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  1. #1

    Default I-15, north from Salt Lake City into Montana?

    Gents and ladies-

    I'm pondering a trip to MT and UT in the late summer/early fall and have some potential to use SLC as my destination airport even though the bulk of the trip will be boonie-bashing in MT, ID, and possibly even NV. Flying into any of Montana's cities can be an all-day affair and requires using my most detested of carriers--NorthWORST Airlines, so entering and leaving from SLC is far more desireable.

    I can get a morning nonstop flight from Raleigh to SLC and arrive there at 10:30am local time, so I'm thinking of doing that and then take a long afternoon drive to Jackson, MT, in the Big Hole. It's just under 400 miles but all other than the last 45 miles is I-15. I am familiar with I-15 from SLC to Logan, UT and the other end of it in MT, but it's been 30 years since I was through SE Idaho. My thinking is that I-15 is pretty flat all the way from SLC and across SE Idaho, passing through a couple of cities up there in the Snake River Plain, and only picks up elevation once, at Monida Pass (the MT and ID border), where the summit is +6,700'.

    So, any recent experiences as to I-15 up that way? I'll probably stick with my plan, anyway, but would be interested to hear if my assumptions on the general topography of the route are correct or not.

    Thanks for any insights.


  2. Default Idaho is quite flat

    Hello Foy

    Yes I drove up there nearly three years ago (I actually drove from LA to Flathead Lake, MT) and let me tell you, Idaho was the most boring part of all. Partly because I drove from SLC to Dillon MT in an afternoon after a big meal and partly because there was a police car 100 yards in front of me for miles (and being European, was constantly obsessed with the going-over-the-limit syndrom). It gets better in Spencer which is really nice. Admittedly, I didnt leave the road. It got better on the way down as we were directed off the I-15 due to a fire and got to go through loads of villages.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula

    Default Terrain should be fine

    While I would argue that Idaho is actually a very pretty drive, it is rather flat with just rolling, easy rises here and there. Except for the last 45 miles into Jackson, you're on the interstate. Remember that in the US interstates are required to follow certain grades, curves, etc. This doesn't mean you won't have a few twisties once in a awhile or a few elevations changes, but none of them should be any problem for any modern vehicle. You will see more hills and passes north of Dubois, Idaho.

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