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Old 11-08-2012, 08:00 AM
 
115 posts, read 114,331 times
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I'm planning on driving an RV (pulling a UHaul trailer) from S. St. Paul, MN to El Centro, CA.

I noticed on the map that I could take a "short-cut" after Kansas City and drive SW on US-50 or at Emporia stay on the intersate down to Oklahoma City and then west on the interstate to Albuquerque.

Why way do you think is best?
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Old 11-08-2012, 08:50 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djconklin View Post
I'm planning on driving an RV (pulling a UHaul trailer) from S. St. Paul, MN to El Centro, CA.
Now? Fall into Winter? Take the 300 mile longer interstate route through Dallas .
I-35 South; turn west at I-20/I-10; left at Blythe CA

Want to take some extra time here and there (as the weather allows) to explore
some of the old roads and sights along the way? Sure. Enjoy yourselves.
Have a good time... but don't *plan* on those side roads in winter.
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Old 11-08-2012, 12:33 PM
 
Location: SW OK (AZ Native)
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Right now I'd avoid I-35 through Dallas and Fort Worth. The Dallas area is a mess with construction (was there two weeks ago, I-20, -820, -35, -635, TX-183. TX-121, all under construction, and have been for the past year-plus).

KC to OKC through Wichita is a turnpike, you'll have tolls to pay, but they're pre-calculated on the toll card. Not a bad road at all, did it in June from KC back to OK.

I-40 OKC to Amarillo to Albuquerque is good, some construction (did it last year visiting family in PHX) but my recommendation is from Amarillo: I-27 south, US-60 to Clovis to Roswell, US-70 to Alamogordo (some mountain driving but US-70 is wide with no hairpin turns or really steep grades; it's a new road from Roswell to Ruidoso) and then on to Las Cruces, with the only really steep grade being up from White Sands (a very worthwhile stop) for a few miles, but a 4 or even 6 lane road most of the way. Then I-25 to I-10 through Tucson to Casa Grande, and I-8 the rest of the way.

I have driven the Tucson to OKC route almost every year since the late 80s, and lived in Tucson through the 90s, visiting San Diego a lot. The route above is not the most scenic but it is 70 to 75 mph roads with minimal curves and steep climbs/descents.

Last year around Christmas I spent two nights in Las Cruces because I-10 was closed between LC and Tucson. I-40 to the north through Albuquerque was even more closed. It's a risk every year. Use the OK, TX, NM and AZ roads web sites, they were VERY useful, some even have cameras you can access and see what you're up against.
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Old 11-08-2012, 02:24 PM
 
Location: SW OK (AZ Native)
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Additional info: I-40 from ABQ to Flagstaff is a nice road, subject to winter closures in the high terrain. However, I-17 from Flagstaff south to PHX is a nailbiter if you're towing with an RV. Steep grade downhill, often nearly bumper-to-bumper. I avoid the 17 anymore, instead use AZ 77 from Holbrook to Payson to PHX (much faster), but it's another road I would not take in an RV with a trailer. I'd opt for a more southern route.
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Old 11-10-2012, 07:44 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
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I'd wait till after Thanksgiving and go to San Antonio for the Canal Lights, then west on 10. Not the shortest, but very EZ. (for the most part).

If you are not into San Antonio (since it is ALSO VERY cheap to fly there... (cheaper than fuel)..). there are several routes through TX and NM to angle down from 40 to 10. You can check the weather for 40, it is often clear., but when it is snowy / windy... it is treacherous.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:36 AM
 
Location: Out there somewhere...a traveling man.
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We just came from Minneapolis to Phoenix via I-35 to I-40 to I-17 and had a great drive. It seemed that every 3rd vehicle was an RV traveling the same route. The weather was great and the Hwy Dept keeps it up for safe traveling.
I-17 down to Phoenix is a breeze. Yes a couple of steep grades but all the RV's and busses we saw were having no problems. The freeway road is one of the best maintained around. Going from I-40 though payson and down to Phoenix is a killer for most vehicles especially RV's and takes twice as long as it's not a freeway. There are some steep drives down from that area too.
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Old 11-12-2012, 08:57 AM
 
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From Phoenix take I10 west to 85 south to I8. To my recollection, 85 is now a divided highway much of the stretch to I8, so it is the least stressful way to get to I8. Don't wait to go south until Blythe--too much heavy Los Angeles traffic on I10. Make sure you stock up on water; being stuck in the desert without water is no fun.
For something unusual, stop in Dateland and get a date shake!

Last edited by Clark Fork Fantast; 11-12-2012 at 09:11 AM.. Reason: clarification
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