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OK. So I was told the forum is the best source of info for finding the good stuff.

A friend and I are going a 25ish day ride from Louisiana to the West Coast. Our goal is to hit the Salton Sea area as fast as possible. Ride 800+ miles days for the first couple of days to get there fast. We consider that the start of the trip. I am going to list the cities we would like to hear about routes in between or around. If you have some or know of some must see places please let me know.

Salton Sea to San Diego (Oceanside specifically)? We are going to spend a day in Oceanside getting some new tattoo's.

Oceanside to Hover Dam?

Las Vegas to and through Death Valley?

Death Valley to and through Sequoia National Park?

Sequoia to and through Yosemite National Park?

Yosemite to Carson City?

Carson City/Reno to Bonneville Salt Flats?

Salt Lake City into CO bypass into WY maybe then into CO???

Gunnison area to Duragno?

Durango to 4 corners to Grand Canyon area?

Northern and central New Mexico routes?

Unless there is a unique hotel or BB or cabin we are observing a no hotel policy this trip. So if y'all know of any camping areas along the routes please share. We regularly sleep at churches, fire stations, and truck stops on our trips East, but we don't know how friendly the people out West are with a couple of deep south guys camping on the back porch.

We are mainly just looking to go for a ride and wonder from place to place, but I know they have some neat sights to see out west and I hate to drive 100 yards to the left of something and never see it.

We have Gamin GPS's too in case you would like to send over some maps... Also if you would like GPS info for LA/MS and some nice rides in AR or Smokey mountain Nation Park area I will be glad to share. If you are in to Dual Sporting I have tons of dirt roads and cut through areas marked and some nice cross country dual sport adventures on GPS.

Thanks,
Kenny
 

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Trip Planning

OK. So I was told the forum is the best source of info for finding the good stuff.

A friend and I are going a 25ish day ride from Louisiana to the West Coast. Our goal is to hit the Salton Sea area as fast as possible. Ride 800+ miles days for the first couple of days to get there fast. We consider that the start of the trip. I am going to list the cities we would like to hear about routes in between or around. If you have some or know of some must see places please let me know.

Salton Sea to San Diego (Oceanside specifically)? We are going to spend a day in Oceanside getting some new tattoo's.

From Salton Sea your best bet is head west on S-22 thru Borrego Springs going up Montezuma Grade thru Ranchita. Turn right at S-2 then left at Hwy 79, then right at Hwy 76. After you pass Lake Henshaw look for Palomar Mt east entrance and go up Palomar Mt and down the west side( lots of twisties) then back onto Hwy 76 to end up in Oceanside

Oceanside to Hover Dam?

Las Vegas to and through Death Valley?

Death Valley to and through Sequoia National Park?
If you take Hwy 178 out of Death Valley thru Ridgecrest over to Lake Isabella ther you pick up Hwy 155 ( more twisties) over to Hwy 65. Take hwy 65 north to Hwy 198 wich take you into the Sequoias

Sequoia to and through Yosemite National Park?

Yosemite to Carson City?

Carson City/Reno to Bonneville Salt Flats?

On your way to Salt Lake City you realy should swing by Zion and Bryce Canyon. You can loop backover to I-15 from there into SLC

Salt Lake City into CO bypass into WY maybe then into CO???

Gunnison area to Duragno?

If you leave Grand Junction heading south you turn on Hwy 41 at Whitewater( if that is not right the guys from CO can pipe in) this will loop around and back to Hwy550 near Ouray. This road is very scenic and a popular spot for riders in that area

Durango to 4 corners to Grand Canyon area?

Northern and central New Mexico routes?

It would be a shame to miss Carlsbad Caverns if you are in New Mexico

Unless there is a unique hotel or BB or cabin we are observing a no hotel policy this trip. So if y'all know of any camping areas along the routes please share. We regularly sleep at churches, fire stations, and truck stops on our trips East, but we don't know how friendly the people out West are with a couple of deep south guys camping on the back porch.

We are mainly just looking to go for a ride and wonder from place to place, but I know they have some neat sights to see out west and I hate to drive 100 yards to the left of something and never see it.

We have Gamin GPS's too in case you would like to send over some maps... Also if you would like GPS info for LA/MS and some nice rides in AR or Smokey mountain Nation Park area I will be glad to share. If you are in to Dual Sporting I have tons of dirt roads and cut through areas marked and some nice cross country dual sport adventures on GPS.

