washington & oregon?
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1974 - 1985 X Mas at WDW - Fort Wilderness 1984 1st trip to DL - offsite, 1986 Honeymoon at WDW - offsite, 1990 back to DL - offsite, 1993 1st trip to WDW with kids age 2 and 1 - offsite, 1995 - WDW offsite
1998 - Inaugural Christmas Cruise on Magic - with all four kids youngest twins 10 mos old.
2000, 2002, 2004, 2006 - X Mas at WDW - Port Orleans
2008 - 10 year celebration of our first DCL Xmas Cruise - 7 night western Magic
2010 - August off site, November All Star Movie
2011 - January Fort Wilderness Villa
2011 - Wonderful Alaskan Cruise Wonder in Roy Disney suite
2012 - New Y"Ears" Eve on the Fantasy
2013 - Christmas and New Years on Magic B2B2B
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Old 04-24-2011, 03:13 PM   #7
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In Oregon - Canon Beach is a great stop for shopping and walking around. DH is from Tillamook, so stop at the cheese factory, sample some cheese, have some ice cream and enjoy the town.

One of the coolest places on the Oregon Coast is Cape Meares. Check out the lighthouse and the tree!
http://www.capemeareslighthouse.org/...opus_tree.html

For the best lunch and afternoon stop along the coast, I recommend Pelican Pub. They are an award winning brew pub and have a location that is my own piece of heaven on Earth. Good food, great view and a fantastic place to stroll in the sand.

101 in that area is very navigable by RV, but can get a little busy. Best to plan any left turns at lights as the breaks in traffic get fewer and further between as the tourism heats up.
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Old 04-24-2011, 06:12 PM   #8
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Swimming Hole in Firehole River Canyon, Yellowstone. Rafting on the Galletin River near the eastern edge of Yellowstone. Rafting in the Snake river south of Jackson Hole.

Waterslides and thermal water pools in Thermopolis, Wy.
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Old 04-24-2011, 07:18 PM   #9
GrandBob
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCLInauguralXmas View Post
The hardest part about trips like this is not knowing how much time you will spend in each are -- thereby making it hard to make reservations ahead of time.
Yep, I hear you. On one hand, you're travelling in summer, so if you don't have reservations, you may end up not getting into places you want to see. On the other hand, I love leaving myself open to unexpected experiences. Some places you never expected may grab you, and you'll want to spend extra time. Other places that you thought were "must see", you'll just say "meh" and leave early. Different strokes. Most of my best travel experiences were totally unexpected.

"Peculiar travel suggestions are dancing lessons from God." - Kurt Vonnegut, Cat's Cradle

But however you plan it, you're going to have a great time. I'm envious of your trip.

-Bob
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Old 04-25-2011, 08:37 PM   #10
DCLInauguralXmas
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rafting

skiingfast - we were thinking about going rafting by yellowstone, so it is good to know that the ones on the east side are good. What was the name of the company that you used?which areas of yellowstone are the must dos?

ahutton - we will definately check out the lighthouses and canon beach. Thanks!

grandbob- in the midwest alot of walmarts allow you to stay in their parking lots with self contained motorhomes, is there anywhere on the west coast like that? in case we find ourselves in a pickle it is always nice to know we have a plan b
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Denise


1974 - 1985 X Mas at WDW - Fort Wilderness 1984 1st trip to DL - offsite, 1986 Honeymoon at WDW - offsite, 1990 back to DL - offsite, 1993 1st trip to WDW with kids age 2 and 1 - offsite, 1995 - WDW offsite
1998 - Inaugural Christmas Cruise on Magic - with all four kids youngest twins 10 mos old.
2000, 2002, 2004, 2006 - X Mas at WDW - Port Orleans
2008 - 10 year celebration of our first DCL Xmas Cruise - 7 night western Magic
2010 - August off site, November All Star Movie
2011 - January Fort Wilderness Villa
2011 - Wonderful Alaskan Cruise Wonder in Roy Disney suite
2012 - New Y"Ears" Eve on the Fantasy
2013 - Christmas and New Years on Magic B2B2B
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Old 04-26-2011, 10:20 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCLInauguralXmas View Post
grandbob- in the midwest alot of walmarts allow you to stay in their parking lots with self contained motorhomes, is there anywhere on the west coast like that? in case we find ourselves in a pickle it is always nice to know we have a plan b
I had also heard that WalMart allows RVers to do that; and the comment wasn't limited to the midwest or east. I would guess that you can do that here in the west, too. But I'm not an RVer, so I have no direct experience.

