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Old 04-15-2019, 10:14 AM   #1
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Florida to Montana

I am spending the summer in Montana, volunteering near Flathead Lake. I'll be coming from Florida and Google maps gives a couple routes, wanted to get opinions on here as to the best route and why.
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Old 04-15-2019, 04:01 PM   #2
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going straight thru or sightseeing/stopping along the way?
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Old 04-15-2019, 05:13 PM   #3
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From your profile you have a 27' Class C & traveling with 2 children. Do you want to make any siteseeing stops with the children? Google Maps gives 3 routes and they are around the same distance. It just depends what you want to see along the way. It's a very long trip with the children and stopping occasionally for a couple days might help. As far as the terrain - none are difficult; just boring. Your RV would do just fine. Just decide what you want to see along the way and go for it!

All the routes take you from Florida to Atlanta to Nashville to St. Louis. From there you have options:

2712 miles - St. Louis to Des Moines; I-29 to Sioux Falls; I-90 to Helena, MT and on to Flathead Lake

2780 miles - Mt. Vernon, IL then North on I-57; I-74: I-39 to I-90 at Rockford, IL to I-94 west to Glendive, Montana then 87/287 to Lincoln, Mt & on to Flathead Lake

2825 miles - St. Louis to I-70 west to Denver then north on I-25 to I-90 at Billings, Montana and to Helena, MT then to Flathead Lake
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Old 04-15-2019, 05:28 PM   #4
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We’re headed home to Montana from Orlando starting today. We’re going I-75 to Atlanta, to I-20 to Dallas to I-35 straight North and 135 to Cheyenne. From there to Billings. If you’re staying on interstates only then it would be jumping off at Missoula and over to Kalispell. If wanting to cut some miles go from Billings to Great Falls, MT to Shelby to Kalispell. Any of the routes will get you there, it’s mostly personal preference and what you want to see/do along the way. You’ll enjoy the Kalispell area.
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Old 04-15-2019, 05:32 PM   #5
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I usually take the most direct route. Best route is so very subjective. Chose one of the Google routes and go with it. There is no bad route. BTW, Flathead Lake is awesome.
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Old 04-16-2019, 09:13 AM   #6
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First, I think you will really enjoy the Flathead Lake area. I've gone out that way several times and I always try to get on I-90 ASAP, which is either Sioux Falls or Madison, WI, depending on what I want to see along the way. For Sioux City, I take a bit of an odd route that includes some two lane roads and one on the older steel two lane bridges across the Ohio River. From Nashville: I-24 to Paducah; US-60 & US-51 to I-55N to St Louis then I-270 I-64 to I-70. At Kansas City, I-29 to I-90 in Sioux Falls.
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Old 04-16-2019, 09:44 AM   #7
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Thank you all for the information. It is somewhat scary traveling to places unknown and reassuring to know my RV can handle the routes. To answer some of your questions, we do plan to stop some, I have a week...7 days...to get there. Maybe more depending on how quickly we can head out.
Some stops may just be overnight while others may require some brief sight seeing but since I am volunteering out at Flathead Lake....I need to get there quickly. Seems like I 90 is a must and I guess I could take one route there and a different route back.
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Old 04-20-2019, 11:56 PM   #8
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We're doing the same route in about 3 weeks with a travel trailer. We'll be leaving Orlando area and heading along the Gulf Coast on I10 for a ways, then cutting up through Mississippi/Louisiana to Texas, then North thru Oklahoma and Kansas to Colorado, across the bottom of Wyoming on I80 to Utah, then north thru Idaho and into Montana on I15. No particular reason other than we've never seen the South. BTW, we live 7 miles north of Flathead Lake. You'll love the area! I've never driven the route (except from Denver to Montana a few times), so I can't really offer any advice other than good luck!
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:56 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Abrum81 View Post
I am spending the summer in Montana, volunteering near Flathead Lake. I'll be coming from Florida and Google maps gives a couple routes, wanted to get opinions on here as to the best route and why.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abrum81 View Post
Thank you all for the information. It is somewhat scary traveling to places unknown and reassuring to know my RV can handle the routes. To answer some of your questions, we do plan to stop some, I have a week...7 days...to get there. Maybe more depending on how quickly we can head out.
Some stops may just be overnight while others may require some brief sight seeing but since I am volunteering out at Flathead Lake....I need to get there quickly. Seems like I 90 is a must and I guess I could take one route there and a different route back.
Map of a route I'd think about - https://binged.it/2vduCEe

This trip is 2,800-3,000 miles - so ...... you might want to try to get 4-10 more days to make the drive - 400 miles a day is 8 plus hours...... every day with little time to do anything else.

