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Old 08-18-2016, 12:42 PM
 
Location: Tampa, FL
825 posts, read 2,582,990 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UconnHuskies630 View Post

Day #1 - Fly into Tucson, see the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum and Saguaro National Park. Would like to see a sunset at Gates Pass if the weather permits.
Day #2 - Pima Air and Space Museum, then spend the rest of the day exploring Sabino Canyon and the surrounding trails. Once again, weather permitting, we'd like to be able to catch a sunset at Tumamoc Hill this time.
Day #3 - Drive to Phoenix, see the Desert Botanical Garden, head north from there to hike Camelback Mountain, grab lunch, then hit the Superstition Mountains (Flat Iron trail in particular), then see the Theodore Roosevelt Dam & Bridge. Is this doable in a day, even if we were to skip the Botanical Garden and drive right to Camelback? We're not really looking to spend more than a day in Phoenix.
Day #4 - Leave Phoenix, drive to Prescott to hike the Thumb Butte trail, then take the 89A scenic route through Jerome for lunch and move onto Montezuma’s Castle National Monument. After that, we'll book a hotel in Sedona.
Days #5 and 6, we will spend entirely in Sedona.
Day #7 - Leave Sedona, drive first to Winslow to see the Barringer Crater, then we were hoping to be able to explore Petrified Forest/Painted Desert and then see Canyon de Chelly as well. We'd book a hotel in Chinle.
Days #8 and 9 - Leave Chinle, drive to the Grand Canyon and spend two days there.
Day #10 - Leave the Grand Canyon, book a tour at Antelope Canyon and explore.
Day #11 - We'll spend the day at Horshoe Bend.
Day #12 - Leave Page and drive out to see Monument Valley. Spend the night at Kayenta.
Day #13 - Leave Kayenta, drive out to see Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah. Spend night in Bryce.
Day #14 - Leave Bryce, drive out to see Zion National Park. Spend night in La Verkin.
Day #15 - Leave La Verkin, drop off rental car at SGU and return to Hartford, CT.

Does all of this seem a bit excessive for two weeks? Any advice would be appreciated!
Can easily be done, but here's what I would change:

On day #4, I'd leave Phoenix and go to Sedona. I'd establish a base there, and then head to Prescott if you really have your heart set on the hike there. In all honesty, there are some fantastic hikes in Sedona, plenty to keep you busy for those three days. Hike the West Fork/ Call of the Canyon. Hike along Oak Creek. Templeton Trail, Bell Rock, etc. Great views from Llama trail.
On day seven, I would not go out to Winslow, and the petrified forest is kind of a drive from Sedona. In all honesty, the Petrified Forest is cool, but not a "must see" IMO. Winslow's only claim to fame is Standin' on the Corner. Cool for a photo op, but that's about it.
I'd leave Sedona on day 7, and head to the Grand Canyon then. I assume you are going to the south rim. Which is two hours from Page. You won't be able to hit the south rim AND Antelope Canyon in one day. If you are planning on just checking out the canyon, you can leave Sedona early and make it to the South Rim by mid-morning. Take in the views and sights, and then head off to Page. Book a hotel there, and book the Antelope slot canyon tour WELL IN ADVANCE. They fill up fast, and you might not get a same day slot. Both Horseshoe Bend AND Antelope Canyon can be done the same day. Book a slot for the Antelope Canyon tour in the late morning for the best sunbeams. You can hike to Horseshoe Bend in less than 20 minutes. It's best in the morning on in afternoon for sun and pictures. Monument Valley is a HAUL even from Page. Can be done as a day trip, yes. But staying in Kayenta is good. Taking on Bryce and Zion that quickly is kind of tough too. So here's how I would finish the trip:
DAY 6: Leave Sedona. Head to the South Rim. Stop and see Desert Watchtower and Grandview.
DAY 7: Still at the canyon, take some of the easy hikes, maybe venture a little below the rim on the Bright angel Trail. Head out to Page in the afternoon. Book a boat tour on Lake Powell to go see Rainbow Bridge. This is a nice relaxing boat ride on the beautiful lake.
DAY 8: Get up early and hit Horseshoe Bend. Catch the Antelope Slot tour. Stay in Page. East at Fiesta Mexicana...great Mexican food.
DAY 9:
Leave Page and head to Kayenta. Grab your hotel then head into Monument Valley. Explore and enjoy. I'd say taking on Canyon De Chelly would be too much. If you have your heart set on seeing it, I'd suggest tossing it in BEFORE your stay in Sedona, because it is pretty far out on the map...moreso than the other areas you are interested in.
DAY 10: Get up and head to Zion. This drive will take you close to 5 hours, so head out early. Take the shuttle into Zion and enjoy the views. Unless you're hiking the Narrows or Angel's Landing in Zion, the tour around the park is just fine. Grab a hotel in La Verkin.
DAY 11: Head BACK to Zion and spend more time there taking in the simple hikes, and enjoy walking a little way into the Narrows. Awesome. Leave and head to Bryce Canyon..the Best Western there is a great hotel. Take a sunset stroll along the rim.
DAY 12: Do your hikes in Bryce, awesome place to hike...rim trail and Navajo Loop are great.
DAY 13: Leave Bryce in the AM, and take a nice drive along Utah 12, through Escalante and loop yourself out to UT 24 and out onto I70. This is a beautiful drive, and you will love taking your time and pictures. Stay in St. George.
DAY 14: Head home.

