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  1. #1

    Default Calgary to Vegas @ XMAS

    Expecting to celebrate NYE in Las Vegas. I have driven I-15 straight down and back, but not in the winter. I have also driven I-15 in Montana in December before, but only for 1/2 day or so. I will be sure to check the road conditions before we leave, but was thinking of taking a more scenic route to Las Vages via US 93. Does anyone have any thoughts on US 93 vs I-15 and which would be safer (i.e. less snow/ice). We drive a new sedan, but not a SUV or 4x4.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Weather

    It really depends on the weather, but I would say that the Interstate would have a better chance of remaining passable, especially for that distance, before any of the US routes, barring a significant storm along the route.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default And time

    Hello and welcome to the R.T.A. forums.

    As you have rightly said, checking the weather and road conditions before deciding is a wise choice. The other is the time you have to make the journey. You mention having "driven straight down" I-15 but are you taking your time or is your goal to get to Vegas as quickly as possible. US 93 will take longer and the days are shorter so to enjoy the "scenic route" it would be best at a relaxed pace.
    Of course weather permitting you could choose one going down and the other returning.

    Have a safe journey.

  4. #4


    Quote Originally Posted by Southwest Dave View Post
    Of course weather permitting you could choose one going down and the other returning.
    That's what I was thinking. We will have about 10 days total.

    With taking US 93 I was just hoping for a more scenic pleasant trip as I have driven I-15 many times. However, I may just stick with I-15 atleast for one part of the journey and I suppose of many of the Interstates I-15 is one of the more scenic drives from Montana to Nevada.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Places of interest

    Well heres a link that includes places along I-15 that may interest you for some R@R.
    A night in the lovely little town of Springdale and a visit to Zion N.P. could be a nice distraction as well.

    Have a safe journey.

  6. #6


    So we've decided to make the drive down I-15 from Calgary to Las Vegas. We plan to leave on the 24th and get a full day of driving in. Depending on how far we make it, we plan to arrive in Las Vegas late on the 25th or on the 26th. I keep following the weather forecast (and various road web-cams provided by the various state's transportation web-sites) and it seems like by the time we leave the weather and driving conditions may improve from what they are today (but no guarantees). I did have a couple questions/statements I was hoping I could receive some feedback on.

    We drive a new MBenz, albeit one that is rear-wheel drive. It has traction control/electronic stability that has worked real well so far in Calgary, no fish-tailing. We also only have the OEM All season performance tires (Micheline Pilot HX MXM 4) that seem to perform "okay" in the Calgary region with winter snowy conditions, however, there have been a few occasions that I couldn't make it up a few moderate climbs on icy roads.

    What are people's thoughts on travelling down I-15 with this car and tires at this time of year. I suppose my main concern would be travelling over the mountain passes (i.e. Monida Pass).

    Is it crucial to get winter tires for this journey, knowing that we will stick to I-15. Or, should I rent an SUV with 4x4?

    We plan to make it to Butte or Dillon the first night and if all goes well make it to Las vegas the next day. Is this realistic?

    Thanks for reading and feedback.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default If its good for Calgary

    If your car is good enough to get around in the Calgary winter, then I don't think you should have any problems. When you're talking about interstates, you're talking about roads that will be in the best condition for traveling in winter weather. "Performance" tires can be a bit tricky in the snow, as can rear wheel drive, but you already know how your car will handle in winter conditions.

    4 wheel drive is a nice feature, but it only helps you get moving. On the interstate, the much bigger concern is stopping. 4WD doesn't help that.

    Dillon or Butte could be done pretty easily from Calgary in one day, but they really aren't far enough if you want to do this drive in 2 days. Idaho Falls would be closer to halfway, and require about 12 hours of driving each day.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    You might want to buy a set of cable chains and throw them in the trunk - just in case. You may need them to go over a pass.

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