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  1. Default Chicago to vegas with tow /winter months

    Hi im new here and im relocating my small family to las vegas nevada. Its December and I need a route thats easy to drive with a tow. Im renting a suv and towing my sonata and two children across america. I wont be taking this trip alone but any advice and routes would be helpful thid is my first road trip. Would I be able to avoid mountains? Is it safe to drive thru mountains with a tow? Should I be worried about ice and snow? Is it possible to go completly south then west? Id like to avoid mountains at all cost if possible Please help thanks in advanced

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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    First things first, I don't think your plan to rent an SUV to tow your car is going to work. Rental SUV's don't come with hitches, and every rental contract I've ever seen has expressly forbid towing with a rental car/suv. If you've found a way to overcome this, please let me know, but as far as I know, the only way you can tow your car is to rent a moving truck.

    As far as route, it is not possible to avoid mountains, and it's not possible to avoid the chance of snow and ice. You simply can't go far enough south to eliminate elevations where winter weather is common in winter.

    The two factors I'd be most concerned about will be what you end up using for a vehicle and the weather. The weather will depend upon the forecasts, and you won't be able to know that information until just before you leave.

    The most direct route is I-80/I-76/I-70/I-15. That does go right over the heart of the Colorado Rockies, but if you are in a moving van, that's a perfectly acceptable route. I've done it myself, in a uhaul pulling a car in February. It may be slow going, but it can be done. However, in an SUV, you could find that to be too challenging. The other options would be to take I-80 all the way to Utah and down I-15, or to use I-55/I-44/I-40/US-93 though OK, TX, NM, and AZ. Both of those options still go through mountains, both going well over a mile high, but they don't go quite as high as the route through Colorado and could be a little easier towing.

    Of course, I'll also mention, if you think you could fit everything you need for your move in an SUV, you might consider fitting what you can inside your Sonata, and shipping the rest, which could be both cheaper and easier.
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 12-05-2014 at 11:03 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Welcome to RTA!

    It's not possible to avoid SOME mountain travel, but I'd look at I-55/I-44/I-40/US-93 as being the best compromise between excess miles and major mountains.

  4. Default

    Thank u. And I didn't even think about not being able to tow using a rental car. So im back to possibly driving my sonata it has 134,000 miles right now do u guys think adding over 1,000 miles would affect my car in a bad way?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    A car with 134,000 miles is barely being broken in. As long as it has been well maintained, that shouldn't be a problem at all, just make sure to have a mechanic inspect it before you get on the road.

    1,000 miles is nothing for a car, and 1,000 miles of highway driving on a roadtrip is far easier on your car than 1,000 miles of stop and go city driving.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.


    As above, 1000 miles of highway driving will have little effect on your car, as long as it has been serviced and is road worthy. If it were not in a condition to be able to complete a 1000 journey, then it's not really worth the expense of towing it across the country. For peace of mind it would be worth considering joining a motoring organisation, AAA for example. [Thats if you are not already a member]

    Have a safe trip.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California

    Default Car care makes a big difference!

    One car that we have been taking on road-trips is 10+ years old and well past the 100K mark. We've kept it in excellent condition and would take it on a trip tomorrow if we had the chance -- and it has 152K on it. AAMOF, it will make a 750 mi round trip sometime after Christmas, to Phoenix and back, and just made that same trip over a 4-day weekend that I had in November for Veterans Day. So, as Dave and others have suggested, "as long as it has been serviced and is road worthy". That said, I would take care not to overload it.

    There are companies that specialize in small load moves, too. You simply fill their small containers with your things, being careful to pack them exactly as they recommend, and they pick them up and take them to your new destination. One company is PODS, another appears to be Mayflower these days. Sort of U-pack, they-HAUL. If this were me, I would consider those if I was taking more than I could pack in my own car.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Blow out the cobwebs.

    I have always been told that if you drive mostly around cities you need to take a car for a good long run on a regular basis, even if it is only to blow out the cobwebs.


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