Get the National Parks Pass for $70. It'll more than pay for itself with all the parks you're visiting.
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Old 08-22-2016, 04:11 PM
 
Location: Pinetop-Lakeside, AZ
1,619 posts, read 1,645,457 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rich67 View Post
Can easily be done, but here's what I would change:

DAY 9:
Leave Page and head to Kayenta. Grab your hotel then head into Monument Valley. Explore and enjoy. I'd say taking on Canyon De Chelly would be too much. If you have your heart set on seeing it, I'd suggest tossing it in BEFORE your stay in Sedona, because it is pretty far out on the map...moreso than the other areas you are interested in.
I believe the OP has decided against Canyon de Chelle, but for any other readers, this makes no sense at all. Go all the way to the eastern border (almost) of Arizona, then back to the western portion to Sedona? Nope. If anything, Canyon de Chelle and Monument Valley should be done near each other. Use Keyenta as a base, or perhaps move from Keyenta to a hotel in Chinle for Canyon de Chelle.
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Old 08-23-2016, 09:58 AM
 
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
5,624 posts, read 4,186,395 times
Reputation: 8025
Quote:
Originally Posted by UconnHuskies630 View Post
head north from there to hike Camelback Mountain, grab lunch, then hit the Superstition Mountains (Flat Iron trail in particular),

Guys, unless you hike all the time and are extremely fit, I would NEVER recommend hiking both in the same day, especially Flat Iron. I mean, if you think you're confident enough to tackle both, then by all means, have at it. Just dont be stupid and die, ok? People die all the time hiking here. DO NOT TAKE IT LIGHTLY!!!! Flat Iron is extremely tough, and might be the toughest hike in the Valley. Actually, Ill go out and say it: its the toughest hike in the Valley. Its steep, long, and unmarked near the summit. Follow the cairns. Camelback is a lot easier, but still not easy. I would recommend the Cholla trail vs the Echo Canyon trail, as its a bit more gradual, but still expect steep sections in the last 1/4 of the hike, and virtually no markers. Watch for rattlesnakes on both trails, and take TONS of water. Take more than youll ever need, especially if youre not accustomed to intense sun, no shade, and dry air (our humidity disappears in October, making hiking far more pleasant).

For real, its not a joke. Dont die out there, its serious.
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Old 08-24-2016, 03:36 PM
 
Location: Beacon Falls, CT
368 posts, read 317,851 times
Reputation: 641
Hey guys, sorry about the two and a half week hiatus. I've decided that instead of trying to rush and see two of the National Parks in Utah on the tail end of the trip, I figured we'd just go next year to see Utah in its entirety like we're doing Arizona this year.

This is the "new" itinerary: nights #1, 2 and 3 in Tucson, #4 in Phoenix (most of the day will be spent in the Papago Park area, Botanical Gardens, Hole in the Rock, maybe Heard), #5 in Camp Verde (Montezuma's Castle), #6 and 7 in Sedona, #8 and 9 in the Grand Canyon, #10 in Page (Antelope Canyon/Horshoe Bend), #11 in Kayenta (Monument Valley), #12 in Chinle (Canyon de Chelly), #13 in Winslow (Petrified Forest/Meteor Crater), #14 in/near Jerome and then we would return to Phoenix first thing in the morning and catch a flight home there. Does that seem more reasonable?

The route north of Black Canyon City is tricky. Originally I thought about seeing Montezuma first and then the next day, head back on 17 to 169 and then 69 to 89A through Jerome. But that's too much backtracking, especially for a route that's scenic regardless of the direction you're driving, right? With the two extra nights we would have spent in Utah, we now have time for Canyon de Chelly. I added an extra night in Tucson: San Xavier del Blanc & Pima the first day, the Desert Museum and Saguaro West the second day and Sabino Canyon all day on the third. I feel like Saguaro and Sabino both need full days and since San Xavier and Pima are so close to the airport, we could spend a couple hours at both and then be able to relax and enjoy the evening on that first day. Would Sabino be worth a whole day after seeing Saguaro or are they too similar?
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Old 08-24-2016, 04:19 PM
 
Location: In the hot spot!
3,465 posts, read 5,010,140 times
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I don't think you will need an entire day for the Papago area. You should venture to the Salt River area around the Butcher Jones recreation/Saguaro lake area. If you're lucky you will get to see the wild horses!
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Old 08-24-2016, 07:35 PM
 
5,951 posts, read 3,685,170 times
Reputation: 7282
Quote:
Originally Posted by UconnHuskies630 View Post
Would Sabino be worth a whole day after seeing Saguaro or are they too similar?
Sabino Canyon is at the base of the Catalina's, so the canyons are much steeper than the canyons over in Saguaro West. Are you planning on hiking up to Wasson Peak, the highest point in the Tucson Mountains, over in Saguaro West?

