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Old 06-02-2016, 09:28 AM   #1
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Crossing the Rockies

I am in WI and going to travel to Moab UT in late Aug. I need to stop in Western NE on the way, so I am interested in a good route to Moab from western NE. I have a 2013 Itasca Cambria 30' with a Ford V-10 engine and towing a car. I am thinking that I-70 going west out of Denver is a bit too mountainous, so is I-80 a better solution? And if so, what would be the best road to head south at some point to hit Moab? .
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Old 06-02-2016, 09:31 AM   #2
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Sorry, I meant I-80 as a better possibility.
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Old 06-02-2016, 11:39 AM   #3
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Go to Rock Springs Wy and head south to I70. Iwould go that way also because of traffic on I70 out of Denver- Very heavy traffic,hate driving on that road.
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Old 06-02-2016, 01:25 PM   #4
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If you have time we'd take I-70 in Nebraska and pick a secondary road south 283 or 281? to take you down to Hwy 50. Take it west toward Pueblo, CO and all the way across Colorado to Montrose and on to I-70 again - beautiful scenery and lots of place to explore.
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Old 06-02-2016, 01:31 PM   #5
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I-70 through Colorado is one of the most beautiful sections of interstate in the country. I'd hate for you to miss it.

Unless that car is at or over your 5k tow limit I'd take I-70, at least once.
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Old 06-02-2016, 02:54 PM   #6
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Good to hear this! We are hitting I-70 on our way to Oregon next week!

Nothing beats a beautiful scenic drive to break up the monotony!
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Old 06-02-2016, 03:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wisrick View Post
I am in WI and going to travel to Moab UT in late Aug. I need to stop in Western NE on the way, so I am interested in a good route to Moab from western NE. I have a 2013 Itasca Cambria 30' with a Ford V-10 engine and towing a car. I am thinking that I-70 going west out of Denver is a bit too mountainous, so is I-80 a better solution? And if so, what would be the best road to head south at some point to hit Moab? .
If you have an air mattress, make sure to let some of the air out or POP.
You will probably pop a potato chip bag or two !
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Old 06-02-2016, 04:19 PM   #8
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We've been over the Rockies on I-70 (west to east) and agree with the scenic drive comment. As I recall there were two passes to cross at Vail and Eisenhower tunnel and neither were much of an issue for us.
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Old 06-02-2016, 04:29 PM   #9
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Here's a good site to see the Colorado passes and grades if you're concerned about steepness:

https://www.codot.gov/travel/maximum...in-passes.html
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Old 06-04-2016, 10:55 PM   #10
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Although I have yet to take my 35' Bounder Classic over I-70 westbound, I've lived in Colorado for almost 35 years and have hauled almost everything else over that road, including rental trucks and camp trailers. I wouldn't hesitate to take my RV over that road. Just have to be careful going downhill.

Also, as a previous poster said, watch out for the elevation change and its effect on stuff. My wife once made some special salad dressing, put it in a sealed tupperware container, and the top popped right off going over Berthoud Pass and it spilled all over the floor of my (then) new pickup (hauling our pop-up to a campout). My truck smelled like salad for weeks!
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Old 06-05-2016, 12:23 AM   #11
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Unless you want to take time to tour other parts of Colorado, I-70 is the way to go. the I-70 grades are not bad enough to justify going all the way north to I80 and then come all the way back south to Moab. Whatever alternate route you try, its still going to involve some steep up & down.
The traffic around Denver is a valid issue, but if you can time your drive through the Denver area to avoid weekday rush hours, then its not so bad if you're staying on the same interstate. Just don't make the mistake of exiting the freeway in the Denver metro area. Make your gas, food & pit stops far outside Denver.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Wisrick View Post
I am in WI and going to travel to Moab UT in late Aug. I need to stop in Western NE on the way, so I am interested in a good route to Moab from western NE. I have a 2013 Itasca Cambria 30' with a Ford V-10 engine and towing a car. I am thinking that I-70 going west out of Denver is a bit too mountainous, so is I-80 a better solution? And if so, what would be the best road to head south at some point to hit Moab? .
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Old 06-05-2016, 10:41 AM   #12
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I used my travel software to look at two routes for you to consider ,,, I used Sidney, NE as the starting point

  1. From Sidney travel state roads to Sterling, CO ... that connects you to I-76 ... stay on I-76 until it joins I-70 on the northwest corner of Denver ... stay on I-70 until US 191 in Utah.
  2. From Sidney travel west on I-80 to Laramie, WY ... the WY 230 and CO 127, CO 126, CO 14, to US 40 through Steamboat Springs to Craig then south on CO 13 to join I-70
I have travelled both of these roads in motorhomes ...

1) is definitely more scenic ... there are about 5 major pulls and 4 down hills ... a V-10 is definitely capable of getting you to Moab via this route.

2) avoids the Denver/front range traffic congestion ... there are a couple of pulls on this route ... it is a pleasant drive ... this will take you through Glenwood Canyon which is scenic.
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Old 06-05-2016, 11:08 AM   #13
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No right or wrong on this. We've done the I70 route East/West about four times now. The first trip was with our 98 Bounder, on a 99 F53 Chassis with he V10. This was West bound only. Sure, we went slow up the hills. And sure, I did slow down at the top of grades and choose 2nd gear to go down some stretches, and then up to 3rd. Note that your year coach will have better brakes and your era V10 has a bit higher compression, and the 5spd transmission is much improved over our era combo. We did the 'stabbing the brakes' to slow down to usually 5 mph below the speed I wanted to maintain. When we got over 5 mph - is when I'd stab the brakes to slow down. I also recommend, as it is often an overlooked maintenance item. A brake flush and use a Brake Fluid that can handle higher temps, to avoid boiling of the brake lines fluids. This is an item where it is worth paying a bit more for a better brake fluid!

Go slow, and enjoy the ride. Try it at least once, and then decide if you want to ever do it again!

Note: Though I climb the grades slowly in our DP, our down hills are drama free with the 2 Stage Jake Compression Brake!

Best to you, and all,
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Old 06-15-2016, 08:20 PM   #14
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We just crossed the Great Divide, and have stayed in Steamboat Springs for the past 3 days.

The only issue we had was the cork popped out of my wife's Patron bottle. I snapped it back in at Alma, CO (highest incorporated city in the US at nearly 11,000 feet) and all was fine at Steamboat.

BTW...AWESOME drive. I hate to say it, but we drove a good bit of it at 45 mph just so we could see the sights and take pictures.

Highly recommended.
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