I'm looking for recommendations on where to stay overnight to do this all in two or three days.
Here's the situation: On the way back to the Bay Area from Palm Springs on New Year's Day, my elderly father has it in his mind to visit Manzanar, then Ridgecrest to see friends, and then back to San Francisco Bay Area.
The park is actually open on Jan. 1, so that part looks OK. I'd welcome your thoughts on the following:
1. I figure it will take about five hours to go from Palm Springs to Manzanar, and we could spend an hour or two in the park, then check into a hotel somewhere, get dinner and call it a day. Where do you recommend that has decent motels and some selection of food? Lone Pine? Independence?
2. The next day, Jan. 2, I figured we could stop in to visit the friends in Ridgecrest for a couple of hours and head home via Hwy 58 and Bakersfield to I-5. If traffic is OK and ol' Dad isn't too tired we can do it all in a day, or break it up into two days. Any thoughts?
3. Road conditions? I presume the elevations are low enough (4,000 feet) that we won't have to contend with snow.
Feel free to weigh in.