Author Topic: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020  (Read 5721 times)

Offline shmelive

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #15 on: August 20, 2020, 10:36:13 PM »
Tentative Itinerary, planned with @JuryDuty over hot dogs and baked beans.

Sun 8/23
Leave Tobyhanna, drive to cedar point 7 hrs. Stay near cedar point or Cuyahoga Valley

Monday 8/24
Work till 11
Visit cedar point park or Cuyahoga Valley for a few hours
Drive to chicago 5.5 hrs
Dinner chicago with close friends, at a distance. (Milt's, I hope.)
Stay chicago

Tuesday 8/25
Work till 1-2
Drive 7 hrs

Wednesday 8/26
11 am Eastern Zoom meeting
Drive 7 hours to badlands. Stay there.

Thurs 8/27
Work 11:30-1
Badlands Park
Stay rapid city

Fri 8/28
Work till 11
Crazy Horse, Rushmore, Devilís Monument (5 hours total driving)
Stay at devils monument or a bit farther west
Try to make it to Bozeman (HA)
Stay over shabbos 8/29
Motzei shabbos drive to Yellowstone? West yellowstone holiday inn

Sunday 8/30
yellowstone
drive to grand teton

Monday 8/31
Work morning
Grand teton
Drive late to Pocatello or SLC, stay

Tuesday 9/1
Work till 1
Drive to Bonneville Salt Flats - 1.5 hrs
Drive to Yosemite - 7 hrs
Stay near there (maybe on the 6?)

Wed 9/2
Yosemite

Thursday 9/3
Work till 1
More Yosemite
Drive to Sequoia 4.5 hours

Friday 9/4
Sequoia National Park
Drive to LA 4.5 hours
Stay there for shabbos 9/5
Drive to joshua tree 3 hrs sat night

Sunday 9/6
Joshua tree
Drive to Death valley national park 5 hours

Monday 9/7 - Labor Day
Death Valley
Drive to Las Vegas, Hoover Dam (if they open it?), to grand canyon 4.5hrs

Tuesday 9/8
Grand Canyon

Wednesday 9/9, Thursday 9/10, Friday 9/11, Shabbos 9/12
Flex days

Sunday 9/13
Get the heck back to NY before Rosh Hashana this Friday. ~40 hours driving over six days.

Comments welcome!
« Last Edit: August 20, 2020, 10:40:45 PM by shmelive »

Offline yitzgar

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #16 on: August 20, 2020, 10:44:57 PM »
Try to squeeze in sunrise at gtnp. I can vouch personally for schwabacher landing, oxbow bend and Mormon row are both supposed to be great too. (And Something fishy will have your head if you don't)....

Online Something Fishy

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #17 on: August 20, 2020, 10:45:38 PM »
- Stay in Billings for Shabbos, and drive to Yellowstone over the Beartooth Highway Sunday Morning. Coming from that direction and skipping the BT is criminal.
- Try to spend more than one day in Yellowstone.
- Check out Monument Valley after the GC, and Grand Staircase-Escalante if you have the time.
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Online Something Fishy

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #18 on: August 20, 2020, 10:46:34 PM »
Try to squeeze in sunrise at gtnp. I can vouch personally for schwabacher landing, oxbow bend and Mormon row are both supposed to be great too. (And Something fishy will have your head if you don't)....

'Deed I will.

If you have only one day, so sunrise at Schwabacher and sunset at Oxbow.
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Offline shmelive

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #19 on: August 20, 2020, 10:51:55 PM »
'Deed I will.

If you have only one day, so sunrise at Schwabacher and sunset at Oxbow.

Will do - I want to keep my head!

Offline BCL

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #20 on: August 21, 2020, 12:10:06 AM »
- Stay in Billings for Shabbos, and drive to Yellowstone over the Beartooth Highway Sunday Morning. Coming from that direction and skipping the BT is criminal.
+1 This will also give you time in Lamar Valley.

- Try to spend more than one day in Yellowstone.
+1

Anyone know more about this? There's conflicting info on the website. One place says it's too late to buy for August/September, and one place seems to say they release tickets 2 days in advance.

80% are sold on first day of the month for the next month. 20% are sold 2 days in advance.
In your case, you have to be ready Sun or Mon at 7 am to grab a reservation.

This is from nps.gov:
How and when do I get a day-use reservation to visit Yosemite?
Day-use reservations are only available via recreation.gov. Reservations will go quickly; be sure to have an account, be logged in, and ready to get a reservation promptly at 7 am Pacific time.

Beginning at 7 am Pacific time on the first of each month, 80% of day-use reservations are available for the following month at https://www.recreation.gov/ticket/facility/300015. For example, on July 1 at 7 am, day-use reservations for all arrival dates in August will be available.

Beginning at 7 am Pacific time two days ahead of the day-use reservation date, the remaining 20% of day-use reservations will be available. For example, on July 1 at 7 am, day-use reservations for July 3 will be available.

Each user can make one reservation per entry date. You must arrive on the arrival date listed on your reservation. An occupant of the arriving vehicle must have the user (with photo ID) who made the reservation. The reservation is then valid for seven consecutive days (including arrival date).


Offline shmelive

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #21 on: August 23, 2020, 10:56:14 PM »
- Stay in Billings for Shabbos, and drive to Yellowstone over the Beartooth Highway Sunday Morning. Coming from that direction and skipping the BT is criminal.
- Try to spend more than one day in Yellowstone.
- Check out Monument Valley after the GC, and Grand Staircase-Escalante if you have the time.

