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Road trip to US

Discussion in 'The Coffee Shop ~ Chit Chat' started by crane3447, Aug 1, 2008.

  1. crane3447

    crane3447 New Member 100 Posts

    My wife and I are leaving to go to her brother's wedding in K.C. on the 13th of August. He lives in Houston so after the wedding we will be heading back to his place for a couple of days.

    We will be driving the whole trip so the first stop on our way back to Calgary is ggoing to be the Alamo in San Antonio. Kinda hoping that mabey some of you guy could help me out and let me know the best way in and out since I understand that its right downtown.

    After we leave San Antonio we going to head up the I 10 and get on HW 87 to head up through Lubbock and into Amarillo.

    Next we plan on heading due west along route 66/ I 40 towards the Grand Canyon. We have a 4day/3night package booked from the 24th to the 27th.

    Then we start heading home. Due north.

    The point of the thread is that I know alot of you guys live in the areas that we will be visiting and I'm hoping that you can help us out. Let us know some of the things to see or avoid. Mabey since my time is so tight let me know of some little gem that is not in the tourist books.

    I'm also going to be starting a blog that I'll try to up date as we travel along. It will be my first blog so this seems like a good way to pop my cherry!
  2. tbplus10

    tbplus10 Super Moderator Staff Member Platinum Contributor 1000 Posts 100 Posts

    Cant help ya with directions around San Antonio (after 7 yrs in Texas I still havent visited) but have a great trip and just be wary of these Texas drivers they get a little goofy at times. Around Dallas theres a lot of dangerous and rude drivers and in most of the state they like to run the shoulder of the road.
  3. MrShorty

    MrShorty Moderator Staff Member 1000 Posts 100 Posts

    Are you staying on the North Rim or South Rim at Grand Canyon? I haven't been to the South rim, yet. Last time I went to the Grand Canyon, we went to Vulcan's throne, which was nice because it is much less crowded than the main area, no fences so you can walk right up to the edge of the canyon and look over the edge. You can also see a volcano that spilled into the canyon (if you like that sort of thing).

    If you like engineering things, you can take a tour of Glen Canyon dam.

    Speaking of dams, Another interesting site is the Teton Dam in eastern Idaho, just above Rexburg. Built and collapsed in the '70's flooding the town. See what happens when engineering goes wrong.

    If dinosaurs are your thing and you have the time, swing through Castle country and visit the Cleveland Lloyd dinosaur quarry south of Price, Ut, and the CEU prehistory museum in Price.

    If you have any interest, you could try swimming in the Great Salt Lake. Antelope Island SP is my favorite place for such a day trip.

    We just got back from Yellowstone. Along with all the stuff in the park, we went and saw the Madison Canyon earthquade visitors center west of the park. It was interesting to see the fault scarps, the huge landslide that formed Earthquake lake, and to learn how the earthquake changed some of the features of Yellowstone.

    I don't know if any of those interest you, but those are some ideas.
  4. MrShorty

    MrShorty Moderator Staff Member 1000 Posts 100 Posts

    I thought of a couple of other places to stop in Idaho:

    1) If you like engineering type stuff, stop and see EBR-1 in the INEL. Reportedly the 1st significant nuclear power plant, it was decommissioned in the '60's and is (or at least has been) open for public tours. It's neat to see how electricity is generated using nuclear reactors.

    2) If you like spelunkiing, you can visit Crater's of the Moon NM. The "moonlike" terrain is interesting to see, and you can wander through some lava tubes and other underground caverns to escape the heat of the day.
  5. retired2001

    retired2001 New Member 1000 Posts 100 Posts

    I live @ Canyon Lake, about 35 to 40 miles North of San Antonio. If you are coming in from Houston on I-10, take the I-37 North exit and go to "East Commerce" (left turn). Stay on East Commerce until you see the Alamo Plaza Exit. You will go North on Alamo Plaza until you see the Alamo (on your right). The Alamo does not take long to see, as it is an old mission and grounds. You will be very close to the San Antonio River and the "River Walk". Many great places to eat and "chill" in the shade, along the river. The "Rio" is a good place to eat and sit and watch the river. Where are you staying in S.A.?
  6. crane3447

    crane3447 New Member 100 Posts

    Thanks for the directions. Best way to learn is to ask somone who lives in the area.

    Is the parking bad? Should we park aways away and walk the last little bit? We're hoping to hit town by around 10 o'clock in the morning. Houston is only about 3 hrs away right?

    We are actually not spending a night in San Antonio. We are kind of pressed for time so we're coming in from Houston on the morning of the 21st. After a look at the Alamo were are going to try to get as far as San Angelo, hope I my spelling is right on that, so we won't have to rush as much to next 2 days. I want to have as much time as possiable to spend on route 66.

    My wife keeps talking about he "river walk". Is it worth our time? I hate rushing with tings like this but at about 6 or 7000 miles round trip, we want to see and do as much as we can.

    Don't worry through, we're not new at this kind of thing.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2008
  7. crane3447

    crane3447 New Member 100 Posts


    Thanks for your input.

    We spent some time in Yellowstone a couple years ago when we drove from Calgary to Virgina. We hit it on our way home. Stuck to the nothern states on that run. Came in over the big horn moutains at dusk! Not somthing I would do again. And don't forget I live in the Rockies. Saw things like Mt. Rushmore and the Crazy Horse moutain on the trip as well. Witch, I would say, are 2 things anyone should add to their " have to see before they die" list. The Pioneear Auto Mus. in South Dakota was cool too. I'm a real car nut so I was in heaven. Tolally unplaned too so that made it even better. Funny how that is somtimes.

    We are staying on the south rim since we are comeing to the park off of the I 40. Got a Grand Canyon Railway package booked. The price is actually good when you figure in that the rooms and almost all your meals arel inc. Don't have to burn any gas for a couple of days either.

    Im gonig to check into some of your ideas. Some of them look great.
  8. retired2001

    retired2001 New Member 1000 Posts 100 Posts

    The parking isn't too bad around the Alamo and it is really close to the "River Walk". It would be a good place to have lunch before you head out. There are a lot of "cross overs" so you don't have to go on a long trip down the river to see what it is like and find a good place to eat. Be ready for some hot weather, although the further you get from Houston, the lower the humidity will get so it gets. Have fun on Route 66, it's a lot cooler trip than going the "southern route".
  9. crane3447

    crane3447 New Member 100 Posts

    Thanks buddy. Made my wife happy.
  10. MWright936

    MWright936 New Member 1000 Posts 100 Posts

    Be careful around the Houston area! It's full of stupid, aggressive drivers! I grew up in Katy, on the west side of Houston, so I've had my fill. Too crowded for my taste!

    Sounds like you have an awesome road trip planned! I went to the Alamo and the River Walk with my fiancee last year. It's lots of fun and really interesting.

    Have fun! :great:

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