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  1. Default MEDFORD OR to OGDEN UT Help in route planning

    I am driving from Medford Oregon to Ogden Utah the end of this January and need some help planning a route. I moved to Oregon from Arizona a few months ago and now my job is taking me to Ogden.

    I have very little winter driving experience (lived in AZ most of my life) and would like to take a route that would expose me to a minimum amount of snowy and icy driving conditions. Time is not a big factor and whether or not the trip takes one day or two is no issue.

    Any help that I can get in planning a route would be greatly appreciated. I will be driving a 2000 Toyota Sienna van fully loaded with furniture and belongings. I have standard highway tires and no chains.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,064

    Default

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    First of all, you need to understand this is at minimum a 2 day drive. At nearly 800 miles, that's just too far for one day, even if you have good weather, if you see bad weather, having a 3rd day available would be helpful.

    Second, I'm not sure what "standard highway tires" means. While you don't necessarily need snow tires, I'd make sure they are at least All-Season tires in good condition. Summer tires would be very bad in even minor winter weather.

    For routes, you've got 2 options that are pretty similar in distance. One would use OR-140/US-95 to Winnemucca, NV and then take I-80 from there. The other would be to head up to Bend, then use US-20 across to I-84.

    There is no way to say at this time which route would have better weather. You're going to have to take a look at the forecasts just before you depart, and decide which looks like a better choice based on the days you'll be traveling.

  3. Default

    Thank you for your reply. I'm not at all worried about the time it will take. I'm a real road warrior who drove alone from Seattle to Phx AZ non stop last year and Phx to Medford in 16 yrs straight a few months ago. I'm only concerned about road conditions if the weather is bad. I have even been considering taking Interstate 5 to Portland and then Interstate 84 the rest of the way because I've heard the interstates are maintained much better in the winter.

    ANY OTHER IDEAS OUT THERE?
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 12-27-2015 at 10:58 PM. Reason: Removed quote of entire previous post and non-standard font

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,064

    Default

    Let me make something clear, Driving non-stop from Seattle to Phoenix or Phoenix to Medford is nothing to be proud of. It doesn't make you a road warrior, It only shows you're willing to engage in extremely reckless behavior that endangers not only yourself, but everyone else on the road. Doing those kinds of drives are every bit as dangerous as driving drunk. There is no person on earth who can safely drive more than 1000 miles in a day, period, and the fact that you survived doesn't make your drives any more safe than someone who "safely" gets home after having far too many drinks. It's a game of russian roulette, with live bullets and eventually your luck will run out.

    If you were going to stick to all Interstates, it would actually be a bit shorter to go down to I-80 via Sacramento, but in either case, adding about 250 miles increases your total drive by 33% - which is 33% more chance of seeing bad weather, and is not something I would recommend. If roads are so bad that you think that you need the advantage of eliminating the 2 lane road drives across Oregon, then you're probably better off waiting a day for conditions to improve.

  5. Default

    COULD I PLEASE GET SOME ADDITIONAL ROUTE INFORMATION.

    The only reason I was considering an all interstate route was my concern over the availability of services and fuel at night. Especially in the area around Winnemucca NV. I will need to do a good portion of my trip at night and want to make sure I can get gas.

    Which of the 2 direct routes would have the most services especially at night. ( going through bend OR or Winnemucca NV?
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 01-11-2016 at 04:49 PM. Reason: Removed Non-Standard Font

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, CO.
    Posts
    304

    Default

    The stretch from Burley, ID to Ogden is really sparse - as in - no signs of civilization and sometimes very high winds and dust storms. I don't know the other route.

    But either route has you ending your day on the interstate so there are services. Just have to pay close attention to spacing between them and your fuel state.

    I always prefer to do any night driving when I first start out and minimize it when I'm tired. Also try to minimize it overall if possible.

    But weather could play a big effect no matter which route you take. High winds and storms slow progress. I have vivid memories of pulling into Boise just as the rain froze to ice on one trip..... Have a backup plan for where to stop if needed.

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

    Default

    Winnemucca is no problem, there's a Pilot and a Flying J, both open 24/7.

  8. #8

    Default And further east of Winnemucca along I-80........

    .........is Elko, a sizable town which is practically guaranteed to have 24 hour fuel, and 50 miles east of there is Wells, NV, and a Love's Travel Stop, a nice 24/7 facility. I've fueled at a Pilot Travel Center in West Wendover, NV, and it's a 24/7 facility. I'd assume zilch from West Wendover for the last 120 or so miles to the I-215 loop connecting I-80 east to I-15 north just past the SLC airport.

    Foy

  9. Default

    Last couple of replies are a great help. The last time I drove through the Winnemucca and Elko area was way back in 1975 and it was a long, boring, and very lonely drive back then and travelers were advised to carry extra fuel with them. Hahah

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,271

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    You will find 24/7 truck stops on almost all Interstates these days. It wouldn't hurt to research Pilot/Flying J, Love's, Petro, and TA on their websites, those are the major chains. In addition to the Interstates, you can also find them on other major truck routes. Most towns of any size will have at least one 24 hour C-store with gas once you get out of Oregon. You don't find them as much in Oregon because of the no self-service allowed and it doesn't pay to have 2 employees on duty all night. Some states even allow unattended cardlock pumps, I once bought gas in Utah on a Sunday at a closed gas station that way, the Mormons roll up the sidewalks on the Sabbath.

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