Thanks,
Kenny
I filled in some info into your original post.
You are diong a bit of backtracking but if that is the order you want to go then enjoy. There are several passes from Yosemite to Carsen City, Tioga Pass is the most popular
 

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I would recommend riding route 550 south from Montrose to Durango, CO. It's a really neat ride between Ridgeway and Durango. You will cross Red Mountain Pass 11,000 feet and go by Ouray and Silverton on the way. There is a railroad at Silverton. From Durango, take route 160 west through Cortez to the 4-corners then on to Kayenta, AZ. Then you can go north on route 163 into the Monument Valley. Return to Kayenta, go west on 160 through the Painter Desert to route 89. South on 89 to route 64 west to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. Williams,AZ is only about an hour south of the Grand Canyon.
 

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OK. So I was told the forum is the best source of info for finding the good stuff.

A friend and I are going a 25ish day ride from Louisiana to the West Coast. Our goal is to hit the Salton Sea area as fast as possible. <...>

Salton Sea to San Diego (Oceanside specifically)? We are going to spend a day in Oceanside getting some new tattoo's.

Oceanside to Hoover Dam?
I'll send ya to another web page, because if you're wanting to spend a bit of time in California, there are dozens of roads to check out. Check out pashnit.com for some detail there. Now, Oceanside to the dam and the Vegas area; lots of desolation; lots of neat roads.

Las Vegas to and through Death Valley?<...>Carson City/Reno to Bonneville Salt Flats?<...>
Not mentioning the time period for this trip, I'll let you know that the temps in the deserts starting in, oh, April or so, get to be really hot. That's why there's a group of us from the desert that'll be taking in Death Valley here in a couple of weeks (search for the threads for details...)

Reno to the Salt Flats - you must ride US50 toward Ely, NV, then to Wendover. Last trip into the area, I didn't get a chance to get up that far north, but I'm not that far, and, besides, another trip destination for another time.

We are mainly just looking to go for a ride and wander from place to place, but I know they have some neat sights to see out west and I hate to drive 100 yards to the left of something and never see it. <...>
I'm not into camping; others here are, and I'm sure they'll chime in.

Not to criticize your itinerary in any way, but on your speed run out west, though, you will be missing out on some great roads in NM and AZ. Mebbe next time...it does seem like you'll have a blast!
 

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LA_Ken, when are you making the trip?
Working down in New Orleans right now, so feels like we are practically neighbors.
I am doing several of the same legs you are in June and will be paying attention to replies to your post. A couple of the legs I am familiar with from living out there for a little while, and am actually duplicating on my trip this summer.

Death Valley to and through Sequoia National Park?
If you take Hwy 178 out of Death Valley thru Ridgecrest over to Lake Isabella ther you pick up Hwy 155 ( more twisties) over to Hwy 65. Take hwy 65 north to Hwy 198 wich take you into the Sequoias
I agree with this most of this route. Coming into Sequoia National Forest from Lake Isabella is breathtaking along the Kern River. I will be looking into camping near the Trail of a Hundred Giants. I believe the campground nearby is Redwood Meadows. Several campgrounds in the national forest around there to camp in. Leaving Redwood Meadows, I would recommend the Great Western Divide Highway through the National Forest and passing through Camp Nelson and a few other small towns picking up highway 190. On 190 in Springville, there is a road that cuts up to Exter, I forget how it is marked locally, only been on it a couple times, but it is very twisty and pretty scenic, lot better than highway 65, which is dang near absolutely straight. In Exter you can then cut up to 198 into Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Lots of riding and sites to see in the national parks proper. From them I am looking into jumping onto highway 41 to make the trek to Yosemite. But this is where I run out of personnel experience, so I will wait to hear from others on this area.
From there I plan to hit the California coast and head south, cutting across from Santa Maria to see the Hoover dam and Grand Canyon, north rim in particular. From there riding through Zion, Bryce, Arches, Canyonlands into Colorado, and traveling down to Durango from Grand Junction.
I was looking at highways 50 to 550 to 160. Again, I will be paying attention to replies for this area as well. I had not heard of highway 41 before, so more info there would be appreciated since I can't find it on my map yet.
Good luck and keep us posted.
 

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Trip Planning

LA_Ken, when are you making the trip?
Working down in New Orleans right now, so feels like we are practically neighbors.
I am doing several of the same legs you are in June and will be paying attention to replies to your post. A couple of the legs I am familiar with from living out there for a little while, and am actually duplicating on my trip this summer.



