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Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

Peach Bottom Pa
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Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

I've been trying to read and educate myself on this trip. We (hubby, myself, and 2 teens) are coming out in the summer (I know, but I'm a teacher and it's my only option) and we need 2-3 days in Vegas area to also see family. We want to see Hover Damn, Grand Canyon, and Pikes Peak (or another option similar to).

We are figuring 10-11 days, including flights in and out of area.

Any advice that I could get would be appreciated as this is quite a trip. Will we need hotel reservations and need to keep tight schedule or would it be possible we'd be okay as long as we make sure our timing doesn't miss our flight home :o)

Thank you

Edited: 07 March 2016, 01:32
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1. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

Are you flying into Denver or can you fly into Las Vegas? I would fly into Las Vegas. In my opinion, there are better options than Pikes Peak to be found in Southwest Colorado and these options won't require near as much driving. Take a look at the San Juan Skyway including the Million Dollar Highway. Pikes Peak and the Colorado Springs area pale in comparison to the beautiful and dramatic mountain scenery you will find along the Skyway and in towns like Ouray and Telluride. Visit Mesa Verde National Park, ride the historic Durango Silverton Train - always rates as one of the best train rides in the world, take an off road jeep tour high into the San Juan Mountains (part of the Rocky Mountains), ride the free mountain gondola between Telluride and Mountain Village, go whitewater rafting, visit Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and more. Another added benefit of focusing on Southwest Colorado is that this part of the state does not see the huge crowds that Colorado Springs does.

Edited: 07 March 2016, 01:59
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2. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

Welcome to the forum. Is there a particular reason why you want to include two destinations that are nearly a thousand miles apart? Doing a 10-day trip that includes both Las Vegas and Colorado Springs is going to get very complex. FV1989's advice of looking at southwest Colorado as an alternative is very good.

Try something like this. Try to make your Las Vegas days midweek and not weekend for better hotel rates.

Day 1 - Fly to Las Vegas

Day 2 - Hoover Dam and other Las Vegas attractions

Day 3 - Drive to Grand Canyon South Rim (stay in one of the rim hotels)

Day 4 - Grand Canyon South Rim

Day 5 - Drive to Mesa Verde (stay Far View Lodge)

Day 6 - Drive to Ouray

Day 7 - Ouray

Day 8 - Drive to Moab

Day 9 - Moab

Day 10 - Drive to Las Vegas

Day 11 - Return

There are many variations you can make on this. I would highly recommend Moab as your kids will find a lot of adventure there. This itinerary does leave you with a long drive back to Las Vegas. It does give you great mountain vistas in Colorado, but that also adds some time onto the trip.

Have fun.

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3. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

Are you flying in and out of Las Vegas? or in to one location and home from another? One way drop charges on your rental car are sometimes pretty steep but sometimes it is worth it.

You are covering lots of distance so the more days, the better. I would say that you definitely need hotel reservations most places. Maybe not Las Vegas.

With the time you have, I would also suggest SW Colorado as your mountain destination.

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4. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

Here is the loop Tumbleweed is referencing above.

https://goo.gl/maps/upDK8UPeSDQ2

After the hot summer temperatures in Las Vegas, you will appreciate the cooler mountain air in Colorado. Moab and Arches National Park are also hot in the summer but it would be a shame to miss the chance to visit since your route back to Vegas goes through there. On your way back to Vegas from Moab, you might could squeeze in a short visit to Cedar Breaks National Monument. It is an easy detour off I-15.

www.nps.gov/cebr/planyourvisit/directions.htm

http://www.nps.gov/cebr/index.htm

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5. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

For comparison, here is the route if you fly into Las Vegas and out of Denver and include Southwest Colorado and Colorado Springs.

https://goo.gl/maps/rMMTQKYSjSm

While Southwest Airlines does not charge extra when you choose different arriving and departing airports, as Missp said, the rental car drop charge can be prohibitive.

Edited: 07 March 2016, 04:05
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Peach Bottom Pa
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6. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

I love the suggestions and links! Thank you and keep them coming, as I'm sure there are dozens of options.

As for the reasoning of arriving in one and leaving another location was purely to cover ground and see the Rocky Mountains too. No need to be Pikes Peak, as since it is popular, I knew of it as an option. That's the only reason.

We are likely going to have to keep it a 10-11 day trip as the 16 year old has baseball tournaments and we only want to risk missing one weekend, rather than two. (money is also another reason)

Thank you again and I look forward to additional suggestions.

OH, what about if this falls over the 4th of July. Does that make this easier/harder?

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7. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

You would need to get reservations somewhere ASAP for the 4th of July, depending on where you will be that day.

We might be able to give you some tips to economize enough to eke out that 11th or 12th night if you do a loop trip. But check out the flight and rental car one way options between Denver or Colorado Springs and Las Vegas, in each direction, as they are both popular destinations and the one way surcharges might not be too bad.

Edited: 07 March 2016, 05:00
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8. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

Thank you all!

I've been looking at the two routes. The loop seems longer in distance and time. Both include Southern Colorado, which means maybe we don't need Pikes Peak. If there isn't a large gap in price for flight and rental, which would be the most bang for the buck. We are limited to the 10-11 day, no choice with that.

Also need to determine what to do where and how many days spending at each...lol So much to see and do so little time. We take big trips every 3-4 years and probably won't do this route again for a long time.

Thank you all again!

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9. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

Hi. Finally talking to hubby about this. What about flying out of Salk Lake City? Does that help time? Touring area? Would that make sense? We do not care for the loop idea as the drive back to LV sounds tiring after a long trip.....No need for Denver or Springs if Southern area fills the want for mountain adventures!

Thank you

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10. Re: Drive from Las Vegas to Colorado Springs or Vise Vera

Hmmm... How about checking Albuquerque, Durango, and Grand Junction for either your arrival or departure airport? If the best choices as far as cost and returning the rental car are Denver or Salt Lake, you could route either way. I personally prefer the drive to Denver for the scenery and things to do along the way, but Salt Lake would work, too.

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