General Question

mirifique's avatar

Best web resources for planning roadtrip from WA to CA?

Asked by mirifique (1511 points ) July 19th, 2010

I know this is probably one of those projects best served by actual human, lived experience, but I’d really like, for my own peace of mind, to be able to find out where I’m going to camp or stay in motels on my trip from Seattle to Sacramento. Any guidebooks, maps or online resources that you’d recommend would be very helpful, as would any information about hiking in the northern Sierras. Thanks much!

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9 Answers

bob_'s avatar

There’s MapQuest, for starters.

Also, you can use GoogleEarth to locate hotels, motels, restaurants, etc., on the road.

YARNLADY's avatar

I would use my AAA membership. Here’s a list of free trip planners – try them all for the best results.

WestRiverrat's avatar

AARP used to have a good trip planner.

Seaofclouds's avatar

When I plan my trips, I look at MapQuest to get an idea of the route I will take. Then I ask other people if they have any recommendations around that path. Then I go back and add it whatever recommendations sound good to my plan.

Jeruba's avatar

My son went the other way, Bay Area to Vancouver, and spent a lot of time planning it, with the aim of spending most nights at campsites in state parks and seeing all the great sights en route. He used a combination of maps, books, and online resources.

One thing he learned is not to schedule too tightly. If everything depends on your reaching a certain park by a certain hour to claim your reservation, and you get waylaid or miss a turn or linger too long at a photogenic spot and fall 3 hours behind, there’s a cascade effect if you have all your driving time planned to the hilt. You can end up losing all your reservations one after another if you fall a day behind. Best build in a little slack every few days.

Another thing was to plan a motel stop at least once a week to sleep in a real bed and take a private shower.

Austinlad's avatar

@YARNLADY is absolutely right. AAA invented trip mapping.

Jeruba's avatar

AAA is also your friend on the road. I have kept my sons’ premium memberships current since before they had their drivers’ licenses. They used AAA’s help as passengers more than once.

The very few times I have ever had to call have been more than worth the cost of membership when weighed against the hassle of a dead battery or a flat tire somewhere miles from home.

YARNLADY's avatar

@Jeruba I second that – we pay for memberships for several members of our family.

tranquilsea's avatar

We are taking a similar trip this summer and we loaded up on the free-with-membership-books from AAA. They are pretty thorough.

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