Have fun!

-Bob
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Old 04-26-2011, 06:14 PM   #12
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anyone with suggestions for the coasts of washington & oregon?
Olympic National Park in Washington has two sections, one is the mountains and the other is the coast.

The visitor center at the Hoh rain forest is a must do, there are short day hike trails that start at the visitor center.

The whole section of the coast is spectacular, then as you get farther south toward Ocean Shores it turns into a sandy beach instead of rocks.

Down south, the Long Beach penninsula, and the State Park at the mouth of the Columbia (there's a great state park on the Washington Side of the Columbia and a great one on the Oregon Side of the Columbia). Stuff to do, day hikes, and lots of Lewis & Clark history to see, especially the museum on the Washington side and the reconstructed fort in Oregon.
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Old 04-28-2011, 06:59 AM   #13
DCLInauguralXmas
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thanks!

you all have been great thanks for all the tips. I am so excited
I don't know if I can wait until
June!!!!

Any suggestions for Yellowstone to Vancouver???
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1974 - 1985 X Mas at WDW - Fort Wilderness 1984 1st trip to DL - offsite, 1986 Honeymoon at WDW - offsite, 1990 back to DL - offsite, 1993 1st trip to WDW with kids age 2 and 1 - offsite, 1995 - WDW offsite
1998 - Inaugural Christmas Cruise on Magic - with all four kids youngest twins 10 mos old.
2000, 2002, 2004, 2006 - X Mas at WDW - Port Orleans
2008 - 10 year celebration of our first DCL Xmas Cruise - 7 night western Magic
2010 - August off site, November All Star Movie
2011 - January Fort Wilderness Villa
2011 - Wonderful Alaskan Cruise Wonder in Roy Disney suite
2012 - New Y"Ears" Eve on the Fantasy
2013 - Christmas and New Years on Magic B2B2B
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Old 04-28-2011, 01:49 PM   #14
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Quote:
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skiingfast - we were thinking about going rafting by yellowstone, so it is good to know that the ones on the east side are good. What was the name of the company that you used?which areas of yellowstone are the must dos?
For Rafting on the Gallatin river I've never used a company. I have many friends with rafts. So it's been very casual for me to go over the years.

There are two types of rafting Scenic, and Whitewater.

Scenic you will drift along enjoying the scenery maybe see wildlife, maybe get splashed. You can do this on the Gallatin River between West Yellowstone, Mt and Bozeman, Mt. Most companies are based in Big Sky, Montana and when you get out are shuttled back to you vehicle. You can also do this from Gardiner, Mt to Miner, Mt.

White Water varies. It depends on the class of water. To put it simply Class III has some rapids, Class IV lots of prolongued rapids. This is what you can find on the Gallatin River. You will need to paddle, get very wet, and hold on, you may fall out, you will remember this. This is adventurous. Probably what your family is looking for. Cost vary a lot but $45 to $60 per person is pretty typical as is a $10-$15 tip for the guide.


For Yellowstone, I'd be happy to post an itinerary. Do you know where you would come from and where you would go to? I would either enter from the Grand Tetons to the South, Cody, Wy from the East, or if you need to stick to freeways Gardiner, Mt from the North. How many mountain passes do you want to drive over?
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Old 04-29-2011, 12:49 PM   #15
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Make sure to drive the Oregon Coast, Hit San Francisco and take a day trip to wine country and/or gold country if possible. I think you need 2-3 days in SF area minimum. I would also include stops at Santa Cruz, Big Sur (don't miss Pfeiffer State Beach) take your time down the coast and make lots of Seal watching stops as you go. Stop in at one of the many Santas along the way.....Santa Barbara for us this year......then take the plunge into LA.....The drive to LA could very well be the highlight of your trip as your photographs will remind you......just an amazing coast to drive!
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