Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Which route would be less higher grade
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 > Which route would be less higher grade

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Alan_Hepburn

San Jose, Ca, USA

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Posted: 06/14/20 02:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We did Hwy 50 from Dodge City, KS to Sacramento, CA last summer - Monarch Pass is a nice drive, but it can be a challenge for most RVs. Our 36 foot Workhorse Bounder, pulling a smart car, was able to maintain about 25 mph up to the top. My only regret is not stopping at the gift shop at the summit!


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time2roll

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Posted: 06/14/20 03:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

With the concerns listed I recommend 70 over 50. But I have never driven 50, looks like a great drive to me but I don't worry about slow, winding, steep roads.


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4runnerguy

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Posted: 06/18/20 05:35pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I-80 may not have the grades but it can have some nasty winds across Wyoming. Can make towing a challenge if it's a cross wind. If it's a headwind, plan on some extra time and a lot of extra gas! Probably only driven this 50 times so it's the one I have the least experience with.

I-70 does have some long grades, especially if you are going east to west. Downhills on Vail Pass and the west side of the tunnel are both around 7 miles of 7% grade. But lots of RV's and trucks do this every year. Great scenery.

Monarch Pass on US 50 has a pretty long downhill >6% grade on the west side. Also, whether you come out of Denver on US 285 or up from Pueblo on US 50 (along the river so no passes there!), either route is much less of a pull than I-70 out of Denver to the tunnel. Likewise a scenic route.

To avoid Monarch Pass (westbound) you can take US 285 south out of Poncha Springs (Poncha Pass is easy). At Saguache, head west on CO 114 and connect back up with US 50 east of Gunnison. Reverse the directions if you're going west to east. A lot of extra miles just to avoid the downhill, but it is an option.


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lewisr

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Posted: 06/22/20 07:54am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Definitely I-80 is your best choice. Winds can be bad in Wyoming, but with your low profile trailer you'll be fine.


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Thom02099

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Posted: 06/24/20 06:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

scottsnider wrote:

I was thinking of taking I 80 over Colorado but was thinking of maybe trying I 70 but heard that Hwy 50 might also be good, so my question is how is 50 over 70? Is 50 flatter over all and are there any large ups or downs? The downs get to me as I have had some scary moments in the past even though I was doing what is right I just don't feel comfortable on a steep or long down hill. I have done the grape vine a few times and that is not bad. Toyota Trundra 5.7 and a 22ft HiLo trailer about 5000 lbs fully loaded. Would love to hear from those that know the routes.


Point of note -- I-80 goes across Wyoming. I-70 for Colorado.

You don't mention direction of travel. I-80 across Wyoming has it's highest point just east of Laramie at ~9600 feet, and then down hill eastbound to Cheyenne. If going westbound, about 5 miles of descent down to Laramie.

Lots of rolling terrain from Laramie to points west. Depending on your direction of travel, you'll have generally head winds headed westbound, or tail winds headed eastbound. Your rig combo should compensate some for the winds as you have a lower profile than most travel trailers.


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