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  1. Default los ANgeles to Minneapolis friday Nov 6th 2009

    Hello and thanks for having me on this forum.

    I will drive from Los Angeles to Minneapolis next week and I would like some advises.

    The route should be:

    Los Angeles (CA)
    Vegas (NV)
    Salt Lake city (Utah)
    South Dakota
    Minneapolis (MN)

    I bought a Toyota 4runner for my GF which lives there and I decided that I will bring her the car instead of shipping it.

    Few questions:

    how long is going to take? I was planning to get there in 30 hours (1960 miles).

    how is the weather in early Nov in Utah?Chances of snow?High?

    I ve never been to Wyoming nor South Dakota so advises are appreciated.

    I do not expect to find any traffic except when I leave LA and I will approach Las Vegas.

    Thanks in advance for any suggestion.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.


    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    If you travel 10 hours a day it will take about 3 1/2 days to get there if you don't see any major delays. This allows time to stretch out and have food and bathroom breaks and to top up with gas, things a computer program doesn't allow time for.
    The weather is unpredictable and you could see just about anything from sunshine to snowfall. The best thing to do is keep an eye on the Forecasts and be prepared to alter your route or have the time to pull over for a few hours in a storm and let the road crews do their job. According to my mapping program 1 15/70/76/80/35 is the quickest route, and although only by a couple of hours it will give you an alternative unless you have to stick to your original route for some reason.

    Have a safe journey !

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default a bit of a detour

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Going through Wyoming and South Dakota is going to add 100 miles to the most direct route. Of course, if you've never been there before, that's a pretty small addition to a 2,000 mile trip.

    I will echo Daves comments about this being a 3.5 day trip. When you are talking about trips that are this long, it really is pointless to start using hours because you aren't a computer that never needs to stop. These kinds of trips are measured in days. I will note that depending upon your exact route, you'll likely be taking some 2 lane roads that will add a little more time to your trip. I'm assuming that since you got your mileage down under 2000, the route you've picked spends some time cutting through the Black Hills in Southwest SD, which will take a little more time, driving at a lower speed. It shouldn't change your overall time of 3.5-4 days, just again, another factor that makes it difficult to measure the time in hours.

  4. Default

    thank you guys for the suggestions.
    the navigator gave me that route...Wyoming and SD to reach Minnesota.

    Dave What other route would you suggest?Going through what?

    I m not very practical with freeway numbers...
    i m originally from Italy, moved here in Los Angeles 5 years ago.

    My problem is that I do not have days off.
    So unfortunately this will not be a pleaseant trip...just a trip to take the car to my GF.
    I will leave friday and I have to make it by sunday.
    My flight goes back to LA on monday and can 't miss it.

    I will not drive solo.
    A person will drive with me.

    I would like to avoid CO...for the weather.

    Anyway the navigator showed 1960 miles...and when I fly to minnesota the miles are slightly less(around 1600).

    Bottom line,

    what route would you take?:)

    Thank you,


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Thurs night, Mon Morn ?

    Hi Tony,

    This would be 3 extremely long days and beyond what we would recommend, add to that the fact you could see weather disruption and you really are putting yourselves under pressure. The route I would take is the one I laid out earlier but would be dependant on weather. It goes right through Colorado but it is Interstate and they are very good at keeping them open, but again check the forecasts.
    You will need to get out of LA extremely early to get a head start, or if it were I, and it was possible I would drive a few hours Thurs night to take some pressure off. Don't expect to arrive untill late on Sunday and again if possible [depending on flight departure time] maybe stopping Sunday night a couple of hours short and continuing Monday morning would be the wisest and safest move.
    The route I mentioned will take you through Denver and Omaha and day 1 you would be looking at getting as close as you can to Green River UT, day 2, North Platte and then to your destination but they will be killer days.

    Someone may come by with an alternative but you should take a look at tips on the speed run to set yourself up for it, but to do 3 day's back to back, covering around 650 miles is not something we recommend for your safety and the safety of those around you.

