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  1. Default XC Move: Cleveland to Portland, OR

    Greetings and Happy Holidays!

    My wife and I will be moving cross-country in mid-Jan., traveling from Cleveland to Portland, OR. We're having trouble in determining a route and would appreciate any advice.

    1. I-80 Route: I-80 to I-84
    2. I-90 Route: I-80 to I-29 to I-90

    The trip out to (about) Omaha, NE would be the same for either route, but then we'd have to decide.

    From what I could tell, #1 seems slightly shorter (by about 100 mi), but also looks more mountainous than Option #2. Any truth to that?

    So, any comparisons / info / recommendations on winter driving conditions for the two routes west of Omaha would be greatly appreciated. Obviously, driving a 22ft. moving truck, I'd like to avoid as much bad weather (particularly over the mountains) as possible.

    Thanks, Jeff

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Weather is Critical, Flexibility is Key

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    Almost anything anyone tells you this early about the weather conditions you will find on either route is nothing more than a guess. You do have, as you have noted, the luxury of two possible ways to get from Cleveland to Portland. There are also several options for switching between them, including I-25 and I-15. Your best bet, then is to wait until just shortly before departure, get the most up to date weather forecast you can, and make your final choice on that basis. You should also schedule at least one day more for your trip than you think you'll need, so that you can sit out the worst of any adverse conditions you might meet. Since Interstate highways are all built to the same restrictions on grades and curves, there really won't be much difference between your two possibilities in that regard, so weather will be your deciding factor.


  3. Default

    Thanks for the insight Buck... Weather will definitely be the key factor. Is I-90 in-fact less mountainous than I-80 through the Rockies? Or at least a shorter duration? I can hardly tell from the online satelite maps...

    Thanks again,

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default I-80 is the "flattest"

    Quote Originally Posted by jah133 View Post
    Thanks for the insight Buck... Weather will definitely be the key factor. Is I-90 in-fact less mountainous than I-80 through the Rockies?
    Actually I-80 has considerably less (net) elevation gain and loss along your route than I-90.


  5. Default

    Thanks for the advice...

    Would I-94 be any better than the other two options? Also, I've heard that snow chains may be required on stretches of any/all of these routes... any truth to that?


  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default I-94

    I-94 is another viable option, although it would add a some extra miles to your trip. I would suspect it would only be a better choice for you if it would allow you to get north of a storm hitting Nebraska and South Dakota during your travel. I-94 reconnects with I-90 before it reaches the Rockies in Montana, so while you bypass the Black Hills, its not going to provide significant relief from Mountainous travel.

    Chains are never a bad idea when traveling through the west. However, if you are planning to stick to the Interstates and you reach conditions where chains would be required, you'd probably be better off finding a motel and waiting until the roads are cleared and safe for continued travel.

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