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  1. Default Operation "Home for the Holidays."

    Hello, so I had a question.

    My husband is in the Navy and in December he will be going to Japan for 6 months. Itís just been us living in Fl., so in order to save up some extra money we have decided that I will stay with my mother while he is gone. Our original plan was to park the car and I would fly, however 6 months is a long time to borrow someone elseís car and why make payments on something you cannot use. Anyways, I am flying my Grandmother out to help me drive back to Idaho Falls, ID. She has made the trip plenty of time just not in the winter time.

    My question is which route would be more desirable for us to take with it being a snowy season.

    Trip: Jacksonville FL-Idaho Falls, ID

    Mode of Transportation: 2012 Kia forte four door not five.

    Time to travel: We will be leaving on the 7th of December and want to be home before Christmas Eve. I know this is a large window but I want ample time to stop at night (Grandma doesnít like driving at night.) and maybe stop and see some of the sites.
    Travelers: Two adults, one small dog (Who is trained well for long distant car rides.
    I know itís impossible to avoid the snow; I just would prefer a more southern route.

    Thanks for listening,

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Hi, welcome to RTA! You bring a dilemma that many of us have been in before: so many routes, which one to take?

    Since it's you and your grandma, what sights do each of you want to see between FL and ID? Get a good USA map and some sticky notes, and then mark the places. A route may just form while looking at the sticky notes.

    As far as the weather is concerned: no matter what route you take, you will take a chance on snow. Even I-10, which goes along the southern portion of the US, has places that get snow. (Just ask anyone who has ever been detained at Van Horn TX in the middle of a winter snowstorm!) The best thing to do, when planning, is to allow extra day or two for the possibility of a snowstorm that could close a freeway. BTW, on that score, the interstates are the last roads to be closed in bad weather, because of the commercial traffic that "must get through". State and local highways are easily closed and the last ones plowed. If the road says that chains are mandatory, that would be a good time to find a hotel and a good book, to hole up in for a day or two.

    To you and your husband, thank you for your service! Deployments are not easy on either of you. (My husband is retired Navy, and I have been through about 5 six-month deployments and many 6-12 week deployments during his service.)


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Embrace the snow

    Thanks for your service -- families share the burden of anyone on deployment.

    As Donna mentioned, I-10 can be notorious for dreadful winter driving conditions in the winter months.

    Without question the best route is winter is nearly always the most direct. Which would be this route: One of our expert members really dislikes I-80 through Wyoming, it is the preferred route for professional truckers, but one of the very best highway departments in the USA is the Colorado department and so you might consider using I-70.

    I guess what it comes down to... is what kind of sites are you interested in seeing along the way?

    Here are some winter driving tips for you.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Via the most direct route, it's a fairly easy 5 day drive spending 8 hours on the road including gas and bathroom stops. This means you have plenty of time, probably only limited by how many nights you want to pay for in hotels.

    My software agrees with Mark except at the end. I'll list highway numbers for you to cross reference:


    It looks like Mark wants to send you up US-191 at Rock Springs to US-189 to US-26 into Idaho Falls. This does cut off about 100 miles but I'd check weather and conditions carefully before going that way.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada


    I concur, US-191 is a real joy when it's icy!


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