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  1. Default Help planing trip from Duluth, MN to Dublin, CA

    First hello to everybody. I am planing to drive from Duluth , MN to Dublin, CA by the end of November. It is a small SUV car and we are not in sightseeing mood, but moving, so we are trying to find easier and safest route as possible for us.

    Google Map are giving this three options:

    1. I-94 W and I-80 through North Dakota, Montana, Idaho and Nevada ( 2012 m)

    2. I-94 W US 85 and I 80 through North Dakota the south on Wyoming, Utah and Nevada ( 2096 m)

    3. I -80 , South on Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Utah and Nevada ( 2194 m )

    and forth possible options to catch close to old 66, and go all the way south on Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona ( 2554 m ) .

    So realizing that I am traveling by the end of November, I believe that first option might not be option at all, even Google map are talking about "season closing" so what is a best option for us? We are also traveling with dog, so we will need to make a lot's of brakes. We were thinking 3-5 days depends of circumstances. Thanks for all the help.

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


    Welcome to the RTA forum!

    Your best bet for a winter trip is going to be to stick to the interstates, which are open year round and get top priority in the event of a storm.

    Since I-94 and I-80 never come even close to each other in the Western US, I'm not really sure what route you'd be using to get north/south in your first option. The route suggested by Google goes through Yellowstone and would not be possible at this time of year. The only route I'd suggest along those lines would involve taking I-90 all the way to I-15 before cutting south.

    However, the route I'd suggest as your first choice is the most direct all-interstate route: I-35 to I-80 (via Des Moines). This is about a 2200 mile trip, and the extra 100 miles is well worth it to avoid 2 lane travel at this time of year. You need to plan on this trip taking a minimum of 4 days, and the 5th day will be important just in case you do see some bad weather that slows you down.

    I would not recommend going all the way down to Texas as it would require a full extra day on the road, and is just as likely to see winter weather. You'd be much better off simply using the extra day to wait out a storm in case you see a storm on the more direct route.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    My mapping software confirms Michael's recommendation - I-35/I-80. Plan on 4 days with overnights around Omaha/Lincoln, Cheyenne/Laramie/Rawlins, and Wells/Elko. 2 hotel chains that are pet-friendly that come to mind are Motel 6 and La Quinta. Keep a 5th day available just in case.

  4. Default

    Thanks guys for your replay. I am close to choose that road; of course in case of NO snow storm exactly on that route during that period.

  5. Default

    I am traveling tomorrow. I was already close to decide to go with I 80 but looks like it is crazy over Wyoming now ( high wind and snow) ; so I was thinking to go through North Dakota, Montana, then down from Butte with road 15 through Idaho and Nevada. is it this too crazy, stupid or?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default not now, but later

    The questions isn't what is the weather like now, it is what will the weather be like in a few days when you are traveling through.

    While they may be seeing some winter weather in Wyoming now, a quick look at the forecast shows quite good conditions all the way across I-80 for most of the week, with temps in the 50s most of the way. It looks the best chance of you seeing bad weather being near the end of your trip as you get into Nevada and California at the end of the week, which you'll be dealing with pretty much no matter which way you choose.

    Taking I-94 across itself isn't a horrible idea, but the weather there looks a lot more iffy than I-80. It looks like you'd see windy weather with high temps just above freezing across most of ND and MT.

    Things could still change in the next couple of days, forecast wise, but if it were me, I'd stick with the I-35 to I-80 plan.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    With Michael's thoughts, you can check the Weather Channel's website. They have an Interstate Forecast link that is wonderful! You can see at a glance what the weather will be like anywhere along your route on a particular day. Just don't forget to change the day, as it will always show you TODAY even when you're wondering about TOMORROW!


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