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  1. #1

    Default mid-November trip -- Colorado to DC

    We are traveling with kids and a trailer from northern Colorado to Washington DC in mid-November. I am trying to decide which route to take, I-70, I-80, or I-40. While I would be inclined to just decide a day or two before, I do need to get hotel reservations for my rather large family who also needs wheelchair access in hotels. I'd rather not have to make, then cancel a bunch of reservations.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO



    Where in northern CO? How many days can you allow for the trip?

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

    Default Purpose of trip?

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    If you are just getting from A to B as efficiently as possible then there doesn't seem to be any difference in time between 180, I 70 or I 70/64. Heading to I 40 adds about 5 hours to the trip and there is no guarantee that you will see better weather by heading South. This is based on starting from the Denver area, but if it is sight seeing options you are looking for then it will depend on your interests and how long you have for the trip.

    This would be a minimum of 3 day's travel, but with kid's and a trailer I would look at taking at least 4 day's and having some time out from long hours behind the wheel, where the kid's can let off a little steam. I doubt you would have too much trouble finding lodgings in November and if you researched a little to find Hotel locations [depending on your travel plans/possible stop points] along each route with wheelchair access you could then perhaps wait untill nearer the time and see what the weather might have in store for you.

  4. #4


    Thanks for the replies. I am straight north of Denver (near Fort Collins). My kids are older, so we are hoping to do the trip in 3 days so that we can be home before Thanksgiving. I've done this trip in 2 days and 3 days with parts of my crew, but this time, all four are going (with 3 adults).

    I have had the same thought regarding weather heading south. How bad is I-80 from Toledo to Cleveland in November? Heading that far north and that close to the lakes makes me nervous.

    I am happy to have found this site, we road trip several times a year.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default The Difference Maker

    As Dave has pointed out, the difference in miles and time between your options is almost not worth mentioning. This will be a hard three day drive at best pulling a trailer. And it's the trailer that makes the real difference among the routes. The I-80/I-76/I-70 route through Chicago, Cleveland and Pittsburgh is all toll from Chicago to Breezewood, PA and the tariff on those extra wheels will be substantial. For that reason alone I'd recommend heading down to Denver and using I-70 to St. Louis, I-64 to Charleston, WV and then I-79/I-68/I-70/I-270 into the DC area.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    I'd recommend heading down to Denver and using I-70 to St. Louis, I-64 to Charleston, WV and then I-79/I-68/I-70/I-270 into the DC area.
    I'd modify that just slightly - stay on I-70 into PA and take I-79 south to I-68. It's about 35 miles shorter and somewhat less hilly. If you are going to try to do this in 3 days, those are going to be 3 pretty long days. You would be looking at overnights in the KC and Indy areas, I'd advise you try for something on the east side of the city in the suburbs to minimize morning rush hour traffic and avoid the cost of downtown hotels. In the KC area, I'd probably look at Blue Springs, it has a decent hotel selection. For Indy, I'd try to make it to Richmond.

    EDIT - To get to I-70 from Fort Collins, I'd take US-34 or CO-14 to I-76 to I-80, then take that to Lincoln NE, pick up NE-2 to I-29. Take that to KC and go around the northeast on the I-435 bypass. This will avoid Denver's toll bypass and the toll stretch of I-70 between Topeka and KC. If it's easier for you to go to Cheyenne to pick up I-80, that's an option.
    Last edited by glc; 08-15-2010 at 01:24 AM.

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