I agree with this most of this route. Coming into Sequoia National Forest from Lake Isabella is breathtaking along the Kern River. I will be looking into camping near the Trail of a Hundred Giants. I believe the campground nearby is Redwood Meadows. Several campgrounds in the national forest around there to camp in. Leaving Redwood Meadows, I would recommend the Great Western Divide Highway through the National Forest and passing through Camp Nelson and a few other small towns picking up highway 190. On 190 in Springville, there is a road that cuts up to Exter, I forget how it is marked locally, only been on it a couple times, but it is very twisty and pretty scenic, lot better than highway 65, which is dang near absolutely straight. In Exter you can then cut up to 198 into Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Lots of riding and sites to see in the national parks proper. From them I am looking into jumping onto highway 41 to make the trek to Yosemite. But this is where I run out of personnel experience, so I will wait to hear from others on this area.
From there I plan to hit the California coast and head south, cutting across from Santa Maria to see the Hoover dam and Grand Canyon, north rim in particular. From there riding through Zion, Bryce, Arches, Canyonlands into Colorado, and traveling down to Durango from Grand Junction.
I was looking at highways 50 to 550 to 160. Again, I will be paying attention to replies for this area as well. I had not heard of highway 41 before, so more info there would be appreciated since I can't find it on my map yet.
Good luck and keep us posted.
My apologies, The road is Hwy 141 not 41. It connects with Hwy 50 near Whitewater just south of Grand Junction, then connects to Hwy 145, then Hwy 62 wich takes you to Hwy 550 near Ridgeway just north of Ouray. I was going to do Hwy 50&550 last year and a local from Colorado told me of this detour and it was well worth it. There is a youtube video of this road but I cannot remember the name of the video. I will rtry to find it and post it
 

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There is a lot more public land out west, such as National Forests, etc, so stealth camping may be easier. I don't know all the camping regulations on these lands but usually if you get in somewhere just before dark and get out early the next day, no one will care.
 

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Having lived in Arizona for the past 18 years, I have been to just about all of these places. The most spectacular you will be missing is southern Utah, N. Arizona. Within about a 100 mile radius from Kanab, Utah is the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, Bryce Nat'l Park, Zion Nat'l Park, Capitol Reef and Lake Powell.

Sequoia is a great Park to ride thru and much less crowded than Yosemite.

I agree, the ride from Ouray to Silverton, down to Durango is fabulous, if its not rainy & cloud,which is common on that route.

Just my thoughts!!! It's always hard to hit every place, even in 25 days.

Ride safe and enjoy!!
 

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Having lived in Arizona for the past 18 years, I have been to just about all of these places. The most spectacular you will be missing is southern Utah, N. Arizona. Within about a 100 mile radius from Kanab, Utah is the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, Bryce Nat'l Park, Zion Nat'l Park, Capitol Reef and Lake Powell.

Sequoia is a great Park to ride thru and much less crowded than Yosemite.

I agree, the ride from Ouray to Silverton, down to Durango is fabulous, if its not rainy & cloud,which is common on that route.

Just my thoughts!!! It's always hard to hit every place, even in 25 days.

Ride safe and enjoy!!
yes, don't miss scenic byways 24 and 12 down thu utah into az, from kanab going into az, there's marble canyon or glen canyon dam, then into flagstaff, sedona, gerome, then head to hoover damn.
 

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Dstevens wrote, "If you leave Grand Junction heading south you turn on Hwy 41 at Whitewater( if that is not right the guys from CO can pipe in) this will loop around and back to Hwy550 near Ouray. This road is very scenic and a popular spot for riders in that area"

I believe the route he's referring to is Colo141. Take it to Colo145, then take Colo62 into Ridgeway. It is indeed a great ride, a bunch of it through a canyon.

You'll hit US550 at Ridgeway then you can take the ride to Durango DBohrer mentioned.
 

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If time permits and your traveling from Durango to 4 corners you might want to stop in at Mesa Verde Nat. Park.Very interesting and the roads were pretty good to.

Also agree with the 141/145/26/550 route. Loved it. Watch for the HANGING FLUME road side historic marker. very interesting. Believe it was on 141 segment of that ride near Uravan.
 

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Should be great riding through Colorado, and CO-141 Whitewater > Unaweep Divide/Canyon > Gateway (beautiful new resort there, and that's all there is) > awesome ride through the Delores River Canyon -- awesome, awesome > Hanging Flume towards the end > Naturita > CO-145 San Miguel River Canyon > Placerville > CO-62 > Dallas Divide > Ridgeway (of course, CO-145 to Telluride (be sure to go into town if time permits -- sits in a beautiful box canyon) > Rico > Delores.

Yep, US-550 (Million Dollar Highway) Ouray > Silverton > Durango also not to be missed.

Watch the weather closely when in Colorado. Should be great, but when the right cold front pushes through there can be some serious snow at the higher elevations. In 2008 we had 100+ in central Utah (UT-95) and two days later snow at Cedar Break NM and also on the road to and at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon (road to North Rim does not open until mid-May).

Scan through some of the rides in the two links in my signature block -- I think they might be helpful. Any questions on the SW let me know.
 

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Head south out of SLC on I-15 and ride US-6 into Green River. Nice road.

If you can detour into Moab do so on 191 and see Arches NP. When leaving Moab to get back on I-70 take SR-128. SR-128 is a killer ride along the Colorado River.
 
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