/ States Roadtrip- Where to???

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thewallace - on 29 Jan 2013
We are looking to get to the states for a climbing roadtrip for our honeymoon and looking for some help with destinations.

We will be heading out early September for between six weeks and two months. My geography of the States and particularly the climbing areas is crap so advice is needed!

Within that time frame, what would be an awesome trip linking in some of the absolute 'must go' climbing destinations?

We are looking for both single pitch cragging and multipitch adventures up to around E2 (although we have not done any climbing in the states so would need some gentle introductions at about VS!) Also keen to hear of any bouldering areas on the way.


Chris Ebbutt - on 29 Jan 2013
In reply to thewallace:Devils Tower, you will not be disappointed. When it comes into view across the plains it looks like a painting, unreal. Careful about access issues, but climbable I believe at the right times. Enjoy your On The Road.
cat22 - on 30 Jan 2013
In reply to thewallace: I think my ideal trip at that time of year would start in Denver, and end in San Francisco. Take in some of the following (roughly E-W):

Rocky Mountain NP
Devils Tower
Grand Teton (or lower stuff in the area)
Indian Creek
Desert Towers
Red Rocks
Tuolumne Meadows
Yosemite (obvs)

We've been to the first 3 on a 3 week trip, the last 2 on another 3 week trip and are currently planning a trip for some of the middle bit! Climbing similar grades, VS-E2. There's just so much awesome climbing out there. And along the way you can stop in and see lots of the national parks.

PM me if you'd like some more info.
hamsforlegs - on 30 Jan 2013
In reply to thewallace:

I'm based in Canada at the mo and have done a fair bit of US roadtripping of late. THere are quite a lot of variables in your query that only you can really sift through. In that time, you can cover a vast swathe from the northern US Rockies right down to Arizona and further if you want. It will depend on how much driving you want to do, what kind of climbing you want to do, and what kind of overall experience you are after. To start the task, here are some general tips:

Get yourself a large, good quality roadmap of the Western US and mark on the destinations that you've heard of or might want to visit.

Look at where you can fly in and out of that will allow car hire and drop off. Point to point (extra hire money)? Out and back? Or do you want to buy and then sell a vehicle? This will help to give you some idea of sensible start and end points.

Then come up with a rough 'dream' itinerary and start plugging things into Google directions. It will give generally very accurate driving times so that you can get a feel for what is feasible. It will also get your eye in on scale so that you don't accidentally end up trying to drive 1000 miles in a day. You'll probably find that you can canter through a lot of the areas that you have in mind.

Refine from there! The map will have the national parks and all sorts of state parks marked, so it gets easy as you 'plug in' your route to figure out potential camp spots and schedules.

Remember that in the southern states it will still be extremely hot for climbing in September, so if you plan to go to Yosemite or anywhere further south, do it later in your trip. Visiting RMNP and Teton seem like sound suggestions to me?

Apologies if this is obvious, but the US is very short north-south (ie can drive Canada to California in a longish day if needed), but overwhelmingly huge east-west. You probably won't want to venture out of the west anyway, but bear this in mind - lots of people don't have the dimensions quite right in their minds!

If you plan on camping for any of it, the reservable camping in the US national parks books up very very early, so get onto their websites and start checking availability. If you are flexible within and near to a park, you can almost always find unreserved camping on the day, but be prepared to hunt around for it don't just assume that there will be loads of space in official campgrounds, or that you can book it all in May!

If you're not camping, you will obviously have more choice but booking is even more critical in many places, and you may have to stay a little further outside some of the main parks.

Sorry for the lack of climbing specific stuff, but just thought that this might help focus the task a little bit!

Have a ridiculous amount of fun.


chris fox on 30 Jan 2013
In reply to thewallace:

I've one 2 roadtrips in USA.

(From Vegas) Redrocks - Jtree - Alabama hills - Yosemite - and back.

(From Phoenix) Devils Canyon - Sedona - Indian Creek.

Lots to go at wherever you go !

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