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Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

England
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Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

I am considering a tow week road trip in August. I will be booking open jaw tickets to Denver, flying back from Dallas to the UK.

I have two teenage daughters. Will probably spend a few days in Denver doing the Theme Parks & Water Parks. Would like to travel east to Oklahoma city, and then south to Dallas

Does this seem like a sensible holiday? Not sure what there is between Denver and Oklahoma City.

Does anybody have any suggestions?

The other question I have, is about the weather. Can we be confident of getting good weather in Colorado? (I know there are no guarantees).

Other ideas are

Few days at a Dude Ranch

Zoos

Shopping!

Many thanks

Bartlesville...
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1. Re: Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

"Not sure what there is between Denver and Oklahoma City.

Does anybody have any suggestions?"

There are at least three basic routes between Denver and Oklahoma City:

The fastest and least interesting is to take Interstate Highway 70 east from Denver, then turn south on Interstate 135 at Salina, Kansas, and stay on I-235 to Wichita, switching to I-35 in Wichita and continuing south to OKC. As noted, that route is the quickest, but also the most boring. There is essentially nothing but wide open, treeless plain the entire trip, with the exception of the "World's Largest Prarie Dog" somewhere on the Western Kansas prarie. Actually, the prarie dog is just a cement statue or some such thing - I've never actually stopped, although I've passed by it many times.

Another route will take you south of Denver on I-25 to Raton, New Mexico, then heading east and south, through the Oklahoma and/or Texas panhandle areas toward OKC, beginning on Highway 64 in Raton. You can check the map and see exactly which route you want to follow after you reach Clayton, NM. From Clayton, you can either continue eastward through the OK panhandle and NW Oklahoma, or head southeast into the Texas panhanle toward Amarillo. Near Amarillo is the Palo Duro Canyon, but aside from that, there's not much else to see between Clayton and OKC. Following the more eastward route from Clayton through OK, you can visit:

Black Mesa, Alabaster Caverns State Park, Little Sahara State Park, Roman Nose State Park and Boiling Springs. You can "Google" each of these locations to see if any of them would interest you and your daughters.

Also, along this second route, between Denver and Raton, you will be following the eastern edge of the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains, so the scenery will be more appealing, and you will go through Colorado Springs, which has Pike's Peak, the Royal Gorge and the Garden of the Gods, among other attractions. East of Raton, between there and Clayton, NM, you will see numerous pronghorn antelope and you will be able to visit the Capulin Volcano.

Finally, the third route will also take you south of Denver on I-25, through Colorado Springs again, but turning east on Highway 50 at Pueblo, CO. Highway 50 will take you to Dodge City, Kansas, a historic Wild West town. Of course, it's all touristy and t-shirts now, but could be interesting, depending on your preferences. From there, you can either continue eastward to Wichita and then south to OKC, or you can head southward from Dodge City, and explore some of the sites in NW OK, as mentioned above.

"The other question I have, is about the weather. Can we be confident of getting good weather in Colorado? " August in Denver should be fine. July is usually the hottest time, but it is a dry heat (there really is something to that) and by August, there is usually already a noticable cooling trend, although still very nice and warm. If you are in Denver in late-August, however, you will at least need a jacket for the evenings - probably not a bad idea whenever you visit. Afternoon rains are a common occurance, but they seldom last very long. If you are planning to spend time in the mountains, you will still get the occasional light rains, but the weather will be much cooler. Temperatures in the 40's and 50's F (5 to 10 C), perhaps cooler, will be common. Expect even lower temps in the mountains at night - possibly even near freezing - especially later in the month.

Whether all or any of this will be appealing to you and your daughters is for you to decide, but at least you now have some ideas. No matter which route you choose, you will be covering some fairly bleak terrain for at least a substantial portion of the trip, which some find very dull, although there are those among us, myself included, who enjoy the stark beauty of the High Plains. Of course, much of those plains are now covered in wind farms, so be advised.

Bartlesville...
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2. Re: Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

Oops, I noticed a typo. The reference to I-235 should read "I-135"

Bartlesville...
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3. Re: Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

Actually, another option which might be of interest would be to take the southerly route from Denver through Raton, NM, then keep going south and west from Raton to Santa Fe and/or Albuquerque, NM. Santa Fe is especially interesting, with lots of art galleries and other shopping. If you go there, stay downtown, near the square. That's where the interesting things are. Also, be sure to sample the local cuisine. New Mexican style food is my favorite. This option would, of course, take you out of your way and make the trip longer, but might prove interesting.

After leaving that area, you could simply head back up to the north and east to Clayton, NM and resume as described in my earlier post, or you could take I-40 eastward through Amarillo to OKC. Certainly not much to see/do along the I-40 route, except Palo Duro Canyon near Amarillo and perhaps the Quartz Mountain Resort in western OK.

Oklahoma City
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4. Re: Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

I drove from OKC to Denver and took the way thru Santa Fe. Loved the drive. If you go as the previous poster suggested, to see Quartz Mountain area, you can also see the Wichitas and then head back north to OKC. Interesting terrain on that trip.

Do a google search for Dude Ranches Oklahoma and you'll find some, I'm sure. The Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum should not be missed. It's truly amazing.

The OKC Museum of Art is very nice. For the 'western' experience, you can visit the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. I haven't been in forever, but I remember fabulous art.

On the way to Dallas, you can hit Turner Falls, Lake Murray, the Arbuckle area in general.

Have a fabulous trip!

Ruther Glen VA
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5. Re: Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

Let me know how many days you would like and your dates for the Dude Ranch and I will gladly send you some options. You can email me at Laura.cutler @americasvacationcenter.com...I specialize in Ranches

Edmond, Oklahoma
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6. Re: Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

I would definitely opt for the route through New Mexico, with a side visit to Santa Fe, if you have the time. It's so beautiful and there are lots of things to see and do.

OKC has a nice zoo, as does Dallas. On weekends in the summer there are often concerts in the OKC zoo's amplitheatre with some big name acts.

As for shopping for your teenagers, OKC has a couple of decent malls, the best being Penn Square Mall. However, I must say that for a really great shopping experience your teens would probably find Dallas much more exciting. I know many people here that choose to make day trips to Dallas for shopping.

7. Re: Denver to Dallas via Oklahoma

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