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  1. Default tips of driving from california to canada?

    Hello,

    I am new here. I am planning a road trip in mid Nov. from the bay area in California to Winnipeg, Canada. Any advice will be highly appreciated. From Google map, I see the route through Navada, Idaho, Montana and North Dakota, then enter Canada from the Pembina port. Can anyone suggest a safe route? Is there any road in this route may be closed that I should pay attention? Thank you very much!

    Fanofdriving

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default wasn't expecting that

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    When I put the route into google myself, I was surprised to see that they route you directly through Yellowstone National Park. While that certainly would be a route worth taking for its scenic beauty, it you are just looking to get from point A to point B, I think I would take I-15 all the way to I-90 instead. Its a longer route, but much faster, and less likely to be significanlty impacted by snow. Certainly it will be possible to see Snow almost anywhere on your route, but if you are sticking to the Interstates, it should cause minimal problems.

  3. #3

    Default

    As an old truck driver, if I were to make that trip I would stick to the Interstate system. Those two lane roads in that part of the country in winter can get to be a real pain if bad weather were to set in. I would take I 80 out of the bay area to Salt Lake City, then I 15 north to Butte Mont. I 90 east fom there and then I 94 where it splits off from 90 to Fargo ND and then take I 29 north to the Canadian border, and then Rt 75 to Winnipeg. That way its all 4 lane hiway. Its a little further but you will make much better time.

  4. Default Thanks for the reply!

    Thanks, Midwest Michael! That's a good point!
    So I guess I should go I-80 to I-15 to I-90 to I-94 to I-29. Any advice on the driving in Nov? I am thinking to prepare a basic winter driving kit: jump start cable, a bottle of engine oil, cooling water, medicine and medical supplies for emergency use, flashlight, cell phone, enough food/water, thick wearing, etc.; my car is fairly new and is in good condition. The tires are for all seasons. the battery is new. anything else? I am thinking to get to Winnipeg in 4-5 days, so basically ~500 mi (~ 8hrs drive)/day. Anyone has an idea of how long it takes to pass the border? Greatly appreciate the help!
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 10-26-2008 at 10:06 PM.

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by johnny99 View Post
    As an old truck driver, if I were to make that trip I would stick to the Interstate system. Those two lane roads in that part of the country in winter can get to be a real pain if bad weather were to set in. I would take I 80 out of the bay area to Salt Lake City, then I 15 north to Butte Mont. I 90 east fom there and then I 94 where it splits off from 90 to Fargo ND and then take I 29 north to the Canadian border, and then Rt 75 to Winnipeg.
    Thanks! I was just thinking the same route. A little far but safe.
    I will have to get to Winnipeg before the moving truck does (they say the truck will take at least 7 days).

    by the way, I wonder if any of these interstate hwy in the route you mentioned close often in Nov. due to the weather?
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 10-26-2008 at 10:07 PM. Reason: merged posts - continuation of thought

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default weather

    Its not impossible to see any of the highways you are talking about close, but it would be fairly rare. It generally takes a major snowstorm to shut down an interstate (in which case you wouldn't want to be driving anyway) and when that happens, its usually for a day or two at most. They just need time for the storm to pass and to get the plows out and clear the way. With the time you've got planned for this trip, you should be in good shape, even if you do hit a major early season storm that holds you up for a day.

    I've crossed the border at I-29 several times. Its usually a pretty fast process. However, since this is a move, I would think you may have to jump through a few more hoops than a typical tourist would. Just make sure you have all your paperwork and documents in order before you reach the border and it should be a relatively painless process.

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fanofdriving View Post
    Anyone has an idea of how long it takes to pass the border? Greatly appreciate the help!
    Here is a link to Canadian Border Agency which shows you _current_ wait time at all ports.

    Also, These waits times are for simply crossing, if you are immigrating or have stuff to disclose expected the wait times to be more for paper work and stuff.

    Hope this helps.

  8. Default thanks!

    thanks for the help!
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 10-27-2008 at 10:30 AM. Reason: navigation

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    I would add just one thing to your winter kit - a set of cable chains. You should be able to get those pretty easily in California, I even saw them being sold at Walmart in San Diego last winter. It's not likely you will need them - but it's something that never hurts to have for winter driving if you are on a time schedule and waiting a storm out is going to impact your schedule.

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fanofdriving View Post
    Thanks! .

    by the way, I wonder if any of these interstate hwy in the route you mentioned close often in Nov. due to the weather?
    At this time of year in that part of the country you could hit bad weather anytime, but it isn't something I would worry myself over. If there were any road closures they would probably be for a very short time, with the possible exception of Donner Summit. The most likely places on your rt would be across Donner Summit in Cal, portions of I 15 in Idaho and Montana, and I 90 from Butte to Billings.

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