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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    2

    Default Calgary to Phoenix-End of October

    Hello,

    New to the site, planning a road trip with my wife and 3 kids (under 5) from Calgary to Phoenix in our 34ft Class A motorhome.

    Would greatly appreciate any recommendations on Campgrounds or attractions along the way that would be worth checking out!

    We will be travelling down the I-15 and plan to make it to Butte, MT the first night (weather permitting). Next day hoping to make it to Salt Lake City but have some flexibility past that point as to when and how we make it to Phoenix.

    Any suggestions would be appreciated!

    *Also, is there any requirements/restrictions on these roads this time of year (heard some places it is mandatory to carry chains)

    Cheers,

    Denver

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,271

    Default

    Welcome to RTA!

    How many days do you actually have to get from SLC to Phoenix? There are 2 basic ways to get there - through Las Vegas or through Flagstaff, and there are a LOT of things to see. If you are in a hurry, you will need at least a day and a half going either way.

    I'm not aware of any requirements to carry chains in any of the states you will be going through, but if conditions do get bad, you may be required to use them, or find a campground and wait things out.

    You may want to winterize the RV and leave it winterized till you reach Phoenix. If you don't want to do this, you should probably just take I-15 all the way to LV then US-93 to Phoenix. This route doesn't have elevations as high as going via Flagstaff, which would basically be taking US-89.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,064

    Default

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    There is no shortage of things to see between SLC and Phoenix. Southern Utah is famous for it's vast natural wonders and national parks. Bryce Canyon, Zion, and the Grand Canyon are three of the most famous, that would be very close to the direct route. You could also swing out just a bit to the east, and hit Arches, Canyonlands, and Monument Valley. Of course, those aren't your only options, but they are some of the more popular option.

    Snow would be unlikely, although certainly not impossible, but I'm not aware of any routes in this area that would require chains. The bigger issue could quite possibly be the cold, as below freezing temperatures would be quite possible overnight in many areas along your drive - which could be an issue for both your comfort, and the operation of your RV. You certainly don't want to have any water lines freeze up on you!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    Your biggest issue in the north will be finding campgrounds/RV parks that are still open, as many do start to close down by the 1st of October. If you have a Good Sam/Trailer Life directory, that will be a big help, as the operating dates are usually included with each listing (or "open year round").

    The second biggest issue is, as GLC pointed out, the winterization of your unit. When I was growing up, my mom and dad often took trips from our home in the Midwest down south to either Florida or Texas, during the winter months. If I recall correctly, Dad would leave the trailer winterized until he was sure we had passed through the "winter zone" heading south. We weren't allowed to use the bathroom and we used water from a jug for both drinking and doing dishes (along with a dishpan, since we weren't filling the grey water tanks either). On the way back north, Dad would empty all the tanks and we'd go back on that system, then he would re-winterize when we got home. At least, this is the way my mom remembers it.

    I-15 is a beautiful route from the Canadian border all the way down to Las Vegas, if you choose to use it. It's very scenic in itself. Beware of the winds coming across Montana, in a high-profile vehicle. Salt Lake City has some wonderful places to see -- just north of there, near Promontory, UT, is Golden Spike National Historic Park. In the 1800s, it is the point where the railroad being built from the East met the railroad being built from the West. There's a train on display that occasionally does go out for a ride, but unfortunately, not after mid-October this year. If you're a space history nut (like my husband and I), Morton-Thiokoll has a display of rockets outside their offices along the approach road from SLC to Promontory.


    Donna

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,749

    Default Winterizing for travel ?

    I disagree about fully winterizing your RV when travelling unless the weather got really extreme, but if the temps drop, or threaten to, then you should drain them overnight.
    We have seen temps of minus 10 and not had to fully winterize the unit for travelling. Sure we may have drained the water off at night at times when the temps really drop away [beyond minus 3] and refilled [part way if we thought we would be draining again] in the morning, but we generally had the use of the on board facilities when we needed them, other than one occasion that is when the city supply had frozen ! Of course you have to make your own judgement call as to when you feel safe to leave the water on board. We found the wind chill factor the most important thing to keep an eye on, that did catch us out once but we got away with it. If you have the 'Arctic' option on your rig then you you should have no concerns anyway.

    As for what to do from SLC, well as said that will depend on time, but as also mentioned I would definitely be looking at Southern Utah, Monument valley and Grand canyon etc.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    2

    Default

    Thank you for the tips, will definitely look into some of those (my kids love trains and rockets!)

    I plan on keeping my tanks full of water, usually can get away with -5°C before things start freezing but I am going to bring a portable air compressor to blow down the lines if we hit some chilly weather in Montana/Idaho just in case. It is going to be parked in Arizona for the winter so I should be ok with not winterizing it once its down there?

    Thanks again!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,271

    Default

    You should be fine in Phoenix - although the record cold there is 17F, the record low daily MAXIMUM is 36F.

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