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Old 11-26-2013, 03:38 PM
 
Location: Brew City
4,214 posts, read 2,501,359 times
Reputation: 5649

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I just drove from Helena, MT to Escanaba, MI in 23 hrs straight. I stopped for gas, drinks and potty breaks when needed but I only stopped for food once in Miles City, MT. And this was with two toddlers .

My theory was, if I was feeling good and the kids weren't complaining, why stop? So if you're comfortable doing it, go for it.

And for the record, I don't drink coffee and I've never had an energy drink in my life .
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Old 11-26-2013, 04:15 PM
 
Location: Spots Wyoming
18,696 posts, read 36,440,872 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mcortona View Post
I'm a non-driver, and a friend and I are driving from Omaha, Nebraska to Bozeman, Montana to ice climb December 11-15. It's 14 hours before stops and we need to get in Friday evening to check in. Then on Sunday, after the competition, we had planned to drive six hours up to Glacier National Park to camp out overnight, then drive the 19 hours back (not counting stops!) Monday morning. If we left at five in the morning Monday and stopped for a total of three hours, we wouldn't get back until three AM Tuesday night.

What do you think? Is this crazy? He's 22.
First, let's fix your math. The route that Mapquest recommends has you taking a lot of 2 lane road. Not good in December. I have found, occasionally, that 2 lane is prudent, but I would opt for interstate as much as possible. That would mean taking I-90 through Wyoming, instead of 212 through the SouthEast corner of Montana. Not bad, it only adds a few miles to stay on the interstate. Hence, 20 hour trip back to Omaha.

We are Mountain Standard time, so if you left at 5am, Glacier time, it's actually 6am, Omaha time. 20 hours would put you in at 2am on Tuesday.

That, no matter how you look at it, is a very aggressive trip, even in the summer time, which means, with the questionable roads of winter, it could be considerably longer. A 20 hour trip is difficult to do, non stop. So figuring some potty breaks, choking down some grocerys a couple times, it's going to add even more time to the trip. Grocery's are a problem. Eating junk food adds to sleepiness, as well as a full meal, so some lighter meals is the best way to go.

I've had a lot of 20+ hour trips, so I know better than to tell you it can't be done, because it can. What I am saying is that you need to plan on getting hung up periodically with unplanned stops. With it being winter, should you break down, wreckers or assistance take longer to get to you because there are added calls they make during the winter. They are busier than normal.

A good part of your planned trip is that you are leaving the coldest and snowiest portion, at a time that when you get to Billings, there will be no more mountain passes to worry about and about that time is when the roads will have a better chance of being dry. Same with when night falls, you'll be down on the prairie of South Dakota or Nebraska so you'll have less chance of black ice.

It's doable, but at my age, I wouldn't plan on it. I'd give it more time. 22 years old is good and bad, bad because of lack of experience, and good in that youth gives you better odds. If you leave at 5am, I'm betting it's going to be closer to 6 or 7 when you hit Omaha. Speed limit is 75, most of the way, and figuring you go 5 over, you'd be lucky to average 66 or 67 mph for the trip, and that is even if you pack food. Good luck.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:53 PM
 
Location: North Dakota
7,721 posts, read 9,018,166 times
Reputation: 11083
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mcortona View Post
I'm a non-driver, and a friend and I are driving from Omaha, Nebraska to Bozeman, Montana to ice climb December 11-15. It's 14 hours before stops and we need to get in Friday evening to check in. Then on Sunday, after the competition, we had planned to drive six hours up to Glacier National Park to camp out overnight, then drive the 19 hours back (not counting stops!) Monday morning. If we left at five in the morning Monday and stopped for a total of three hours, we wouldn't get back until three AM Tuesday night.

What do you think? Is this crazy? He's 22.
I wouldn't do this drive in the summer. You don't know what the weather conditions will be in December. I would pass on Glacier. It's a nice place but a very long drive out of the way.
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Old 11-27-2013, 09:30 AM
 
4,738 posts, read 4,016,316 times
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Skip Glacier this trip. Only a few miles of goingtothesun highway is kept open year around to get to a lodge.

Sticking to the Interstate is good advice because the gas stations and convenience stores with longer hours & cell service are found along it.

Pack a winter survival kit in your vehicle including water & food, sleeping bags, and flashlights. Tell someone your schedule and check in with them.

Keep your gas tank at least half full. Have a great trip.
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Old 11-29-2013, 06:28 AM
 
281 posts, read 730,225 times
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The words "icy roads" and "drive faster" does not sit well with me at all. Because after that I think of the word "fatalities and highways". Slow down, maybe live longer. Have a safe trip.
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Old 11-30-2013, 08:04 AM
 
3,764 posts, read 7,470,438 times
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Skip Glacier camping in winter.

After your ice climbing, drive down to a motel in Gardiner, Montana. Then drive into Yellowstone, stop to see the geothermals at Mammoth Hot Springs, then drive through Lamar Valley for wildlife viewing to Cooke City & back to Gardiner.
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