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Old 11-29-2011, 09:02 AM
 
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I'm moving to Philly, PA mid December! Driving I 80 the entire way. My question is, how bad are the Rockies at that time of year? And how steep do the roads get? I have no doubt that I can make it in 3-4 days. I'm just super worried about the Rockies. And are there any other things that I should worry about along I 80? Thanks for your help guys!
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:33 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
28,490 posts, read 62,120,010 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeRoSeSs View Post
I'm moving to Philly, PA mid December! Driving I 80 the entire way.
Starting from... Sacramento?
If so then you're familiar with Donner Pass which (when bad) has the worst of the road conditions
you'll face the rest of the way; including the stretch through WY.

Beyond that, the bigger concern will be winds from the north as you cross through the plains states...
and the lake stretch from Chicago to Cleveland before picking up 76

Weather tends to run in 3-4 day cycles... wait for a clear cycle and stay with it.
Take your time. Be careful.
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:23 AM
 
Location: On the sunny side of a mountain
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The stretch though Wyoming can be outrageously windy with blowing snow, keep a very close eye on the weather.
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:56 AM
 
Location: Durham, NC
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Agree with others that Wyoming will be the crux of the trip. Often they only plow one lane of travel in each direction on the interstates in WY. Combine that with blowing snow and it can get nasty...deep drift can accumulate very quickly! Western Nebraska is only slightly better. That said, I did a lot of winter driving throughout southern WY & western NY in a Ford Taurus with regular 4-season tires (i.e. not snow tires/no studs) and never had a problem.
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Old 11-29-2011, 01:01 PM
 
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Great! That's exactly the info that I was looking for. I will bring winter safety gear and some chains. I should be good. I had just heard that the Rockies were a danger area.
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Old 11-29-2011, 01:28 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,546 posts, read 39,924,861 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeRoSeSs View Post
...I will bring winter safety gear and some chains. I should be good. I had just heard that the Rockies were a danger area.
No 'Rockies' on I-80. Just a couple hills between Rawlins and Laramie, and Sherman Pass (Between Laramie and Cheyenne, very short uphill from Laramie side). Wind and ground blizzards will be the issue. You may need to change lanes to avoid the 'icy' tracks from trucks, and watch for drifts on overpasses / bridge railings. You will not want to be in the Windward lane when crossing, as snow drifts from railing across the roadway.

I recommend food / water, candles FOR SURE... freeze protection for you... sleeping bag, reflectors and an orange (tall) bicycle flag in case you get stuck in a drift.

I watch the 8-14 day forecast Climate Prediction Center - 8 to 14 Day Outlook, but... Wyoming can change in about 1 hr.
WYDOT Travel Information Service (Laramie) (1-888-996-7623)

Donner Pass is most significant mountain obstacle.
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Old 11-29-2011, 04:30 PM
 
Location: Texas
14,078 posts, read 17,657,689 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
No 'Rockies' on I-80. Just a couple hills between Rawlins and Laramie, and Sherman Pass (Between Laramie and Cheyenne, very short uphill from Laramie side). Wind and ground blizzards will be the issue. You may need to change lanes to avoid the 'icy' tracks from trucks, and watch for drifts on overpasses / bridge railings. You will not want to be in the Windward lane when crossing, as snow drifts from railing across the roadway.

I recommend food / water, candles FOR SURE... freeze protection for you... sleeping bag, reflectors and an orange (tall) bicycle flag in case you get stuck in a drift.

I watch the 8-14 day forecast Climate Prediction Center - 8 to 14 Day Outlook, but... Wyoming can change in about 1 hr.
WYDOT Travel Information Service (Laramie) (1-888-996-7623)

Donner Pass is most significant mountain obstacle.

There's also Parley's Summit, east of Salt Lake City. It's about 6 miles of 6% grade, up and down, and snow in the Wasatch Front range can be very heavy.

However, it's easy to get around without going over any mountains at all. Just take I-15 north to US-89 north. That will take you up to I-84 east, which winds up a river valley instead of going over any peaks, and brings you back to I-80 just before the Wyoming line. It's not but maybe 10 or 15 miles further and well worth it in the winter time.
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Old 11-29-2011, 06:00 PM
 
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As you will be spending winter in the North East and doing this trip in winter do yourself a favor and equip your car with snow tires before you start the trip, make sure coolant and wiper fluid are up to winter standards, make sure there's air in the spare.Stock up on a few emergency supplies like energy bars,blankets or sleeping bag a few candles and a way to light them ,AAA membership and fully charged cell phone..Proper winter clothing should also be readily available..
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:33 PM
 
Location: God's Gift to Mankind for flying anything
5,326 posts, read 11,043,599 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jambo101 View Post
Stock up on a few emergency supplies like energy bars,blankets or sleeping bag a few candles and a way to light them ,AAA membership and fully charged cell phone..Proper winter clothing should also be readily available..
Never let your gas supply go below 1/2 !!!
If you do get stuck, you can at least stay warm for a long time by letting your car idle for hours on end. !!!

Even winter tires can not handle snow that is more than 12 inches high !!
So you have to wait for the plows to get to you.

Been there, done that. Worst part was the colour of our car !!. It was white ! Luckily, we had a 12 vdc air pump, that also has a flash light and a flasher on it, so we placed that in the back of the car, and kept wiping the rear window free of snow (we have a van !.).

If it does not snow while you drive thru Wyoming, do not fall asleep from boredom.
The only scenery that changes is the yellow line in the middle !!!
If there is one !
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Old 11-30-2011, 08:43 AM
 
34,365 posts, read 41,446,089 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by irman View Post

Even winter tires can not handle snow that is more than 12 inches high !!
So you have to wait for the plows to get to you.
Anyone out in a major snowfall is asking for trouble, thats when you stay home or grab a motel for a day or so..
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