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  1. #1

    Default Moving back to Nevada from NJ- ugh!!

    Hi there!
    I've been scouring the internet about making a cross country trip in late October and this site is fantastic! I'm hoping to get some advice from seasoned travelers.
    I just traveled in early September from Reno, NV to NJ to live temporarily for 1 year while my daughter attends school out here and now sadly a family emergency is taking me back to Nevada to stay.
    A good friend of mine drove our moving truck for me and made the cross country trip (I didn't drive at all) but I was on the trip. We took I80 the entire way and made it in 3.5 days. I was on a time crunch due to closing up loose ends in Reno and my daughters first day of school. It took long days of driving but my friend is used to driving a lot so for him it wasn't so bad. (Can't say the same for my daughter and I being cramped in a uhaul for 12-13 hours at a time!!)
    Now due to my family emergency I'm facing making the trip again in a much smaller moving truck (thank goodness!) and I'll be doing the entire drive myself.
    I'll have my daughter with me for company but she doesn't drive.
    I'm really nervous about driving a truck I'm unfamiliar with for that long of a distance and I'm really concerned about running into bad weather. Although it does snow in Reno, I'm used to driving my all wheel drive vehicle very slowly during any bad weather. The good thing is I am not on a time crunch this time although I do want to get there as soon as possible.
    Since I'm already familiar with the I80 route I think I should stick to what I'm familiar with although I know there's a more southern route alternative.
    I'm leaving the morning of 10/25 and plan to be in Reno sometime Saturday the 29th if all goes according to plan.
    I've driven to Yellowstone National Park two summers ago on my own and I know I'm okay with long distance drives but that was driving in the comfort of my own car.
    I should also mention the wind through certain parts of our drive had my friend white knuckled gripping the wheel for lengthy distances. He was pretty tensed up after those few episodes (Nebraska and Wyoming) if I remember correctly.
    We had a 20 ft truck- this time I'll have the 12 ft one so I'm hoping I won't feel the wind gusts as bad as the bigger truck.
    If anyone could give me advise on what to expect at this time of year or if the alternative route might be safer due to weather concerns.
    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Welcome to RTA, glad you found us!

    I-80 is going to be your shortest and safest bet. Going further south to avoid weather is a fallacy. All of the routes have their downsides, like they'll add a day to your travel time. The best thing you can do is try to get an extra day "just in case" you have to hole up somewhere and wait out the weather. Chances are you'll be fine and won't need that day, but you'll want that extra day for peace of mind.

    For your own safety, I would plan to use ALL 5 of those days to travel. You will have to travel 500-550 miles per day. In a smaller, 12-ft truck, this is do-able, but bear in mind you will be on the road between 10 and 12 hours per day. Stop every couple of hours to stretch your legs -- you will have to stop a lot anyway, to fill that truck up with fuel -- do some exercises, clear your mind. Treat it like a marathon, not a sprint. Stop and get food along the way.

    I-80 will cost you in terms of tolls. I'm sure others here will offer some suggestions that would not take you far off your beaten path but allow you to get off the toll roads and onto FREEways.

    As far as weather is concerned, none of us have a crystal ball. Keep an eye on the weather, using your smart phone, the TV in the motel at night, even TV's at the truck stops are often tuned to the weather stations. If the freeway gets closed, it will be your clue to get off and hole it up in a nice motel.


  3. #3


    Thank you Donna. I know I'm overthinking this!

    It's just such a different thought process then when you know you aren't the one driving!

    I didn't even think of avoiding the tolls- the drive here originally was my first experience with them and if I can manage avoiding them I certainly will! Thanks for the tip.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default To avoid most of the tolls.

    Take I-80 out of NJ all the way through PA to Youngstown OH. Pick up I-76 through Akron to I-71. Take that to I-70 and then I-74 back to I-80. You can avoid most of the traffic of Indianapolis by taking the beltway.

    I have taken this several times, on advice from this forum. It always gives a good run, saves heaps on tolls and adds very little time/miles. It will also avoid Chicago traffic.

    Be aware that even a 12' truck picks up quite a bit of wind. Hope it is a tail wind for you.


  5. #5


    Thanks for the added info Lifey!

    That's awesome information for someone who knows NOTHING about this side of the world- haha!

    I'm going to do it for sure- every cent counts this time around as I didn't expect to be going home so close to coming out here :(

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Good maps.

    Don't hit the road without good maps.

    If you don't already have some, you could do well to pick up a road atlas, such as the Rand McNally. This is much more helpful than electronics should you be detoured because of construction and/or weather. Your daughter will come in handy here, following your route, and finding alternatives, if necessary.


  7. #7


    Bought one today- thank you for that! 8 days left and we're on the road!

    I'm excited and nervous but, ready for it.

    Thank you!

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