Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. Default Wisconsin to Nevada, middle of February

    We are leaving Wisconsin on February 16th and hoping to be in Nevada on the evening of the 17th. Four drivers and one night stopping along the way. Which route would be best - Hwy 80 or going the southern route. This arrival date is not set in stone depending on weather conditions. We would prefer I80 but are worried about snow storms going through that area. We would of course keep ourselves posted on weather conditions. We have traveled this route many times in the summer but never during winter.

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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I-80 could see bad weather, but so could routes that are farther south. There's just no way of knowing until you get closer to your departure date.

    Where in WI are you starting from, and where in NV are you heading? That will be a big factor in your route options.

  3. Default

    We are from Muskego, a suburb of Milwaukee. We will be going to Las Vegas and Laughlin as we have relatives in Laughlin. We have driven I-80 and know that it is a busy interstate for semis. We were thinking maybe we could turn off before Wyoming and head through Colorado, but we don't know if this route will lead us into more snow. You're right though, we do need to see what the conditions would be like closer to our date.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Two Options, But Not Two Days

    You basically have a choice between two routes, both of which are essentially all-Interstate and both of which will take a minimum of three to four days to complete safely since they're both about 2000 miles long. There is simply no way, no matter how many drivers you have, to drive 2000 miles in two days.

    The 'northern' route is the 'I-80' route you referred to, and goes to Las Vegas first. Take I-43/I-39 south out of the Milwaukee area to I-88 near Rochelle IL. Note that I-88 is toll in portions. Follow that to I-80 at the Quad Cities and follow that to western Nebraska, Take the I-76 cutoff to Denver and I-80 over the Rockies to I-15 south in Utah.

    The 'southern' route is slightly longer and goes to Laughlin first. Take I-43/I-39 south out of the Milwaukee area to Normal IL, then I-55 to St. Louis, I-44 to Oklahoma City, and I-40 to Needles CA, finishing up on AZ-95 north to Laughlin.

    Note that neither route is guaranteed to see better weather than the other. I-40, while father south and relatively flat, reaches elevations near 8,000 feet across much of northern Arizona and can - and does - see snow, ice, high winds, and other nasty weather.


  5. Default

    Thanks a lot for your input. I appreciate it. Although, I must tell you that both my husband and I are retired and have driven to Las Vegas in 2 days (of course this was in spring and late summer). We make one pit stop in North Platte, NE and from there on to Vegas. Wallah - we are usually in Vegas around 8:00 P.M. Maybe earlier. Wait a minute - I was just reviewing my thoughts. We did spend another night in Northern Nevada - Wendover. We drove through some desert area and entered Vegas from Northern Nevada. I am the jittery one because of the time of year we are leaving. Doesn't I-76 get hit with a lot of snow storms?

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


    I've got to say, worrying about weather on a plan to drive 2000 miles in 2 days strikes me as rediculous. Put simply, far more people die from drowsy driving than responsible driving in winter conditions.

    If you have done this trip in 2 days before, consider yourself lucky, don't consider it some sort of proof that you can do it again safely. Most people don't kill someone the first time they drive drunk, and most people don't get into a crash the first time they send a text from behind the wheel, but those activities cause way too many deaths and injuries. 2000 miles of driving in 2 days is every bit as dangerous as any other behavior that keeps you from giving 100% of your focus to safe driving.

    As far as weather, I-76 is only a couple hundred miles long, and it really doesn't see any different weather than you'll see on I-80 in Nebraska. I-70 through Colorado, as it crosses one of the highest mountain passes in America, is probably your most likely place to see difficult conditions. However, it really doesn't matter which areas "get hit with a lot of snowstorms" it really only matters what the weather is when you are on the road. Wisconsin sees a lot of snowstorms, but the vast majority of time in winter, the roads are perfectly fine. It's really not that different anywhere else.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Years and years ago, four crazy "kids" (all between 17 and 22) went from a small college town in northeastern Missouri, heading for California. The plan was to take turns driving, non-stop.

    The rule was ... two people awake at all times, the driver and the occupant of the front seat. Two people in the back were encouraged to sleep whenever possible. The driver did a 2 hour shift, there was a stop somewhere (gas, food, rest area), and the driver went to the back seat. Shotgun rider became the driver, and the backseat passenger side rider moved to become shotgun rider.

    We drove 1400 miles that way until one of the riders was dropped off in Flagstaff. When that rider got off (me, the youngest one of all), I was TIRED. This was a good 28 hours after we left school. The rest of the three continued the same pattern as far as Rancho Cucamonga, CA, where the car owner took the third one to the train station so she could go into downtown LA (ugh). He reported later that the three of them were exhausted after 1800 miles and would NOT try that on the return trip.

    Two of us rode back to college via train. The car owner sent his gal back to MO on a plane later that summer, and then took 3 days to drive back to college in late August.

    Point being made: TIRED makes for not-so-safe driving. I'm sure that none of us were particularly safe drivers after the first 12 hours.


  8. Default

    Thanks for all the input. We have completely revamped our travel plans and have added more days to the trip. You are all totally correct. Pushing the driving is totally dangerous. Thanks again for all your input.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-08-2010, 07:35 PM
  2. Roadtrip California and Nevada in february
    By italiangi in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-10-2009, 03:43 AM
  3. Sierra Nevada in February
    By littletommybonesaw in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 12-28-2007, 04:11 PM
  4. In the middle of February--what's the safest route to Las Vegas?
    By aethelwulfskin in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 11-21-2005, 09:45 AM
  5. Replies: 7
    Last Post: 02-18-2003, 08:16 AM


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name