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Give me Tips - The Drive from LA to Vegas

Discussion in 'Getting There & Getting Around' started by QIKFIX, Aug 18, 2015.

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  1. QIKFIX

    QIKFIX Low-Roller

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    We are driving from LA to Vegas this trip or something different.

    Plus that one way flight is the same price as our car hire for the 12 days (there are 5 of us).

    What tips for the drive can you give?

    Q
     
  2. dmr

    dmr Registered Abuser

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    LOL, don't leave El Lay Friday afternoon and return Sunday morning! :) :)

    If you're a shopaholic, there's the big outlet center in Barstow.

    Make sure your car is in good shape! I would really hate to break down this time of year! It can get incredibly hot. There are signs telling you to turn off your AC on some of the up-hill runs to avoid overheating.

    Fill up in Las Vegas before you head back. Prices are quite a bit lower. Once you get out in the desert, even on the Nevada side, prices tend to be high.

    I'm sure I'll think of something else just after I hit the post button. :)
     
  3. 6Mermaids

    6Mermaids Low-Roller

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    I would try to leave Thursday night and come home Monday morning---or any week day for that matter. The traffic can be a nightmare Friday evening and Sunday day. I made this mistake one time and it took almost 7 hours to get from Vegas to LA. Even when I pulled over to get Chipotle, the line was so long it took almost 30 mins and there was no where to sit.
     
  4. Malibugolfer

    Malibugolfer High-Roller

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    I'll reiterate the do not go from LA on a Friday or return on a Sunday.
    Take water if it's summer.
    Keep up with traffic, it will be going faster than perhaps you are used to (70"s).
    Not much scenery if that's a factor for you unless you like high desert.
    If you play Scrabble, remember Zzyzx just before Baker.
     
  5. QIKFIX

    QIKFIX Low-Roller

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    We are leaving Wednesday about 1PM from LA and planning returning Sunday, 12 days later. Our flight is at 9PM, what time do one suggest leaving Vegas???

    Reason we are driving back in Southwest flights are $180 and there are 5 of us.

    Q
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2015
  6. pleepleus

    pleepleus 2016 - The monkey is back

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    You're good with the depart time from LA. You may want to leave early Sunday morning (Before 9) on your return just to be cautious. The drive back Sunday can get nasty if you leave at the wrong time.
     
  7. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Low-Roller

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    Though it might seem drastic, this is good advice. Sunday can be a nightmare.
     
  8. pleepleus

    pleepleus 2016 - The monkey is back

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    Yup. Especially since monsoon season is not over, you would hate to be stuck on the 15 because it is washed out.
     
  9. QIKFIX

    QIKFIX Low-Roller

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    What about leaving Saturday then, doesn't seem worthwhile to pay for another nights stay if we are leaving before 9AM Sunday.

    What's with the hectic Sunday driving from Vegas?

    Q
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2015
  10. Packer Backer

    Packer Backer Low-Roller

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    think about reversing your plans. Drive out to Vegas on Weds and then fly back on Sunday...
     
  11. pleepleus

    pleepleus 2016 - The monkey is back

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    It is due to the fact that Vegas is a big weekend destination for people from Cali. You should be good leaving any time on Saturday.
     
  12. JWBlue

    JWBlue VIP Whale

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    There is a store in Baker off Interstate 15 that has great nuts and jerky.

    It is tradition for us to stop there on our way to LV.

    http://alienfreshjerky.com/

    I highly recommend the almonds that are roasted and unsalted and turkey jerky.

    It is about a 5 minute detour off Interstate 15.
     
  13. 6Mermaids

    6Mermaids Low-Roller

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    This is off topic but has anyone ever stopped at Peggy Sue's Diner on the drive? I have always wanted to but am always in too much of a hurry to get to Vegas or too tired/hungover to stop on the way back to LA. It looks cute and I just would like to see it once. The other place I have always wanted to stop and look at is the abandoned water park on the 15.
     
  14. dmr

    dmr Registered Abuser

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    Sure have.

    It's worth it to stop there once, but don't go outa your way for it. IIRC the food is actually quite good.

    I do have some photos of the interior which I shot last year, but they're not where I can get them right now. I'll post a couple when I can get to them.

    Where is the abandoned water park? I love things like that. :)
     
  15. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    You can see it in that Tony Hawk car commercial with his kids. S/B it's on the right between Afton Road and the ag inspection station.

    We've been to Peggy Sue's a few times during our 200+ times on that damnable road. lol Standard, fattening, big-plate road food.
     
  16. oldaquaman

    oldaquaman Tourist

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    this is slightly off the topic too, but one of the real concerns of driving to vegas anymore is the all too often backup through the cajon pass construction zone. coming and going.

    we drive from the long beach area to vegas 4-5 times a year and the last two times (end of may and last week) a 4 1/2 hour normal drive has become 5 1/2 hours.

    the latest was a fender bender near hwy 138 (?) that backed up traffic all the way to the kenwood exit a week ago today (aug 17) during the late morning.. we returned on saturday with no issues, but left vegas at 7:30 a.m., in part to beat the oppressive heat.

    I wonder how others deal with (and don't tell me to fly next time LOL) since there are NO alternate routes that I know of. lanes are subject to closing depending on what projects are going on, and it seems to me, the traffic flow, even at the best of times, has a hard time getting through.
     
  17. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    Such is the reality of So Cal-to-Vegas. 10-15 years ago it was the lane expansions just over the Mojave, the long process on the Halloran Grade, Mountain Pass. It's always something and always will be something because some day they need to get on that mess from Barstow to Baker, and leading in to Primm.

    We now have about three hours before we even get to deal with the 15. I go through Fillmore, Santa Clarita and on to Pearblossom just to avoid the 210/Cajon fiasco potential, and trust me, Palmdale to Victorville isn't exactly the garden spot of the world. Hell, I'll sometimes go the north route through Cuyama, across the valley and up the Tehachapi.

    I'd gladly now wean myself of the California native addiction to the personal car if we had an air option other than Allegiant. Rentals are cheap in Vegas.
     
  18. ardee

    ardee VIP Whale

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    Driving home on Sunday isn't a problem if, and I repeat IF, you get out of town before 9am, as stated above. Otherwise leave on Saturday.

    The construction through the Cajon Pass is really ugly right now, and the various lane splits make crazy drivers even crazier. Going North isn't a problem, but coming back is a bitch in heavy traffic.

    Depending on where you are staying, in-town traffic on the 15 can be dicey around rush hour. South Strip shouldn't be a problem, but Downtown could be.
     
  19. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    Back when we were going to LV way too often, we started going home late on Sunday, having the day and even dinner. But over time that option went away. So we just did the oh-dark-30 patrol Monday morn, often. I'm a morning person, Terri'd sleep and get to work an hour or so late. Worked well.
     
  20. oldaquaman

    oldaquaman Tourist

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    I would certainly entertain any, all options.

    If you are like us, have the luxury of being retired, always avoid the friday departure from southern calif. and sunday p.m. return from vegas, and STILL have issues with the cajon pass, I wonder what works best.

    Leave at 4 a.m.??
    Leave at 10 p.m. and spend the night in Barstow!

    Just curious. I know there have to be a lot of people who still do drive. we have flown in the past out of long beach, but that's still money (plus rental) that we could put to better use in vegas LOL.
     
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