    Bottom line,
    If the weather is not cooperative you won't make it in the time you have and could put you under immense pressure. Try and add Thursday to your trip or get a late flight Monday/early Tues.

    Have a safe journey.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default the razors edge

    You are really setting yourself up for a very stressful and potentially problematic trip.

    I would agree that leaving late on Thursday and at least tying to get to Vegas would be quite helpful, however your comments about not being able to get off work have me concerned that you aren't even planning to leave until later in the day on Friday. If you don't have at least all day Friday, you really need to rethink your plans, because it will start becoming impossible to do safely.

    If you can give yourself 3 full day, you're looking at 13 hours each day on the road, if you take the route that Dave laid out. That's tough but doable, assuming the weather is clear. The problem is, if you do see some bad weather, you've got no margin of error and your trip could quickly become impossible to achieve on your timeframe.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    My mapping program says fastest route is 1928 miles from downtown LA to downtown Minneapolis, via I-10/I-15/I-70/I-76/I-80/I-35. Bypassing Colorado by taking I-15 to I-80 is 2000 miles. If the weather is bad in the Rockies, it's 2121 miles via I-15/I-40/I-35.

    I HIGHLY recommend that you do whatever you have to do to take Thursday AND Friday off. If you are planning on working Friday and leaving after work, look at the shipment option. There are services that you can use which will find a person to drive the vehicle for you. If you can leave after work on Thursday and get as far as Las Vegas or Kingman that night, you have a decent chance of getting in late Sunday night if the weather cooperates.

  8. Default

    I checked again the route on Mapquest.
    My GF does not live in minneapolis but in St cloud which is 70 miles NW of Minneapolis.

    Mapquest insists that the best route (for a total of 1899.19 miles) is drive to Vegas, Salt Lake city, Rapid City Wyoming and Sioux falls South Dakota.

    I will leave friday morning.
    We will be 2 drivers.

    I will not go solo.

    When I drive, he rests, when I rest, he drives.

    We stop for food, taking breaks, going to restrooms...and that is about it.

    I am confident that I will make it with no problems but obviously SAFETY FIRST.

    and if for some reason I can t make it...I will get a different flight to go back to LA.

    I am not an irresponsible person.

    Unfortunately when you do not have your own company and you do not have many vacation days, this is what you have to do.

    Shipping companies charge 1000+ dollars to ship the car out there.

    With 500 I take care of it.

    And again, I really appreciate all ur suggestions and concerns.


  9. Default

    And by the way this will be the car i ll be driving :)
    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default a better route

    St Cloud as a destination does change things a bit, however, personally, I think Mapquest is giving you a really bad route choice. Its directing you on some 2 lane roads through the black hills that are going to be some pretty slow going routes.

    What I would recommend is to take I-15 to Utah then either take I-70/I-76 through Denver or I-80 from Salt Lake City through Wyoming to Nebraska (there isn't a great deal of difference mileage and time wise). Once you are in Nebraska I would etake US-83 at North Platte and then take that north to I-90 in South Dakota, from there you'll go all the way to just inside the Minnesota border, and pick up MN-23 from there.

    This avoids some of the 2 lane roads in Wyoming and South Dakota that will slow you down. US-83 is 2 lanes through Nebraska, but it is a very straight road that still has a 65 mph speed limit. MN-23 is a route that I've driven numerous times, and its a pretty busy rural 2 lane road. You won't make great time on this one, but its the best way to get from Sioux Falls/I-90 to St. Cloud.

    Interestingly Googlemaps doesn't give the I-90 based option at all. Its first recommendation is to take I-80 all the way to Des Moines, and then go up through Minneapolis or take I-15 all the way to Montana and then pick up I-94 for the trip through North Dakota to St. Cloud. I personally, would chose either of these routes over the way Mapquest suggests, but I still think cutting through Nebraska will be your best option (assuming weather is good). Your looking at 3 long days on the road, but with 2 drivers taking frequent but short breaks, you should be able to have a good safe trip.

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