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  1. Default Ft Wayne to Phoenix via Kansas City, Denver and Las Vegas

    Hello all,

    I'm taking a road trip to move my brother across the country. We are going somewhat out of the way to visit some friends and places we've never been... and, spend two nights in Vegas. Our route will take us from Ft Wayne, Indiana to Kansas City on day one; KC to Denver (or further) on day two; Denver to Las Vegas on day three; Las Vegas to Phoenix on day five. I've made road trips of decent length before but never of this great distance.

    I was wondering if anyone can offer some insight as to places we need to stop along the way, any present road conditions or areas to avoid (our trip is in August) or any other insider information one might find useful. I've read that, upon entering Utah, gas may become sparse on the I-15 stretch heading down to Vegas. We'll be in a fairly fuel efficient car, obtaining about 40mpg, so we shouldn't have an issue with that.

    Any information and assistance you can provide is greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Stops Along the Way?

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    If you really plan to cover over 1950 miles (Fort Wayne to Las Vegas) in just three days, then you simply have no time for any stops other than to get gas and food and occasionally go to the bathroom. That's it. And that's assuming your in a sedan than can travel at or above the speed limit and not in a truck or pulling a trailer. You will have a few hours on the day you drive from Las Vegas to Phoenix to perhaps tour Hoover Dam, or maybe visit Oatman or Wickenburg, but certainly not to make a detour to the Grand Canyon for example. You really need to reconsider how long this trip is going to take in reality. That is a far bigger worry than the fact that there may be an occasional spot in Utah where it may be a dozen miles to the next gas station.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 07-25-2011 at 09:37 PM.

  3. Default


    Thanks for the welcome. Don't get me wrong, we do realize we're in for quite a drive each day. We will be in a vehicle that will allow us to stop for gas just once each day and will not be towing anything. Trust me, we've thought this through and realize it's going to be a grueling drive each day and, in order to make this trip happen, we're willing to drive ten to twelve hours per day, as needed.

    Thank you for the stop ideas on the Vegas to Phoenix leg; I appreciate it.

  4. Default

    I have never had problems with finding open gasoline stations in Utah during the daytime. At night however, there is a "dead zone" on I-70 between Grand Junction, CO to around Cove Fort where I-70 intersects with I-15 in Utah. At around 5-6 pm the gasoline stations and just about everything else closes. I am not sure about the gasoline situation at night along I-15. If traveling north at night, I fill up with gas at Mesquite, NV and can reach Grand Junction, CO to fill up again.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    There's only one spot on I-70 where gasoline is hard at any time of the day or night, and that's 108 miles between Green River, UT and Salina UT. There's a 24 hour station in Salina and another one (Flying J) in Richfield, UT. So gas up at Grand Junction or Fruita, going in that direction. (There's gas at Green River, but it's usually a lot higher $ than GJ or Fruita.)

    There are plenty of truckstops open 24/7 along I-15 from Cove Fort down to Las Vegas.

    Honestly, though - if you can do that trip in FOUR days, you'll be more comfortable. Otherwise you are looking at 650 mile days. The traffic on I-70 between St Louis and Kansas City is ALWAYS heavy, day or night. (BTW, right now, Columbia's gas prices are 4c a gallon cheaper than Kingdom City! However, that could change.)


  6. Default

    I stand corrected.

    When I traveled through in 2007 and 2009, the Richfield station closed on me at 6:00 pm (I can't remember if it was a Flying J) and there was no open station at night from Richfield to Grand Junction. I am glad to hear that is no longer the situation.

  7. Default

    Thank you all.

    Again, I realize we are in for quite a haul each day but we recently did 1200 miles in one day and I know we're up for the 700 per day push we're looking at in the next couple of weeks. It's not going to be easy, to be sure, but we're leaving Ft Wayne on Sunday morning and would like to be in Vegas for a late dinner on Tuesday so this is the schedule we have. Correct me if I'm wrong but the Monday leg (KC to Denver or Grand Junction, if we have the strength) is going to be the worst because of the flat landscape and fairly straight shot between the two.

    Again, thank you all for the present and future information and assistance in this upcoming trip.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    The Monday leg, KC to Denver, is fairly flat - - just rolling hills that will gradually bring you to the mile-high city. You may have construction on the short portion of the KS Turnpike that you will encounter. However, just west of Denver, you have some heavy climbing to do. Denver is mile-high, but between there and Grand Junction, you have a 10,000+ ft pass to go over.

    When we do those long 600-650 mile days, we leave early in the morning (around 5 or 6) so that we are at the destination well before the dinner hour. Since you are heading west, you are gaining 1 or 2 hours as you go (not sure if Ft Wayne is in Eastern time?). You'll gain one at the Illinois border (Central time), and another on the very west side of Kansas (Mountain time).


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