Just being realistic here - a 1989 Ford 1 will likely need a little love along the way so I'd plan on some time for that as you go.

Couple facts to keep in Mind - in an RV you are lucky to average 50 MPH - and often lucky to do 40 as you are not in Florida, they do have Mountains and not every road is straight and Flat.

I took you up to Hannibal, MO Kids will enjoy Huck Finn stories here - then out RT 36 - avoids a lot of the traffic and I's for a while - then up to Cody with a drive through Yellowstone to West Yellowstone then on up to Flathead Lake.

I have found over the years that the I's are just worn Out and if not filled with Trucks and Pot Holes then they are under construction or there is an Accident or other problem that will slow you down so I avoid them.

You will encounter a few Mountains - Meaning driving UP for a bit but that is not the real issue - The Going DOWN is the part that you need to be Alert for - Go down in the Gear you came up - yes that's Slow - and Save the Brakes.

Once you get there Likely it will be important to check all the system in the Class C to be sure they are good for the Drive Home - if you have time - try to Catch Colorado and some of what it has on the drive Back.

Let us know more of what you decide - lot's of good info from the poster here.

Hope this helps,

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Old 04-21-2019, 07:23 AM   #10
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Florida to Montana

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Originally Posted by Big Dude View Post
....US-51 to I-55N to St Louis then I-270 I-64 to I-70. At Kansas City, I-29 to I-90 in Sioux Falls.


Just planned my trip from Florida to Montana and will be using this same basic route and have already spent 2 days making plans for overnight stops. Using google maps, KOA directory, and Passport America but itís a chore. There has to be any easier way.
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Old 04-21-2019, 07:44 AM   #11
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Just planned my trip from Florida to Montana and will be using this same basic route and have already spent 2 days making plans for overnight stops. Using google maps, KOA directory, and Passport America but itís a chore. There has to be any easier way.
Just a suggestion - don't worry about where to stop - we have used - https://www.allstays.com/c/wal-mart-locations.htm - allstays you get to travel in and as you want then go every few days find a place to stop to Dump and Refill.

If you are going from "A" to "B" then just roll with the drive - there will be a place for you as you travel - Wal*Mart has security - Lights and when you call they generally will let you know where the quiet spots are in the lot.

When we first started this RV thing 50 years ago you didn't need reservations - now we have found that we can use way-stops along the way and the travel is just more enjoyable - around 2 in the afternoon the DW will look out ahead to see where we might land and just locate something and Call to see if we fit.

For some of us the stress of planning is worst than the stress of not knowing.. so we fall into the no reservations group just makes it more fun. We could jump in the Coach and head to the Rockies tomorrow and not have an issue, pretty sure I could fill the entire Summer with No Reservation and never have a problem.

IMHO the easy way is to go with just a find a Good Route, can't tell you how many nights we have spent with the Generator and A/C running with No Problem.

JMHO,
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Old 04-21-2019, 11:51 AM   #12
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.

If you are going from "A" to "B" then just roll with the drive - there will be a place for you as you travel....

For some of us the stress of planning is worst than the stress of not knowing.. so we fall into the no reservations group just makes it more fun. We could jump in the Coach and head to the Rockies tomorrow and not have an issue, pretty sure I could fill the entire Summer with No Reservation and never have a problem.

IMHO the easy way is to go with just a find a Good Route, can't tell you how many nights we have spent with the Generator and A/C running with No Problem.
This is the way we full-timed travel for 16 years!! Just GO!! When you start getting tired look on a map to see where you'll be ready to stop and then get on Allstays or RVParkReviews. You'll find a place - really. There are also some very nice county and city parks available for camping in the smaller towns. Google the town for a place to stay.
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