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Old 02-28-2014, 07:09 AM   #1
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Source for highway grade and elevation?

I live in San Diego and purchased my first 5th Wheel from a dealer in the Denver area. I'm planning to go back and pick it up as soon as I can determine a time frame where the route will be free of snow or freezing conditions. Right now I'm just checking my weather apps for weather conditions in cities and communities along my proposed route. I'm wondering if there is a better way to do this and also to determine where along my route will I encounter the greatest grade changes so I can anticipate and plan accordingly. Haven't found a good resource for this info online yet. Any suggestions? Thanks!
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Old 02-28-2014, 07:16 AM   #2
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Traveling in Colorado this time of year is day by day based on the weather forecast so you'll need to keep a close eye on that. if you want to avoid a lot of grade changes take a look at taking I-25 South to either I-40 or I-10. You will have to go over Raton pass in NM but other than that it's not to bad.
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Old 02-28-2014, 07:34 AM   #3
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I was considering the southerly route that you describe, that's something I'll take a serious look at. The dealer says I can leave the trailer there as long as I need to but I would like to get it as soon as I can weather permitting.
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Old 02-28-2014, 07:36 AM   #4
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x2... Definitely head south out of Denver on I-25 and over Raton Pass as you enter New Mexico. Raton Pass is only about 8,000 ft and a pretty easy climb. This is a much easier route and less weather-risky than I-70 West.

With the exception of a snow day we have almost as many sunny days a year as San Diego. Most of the winter the I-25 corridor is clear of snow (it is clear now). So if you have a few days to play with upon your arrival to Denver, check the weather and if it is clear you can comfortably hit the road. From Denver you can comfortably be in Albuquerque in an easy day of driving. If you continue south to I-10 you have little risk of hitting snow.

Restaurant recommendation: Depending on the time of day that you pass into New Mexico do not miss stopping in Las Vegas, NM (don't look for neon and silly hotel/casino's) and go to Charlie's Bakery and Cafe. This place is the bomb, especially for breakfast! And they have a huge open lot for parking a rig across the street.
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Old 02-28-2014, 07:42 AM   #5
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I was considering the southerly route that you describe, that's something I'll take a serious look at. The dealer says I can leave the trailer there as long as I need to but I would like to get it as soon as I can weather permitting.
We're headed to SoCal in a couple of weeks, we go at the same time every year, we've learned that we just get everything ready to go and pull out when the weather gives us a window of opportunity.
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Old 02-28-2014, 07:45 AM   #6
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weather-risky than I-70 West
At all cost do not travel I-70 west of Denver during the ski season, especially Friday Saturday or Sundays. Your taking your life in your hands...Even on clear days you can encounter 5-10 mile backups....slow moving vehicles in one lane and race car drivers in the others.

I have taken many ski trips out there and let the bus driver worry. I'll sit back and watch.
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Old 02-28-2014, 07:56 AM   #7
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Get the Mountain Directory. There is one for the east and west. I have used them for years. There is also a cd you can purchase. Worth the money to feel better about the roads you are going to take.
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:07 AM   #8
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Just ordered the mountain directory!
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:10 AM   #9
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I think since I have a new new truck and a new 5th wheel I'll take the more forgiving southerly route. I have time since I've retired and I would rather take a leisurely drive that takes a bit longer than a white knuckle drive and save a half a day. Thanks all for your input, it's really helpful. What source do folks use to check road conditions?
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:16 AM   #10
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Most states I have traveled in have a web site. Go to the state home page and look for DOT or transportation.
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:33 AM   #11
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I think since I have a new new truck and a new 5th wheel I'll take the more forgiving southerly route. I have time since I've retired and I would rather take a leisurely drive that takes a bit longer than a white knuckle drive and save a half a day. Thanks all for your input, it's really helpful. What source do folks use to check road conditions?
Gidean, here is the website to use for Colorado road conditions. There are state DOT road condition websites for each state.
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:33 AM   #12
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Retirement means we can travel 250 miles a day and get home when we want! Take it easy, see the sights, the house will still be there _ unless California slide farther west.
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Old 02-28-2014, 03:10 PM   #13
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Great information and thanks for the link. I agree on taking our time and seeing the sites.
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Old 02-28-2014, 03:24 PM   #14
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Great information and thanks for the link. I agree on taking our time and seeing the sites.
If you have time, Santa FE NM is nice and it's an easy pull from Denver on the first day, if you want a longer pull, we've heard that there is a nice campground in Las Cruces.
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