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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Ft. Collins, CO.

    Default Colorado to Seattle & back via I-90 (2012) report

    Morning of the trip I checked the WyDot website and saw that I-80 was CLOSED from Cheyenne to Rawlins due to "winter driving conditions." No problem, we were going north from Cheyenne to join I-90. (the preferred route) Underway at 0600.

    Cheyenne was high winds with thin ground blizzards across the road. Empty semis were advised to not proceed else risk getting blown over. 20 knot crosswinds gusting to 35 or so from Cheyenne to well north of Casper.
    Could barely open the driver's door to get out to refuel in Casper.
    Winds abated somewhat around Buffalo and Sheridan.

    Headed west out of Billings the wind picked up again as a crosswind around Big Timber. Just outside of Livingston it became a headwind and in one big gust it popped the magnetic scanner antenna off the roof. (pulled over to stick it on the back liftgate oriented horizontally) At Livingston MtDOT had a high-wind bypass for big trucks. The interstate goes up on the side of a hill while the bypass went thru town. I've never seen that before but it sure made sense in this case! Ground blizzards and crosswinds again.
    Once to Bozeman the winds abated.
    Had dinner at Butte then pushed to Missoula. Hotel by 2000.(Marriott Courtyard was nice) Ran that far because weather was good and I was doing ok.

    Next day underway at 0700 (PST 0800 MST). Lookout Pass at the Idaho border had slush in the left lane but running in the right lane was dry. (Note- this stretch of road is pretty rough concrete. Last year we were on it in snow so didn't notice.)
    Spokane had had some snow but roads were dry. Deepest snow of the trip was in the parking lot at McDonald's west of Spokane.
    Fog in the Columbia river gorge and low overcast across Washington to Snoqualmie Pass.
    Top of Snoqualmie was clear skies and sunshine from there all the way to our destination!

    Return- Underway 0700. Forecast was for overcast and possible light snow across Washington. Was true. Except for the light snow which didn't happen. Right lane was dry all the way. Saw a little ice fog on some of the high spots.
    Lookout Pass was again dry right lane and slushy left. Low clouds, no precip.
    Descent to Missoula saw drier roads. The run to Bozeman was pretty much nominal.
    Next day started at 9F. Jeep started ok but the instruments all read zero until I noticed them and did a restart before leaving the parking lot.
    Forecast was for clear and little wind except for around Casper.
    Forecast was correct. Winds north of Casper and south of Buffalo were 20kt crosswinds with some gusts and a small angular headwind component so I ran slower thru that stretch otherwise the transmission would kick down on some of the hills. Turning directly east at Casper we had a great tailwind. Wind turned cross again south of Douglas but wasn't so fierce.
    15kt crosswinds prevailed pretty much into Colorado where the winds quit but the roads became rough concrete.

    One thing of note is that the I-25 section from Sheridan to Cheyenne saw wonderfully little other traffic. For at least 10 miles I had one car in view ahead at well over a mile distant and none behind me. I like this as I'm running my own trip under these conditions rather than adjusting for other cars and watching for them to swerve into my lane as they forget to steer while passing and so forth.

    Had the scanner setup for everything of interest including CB. I wound up locking out the CB channels as the skip was in and I wasn't interested in getting my truck washed in Georgia.... Heard a "road hazard" call of a life sized purple stuffed tiger in the road north of Buffalo. (I'd seen it as well) Heard a home invasion burglary go bad (for the burglar - the occupants gave him a "temporary loss of consciousness") in Spokane. Wasn't much to listen to from the snow plows as they weren't needed.

    I-90 worked again :-)
    Last edited by noFanofCB; 12-30-2012 at 12:38 PM. Reason: time zone

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Where do you go next?

    Great road conditions report!

    Where are you headed next?


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Ft. Collins, CO.


    Back to work on Wed :-(

    Next real trip might be La Junta, CO. to continue surveying and mapping the old WWII B-25 training base. Continental Airlines established a field and hangars there before the war and the foundations can be found. Probably will go before the rattlesnakes come out...

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