Journey with Confidence RV GPS App RV Trip Planner RV LIFE Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Take a Speed Test Free 7 Day Trial ×
RV Trip Planning Discussions

Go Back   iRV2 Forums > MOTORHOME FORUMS > Class A Motorhome Discussions
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 07-07-2020, 08:43 PM   #15
Senior Member
Sonic's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: So Cal Wine Country
Posts: 698
Lots of good advice above about relaxing and taking your time, following a truck (youíll learn a lot by watching truck drivers), scrubbing speed through short firm application of the brakes vs. riding them, watching your speed at the top. Youíll occasionally encounter impatient truckers riding your tail. Ignore them and focus on the task at hand.
Also, there are many YouTube videos that drivers have made from their dash cams of driving various roads around the country. I occasionally view these to preview a drive.
If you search YouTube for the name of the road and destination. Something like ďDriving TN-66 to Pigeon Forgeď you may find one.
2014 Newmar Ventana 4037, XCR Tag Axle, Cummins ISL, All-electric
Sonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free! RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 07-07-2020, 09:35 PM   #16
Senior Member
BlueThunder4's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 233
Agree with what others have said about letting the trans downshifts control most of your speed and bleed off excess speed when needed with short firm brake applications. Donít be afraid to let the V-10 rev out, it is designed to rev and should not be expected to stay in low Rpmís like a diesel that is not how it was designed. When itís screaming going up steep grades or heavy trans braking coming down, itís working as it should. I have traveled up and down the entire west coast in some very steep and winding terrain towing a toad and we have had zero issues. Ignore the impatient drivers you may encounter behind you and keep your speed on target, they will pass you soon enough and be gone. Have fun, relax, and you will be fine.
2017 Fleetwood Flair LXE 31B
2020 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon
BlueThunder4 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2020, 10:09 PM   #17
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: OKC
Posts: 567
Not sure what your total weight is. But I have the V10/6 speed setup like I’m assuming you do. I’m lighter, but also have less gearing in the axle. Absolutely use tow/haul, as has been said by a few. Leave it in Drive on the selector. As you start descending, a quick stab and release on the brake pedal will downshift the transmission. For very steep downhills, you want to be in the lowest gear that will obtain your comfortable speed. So, you pick your (very patient) speed at the top, and do the quick brake stab and release thing a few times until the transmission is in a low enough gear that you’re in high revs. Then coast down. Foot over the brake, but only pressing the brake to downshift the transmission, or to scrub off speed for a short time. Do not ride the brake. For my 11k rv pulling a 5k trailer, I can do the worst of the Rockies with almost no normal braking—it’s all engine braking. You’re heavier, but I think you have significantly lower gearing, which will help.

Anyway, wanted to chime in. Twinboat and a few others have this 6 speed transmission. Listen to them. And let the engine rev, that’s it’s job.
2011 Jayco Embark Super C
Cummins 8.3 350
DirtRider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2020, 11:24 PM   #18
Senior Member
jkorn's Avatar
Tiffin Owners Club
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Third rock from the Sun
Posts: 524
Send a message via Yahoo to jkorn
I’ve done many mountain passes. When you get to the top, BEGIN your descent NO faster than the speed you were going uphill. It will be much easier to manage your downhill speed if you start out at the speed you need going down hill. The same going up. Just because the limit is 65 if you went up at 35, you need to go down at 35. Then it will be easy to control your speed and not burn out your brakes. You’re not driving a car. Try and remember that. If you take this advise you will have no problems and will have a great drive thru wonderful county. Jeff
2021 Tiffin Allegro Bus 45OPP
2014 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP, 450HP
2015 Jeep GC, Air Force 1, Roadmaster Nighthawk
jkorn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2020, 12:22 AM   #19
Senior Member
rarebear.nm's Avatar
Excel Owners Club
Winnebago Owners Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Santa Fe, NM
Posts: 6,290
Never driven in the Smokies yet. But I have spent 55 years driving the western mountains.

Largely same advise as many above with a few differences. Use the tow/haul if you have one, it will do a lots. Typically you're not going back down the same grade as you came up. So you don't really know what gear you might have used coming up. When I get to the top of grade just before it starts down, that's where I downshift. But I use one gear lower than I guess I would have used going up. Start out slow on the decent. It's very easy to add speed, but can be a problem to bleed it off once you start going too fast. If you have a diesel with an engine/exhaust brake turn it on at the top. Use the service brakes as little as you can. Reserve them for when they really required. When you do use them, tap them lightly to drop some speed. Do not ride them, common mistake. On some grades I may start out at the top in one gear and down/up shift multiple times in the trip down. My goal for any down grade is not to use the service brakes at all, all done by gears, tow/haul and exhaust brake in various combinations. Different vehicles have different braking options.

