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  1. Default 22' Moving Truck from OR to NH: I-80 or I-90?

    Hi, I'm driving a 22' moving truck from Portland, Oregon to New Hampshire in early August. I'm debating I-80 vs. I-90. Scenery wise I'm imagining I-90 will be nicer but I won't have time to stop and enjoy it at all so that's less of a factor than how many crazy hills I'll have to climb up (and down) with a fully loaded 22' truck. Any advice from people on I-80 vs. I-90 in terms of the number of steep hills/mountains?

    Thanks very much,

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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Moving Trucks really have more power than you might think. You probably won't be able to go 70 while climbing the bigger hills, but you shouldn't really have any problems on the interstates either. I've made the drive over the Rockies on I-70 in a moving truck, towing a car on a trailer, and the trip was just fine. At worst, you'll be in the right lane, alongside the other big rigs slowly making the drive uphill.

    What I think you'll find to be far more challenging is the wind and possibly urban areas with heavy traffic.

    Having said all that, I'd lean towards I-90. In general, it is at a much lower elevation and spends much of its time in river valleys. I-80 on the other hand, covers a lot of time on high plains, where it is relatively flat, but at a high elevation, and can be quite windy and could make for more work to handle the moving truck.

  3. #3

    Default I-94?


    I am not sufficiently familiar with the distances involved to factor them into a recommendation, but I know "early August" is Bike Rally time in Sturgis, SD, along I-90. If your drive-through would involve the week before, during, or after Sturgis, I'd be inclined to take another route.

    I do like I-80 but as noted, the winds in Wyoming can be a pain in a truck. There is in fact considerable up and down along 80, including the highest pass traversed by an Interstate north of Colorado--and it is far more rolling than I-90 in Montana.

    I-90 from Big Timber or even Billings all the way to and through Idaho is as scenic of a segment of Interstate as I've ever traveled, rivaling Colorado's I-70 in many respects. The towns of Livingston, Bozeman, Butte, and Missoula are each fun places to overnight and rub elbows with the locals.

    I'd look at I-94 across ND to avoid Sturgis, joining I-90 at Billings, still realizing that the Sturgis crowd returning to WA, OR, and even CA will have I-90 crowded for some distance west of there. If you take I-94, be advised of a virtual lock on motel rooms in the Williston, ND area due to the oil boom in western ND. Perhaps best to time your overnight stops to jump over the area during the daytime.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Another Alternative - Scenic and Cheap(er)

    Since all Interstates are built to specifications which limit the maximum grade (steepness) to 6% or less, there is really no reason to choose one over another in that regard. As far as scenery goes, all of the major Interstates through the northern Rockies are going to give you more incredible vistas than you could possibly need. In the mileage department, there are several routes that can get you to New Hampshire (I used Concord in lieu of any further information) in between 3000 and 3250 miles. So, what's left to use as criteria for a route? Well, as has been alluded to, there's traffic. Both I-90 and I-80 will take you through Chicago, an experience I wouldn't wish on anyone. Even the 'bypass', the Tri-State Tollway, is a nightmare, especially in the rig you'll be driving, with multiple merges, short entrance ramps, and narrow lanes. To add insult to injury, you will be charged for the privilege of driving that road as well as the Indiana Toll Road, the Ohio Turnpike, the New York State Thruway, and the Massachusetts Turnpike; and not the 'low' auto rate.

    An alternative to such a route would be to just take I-84 out of Portland up the Columbia River Gorge and through the Snake River Valley of Idaho all the way to its (local) end in Utah and then pick up I-80 across southern Wyoming out into Nebraska where it follows the old route of the Oregon Trail. At Lincoln, use NE-2 and I-29 to get down to Kansas City and I-70 east. Stay on that all the way to Columbus using the various beltways: I-435 around Kansas City, I-270 north of St. Louis, I-465 south of Indianapolis, and I-270 north around Columbus. From Columbus head north on I-71 to I-76 east continuing onto I-80 east at the junction with the Ohio Turnpike. I-80 will take you across northern Pennsylvania to Scranton where a short stint on I-81 north/I-380 will connect you with I-84 (again!). Stay on I-84 to the Mass Pike and use that for a couple of exits to I-290/I-495 around Boston. You then have the choice, depending on where in New Hampshire you're headed, to use I-91 north (from Hartford), US-3 north (from Lowell), I-93 north (from Lawrence), or NH-16 north (from Portsmouth).

    Last edited by AZBuck; 07-17-2013 at 05:01 PM. Reason: Typos

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