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  1. Default Weather: I-80 Thru Utah or I-70 Thru Denver in early October

    Hello,

    My wife and I are taking our annual road trip from Chicago to San Diego. Because of a new job we have to go 2 weeks later than planned. Leaving 9/20/2008.

    This time we are going via I-40 so we should be okay. However we are coming home through Vegas.

    When we get to the intersection of I-15 and I-70, we would love to stay on 15 and catch 80 back east. But I am afraid that 80 may be a little rough through utah and wyoming that time of year weather wise. But then again 70 may not be much better through colorado.

    I know we aren't weather predictors but what is the chance of bad weather on each of those routes around October 2,3,4.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,067

    Default excersize in futuility

    I'd say you should be traveling early enough in the year that winter weather shouldn't be a big concern. That said, it's pointless to even try a guess at the conditions 3 months from now. You could hit snow, you could hit tornados, you could find perfect weather. Every single highway in the US is at risk of seeing severe weather on any given day.

    The only thing we can say accurately is to look at the forecasts in the days before you leave and pick your route based on that information.

  3. Default

    Thanks. i think we'll take the I-15 to I-80 route. I-70 through the mountains of Colorado may be shorter...but I don't think it's quicker.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,060

    Default I would do I-70 in a heart-beat!

    Quote Originally Posted by grant34 View Post
    When we get to the intersection of I-15 and I-70, we would love to stay on 15 and catch 80 back east. But I am afraid that 80 may be a little rough through utah and wyoming that time of year weather wise. But then again 70 may not be much better through colorado.
    Early October is just about perfect weather conditions for travel in the west. Cooler, yet still sunny days, it's hard to beat that combination. I-80 is flatter and generally preferred for larger and heavier vehicles, but if you are traveling in a passenger car, I-70 will save you several hours of travel. Plus, it is flat-out gorgeous -- here is a field report for the section of I-70 through eastern Utah!

    Mark

  5. Default

    Thanks Mark, We actually went that way (I-70)last year. It is gorgeous. Is I-15 to i-80 east scenic as well? Or pretty boring?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,067

    Default Boring?

    There is a bit of a code around here that there are no boring roads, only close minded people.

    I-80 won't be nearly as "in your face" with scenery as I-70, its beauty will be much more subtle than the canyons and mountains of I-70. I think you have two very good options, I might lean towards I-80 if you haven't done that route so you can see it for yourself, but taking I-70 through Colorado and Utah is never a bad bet for a scenic trip either.

  7. #7

    Default I-80 in UT and WY

    Hello grant.

    My son has driven the stretch of I-15 from the I-70 split up to Salt Lake City (SLC). There's a bit of elevation around Cedar City but nothing over 5000-5500' so at that time of year, very likely no worries. I've driven I-80 from SLC all the way into Iowa myself.

    From SLC towards WY, I-80 quickly climbs from the 4000' elevation of the SLC basin to Parley's Summit at around 7700'. I suppose there are very brief snow episodes in early there and then, but likely just within a few miles each way of the pass at Parley's. The short remainder of I-80 through UT and on all the way across WY is high plains and butte country and generally not regarded as the most scenic of routes. I like driving any Western highways and appreciate big sky country no matter what the terrain is like, but it's just a lot different from the alpine country in CO from Glenwood Springs to Denver on I-70.

    I'm with Mark in saying I'd do I-70 in a New York Minute just to see the aspens in Autumn.

    Oh, and if you decide on I-80, you can improve the scenery substantially for part of the way and avoid elevation at Parley's if you take off of I-15 at Provo, go up Provo Canyon to Heber City, and then drive past and through the Uinta Range to and past Flaming Gorge Reservoir, thence up US 191 (I think it's 191) to Rock Springs/Green River, WY, where you'll hit I-80.

    Enjoy the planning and the trip!

    Foy

  8. Default

    Wow Foy...A lot of good information. Thanks. I had no Idea what the terrain was going that wey.

    Thank all of you for your information. I think that as we leave Vegas that morning we will check the weather and our time and make a game time descision when we get to the I-15/I-70 junction. As i mentioned we have done 70 before so through Salt Lake City may still get the nod. Either way .. I agree... there are no boring roads...

    Take care, and thanks

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