Recommend British Person holiday destination
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Paul Doran
(PaulDoran) - F

Locale: Guernsey
Recommend British Person holiday destination on 03/18/2010 01:19:54 MDT Print View

My girlfriend and I would like to travel to somewhere in southwest US in October.

I understand it is warm during this time; we'd like to do a few different activities: a bit of climbing, cycling, walking, relaxing. Where do you guys recommend?

I was thinking Utah?

Thanks for your thoughts..

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Recommend British Person holiday destination on 03/18/2010 09:30:35 MDT Print View

Highly, highly recommend Utah! Canyonlands, Arches, Bryce, Zion... Salt Lake is good for a day or three, plus the myriad of small 'Mormom' towns along the way...

Shouldn't be too hot in October.

Alan Little
(AlanL) - F

Locale: Bavarian & Austrian Alps
Utah seconded on 03/18/2010 10:48:03 MDT Print View

I'm British, and I spent three weeks backpacking around southern Utah / northern Arizona (Paria Canyon through hike, other bits & pieces) in '98. It was absolutely fantastic, trip of a lifetime. Don't just think about the national parks - there's a lot more seriously remote real wilderness out there, e.g. parts of Grand Staircase /Escalante.

I was in the area twice - long trip in June/July, *hot*, regretted bothering to carry a sleeping bag, and short trip at Easter, *snow*, regretted not bringing a down jacket.

The desert is to be taken seriously, especially if you're going into remote areas. If you don't have desert experience, it's worth hooking up with somebody who does for a few days - I spent the first week of my three week visit with a Sierra Club group, some great folks and learned a lot. Might be worth considering something similar.

One specific recommendation for a base area would be around Escalante/Boulder. Idyllic area, heart of Grand Staircase/Escalante National Monument and within easy striking distance of many national parks: Capitol Reef, Bryce, Zion. Close to mountains if the desert's too hot, close to desert if the mountains are too cold.

Edited by AlanL on 03/18/2010 13:57:17 MDT.

Matthew Swierkowski
(Berserker) - F

Locale: Southeast
I'll third it on 03/18/2010 11:22:12 MDT Print View

Southern Utah is got to be one of the most diverse areas in the US as far as scenery goes. There's all the parks Ben mentioned, and you aren't that far from the Grand Canyon if you want to try and fit that in too. I have day hiked in most of the national parks, and backpacked in Escalante National Mounument. If you like slickrock canyons then ENM is a good place to hang out in as Alan suggested.

Rick Dreher
(halfturbo) - MLife

Locale: Northernish California
Re: Recommend British Person holiday destination on 03/18/2010 11:41:02 MDT Print View

Because California is in southwestern US according to the map, if not the popular vernacular, I'll add that the Sierra Nevada can be great in October.

Not that I have anything against the Four Corners region, I'm just a bit prejudiced towards the Sierra. That and my disappointment with the Utah "beer." Sheesh.

Cheers,

Rick

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Recommend British Person holiday destination on 03/18/2010 12:37:41 MDT Print View

Paul:

T's the thing about N. America. There are more amazing sights than anyone can ever hope to see in one lifetime. Utah is fantastic. So is California. And really, the list is endless!

Folks will likely continue to add their favorites. But don't fret over this too much -- it's not like you are condemned to making only one visit in your lifetime, correct?

Pick whichever. You can't pick them all. But then, it's hard to pick the "wrong one" either. So in the end, it's really just a matter of order. Happy travels!

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Recommend British Person holiday destination on 03/18/2010 17:34:07 MDT Print View

"I'll add that the Sierra Nevada can be great in October."

+1

If you base yourself around Bishop in the Owens Valley, you will have easy access to world class climbing in the Owens River Gorge, Buttermilks bouldering area, and countless alpine routes along the Eastern Sierra Crest. The Valley is also a great place to bike, hike, sightsee, fish, or just hang out, and the backpacking is pretty darn fine in the bargain. And, as Rick already said, it is a great place to be in October. I'm prejudiced, too, but we're really not exaggerating this time.

Art ...
(asandh) - F
Re: Recommend British Person holiday destination on 03/26/2010 11:44:23 MDT Print View

if you don't plan on backpacking I would probably recommend Southern Utah over Eastern Sierras.
Probably better for site seeing.

however, if you do choose Eastern Sierra, I'd recommend basing out of Mammoth. Problem with Sierra Eastside in October is there is a good chance the road up through Tuolumne into Yosemite Valley may be closed for the winter from snow.
if the Tioga road is still open then the Sierra Eastside would be strong competion for Utah.

p.s.
ok just checked, Tioga Road has only closed in October twice in the last 20 years. So Sierra Eastside is back on the table as an almost equal candidate to Utah.

Edited by asandh on 03/26/2010 11:50:34 MDT.

Rick Dreher
(halfturbo) - MLife

Locale: Northernish California
Re: Recommend British Person holiday destination on 03/26/2010 12:05:32 MDT Print View

I second the idea of staying at Mammoth. It's a nice destination in its own right, right at the base of the mountains. There's also Bishop, which is less picturesque but bigger, with more services.

I wouldn't be too concerned about Tioga Pass, given the rarity of October closures and the options of Sonora, Ebbetts and Monitor passes or connecting to Highway 395 through South Lake Tahoe.

(Here are the historical Tioga closure and opening dates.)

http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/tiogaopen.htm

I don't actually work for the California tourism commission, but we can certainly use the economic stimulus afforded by frolicking backpackers! ;-)

Cheers,

Rick

Paul Doran
(PaulDoran) - F

Locale: Guernsey
Thanks on 04/07/2010 03:42:59 MDT Print View

Thankyou so much, this is really useful info. I may actually have to go to India this year now due to financial situations. Its cost 450 to fly to instead of 550 (pounds) and is obviously going to be a lot cheaper when there...