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  1. Default Seattle to Phoenix January

    I want to go on a roadtrip from Seattle to Phoenix the first week of january and I'm wondering what the safest and quickest route is. I don't have much experience driving in snow or ice, but I'm sure i5 wont be TOO bad since its a big interstate. I just want to know if theres any way to get around it or other routes that would be safer/ some tips.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Here's what I would do:

    First, keep an eye on the weather within the week before you leave. Invest in a good atlas, if you don't already have one, and be sure to plot out several routes you could take "just in case".

    Second, there are two logical routes: I-5 south to CA-46 east, CA-99 south to CA-58 east. US-395 south to I-15 south, to I-215 south to I-10 east -which will take you into Phoenix. This will take you over one pass, that is Siskiyou Pass at the OR/CA border. The other logical route could be I-90 east to I-82 east, to I-84 east, to I-15 south. Then you can take I-70 east for a few miles and drop south on US-89 in UT, then through Page in AZ, catching I-17 south in Flagstaff. The issues with this route include quite a bit more 2-lane highway (through some beautiful country, however), and Flagstaff is at 7000 ft elevation and could cause some winter issues.

    Interstates are, by far, better maintained during inclement weather. Our commercial truckers MUST get through, so interstates are the last to close and the first to open. That's why, if it were me, I'd lean towards the I-5/I-10 route. The CA routes that uses are not in "snow country", and CA-58 is near-interstate quality in most places.


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


    Google Maps suggests the shortest/fastest route would be I-90 to I-84 to US 93.

    Since this route puts you over the mountains to the cold side where there is snow and ice this may be one of the rare cases where there is a very clear difference between routes and their snow/ice potential. I-5 isn't the shortest but I suspect it's far less icy & snowy.

    I'm watching to see what others who know more about it will say.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    US-93 through Nevada is a pretty desolate road. I don't know if I'd recommend it in the winter.

    I'd like to make a minor change to Donna's recommendation - instead of taking I-215 to I-10, take it to CA-210 east to I-10, this freeway is now complete and open. This can avoid some considerable congestion. This is only about an hour longer than the US-93 route, assuming good weather on both routes.

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