U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Montana
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
 
Old 11-11-2007, 09:09 PM
 
4 posts, read 52,463 times
Reputation: 18
Default travelling I-15 in the winter

My wife and I are travelling from Alberta, Canada down I-15 in January this winter in a motorhome and are wondering what grade the mountain passes are? And where the worst ones are and if there is a bypass around the passes that would be better driving in the winter. Any info would be appreciated.Also any about the Idaho passes as well

Thanks
Keeta
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 11-12-2007, 08:58 AM
 
Location: Kingman - Anaconda
1,416 posts, read 3,446,391 times
Reputation: 540
Quote:
Originally Posted by keeta View Post
My wife and I are travelling from Alberta, Canada down I-15 in January this winter in a motorhome and are wondering what grade the mountain passes are? And where the worst ones are and if there is a bypass around the passes that would be better driving in the winter. Any info would be appreciated.Also any about the Idaho passes as well

Thanks
Keeta
I would say that I-15 south would be better kept than the bitterroot valley south of Missoula as its a interstate. Montana has a great traffic cam roadway condition website. Keep your eyes on that and you can see 1st hand what the road condiitions are like
Not a lot of options to drop south unless you head over to Spokane and drop through the tri-cities into Oregon and over to Boise. Problem there is the hill at Lagrande Oregon can be something else.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-12-2007, 10:14 AM
 
4 posts, read 52,463 times
Reputation: 18
Thanks for info. Do you know what the hiway from Boulder MT to Dillon Mt is like for passes etc and would it be better than I-15 for winter driving?
thanks
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-08-2007, 07:11 PM
 
Location: Nebraska
2,671 posts, read 3,716,759 times
Reputation: 2666
I was an over the road trucker for many years and drove quite extensively in Alberta, Montana, Idaho(plus about 45 others). It has been a few years since I quit over the road but I imagine that the roads are better now than when I quit. If you live in Alberta you know all about whiteouts, ground blizzards, black ice etc. The only really nasty pass IMHO on I-15 through Montana, Idaho and Utah is the Monida Pass area on the border of Idaho and Montana. Compared to Mountain passes in Colorado it is a piece of cake. It is probably a 5% to maybe 6% maximum grade. They do a good job of plowing and sanding on it so if you call ahead and check conditions it should be OK.

Some of the best scenery I remember from Montana was in the Lima, Montana area along the Beaverhead(?) River. Great fishing and tubing although friends in the area tell me that a few rich Californians have bought up the best property in the area and closed it off. Too bad if that is the truth because it should be enjoyed by all.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-08-2007, 08:12 PM
 
4 posts, read 52,463 times
Reputation: 18
thanks much
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-08-2007, 08:13 PM
 
Location: In an alternate universe according to some, AKA Aspergers
10,561 posts, read 11,472,362 times
Reputation: 4961
In Montana and Idaho and some other states you can dial 511 from oyur cell phone for current road conditions. It works with voice or dial prompts and lists highways and areas. It can be a life saver if weather is changing.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-09-2007, 11:05 PM
 
1,048 posts, read 2,520,331 times
Reputation: 524
Monida Pass and maybe around Woodville north of Butte and Boulder Hill can be hairy at times. But generally fine. Here's a good website with road conditions and live pictures of the various passes:
Traveler Information - RPU Camera Sites
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-10-2007, 06:11 PM
 
4 posts, read 52,463 times
Reputation: 18
Is Boulder Hill north of the town of Boulder Montana or south?
Thanks for all your information
Keeta
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-11-2007, 09:13 AM
 
Location: Sarasota
463 posts, read 1,044,760 times
Reputation: 136
From Boulder to Dillon, most truckers come through the Jefferson Valley where I live and come down highway 55 to Twin Bridges and then turn rt and go to Dillon. There is rarely ever snow and the roads are fine. It cuts off a huge triangle instead of going over the Homestake Pass to Butte and then south on I-15. Or from Helena, straight down I-15 is usually ok but the Boulder HIll can be a little hairy at times if it's icy. Also around Elk Park.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-15-2008, 11:49 AM
 
1 posts, read 11,814 times
Reputation: 11
Keeta, Boulder Hill is north of Butte; it is closer to Helena. I've never had much trouble with that area in the winter but Elk Park always seems to be nasty in winter either because of the wind or snow or ice or both. It is an area just north of Butte that is an open valley surrounded by hills/mountains. The wind is almost always blowing there, at least that's been my experience. Also the area between Elk Park and Butte can be a little hairy if there is snow/ice. I'm not sure if that is a pass but most here in Helena call it Butte Hill. Monida Pass is pretty bad too. I've been looking for ways to go around it because I always get into ice or snow there but haven't yet found a way that isn't a long distance out of route for going south on I15. Done several 180's sliding on black ice at the top of the pass although I do have a two wheel drive pickup so don't get as good a traction as a 4 wheel drive. The pass area between Butte and Dillon usually isn't too bad although it seems like it takes forever. I was there during a spring snow storm and it was a nightmare. Generally I'd say be careful and watch for changing conditions. Be prepared with extra clothes and blankets as well as some food and water in case you do get stuck. Basic common sense is always called for when traveling this area in winter or spring. Also, as JimJ said, 511 on your cell phone does work here. I've used it when I have to go over McDonald Pass between Helena and Garrison. Montana DOT also has web cams on some of the passes and roads so you can see them before you get there. Lady, Highway 55 is a nice drive but is a two lane road. Sometimes the local drivers are not very patient with someone going the speed limit or slower, as with any road in Montana. The road is better than going over Homestake Pass to Butte though if I'm remembering correctly Homestake Pass is on I90 east/west while Boulder is on I15 north/south as is Butte so someone going straight south would not go over that pass. It is a longer route to Dillon from Boulder although it is very pretty. I believe most truckers go that route to avoid the scales on I15, lady.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2011 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram


Over $84,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Montana
Similar Threads

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top