2-Week Roadtrip: LA to Yellowstone to Coeur d'Alene to Boise to SF to LA
Replies: 19 - Last Post: Aug 9, 2012 10:15 PM Last Post By: ianw6705
May 21, 2012 10:58 PM
15Thanks for the tips, MLM192. Again, suggestions like yours are definitely helping to hone my itinerary.
I suppose I should reiterate that the ideas and route I proposed in my original post made up rough itinerary. It was meant to simply provide a general framework from which to draw suggestions from those more familiar with these places than I. And the suggestions have been great.
As I mentioned in my first post, I can add or eliminate stops as I go, based on recommendations and my own experiences. From what's been suggested so far, I'm getting a very good idea of how and where to best spend my time. I've known from the start that some of my prospective destinations would have to be axed, and now I know which ones likely will be.
I'll be judicious in where I go, and will avoid rushing through as best as I can. Posting here helps in those efforts. Thanks again.
Jul 10, 2012 11:56 AM
16I bet you had a great trip at the end! Do you mind to share your final itinerary and any feedback? I have about two weeks from mid September and I hope to catch a glance of the beauty of YNP. I understand it would get a bit cold at that time. But if I don't do it now, I will have to wait another year. I am also based on Orange County CA. So your advice could be really relevant and helpful! Post here or PM me. Thanks!
Aug 9, 2012 6:15 PM
17My trip was great. I won't mention every town along the way (there were too many to list), just the ones where I stopped or a night or two. Here's the long-overdue wrap up:
• I-15 N. from Southern California to St. George, UT.
• I-15 N. from St. George to Hwy. 20 East, to Highway 89 S. to Panguitch, UT.
• Hwy 89 N. from Panguitch to Hwy. 189 N. to Park City, UT.
• Hwy 189 N. to 89/30/16 N. to Jackson, WY.
• Hwy 89 N. to Grand Teton and Yellowstone Nat'l Parks.
• Hwy 89 N. to Gardiner, MT.
• Hwy 89 N. to Livingston, MT.
• Hwy 90 W. to Bozeman, MT.
• Hwy 90 W. to Hwy 1 W. to Philipsburg, MT.
• Hwy 1 W/N. to Rock Creek Rd. (Rte 348 E. and Rte 102 N.) to 90 W., to Missoula, MT.
• Hwy 93 S. from Missoula, to Rte 12 W. (Lolo Creek Rd.) to Kooskia, ID.
• Rte 13 S. from Kooskia, to Hwy 95 S. to 80 S. to Reno, NV. (by far the longest driving day).
• Hwy 80 S. from Reno to 20 W. to Nevada City, CA, to 49 S. to 80 S. to 12 W. to Sonoma, CA.
• Sonoma to SoCal via I-5 South.
This was the most scenic road trip I've taken, and aside from some lackluster scenery from Kooskia to Reno and Sonoma to SoCal, I loved every road I took. Highlights of the trip include:
• Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks (1 day Tetons, 3 days Yellowstone)
• Livingston, MT (great food, nice people, cool bars, lots of history)
• Bozeman (great people, quite a bit to do and see, relatively speaking)
• Butte, MT (strange and fascinating city; inspiring and depressing at the same time. Its former glory is so evident in the incredible, historic commercial and residential architecture, but it's ultimately a sad sight of a rundown, seemingly half-abandoned city.)
• Philipsburg, MT (tiny historic town with lots of charm. Not a lot to do, but a nice day trip and beautiful drive)
• Rock Creek Road from Philipsburg to Missoula (unpaved for 40 miles, but beautiful, serene riverside scenery, lots of fishing/camping and wildlife)
• Missoula (a real city, with plenty to do and the youngest, most artsy/bohemian vibe of the places I visited)
• Highways 93 and 12 from Missoula to Kooskia, ID. (beautiful, mountainous and green riverside scenery for 150 miles and beyond)
• Nevada City, CA (I have to throw that in because it's one of my favorite small towns anywhere- a beautifully-preserved gold rush gem).
Yellowstone is incredible (and I loved catching quite a few brown trout there), Montana is great, and the scenery and many, many historic towns along the way in Utah, Wyoming and Montana were beautiful. The people, history and natural beauty left the biggest impressions on me, and I hope to visit several of these places again in the future.
I should also mention that sleeping in my car two out of every three nights was never a problem, wherever I went. I mostly stayed in well-lit market parking lots, with no hassles from anyone. One of my best trips ever.
Thanks to all who gave their suggestions. And to "hahahut", I imagine September might be a really nice time to visit Yellowstone. I'm sure there will be less crowds, and the cooler weather really isn't bad. It was in the low 60s during the day for me, which I believe it is in Sept., too.
Aug 9, 2012 7:22 PM
18Thank you for coming back to give a report. So many people never do.
(I agree, Nevada City is a gem.)
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