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Old 06-29-2014, 09:21 PM   #1
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Travel from Phoenix to Flagstaff

We will be taking I-17 north from Phoenix after the 4th and I'm wondering from those that have made that trip (many I'm sure) what the elevation change is? Is this route fairly mountainous?
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Old 06-29-2014, 09:48 PM   #2
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You do have some fairly steep climbing grades just north of Phoenix, then a fairly long 6% 7% downhill going in to the Verde valley, then a long 6% climb up to the Mogollon ridge. You don't have cliffs at the edge road and it's all 4 lane highway.
Flagstaff is at 7000 ft I think. Have made the trip several times with a 30ft class towing a Ranger truck, and a Fleetwood Bounder Diesel 39 foot long towing a jeep liberty.
Never had any trouble. Just watch you speed when going in to The Verde Valley using your transmission and lower gears .
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Old 06-29-2014, 09:54 PM   #3
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6000ft total but you gain and lose as you ascend. My old '87 does it often from 1/2 way up (4000ft).
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Old 06-29-2014, 10:01 PM   #4
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You do have some fairly steep climbing grades just north of Phoenix, then a fairly long 6% 7% downhill going in to the Verde valley, then a long 6% climb up to the Mogollon ridge. You don't have cliffs at the edge road and it's all 4 lane highway.
Flagstaff is at 7000 ft I think. Have made the trip several times with a 30ft class towing a Ranger truck, and a Fleetwood Bounder Diesel 39 foot long towing a jeep liberty.
Never had any trouble. Just watch you speed when going in to The Verde Valley using your transmission and lower gears .
You have an exhaust brake for those downhill sections Cat? That is always a big help.
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Old 06-29-2014, 10:27 PM   #5
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Yes I do have and use the exhaust brake, going into the Verde Valley I run 55-60mph in 4 speed with the exhaust brake on. Have to tap the service brakes maybe 4 times to keep the speed down to the 55-60 mph
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Old 06-30-2014, 12:37 AM   #6
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I use google maps to see this info. Go to directions ..... put in your start and finish ...... click on the bicycle icon ..... you will see elevation info for the route ...... always check that the bike route has not deviated from the car route

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Phoe...35.1982836!3e1
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Old 06-30-2014, 07:33 AM   #7
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I use google maps to see this info. Go to directions ..... put in your start and finish ...... click on the bicycle icon ..... you will see elevation info for the route ...... always check that the bike route has not deviated from the car route

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Phoe...35.1982836!3e1
Well I'll be darned. I am a triathlon guy and started as a cyclist...I have a multitude of different training and data logging pages I use, (Strava, Map My Ride, Garmin Connect, Ride with GPS) but never have I used the Google cycling portion. I tried to create a route with Strava and it would send me on all the side roads. Thank you!
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Old 06-30-2014, 04:52 PM   #8
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Made that trip many time, in the heat of the day you really have to watch the coolant temps. My peak HP is at 1800 rpm so on the steep grades I keep the motor right at 1700-1800 and just select the gear to keep it at the speed I want. Once when it was over a 105 degrees I had to come all the way down to third gear to keep the temps at or just below 200. You will feel the loss of horsepower as you start getting around 6000ft.
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Old 06-30-2014, 05:03 PM   #9
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google earth (earth.google.com l-oad the program) and select "get directions" put in the trip start and end. Then right click on the blue route on the map and select "show elevation profile" which will show a graph including all the stats you are looking for including max ascent and decents as well a overall elev changes at any point along the route.

Will answer all your questions and works for us.
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Old 06-30-2014, 05:08 PM   #10
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Just did it so.....
Elev gain and loss 10,629 to -4815
Max slope 7.3% and -8.1%
Range 144mi
Elevation min, avg, max 1066, 3761, 7001
Numbers are in feet.
Hope this helps
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Old 06-30-2014, 06:08 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qwert66 View Post
Just did it so.....
Elev gain and loss 10,629 to -4815
Max slope 7.3% and -8.1%
Range 144mi
Elevation min, avg, max 1066, 3761, 7001
Numbers are in feet.
Hope this helps
You know, I'm pretty tech savvy and I'm a little embarrassed I didn't know this.

Good info, Thanks.
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Old 06-30-2014, 06:16 PM   #12
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It's a fairly straight interstate with some curves but definitely no switchbacks or drop-offs. It's heavily traveled by RVers, semi trucks, and millions of others. It does go up and down and the main areas are up from Phoenix to Hwy 69/Prescott then a down into Camp Verde then a long up toward Flagstaff. For the downs be sure to get in low gear BEFORE you start down. Many truckers and RVers will be going slow so don't let it bother you. There are passing lanes for the others. It's a beautiful drive. Enjoy!
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:03 PM   #13
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The wife and I just traveled that route a few weeks ago when we purchased our motorhome. I did not have any trouble. Had to keep the RPM's up around 2500 to keep up speed.

Watch for semis as they usually move really slow up the mountains.

You have to watch traffic coming up behind you in case you need to move over for a semi.

The temps were in the 100's while we were there. We left Phoenix around 6:30am to beat the heat.

It is a beautiful drive. Have driven it several times in other vehicles this was the first time in a motor home.
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Old 07-20-2014, 04:39 PM   #14
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6000ft total but you gain and lose as you ascend. My old '87 does it often from 1/2 way up (4000ft).
Just ran it again. My '87 pulled the grades at 45 plus pulling a Neon on a dolly.
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