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  1. #1

    Default Fargo, ND to Seattle

    Hi all,

    I am planning on driving from Fargo ND to Seattle WA next week.

    My plan is as follows:

    leave Wednesday from Fargo, ND - stay in Billings, MT Wednesday overnight

    leave Billings Thursday - stay in Seattle Thursday overnight

    I am estimating 12 hrs of driving for each day. Is this a fair estimation?

    I haven't done this route before.. however, I have driven from Winnipeg, Canada to Vancouver, Canada in 2 days at a similar pace.

    My concerns are about the mountain passes in Montana and Eastern Washington. I have been looking at the state webcams and it seems to always be snowing in the passes. I don't have snow tires (all seasons) and I have never used chains before. I am hoping the weather will be much better next week? It will be May 1.

    Do you think I can do this drive?

    I am driving a 2dr. 4cy. Honda Civic.

    thanks for your advice.

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

    Default A Challenge

    Welcome to the RTA forum!

    If you've done Winnepeg to Vancouver, then this really should be pretty similar to what you did before. It will require two very long days and it will take about 12 hours on the road both days. That amount of driving, especially traveling solo, is stressful, so stop and take a break whenever your focus starts to wonder, and don't be afraid to stop short of your 2 day goal.

    One thing I would change, instead of planning to stop in Billings, I would aim for Bozeman. It will make for two more even spaced days, and the day that will be slightly longer would be your first day, when you should be more rested and less tired from your marathon trip behind the wheel.

    I really wouldn't worry about the mountains too much. You may have to slow down somewhat, but I wouldn't expect them to cause many problems.

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

    Default Chains?

    I just checked the webcams for Snoqualmie Pass (on I-90) and things are bare. Wet, right now, but bare.

    You would only need chains if a very heavy snow fell. So I doubt very much you'll need them. It's way too late in the season for that.

    If the worst happens and, for some reason, you find yourself in that situation, you could always veer down to Oregon, pick up I-84 and go into Portland and then up I-5. Unfortunately, this would add about 6 hours to your trip and your time is tight enough already. But I really don't think you need to worry about it. The pass should be fine.

  4. #4


    thanks everyone
    I am looking forward to this drive.. it will be a nice change from the Canadian side of the border.

  5. #5

    Default Montana passes

    I agree with the foregoing. By stopping at Bozeman, you'll have the first of the MT passes behind you on Day 1, and you'll be into Idaho before long on Day 2, with the other 3 MT passes behind you.

    I often look at the MT passes on the DOT webcams, and it certainly has been the abundant year for snowfall (finally!), but when you look at the elevations posted on the webcams, you'll see most are +5,000', so there are but a few miles each side of each pass where snow sticks. The majority of your transit of Montana will be at elevations below 3,000' and it's highly unlikely you'll encounter snow most of the way. And if you do, it's not likely to accumulate to any great extent. I'd be entirely comfortable in a front-wheel drive car with all-season tires, too.


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