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Old 07-30-2008, 11:32 PM
64 posts, read 232,362 times
Reputation: 67


Is it possible, or am I crazy? I plan on moving to Spearfish in December/January to finish up school and getting my bachelors in business management at BHSU. Since I'm currently living in SoCal, I'm wondering if it's possilbe for me to fit all of my life into my truck and drive 1400 miles in the middle of winter and be able to make it all the way there without getting stranded in the snow. I'm worried about getting nailed by a bad storm and having to spend nights on the side of the road in single digit weather. I know it's still months ahead, but I'm planning ahead so that I'm good and prepared for when the day comes. So my question is, do they close down the interstates during bad storms, or is it still possible to travel thru them? I don't want to have to stop and sleep at hotels every couple hundred miles so I won't freeze to death.
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Old 07-31-2008, 01:12 AM
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
3,940 posts, read 12,903,293 times
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It's possible to move in the dead of winter. I plan on moving to either Portland or Denver this January. They do close down Interstates during bad storms but you just have to look ahead at the forecast and bring necessary stuff in case of a storm. Bring blankets, and layers of clothes along with you in your truck. The worst area you will have to worry about is the Rocky Mountains but don't fret because there are towns every few miles and the roads are well-patrolled. They know that people drive in the mountains in winter (ski-bums) so traffic is common, especially around Denver and SLC.

I drove from Rapid City to Minneapolis twice in December and January and I did fine. My second trip it was snowing hard, so I just slowed down a little and kept space between myself and the car ahead. Did excellent time!
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Old 07-31-2008, 06:14 AM
Location: So. Dak.
13,495 posts, read 33,044,049 times
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Wow Danny, I didn't realize you are moving so soon.

Maxx, like Danny said~just be aware of the weather forecasts. Be sure to listen to the weather on the radio as you're travelling and they will let you know if the interstate is closed. It doesn't really happen that often and your chances are good considering it'll just be a few days you'll need to be concerned about. We have gates on I-90 and they close them so you'll know if you don't have access to the road. They patrol the interstate to be sure no one is stranded out there. Whatever you do, don't go around the gates cause people have done it and the end result is tragic.

That being said, welcome to South Dakota! We're always happy to have another resident and you picked a beautiful area to live in.
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Old 07-31-2008, 12:35 PM
64 posts, read 232,362 times
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Thanks so much for the info and advice. I plan on going up thru Utah and then across all of Wyoming. Those are the two states that worry me most. I've done the drive four times already, but it has been during the summer months. I saw those interstate gates you are talking about that have the flashing sign saying to turn back to the last town you passed, but have never seen the gates down. It's a 20hr drive going 80mph with no stops from SoCal to Rapid City. But with my situation, I will be happy just to make it there in less than two days.
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Old 07-31-2008, 12:58 PM
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
3,940 posts, read 12,903,293 times
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Maxx, I am sure you will do fine, like you said, it's Utah and Wyoming that you should worry about most. Also watch out for deer around sunrise and sunset. I cannot tell you how many people I know that have hit deer on the way to and from Rapid City and the Rocky Mountains.

Just keep posted on the weather before you leave, if you have to wait an extra day or two do it. South Dakota isn't going anywhere!
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Old 08-11-2008, 12:28 PM
Location: Black Hills of South Dakota
112 posts, read 336,463 times
Reputation: 98
MAXXIMUZ, I lived in Spearfish for 30 yrs before moving to CA. We drove back to SD every Christmas for many many years, never had a problem with storms. Occasionally we'd run into a slippery patch of road, or some small snow drifts, but thats it. Just watch the forecast and make your plans around that. You can make the trip easily in 2 days. ( I've done the 1306 mile trip little as 18 hrs, but 21 is my average)

The people in SD & the midwest know how to drive in the snow and ice, so things have to get pretty rough before the roads get closed. I can assure you that you will never see a highway shut down in SD or WY just because there is an 1/8th inch of slush on the surface like you see her in CA.

Good luck on your trip back.
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