San Diego to Colorado - easiest route during winter
We are driving from San Diego to Colorado for Christmas. I'm not experienced at driving in snow and icy conditions. What is the easiest way to get there? We took I-70 last time, but lucked out with the weather -- it didn't snow at all both ways. We're considering taking I-40 to I-25 this time, but don't know whether this would be an easier route.
My advice is to plan it both ways -- I-40/I-25 and I-15/I-70, then see what the weather is like when it is time to go. The reality is, either way will probably be open and passable, but if a current storm makes travel difficult on one route, the other may still be OK. A third possibility is I-8/I-10/I-25 -- I've made it to Denver that way when everything else was impassable, although you can run into icy conditions on that route too, especially around Deming, and along I-25 south of Albuquerque. Bob
Weather to choose a route (pun intended)
After living in Colorado for 12 years and New Mexico for six years and hitting some of those roads, I can attest Bob is right about weather affecting any of these routes. For example, I-25 can be fraught with danger. It's not just near Albuquerque that it can be dicey. La Bajada Hill, south of Santa Fe, can be tricky in winter. Going north from there, you hit Raton Pass, at more than 10,000 feet. With the 18-wheeler volume and even with the new construction, I'd be leery of the snow and ice along there. Then there's the thrill of Monument Hill — 7,000+ feet — north of Colorado Springs. I've driven in places that can and have had heavy winter conditions since 1967 and those still scare me.
If it were me, I'd take the most direct route, but you didn't say where in Colorado you're going. That can make a huge difference in which way to go. Some of the secondary roads in New Mexico and Colorado are as efficient as the interstates. Let us know more about your destination and maybe I can respond with more helpful and direct information.
Thanks for your responses!
We're going to Denver. I heard I-8/I-10/I-25 might not be a bad way to go and that it usually has less traffic going through.
Low Road, High Road
It looks to me like I-8/I-10/I-25 is the long way but if the weather is bad north and west of Denver, it would work. Just keep in mind those high points on I-25. I guess I'd consider the I-15/I-70 route if the weather looks really clear. It looks more direct.