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  1. Default Georgia to Ohio to California

    Hello! First off, this is the best road trip resource I have come across. I have been reading the forums for tips on an east coast to west coast winter road trip, but I was wondering if I could get some expert advice on an upcoming trip I'm planning.

    My boyfriend and I will be driving from Savannah, Georgia to northern California at the beginning of January. We are planning on stopping first in Charlottesville, Virginia, then driving to Columbus, Ohio, then on to Sacramento, California. I think we can figure out from Savannah to Ohio, but I would like advice on the best routes from Columbus to Sacramento. My boyfriend has a lot of experience driving in the snow, but I don't--I would like to know the (theoretically) safest route. We're thinking about driving between 8 and 10 hours a day. What stops would you recommend?

    This is my first road trip (besides northern California to southern California)...I'm so excited! I know it's not the best time of the year to drive, but any advice would be appreciated.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default a basic route

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I-80 is one of the best winter cross country routes, and it is also the shortest for your trip, so that would seem like the ideal path.

    From Columbus, take I-70 to Indy, then use I-74 to meet up with I-80 at the Illinois/Iowa border.

    You didn't say how much time you have for this trip, but you'll want at least 4, but preferably 5 days to make the trip using your very reasonable plan of driving 8-10 hours a day.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Central California

    Default Or...


    Depending on your vehicle, weather, and confidence with driving in snow, you might also consider driving I-70 through Colorado before heading north to Salt Lake City and I-80. The route past Dillon Lake, Copper Mountain ski area and Vail ski area are spectacular in winter. You only have two high, but well plowed, passes to cross. If you have a little extra time, you could sneak in a visit to Arches National Park in Utah.

    Even if you take I-80, if the weather looks good you could cut south on I-76 in western Nebraska to cross Colorado from Denver to Grand Junction. It would only cost you an extra day or so, and the scenery could be unforgettable. Remember, skiers drive these roads routinely.

    Once you get to Reno you have the choice of taking I-80 on across the Sierra Nevada mountains, or swinging a little south to Lake Tahoe and cruising down Hwy 50 to Sacramento. Both routes are beautiful...your choice.

    Have a good one,

    Craig Sheumaker
    co-author of the travel guide: America's Living History-The Early Years

  4. Default

    Thanks so much for the responses! They sound great. It's just what I needed--some specific routes with a few scenery suggestions. I can't wait to get on the road!

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