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US West Road Trip in a 69 from Switzerland

 
Old 03-30-2016, 12:34 PM
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Yankeededandy
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Default US West Road Trip in a 69 from Switzerland

My wife Kate and I are from Switzerland...

...and we have owned our 69 for a couple of years now. We’ve done our fair share of road trips, among them tours through parts of France, Italy, Germany, England and Scotland, mostly in small groups of good friends, some on our own. Inspired by Jack’s Corvette Vagabond trips through the US and Europe, we started dreaming of taking the red convertible to the US one day… so…

…on a snowy day (of all days we had to choose the only one in weeks where it snowed) in November last year, we drove the Corvette to a harbor in Northern Germany, stuffed it in a ship and had it transported over the Atlantic and Pacific ocean, after which it was dropped off in L.A. A couple of things had to be done to the car to get it in decent shape, a good friend in the area is currently taking care of that.


The actual trip will start and end in the city of angels between May 28 and June 25. After that, the Corvette will return back home to Switzerland. The whole thing is planned as a round trip, taking us from L.A. to Vegas, through the Bryce Canyon area, Salt Lake City, through Yellowstone. From there we will hang a left and cross over to Seattle. After that obviously the ultimate tourist route, Highway 1 all the way back down to L.A., with a break of a whole week north of the Golden Gate to catch our breath in between.


It’s a good thing we didn’t know what we would be up against organizing the whole thing. E.g. trying to get insurance from a US company for a car registered in Switzerland and the driver/owner a non-resident. That was a PITA to arrange. We also had to make sure that we wouldn’t have to pay import taxes in the US because without the proper paperwork we would have had to deposit 50% of the cars estimated value upon entry. And lots of similar fun stuff to keep us busy for the past months. Fortunately, we got everything sorted out and we’ll be able to legally drive the car with Swiss license plates (wonder if those will catch the attention of some highway cops) through the Western States.

If you’re interested I will be posting updates and pictures of our trip as we’re moving along. And if you happen to see a couple in a red 69 convertible, frantically taking pictures all the time, that would be us.

A few impressions from past tours

South of England, June 2014


Scotland, June 2015


South of France, May 2012


Martin
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Old 03-30-2016, 12:43 PM
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It sounds very nice and crazy at the same time...good luck and enjoy a lot!!
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Old 03-30-2016, 12:44 PM
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chazde3
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That's going to be quite the road trip! I hope you enjoy it. I haven't gotten the chance to be that far out west yet so far in my life.
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Old 03-30-2016, 12:49 PM
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WOW, this is really awesome. My bucket list to drive my corvette in the lower 48 and as many Canadian provinces as I can hit. I am jealous and envious. Keep posting and enjoy. Really cool
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Old 03-30-2016, 01:32 PM
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I envy your pursuit of adventure and the willing wife!...Chit I'm lucky to get my wife in the C3 for day cruise. Looking forward to the chronicle!

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Old 03-30-2016, 01:49 PM
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Alan 71
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Hi Martin,
INTERESTING trip!
While you're near St. Lake City you should at least consider a side trip to see the Bonneville Salt Flats.
Sadly there likely won't be anything going on because SCTA Speed Week is in August.
STILL, quite an unbelievable sight!
Regards,
Alan
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Old 03-30-2016, 07:48 PM
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Sounds like a great trip Martin. Jack would be proud of you. We actually kicked off both of Jack's trips here at my house on Cape Cod Mass. Looking forward to the pictures of your trip. Have a great trip
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Old 03-30-2016, 08:09 PM
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Martin, I've enjoyed your European adventures and look forward to your west coast swing! How long will it take for that beautiful '69 to ship to LA?
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Old 03-30-2016, 08:18 PM
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Thanks for including us in your great adventure.
You are creating priceless memories, that you can fall back on for the rest of your lives.
Have a fun and safe trip.
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Old 03-30-2016, 09:14 PM
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Take Rt12 from Bryce to Torrey UT. Stay at Austins Chuck Wagon Lodge in Torrey and visit Capitol Reef National Park. I did this two years ago and it is a spectacular drive (even in a rental car....)