+1
I will try to reach Billings for Shab. South Utah may have to wait for another trip, it'll depend on the time. Also, I've been to Arches and Canyonlands so I have less of a drive (pun intended) for South Utah atm.

+1 This will also give you time in Lamar Valley.
+1

80% are sold on first day of the month for the next month. 20% are sold 2 days in advance.
In your case, you have to be ready Sun or Mon at 7 am to grab a reservation.

+1 This is very helpful, thank you!

Offline shmelive

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #22 on: August 23, 2020, 11:31:42 PM »
Trip Report Day 1

Aaaaaand the trip is underway!! I started off with a nice lazy last morning with my siblings in our Tobyhanna Airbnb. All in all, a really nice place for a medium size family to stay - 5 bedrooms, lake view and access, spacious comfortable areas to relax...

View of the Lake

After our non-tearful goodbyes, it was time to head out. I put my first stop - Cuyahoga Valley National Park - in Waze, and off I went.


On the way, I kept my eyes out for Walmart. Because, dear friends, it seems that I have forgotten to tell you about my first roadtrip snafu.

As I was loading my car before heading to the Poconos last week, I noticed that the inside of my trunk was wet. I unpacked the trunk completely, and I saw one of a car owner's worst nightmares: mold. I consulted the Google, and covered the trunk with baking soda. Not sure if that was a good idea or not, but it did reduce the moisture.

Directions: Add one s***load of baking soda to trunk. Vacuum. Pray.

Welp. I was out of options at that moment. I consulted my dad, and then Amazon Primed a trunk liner replacement to the Airbnb. Sadly, USPS decided that the package was undeliverable because the addressee was unknown. Hmm. not sure why that was a problem. FedEx delivered a package to me at the same address two days earlier.

So, I went to Walmart on the way. Walmart #1 didn't have what I wanted, and it was then that I remembered that @JuryDuty had suggested I check Walmart.com for in-store availability. @JuryDuty is always right. I checked online, went to the next Walmart that was on my way, and picked up a suitable replacement.



It was one-size-fits-most, which apparently means that it mostly fits :) I'll get a real replacement when I get back to NY. I left the now-dry, full-of-baking-soda original liners in Tobyhanna for the sanitation and the raccoons to fight over.

I stopped for gas along the way. All rest stops seem to be following a similar policy - put up a sign that masks are required, and not enforce it. Most people were wearing masks, though. Yes, I was wearing one.

I crossed into Ohio...


and made it to Cuyahoga Valley.


It's a nice park, mostly with easy hiking and biking paths through forests. I did the Ledges Trail, as recommended by @crownsbroyal. I was a bit underwhelmed, but if that was the best of the park then I'm glad I chose that trail. Here's a pic of the Ledges Overlook:



I must be spoiled, I guess. As punishment for not enjoying the view, I had an unexpected encounter with a state trooper, and will have to make an obligatory donation to the State of Ohio.

I decided that I would drive West until I got tired. I pulled up the IHG app (more on IHG later - basically I've decided that IHG would be the best bet for this trip) and found a few hotels along the I-80. A few podcast episodes and phone calls later, I arrive in Fremont, Indiana, which is where I currently find myself, typing at a hotel desk in a hotel suite.


That sign says Indiana!

For tomorrow, plan is to see two clients over Zoom in the morning (hotel WiFi seems good), head to Indiana Dunes SP, then Chicago for late lunch/early dinner with friends whom I have not yet texted, and then head further West. For now, good night!

Day Totals: 562 miles driven, too many hours to count. Filled up on gas twice.

Offline yitzgar

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #23 on: August 23, 2020, 11:41:57 PM »
I like your writing style

Online ah giten

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #24 on: August 24, 2020, 12:51:15 AM »
What camera do you have with you? That picture that you said isn't nice, is actually a pretty good shot.

Offline shmelive

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #25 on: August 24, 2020, 08:24:10 AM »
What camera do you have with you? That picture that you said isn't nice, is actually a pretty good shot.
Thanks. Iím using my iPhone XR. I have another camera with me, which I may use for some more scenic shots.

Offline jose34

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #26 on: August 24, 2020, 08:42:35 AM »
Keep it coming...

A few comments.
First of all not sure if you referring to this but I do find IHG to have the best quality of nice but simple places to stay aka. Holiday Inn, Holiday Express etc...

I'm sure you know about this but  I wonder if you can program Siri or another app to auto focus to take pictures automatically of certain things.

Offline Mikes@Micro

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #27 on: August 24, 2020, 08:54:06 AM »
. wonder if you can program Siri or another app to auto focus to take pictures automatically of certain things.
Something like this?
siri shortcut
Quote or engagement  equals full throated endorsement and vote!
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Offline shmelive

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #28 on: August 24, 2020, 11:10:00 AM »
First of all not sure if you referring to this but I do find IHG to have the best quality of nice but simple places to stay aka. Holiday Inn, Holiday Express etc...
Yes, exactly.

I'm sure you know about this but  I wonder if you can program Siri or another app to auto focus to take pictures automatically of certain things.

Interesting, I'll look into it!

Offline CRACKERJACK

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Re: NYC - CA - NYC Solo National Parks Road Trip Summer 2020
« Reply #29 on: August 24, 2020, 12:29:05 PM »
First of all not sure if you referring to this but I do find IHG to have the best quality of nice but simple places to stay aka. Holiday Inn, Holiday Express etc...
Staybridge cheap and nice