You should be going slow enough not to have white knuckles and be worried about controlling the rig. In my diesel with the our 5th I may be applying fuel instead of brakes.

Keep in mind your job is to get you,your rig and passengers down the other side safely. Do not worry about traffic that backup behind you. When you can pull over safely do so and let the traffic clear. On some grades the traffic is non-stop snake like and don't worry about it.

A few old timers here may recall a trucker's song "Wolf Creek Pass" by CW McCall. About an exciting ride down the south side of Wolf Creek Pass in Colorado. They end up crashing into the side of a feed store.
Fred & Denise (RVM157) New Mexico
2007 Excel Classic 30RSO & Coach House 272XL E450
2007 RAM 3500, Diesel, 6Spd Auto, SWD, 4x4, CC & LB
rarebear.nm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2020, 04:31 AM   #20
Senior Member
Monaco Owners Club
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: reynoldsburg, ohio
Posts: 432
speed going up the same as speed going down...........we have a dp, drove knoxville to asheville on 40 using throttle and engine brake, didn't have to touch service brake once......................let your tow/haul mode help you out.........and don't be afraid to have others whiz by you...................
jsmmonaco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2020, 05:45 AM   #21
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 229
I'm always slower going down than up. Wolf creek pass into Pagosa Springs is 25mph for a solid 20 minutes @2800 rpm.
99 Tradewinds, 37ft, pushed by 2013 CRV, connected by Brute Elite tow bar.
lockinload is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2020, 08:38 PM   #22
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2017
Location: Metamora, MI
Posts: 5,293
Originally Posted by oldcoon View Post
Whatever gear you climb with use that same gear going down.
That is not an accurate recommendation just a worn maxim. The two sides of a hill are never the same.

You use the gear that you need to use at the time.
2002 Newmar Mountain Aire Limited 4370 w/ Spartan K2 and Cummins 500hp
ASE Master Certified (a long.....time ago...)
Dav L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-14-2020, 04:44 AM   #23
Senior Member
Betr2Trvl's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Georgia
Posts: 1,723
Both of these recent threads are directly relevant to the OPs question

This is referenced in my 3rd post in the above thread, and again, directly related to mountain driving.

You need to have confidence in your equipment, and confidence and knowledge of how to drive your rig in an appropriate manner for the road conditions, otherwise you are putting yourself and others at risk, in the mountains or otherwise.
2015 Tiffin Allegro 31SA; 24k chassis, Sumo springs
2015 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk
Betr2Trvl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2020, 07:46 AM   #24
Senior Member
Commercial Member
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: behind the steering wheel
Posts: 2,280
i can tell you, south out of gatlinberg is an adventure. you will find fingerprints embedded in the steering wheel. it can be done, but dont.
azpete is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2020, 01:44 PM   #25
Senior Member
TimmyB's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Florida, originally Michigan
Posts: 1,184
Another vote for (a) using your Tow/Haul feature and (b) taking the I-75 to I-40 past Knoxville route. More miles, FAR less headache. Also, if you come through Knoxville at the wrong time of day, 640 around the city is a nice highway and avoids the city congestion. Again, a couple more miles, but moving is WAY better than stop and go in a Class A hauling a toad.
2020 Fleetwood Bounder 35P, Blue Ox Avail towbar, Blue Ox Patriot II brake system, EezTire TPMS system, 2021 Ford Ranger Tremor (toad)
TimmyB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2020, 02:03 PM   #26
Senior Member
pduggs's Avatar
Monaco Owners Club
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Somewhere Nice
Posts: 1,438
We drove through parts of the Smokies getting into our park, just south of Pigeon Forge last Fall. We were forced to take a winding tight two lane road for about 40 miles. I recommend going very slow. Some of the curves are very tight and there isn’t much of a shoulder. I had a long line of cars behind me until I found a spot to pull over and let them by.
2008 Monaco Dynasty Squire
Paul & Luci
pduggs is offline   Reply With Quote


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
RV Tips & Tricks - Snowbird Tips You NEED To Know... ExcelRVGuy Excel Owner's Forum 17 02-17-2017 05:57 PM
Driving in the Mountains CWJK55 Class C Motorhome Discussions 7 03-04-2016 02:14 PM
Newbie question driving mountains on wet roads sunset4k Class A Motorhome Discussions 15 09-24-2015 07:38 PM
Smokey Mountains Elkmont Campground from Nashville area? Driving suggestions? davidki Navigation, Routes & Roads 10 01-28-2015 08:48 PM
Driving in the mountains of Colorado BaD42 Workhorse and Chevrolet Chassis Motorhome Forum 32 03-30-2006 02:56 PM

» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:59 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.