We took the family out in 2013 (kids at 19 and 21) - had wanted to do it for years and finally had the chance. Gorgeous country. Can't wait to get back to UT and see more.

Enjoy and post some pics!

Tom
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Old 03-30-2016, 09:24 PM
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Great trip, even if it is the wrong coast

Looks like North rim of the Grand Canyon - excellent choice. I know you've got things pretty planned out, but Canyon de Chelley is a very interesting place, and there is this tunnel in to Zion... sounded fabulous when The Plastic Pig and I went through it.

Butte, Montana? Looks like that's on your route. A very interesting place, highly recommend taking the 'underground' tour.

My daughter lives in Helena, MT; I'll pass you her contact information if you need it.

PS: If you've not been to a rodeo, it is well worth your while.


Last edited by Dirty Dalton; 03-30-2016 at 09:35 PM.
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Old 03-30-2016, 09:27 PM
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PICS.......PICS......PICS......... and have fun between the PICS!





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Old 03-31-2016, 10:03 AM
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I've driven some of this route and I can tell you it is breathtaking! In a 69 vert it will be heaven.
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Old 03-31-2016, 11:42 AM
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What an awesome trip you have planned! Always love the pictures from Europe. I bet you don't see to many there. You getting so close to Canada, I would encourage you cross the border! Anyway have a great time. Looking forward to pics and videos!
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:05 PM
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Sounds like a blast. I admire your sense of adventure and you picked a beautiful part of the country. So many amazing things to see.

You might consider Glacier National Park, just north of Missoula. Of course, if you made all of the dozens of 100 mile jaunts off your route (like Bonneville, as Alan suggested) that you'd never make it home. Enjoy, and post lots of pics so we can be jealous.
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Kevin68 View Post
...You might consider Glacier National Park, just north of Missoula. ... Enjoy, and post lots of pics so we can be jealous.

Glacier, not to mention the Park Café, would be an excellent choice.



Pies to die for!
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Old 03-31-2016, 02:45 PM
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Thank you guys. As you guessed, lot's of details are worked out, but many are not. We're grateful for any tips along the way, even though it is already clear that we won't stand a chance to do all the things we want to do. It's a small miracle that we're able to stay away from work for so long. If we would have been able to choose freely, we would have taken 3 months. But life is full of compromises. Still, we're excited like little kids before christmas.

Small things: We didn't want to carry mundane airplane luggage in our Corvette for the trip and found these on a local flea market recently: Soft carry on bags which were popular here in Switzerland in the 60s and 70s to carry roller skates or soccer gear. Somehow fitting we think and they can be squeezed in nicely into the space behind the seats.



Pics will of course follow.
About Canada: As much as we would like to sneak accross the border, our insurance only covers the US. Plus it would mean "exporting" and "reimporting" the car. Life is complicated for us foreigners .

Bonneville, Rodeo, Glacier, etc. we'll check it out . We are taking Route 12 to Torrey, that's already planned. The first thing we're going to do ist this though: When we were in L.A. last year, we rented a C2 for a day and blasted over Mullholland and a piece of PCH. We're going to repeat that on the first day in "our Corvette" (the 64 was pretty ratty). Here's a short video we took on that day:
.

More to come soon,

Martin & Kate
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Old 03-31-2016, 05:34 PM
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Great video! Some real California Corvette Dreamin'
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Old 03-31-2016, 06:38 PM
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Your pics from Scotland a couple of years ago I very much enjoyed. This trip will be just as interesting!
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Old 04-02-2016, 04:29 AM
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Very cool road trip!
I got to see the world via the Marine Corps.
No corvette ride there for sure Ha Ha.
Welcome to the USA in advance.
The mid west is amazing, I back packed through a small portion of it
in the 1970's.
It is the youngest part of America. It didn't get going till 1840's.
If you ever come to Philadelphia, PA, I can show you where it all began.
Have a safe tripp and please post as you go.
I will be checking in often
A life time experience for sure.
I was in Switzerland briefly in 1978 for a school trip.
It was beautiful in April.
I saw one silver 1978 corvette in Germany and almost died.
Marshal
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