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Old 12-20-2013, 07:59 AM   #1
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Driving the Continental Divide

Has anyone attempted to drive the Continental Divide in a tag axle diesel pusher? If yes, I would be very interested in learning about your adventure. If no one has attempted it, at the risk of asking the very obvious, why not? Thank you.

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Old 12-20-2013, 08:58 AM   #2
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There are many highways that cross the continental divide, but you didn't say which one is your concern. Individual gradient information is available in this excellent publication Mountain Driving Guide for Truckers, RV and Motorhome Drivers If you plan on driving west from Denver to the Eisenhower tunnel it's a long climb but I have seen many large coaches and buses crossing several different times with no apparent difficulty other than slowing down. Just remember to watch your gauges...

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Originally Posted by OWV View Post
Has anyone attempted to drive the Continental Divide in a tag axle diesel pusher? If yes, I would be very interested in learning about your adventure. If no one has attempted it, at the risk of asking the very obvious, why not? Thank you.

Regards,
OWV, Our Wondering View
Entegra Aspire, 44U on order
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Old 12-20-2013, 09:17 AM   #3
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Quote:
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Has anyone attempted to drive the Continental Divide in a tag axle diesel pusher?
I read your question as driving the divide north/south (mostly) and not crossing the divide. Excellent question to which I do not know the answer - anxious to hear the answer. There is most certainly a route and it is not particularly friendly in a lot of places (gravel road or worse) but what a spectacular and beautiful trip!
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Old 12-20-2013, 09:32 AM   #4
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There is a Continental Divide Trail, but not a road it's a hiking trail. The Continental Divide is crossed at many places by major interstates and roads.
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Old 12-20-2013, 09:55 AM   #5
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We've crossed it many times, including a trip west from Denver through the Eisenhower Tunnel. No problem with our 40DP (400ISL) pulling a Ford Explorer.

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Old 12-20-2013, 10:01 AM   #6
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Crossing the Continental Divide - yup - do it frequently - but "driving the Continental Divide" would be difficult - as noted above, it's a hiking trail about 3 feet wide running north/south. Perhaps we need more information about your quest...
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Old 12-20-2013, 10:24 AM   #7
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I'm sure the OP is referring to a drive like this one:

http://www.travelandleisure.com/arti...inental-divide
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Old 12-20-2013, 01:36 PM   #8
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Back in the dark ages, I drove the Continental Divide from New Mexico to the Canadian border. We had 17 geology students in a 15 passenger van with all of our camping gear! By the time we returned to the university (it was a school owned van), the van was totaled! I don't remember the exact routing we used, but I would not drive some of those roads in any type of RV. In fact, we probably shouldn't have been driving them in a van and definitely not in one so horribly overloaded.

The scenery was awesome! I plan to park the 5th wheel nearby and ride some of those roads on a motorcycle.
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Old 12-20-2013, 03:16 PM   #9
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Get a copy of "The Mountain Directory - West" and it will give you all highway information that might be of concern for you. As far as crossing the mountains from east to west, as stated, there are many highways you can take so we'll need to know where you're planning to cross to help you out further. Semi trucks, busses and RVs cross the mountains daily.
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Old 12-21-2013, 06:59 AM   #10
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Quote:
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I read your question as driving the divide north/south (mostly) and not crossing the divide. Excellent question to which I do not know the answer - anxious to hear the answer. There is most certainly a route and it is not particularly friendly in a lot of places (gravel road or worse) but what a spectacular and beautiful trip!
Yes, north/south. I understand it can be dicey, but is there a way to parallel the hiking trail on paved roads?

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Old 12-21-2013, 07:44 AM   #11
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Yes, north/south. I understand it can be dicey, but is there a way to parallel the hiking trail on paved roads?
I've certainly not been on the entire route but am somewhat familiar. When I say "route" I mean a series of roads that do as you have stated - allow you to parallel the continental divide and are acceptable for a motorhome. Adding "paved" to the equation makes it a real challenge (I do not enjoy gravel roads in my MH but I know some folks don't mind). I suspect it is possible but that requirement will take you farther from the divide (in at least some places) than the gravel roads do.

If it were me, I would take a look at the route that the Tour Divide bike race/challenge uses. Yes, there is a 2,750 mile mountain bike "race" (not in the typical sense) that follows the divide from the US/Canada border all the way to the US/Mexico border. The Adventure Cycling Association has some detail maps available. A great deal of that route is NOT passable by MH but it may help you find a route that is. Entirely likely that a paved road route is already published by someone, I just haven't seen one.
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Old 12-21-2013, 07:53 PM   #12
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Yes, north/south. I understand it can be dicey, but is there a way to parallel the hiking trail on paved roads? Regards, OWV, Our Wondering View
In short, no. As stated by others, there is no one single road that runs north and south that parallels the Continental Divide. But you can get good maps, study them to determine secondary paved roads roads that you would feel are suitable to your desires. It will entail many many different roads, but I'm sure it would be well worth it.

Part of the fun of RVing is this type of planning for the individuality that leads many of us to become RV owners in the first place. Planning builds anticipation. Enjoy it and the journey, both. :-)
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Old 12-21-2013, 08:11 PM   #13
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There are a number of 'continental divides.' One separates the Pacific Ocean drainage from the Atlantic/Gulf of Mexico. Another divides the Gulf of Mexico drainage from the Great Lakes Drainage. A third divides the Atlantic piedmont and the Mississippi/Gulf of Mexico drainage. Others include Arctic Ocean drainage and Great Lakes drainage. Since they are usually highest point ridges and most roads were developed along rivers and valleys, there are no roads that 'follow the divide.' Cross it, but not follow it for any distance.
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Old 12-21-2013, 10:06 PM   #14
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Get something smaller, it will be more fun.
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