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  1. Default Los Angeles to Denver - Mid to late February

    In Mid-Late February my boyfriend and I are going to be moving him from Los Angeles to Denver. We are planning on taking the I-15 N and I-70 E route. As much as I would love to spend a few days exploring, time is not on our side.

    According to google maps the over all trip will take 15 hours so we plan to split it into two days. We are both not experienced drivers in winter weather, shoot I have never even seen snow or an iced road in my life. So this is worrisome for us. We want to be at our destinations before it gets dark (5:00ish). The first day (traveling mostly in Utah) we are more willing to drive a little after dark as we can not take off until 8:30-9:00 am.

    Where is a safe place to stop for the night. We were thinking maybe stopping in Richfield or if its safe enough to drive at night, go to Green River.

    In a perfect world we would love to stay somewhere that might have something to do in the town, nice local restaurant, and stay somewhere with a cabin-ish feel rather than staying in a Holiday Inn. I have been looking online but want to see if there are any hidden gems we can enjoy.

    Any suggestions and tips would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    The first thing you need to know is that travel time estimates provided by online mapping programs just don't reflect real world conditions. LA to Denver is a little over 1,000 miles - to complete that in 15 hours, you'd have to average nearly 70mph, which is impossible to do once you figure in any traffic or other slowdowns, not to mention even minimum stops for fuel, food, etc.

    Realistically, this a solid 18-20 hour drive, and the overnight stop you're planning is a must. Richfield or Salina are by far your best options to find lodging. Even there, you're almost certainly going to be arriving well after dark. If you leave at 9am from LA, it's going to be at least 7 or 8 by the time you get there (don't forget, you'll be losing an hour).

    Green River - at nearly 700 miles away is just too far - it's not the darkness that would make it unsafe, it's the fatigue of being behind the wheel for the many hours and miles. It would be an especially bad idea in this case because there are no services at all for the 100 mile stretch between Richfield/Salina and Green River.

    You mentioned this is a move. What are you doing for a vehicle in this case? If you're going to be in a moving van and/or towing, keep in mind, you'll need even more time.

    The other big factor could be weather. It's impossible to say what conditions you might see in the middle of February. You could see perfectly good weather, you could see a major snowstorm. I-70 goes through the heart of the rockies and snow is certainly a possibility you'll have to be aware of. It's even possible that you'll need to be prepared to stop and wait a day for conditions to improve - the only thing you can do is make sure to keep an eye on the forecasts as you get ready to leave. If there is a storm in the forecast, you might consider another route - perhaps I-40 to I-25, but that route could see snow too, and that adds enough miles where you'd need to look at adding a second overnight anyway.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    In my mind and experience, Richfield is a better place to stop than Salina. There are more motels open all year round, and more restaurants, than in Salina which has only a few options.

    We like the Quality Inn there, but if you are towing anything, or even driving a U-Haul, there's really no parking there for that without taking up a lot of spaces. You're better off in one of the motels that's closer to the freeway. If you're in a car or pick-up without anything being towed, you'd be fine at Quality.


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