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dennypearson

Kansas City to Reno

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This summer we will be driving our motorhome  from Kansas City to Reno. We are trying to decide whether to take I 80 or take I70 through Denver and pick up Rt 50 in Salina. Our question is about driving conditions like terrain, road condition and traffic and views from the road. Rt 50 from Salina to Reno looks like 2 lane, has anyone had any issues with that stretch? Thanks, Denny Pearson. ( We are new members & this is our first post to the forum, let us know if we doing something incorrectly)

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23 minutes ago, dennypearson said:

This summer we will be driving our motorhome  from Kansas City to Reno. We are trying to decide whether to take I 80 or take I70 through Denver and pick up Rt 50 in Salina. Our question is about driving conditions like terrain, road condition and traffic and views from the road. Rt 50 from Salina to Reno looks like 2 lane, has anyone had any issues with that stretch? Thanks, Denny Pearson. ( We are new members & this is our first post to the forum, let us know if we doing something incorrectly)

Welcome to the FMCA forums! Your first post looks good. I would recomend creating a personal signature with your coach information for future help.

What type of unit do you have, Diesel Pusher, Gas and will you be towing or not? Another good question, do you have brakes on your car in tow? Colorado can be tricky with mountains and switchbacks. 

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I will work on the personal signature, thanks for that advice. We have a 2017 Tiffin Breeze, cummins diesel with engine brakes, tow is jeep Patriot with SMI electric brakes. The Cummins is the 275 hp with turbo charger which I am told will help with the altitude changes. The Breeze has run well in the mountains form NC up through Vermont,  and NH, steep hills but maximum altitude has been only 4,000ish. 

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With that setup there really is no boundaries. If it was a gas coach with no brakes on the Jeep your routing would be different for safety. Not that a gas coach couldn't do it but it would be risky. 

We have some regular members on here from Colorado, hoping they chime in of preferred routes.

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Welcome!

I was on I-70 from Grand Junction to Denver last July...not doing that again!  Been on I-80, both directions and prefer it, just not much to look at.  US rout 50 (the loneliest highway),  wonderful drive, just have a full fuel tank when you get on it.  There are some service, but few and far between..Truck Stop when you get to US 93 Junction!  A lot of Mountain passes, and some of the most beautiful scenic views anywhere...take your time to explore, stop & take pictures!  I took a week, last time in 2014. 

If my rig has no problems, yours won't either! 

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Not sure what problems you had on I70 from Denver to Grand Junction but I could avoid that stretch by taking I 80 from Kansas City to Salt Lake City then drop down I15 to pick up Rt 50. It adds about 50 extra miles but you get see Salt Lake, avoid I70 form Denver to Grand Junction, then still get to experience Rt 50. Does that make any sense? 

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Drove from Portland OR to El Paso TX, last summer, worst traffic the whole trip was between Ogden UT and Salt Lake City, UT. All stop and go, no accidents just rolling slow downs.

Jim

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Denny,

Welcome to the Forum.

I-80 has some ups and down hill but no mountains from Kansas City to Rock Springs, WY. I-70 going through Denver and west take you over some really high passes and heavy traffic through Denver. I myself would take I-80, stop and see my son in Cheyenne then on west. But that is just me.

Good luck, happy travels and again welcome.

Herman

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Denny,

On I-70 is as Herman said, lots of passes and tunnels.  60 miles from Denver, climbing all the way, is Eisenhower Pass, 11,118 feet...I was there July 14, 2018 on my way to Gillette, WY. It was snowing!  I only took I-70 East Bound because we came out of Cortez, CO. 

I-70 also has a lot of Semi's crawling up the passes and in a coach, I'm not as nimble as a car!  Check CDOT for construction and closures!  Not saying to you that you should stay away...that's your choice, but if you have not had a lot of Mountain driving in a coach with toad, use caution!  Also, use your gears and exhaust break going down hill...If 40 is good enough for a 18 wheeler, it's good enough for me! 

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From KC, I- 80 is easily 135 miles or so north to Exit 10 in Iowa. From Exit 10 you should cross the Missouri River and take Neb 2 to Lincoln where you  will finally be able to join I-80. Read a Map and you will see that 80 does not run through KC.

When you join I-15  in Salt Lake it is near 80 miles south to the Nephi exit onto Utah 132 that will take you to US 6.  That will take you to Delta Utah where you will finally join US50. At this point I think your estimate of 50 or so extra miles is considerably more .

I have run all of  the roads I suggested a number of times in an 18 wheeler.

My choice would be I-70 west out of KC through  Denver and on to  Utah. Never run 70 west from Denver late in the week unless you like setting in traffic. Go through Denver early in the week if possible. 

As Carl suggested, make sure that your fuel tank is full, and I add, check your tires for proper pressure. My first trip across US 50 was as a hitch hiker in 1964. It is an interesting ride. We love Reno also. Enjoy!!

 

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Thanks so much for everyone's advice. I guess the trade off is that you can choose to take your time and  run up and down some pretty steep hills if you want to see the mountains or have an easier drive and miss the view. 

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I-80 is not without it's problems. Between Laramie and Rawlins high winds can be a problem . On that stretch Elk Mountain sets south of 80 all by itself. It creates its own weather. There will be 18 wheelers in large numbers. Closer. to Evanston you will run into  some hard pulls on the "Sisters" and I have even seen some snow in that stretch in June. 80 in Utah is quite curvy until you get to Park City, and then you have to deal with Parley's Summit. A busy  steep downgrade with several lanes  and  lower speed limits for the big guys. Salt Lake City  often has heavy traffic. Just a "heads up" for you.

 

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Still planning my trip out west, I'll be staying in Colorado Springs with some family, next stop Moab UT. Should I head up Rt 25 to I 70 in Denver or can I run across US 24, US50 then I70 to Moab area? Are these roads okay to travel in my Tiffin Breeze?  This route would keep me out of Denver and off of I 70 for most of the ride. Thanks again for any advice. Denny Pearson

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Yes you can run US24 westbound from Colorado Springs.  Have run that stretch in both motorhomes and also in an 18 wheeler. Take US285 south from the  Buena Vista area to US50 then westbound over Monarch Pass. The pass is 11,312 high , but 50 is well maintained . Have traveled it in two Motorhomes, an F-150 pulling a travel trailer and in 18 wheelers. The downgrades are lengthy but the curves are gentle. I see that you have a diesel with I am guessing a compression brake. US50 joins I-70  with about 20 miles left to the Utah line west side of Grand Junction. I have run US50 across Nevada in 18wheelers and hitch hiking, but never in an RV.  If I had a reason to run it with a motorhome I would. 

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33 minutes ago, manholt said:

Love US50, have run it both ways, in gas coach & DP. :wub:

Loneliest Road In America-- one of our favorites!

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I live in Colorado, and grew up in Medford Oregon. My choice of routes always led me to 50 if I had the time and that was dozens of times between 1976 and the present day. I have had Porsches, Audis and the coach across it. East to west is the friendliest if in a coach. Be sure your brakes are in good working order. West to east offers greater climbing opportunities. The sights are wonderful, the roads intersecting the Interstate 80 north of 50, are all spectacular, scenic byways and all different from one another. Be sure you fuel tank is full as prices are high and sometimes far apart, 100+ miles. Yes it is a two lane all the way across the majority of Utah and Nevada. There is a very good reason it is called the "Loneliest Road". . Enjoy! 

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