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  1. Default Tioga Road in October


    I am looking at driving from San Francisco to Las Vegas stopping one night around Yosemite and then driving through Death Valley to Las Vegas.

    What are the chances of the Tioga Road being closed in early October (1st-2nd).

    Also is it feasible to drive form Yosemite to Vegas in one day?


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

    Default no problem

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Tioga doesn't usually close until late October even in "early winters," and you'd be looking at something pretty record breaking for it to be closed that early in the year. The last time the road closed before October 15th was in 1948 (when it closed on Sept 22), and I think its safe to say the road clearing technology has improved a bit since then.

    Driving from Yosemite to Las Vegas can be done in a day. It is a fairly long day, but the bigger problem is that there is a lot that you can stop and see. You'll have to pick and choose your stops or you'll find yourself getting into Vegas very late.

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

    Default Open.

    Hello and welcome to RTA !

    Very good, as in almost certainly.

    You can drive from Yosemite to Vegas in a day but to enjoy the Tioga pass and Death valley it will be much better with an overnight stop.

    [Basically, what Michael said while I was still typing]
    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 05-27-2009 at 03:43 AM. Reason: beaten to it !

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    SF Bay Area

    Default details, details....

    This site gives you the opening and closing dates for Tioga Pass for the past 75 years.

    Based on this, you should be good.

    Things to note: 1) the closing dates they list are the LAST closing date... there may be cases where it closed then reopened. 2) I've driven from the Bay Area to Vegas in one (long) day without benefit of Tioga Pass, a longer route. Even if the pass is closed you can STILL make it by going south on 99 then over Tehachapi pass. This is a fallback only, as the drive over Tioga Pass and down 395 is one of the most scenic drives in California.

    If you have internet access, as things get close, the Caltrans website lets you check road conditions in near realtime; you want to plug in 120 as the highway number.

  5. Default

    Thank you for your comments.

    I have been told that I will need snow chains on the car. As I am hiring a car it will not have snow chains. Is this true?

    Thank you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Forget the chains.

    I'm not even sure a rental company allows you to fit snow chains, but you won't need them. If it got to that point the road would almost certainly be closed anyway, if not I wouldn't advise trying to cross it. The park rangers in the valley will keep you fully informed on the conditions if you ask but it is more than likely going to be dry and crisp with blue skys. The only inconvenience you are likely to encounter is that if there are cold nights [below freezing] on the high ground it might be closed untill mid morn or so untill it thaws out. I have been over it in third week of Oct and it has been wonderful.
    Of course nobody can say for sure at this stage but it would take some really freaky conditions to close it this early, so relax ;-)

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