Where are you planning on hiking in Sabino, to 7 falls in Bear Canyon, the Telephone Line Trail? Depending on how fit you are and how many pictures you want to take, you can do both those hikes in less than a day.

Southern Utah is my favorite place in the US and one of my top places in the world. Definitely go in the off season next year and you can do a huge loop and hit Zion, Bryce, Grand Staircase-Escalante, Capital Reef, Caynonlands and Arches.
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Old 08-24-2016, 10:33 PM
 
4,192 posts, read 12,217,997 times
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yes, Sabino and Saguaro NP (west and east units) are very different from each other and all are worth it.....

parking fee at Sabino, but if you get that $80 federal lands pass I think I mentioned in an earlier post, that covers it....you can do a touristy shuttle (fee) or hike on your own in a couple different directions (Sabino Canyon or Bear Canyon).....if a weekend, get there early.....Seven Falls in Bear Canyon is a classic, but not too impressive if it hasn't rained in last few days.....walk around the visitor center, too.....

Saguaro NP (east and west) are much quieter, serene, more low-key than frantic Sabino Canyon.....good trails and good visitor centers....loop roads, too, if you want to drive sections.....

by "Pima", I presume you mean the Pima Air Museum??....if so, try to book a tour of the boneyard along with the museum...they handle the boneyard tours....quite a sight!!

San Xavier is still an Indian church (Catholic) on their reservation, so be a little respectful and all that when there....very historic and authentic.....

good revised itinerary!......be ready for lots of driving!!......make hotel reservations ahead if sleeping that way.....stay IN the South Rim village, not in Tusayan!!.....google all your spots for more info...

South Rim lodging....make reservations now!:

http://www.grandcanyonlodges.com/
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Old 08-25-2016, 11:55 AM
 
Location: Granville, OH and Oro Valley, AZ
114 posts, read 152,050 times
Reputation: 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by UconnHuskies630 View Post
Hey guys, sorry about the two and a half week hiatus. I've decided that instead of trying to rush and see two of the National Parks in Utah on the tail end of the trip, I figured we'd just go next year to see Utah in its entirety like we're doing Arizona this year.

This is the "new" itinerary: nights #1, 2 and 3 in Tucson, #4 in Phoenix (most of the day will be spent in the Papago Park area, Botanical Gardens, Hole in the Rock, maybe Heard), #5 in Camp Verde (Montezuma's Castle), #6 and 7 in Sedona, #8 and 9 in the Grand Canyon, #10 in Page (Antelope Canyon/Horshoe Bend), #11 in Kayenta (Monument Valley), #12 in Chinle (Canyon de Chelly), #13 in Winslow (Petrified Forest/Meteor Crater), #14 in/near Jerome and then we would return to Phoenix first thing in the morning and catch a flight home there. Does that seem more reasonable?

The route north of Black Canyon City is tricky. Originally I thought about seeing Montezuma first and then the next day, head back on 17 to 169 and then 69 to 89A through Jerome. But that's too much backtracking, especially for a route that's scenic regardless of the direction you're driving, right? With the two extra nights we would have spent in Utah, we now have time for Canyon de Chelly. I added an extra night in Tucson: San Xavier del Blanc & Pima the first day, the Desert Museum and Saguaro West the second day and Sabino Canyon all day on the third. I feel like Saguaro and Sabino both need full days and since San Xavier and Pima are so close to the airport, we could spend a couple hours at both and then be able to relax and enjoy the evening on that first day. Would Sabino be worth a whole day after seeing Saguaro or are they too similar?
As another said, Sabino is very different from SW. I suggest take the tram, which crosses the river about 7 times to the end of the road and then return, then hike Blackett's Ridge (fairly steep with awesome views) or take the other tram out to Bear Canyon and hike to 7 Falls. I think that is about 5 miles round trip or 9 without taking the tram. Then drive to Saguaro East NP and drive the 8 mile loop or rent bikes and ride the loop. It is one way and a good surface. Since you are on that side of town you could also drive up Mt Lemmon rather than SE, get out at Windy Point, 7 Cataracts, Summerhaven, Ski Valley and the observatory. Have lunch or a mid afternoon snack at the Sawmill Restaurant in Summerhaven. When you are riding the tram at Sabino, gaze at those peaks and there are some awesome destinations like Cathedral Rock, Bridal Veil Falls, Hutch's Pools, Window and Window Peak, etc... I find Saguaro West kind of boring but if you've never done it, Wasson Peak would be a good, moderate hike.
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Old 08-25-2016, 12:39 PM
 
Location: Pinetop-Lakeside, AZ
1,619 posts, read 1,645,457 times
Reputation: 2889
UconnHuskies360, your new itinerary sounds much better, much less backtracking.

Enjoy your trip!
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