IMG0680From the time you ride north from downtown San Francisco and cross the Golden Gate Bridge over the Bay you'll know you are embarking an on extraordinary journey. The city soon gives way to the hills of Marin County and the lush beauty of the Muir Woods, where giant redwood trees soar skyward over 200 feet. These are some of the oldest living creatures on earth.

As you pass through this enchanted forest, the salt air and cool breezes of the Pacific Coast replace the earthy aroma of the redwoods. Waves crash into the rocks along the rugged shoreline, and seal lions bask in the sun on the boulders near the shore.

Highway 1 is a motorcyclist’s dream come true! Crack the throttle and your worries fade into the background. No tract homes, traffic jams or boulevards here... just you, the motorcycle, the wind in your face and the unbelievable coastline.

Turn inland near Bodega Bay. At first, the forest is dense and the sunlight rippled as you wind your way through the redwoods and cedars that thrive in the coastal dampness… until the landscape opens and the roads beckon you into the highlands. The pavement is perfect, the curves enticing, and the scenery spectacular as you descend into California’s world famous wine country. You’ll spend the night at a truly unique hotel in Yountville.

Your route carries you back to the south, and then to the east of San Francisco. You’ll cross rich agricultural valleys, where a pleasing Mediterranean climate welcomes visitors year round. Orchards and groves line the roadway. Farmland soon gives way to the foothills of the Sierras, and by lunch you are climbing in altitude, about to enter Yosemite National Park. These parks are home to giants: immense mountains, deep canyons, and huge trees. Because of this huge elevation range - 1,500' (457m) to 14,491' (4417m) - the habitats are stunningly diverse .

D93Z9416Sequoia and Kings Canyon were the first National Parks in California, and Sequoia was the second national park (after Yellowstone) designated by Congress, in 1889. General Grant Park (the former name of Kings Canyon) was the third.

With the range of elevations comes a wide range of weather conditions. Layers of clothing will be critical, as temperatures may range from the 80’s (27C) to the 40’s (5C) even in the summer months. At the highest elevations, snow is possible at any time of the year.

Incredible vistas greet you at every turn, and the clear mountain air and warm sun bring out the scent of the pines and other vegetation as you ride. Blue skies will likely be overhead, but in winter months snow drifts as deep as 80 feet in some sections areas of the parks.

Your time is spent turning corners, literally. But soon, the high country gives way to forests and then semi-arid desert as you leave Kings Canyon to the south and enter the Kern River Valley. The roads provide your entertainment as you climb, twist and turn through the countryside. The Kern is the southernmost of the seven major Sierra Nevada rivers that supply water to the San Joaquin Valley, which produces 45% of the nation’s fruits and vegetables. 

fcdeathvalleygAn unprepared rider would be unwise to venture forth into Death Valley during the height of summertime, as temperatures are among the hottest on the planet, approaching 130 degrees Fahrenheit. (54C) Clear skies and mild temperatures in fall, winter, and spring make these seasons the most pleasant time to visit; still, lasvegasstripthe average high temperature even in October is 93F (34C), the average low is 61F (16C).

Spend some time exploring the desert, but be careful – conditions can be severe. Alternate routes are available if Death Valley is inadvisable during the time of year you select.

Our journey draws to a close as you leave the clear desert and enter Las Vegas, America’s playground of the West.

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DAILY ITINERARY

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San Francisco to Las Vegas

Great American Touring

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Great American Touring Group, Ltd.

TOUR DETAILS

Self-Guided
Motorcycle

Road Trip Auto
(Self-
Guided)

Dates

May - October

April - November

Start / End City

San Francisco / Las Vegas
(Can be Reversed)

Duration

9 Days, 8 Nights (7 Ride/Drive Days)

Approximate Distance

1,280 miles / 2,048 km

Meals Included

N/A

N/A

2015 FEES (US$)
Currency Converter

Self-Guided
Motorcycle

Road Trip Auto
(Self-
Guided)

mc1a1a2a1a1a4newrm5a4
1 Bike / 2 Riders / 1 Room

$2,095 / person

N/A

mc1b1a2a1a1a3mc1a1a1b1a1a4newrm1a1a3
2 Bikes / 2 Riders / 1 Room

$2,875 / person

N/A

mc1a1a1a1a1a1a4newrm2a1a3
1 Bike / 1 Rider / 1 Room

$3,850 / person

N/A

newrm3a1a3newrm4a1a3
1 or 2 People / 1 Room

N/A

$2,650

There may be extra charges for 2+ people
per room
.

* Extra charges may apply to Self-Guided Tours scheduled during Special Events

7 Ride Days Self-Guided or Road Trip Auto