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  1. Default Hwy 93 from Vegas to Montana

    I haul an RPod type trailer with a mid-sized V8 pickup and hills and flats are a breeze. I struggle climbing steep grades like Donner Pass on Interstate 80 in CA. Iím wondering if Highway 93 is a better choice than Interstate 15 from Las Vegas to Missoula, MT?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Central Missouri
    Posts
    5,676

    Default

    Hi, welcome to RTA!

    Even an RPod can seriously compromise a pick-up. Are you sure you've got enough truck for your trailer? My husband and I had a full-size pickup that used to struggle with 6% uphill. The trailer was just too heavy for it.

    I have traveled much of US-93, but not towing. So I didn't pay a lot of attention to the ups and downs. I did a little search for you, tho, and came up with these comments:

    US Highway 93 passes through the town of Jackpot just across the Idaho state line and hits I-15 about 20 miles east of Las Vegas with Ely about midway. Ely and Jackpot have the best housing and food options. Wells, not so much. Distance is about 450 miles (and 7 hours) of high desert two lane highway …usually in good condition.

    Watch out for icy spots in winter and the shoulder seasons. Pay attention to your tires and your gas gage no matter the season. It is common to see signs: “next gas …100+ miles”. Check your tire pressures before the trip; visually inspect your tires AND THE SPARE. High temperatures are very hard on tires, engine coolant and oil.

    Endless vistas and desert scenery suck when your vehicle is dead and the next town is 100 miles away. Carry drinking water.

    70 MPH posted open-road limits are typical and car traffic typically moves at 75. Highway 93 is a major semi-truck, snow-bird RV route (lets call em all big rigs). The RV migration is amazing with peak numbers several weeks either side of November 1st and April 1st. Big rigs on a two-lane highway always make for difficult passing situations. Reflections off the pavement and the wide-open country can greatly hamper distance perception resulting in some bizarre passing/not passing decisions.

    There is a shortcut of about 45 miles between Ely and Alamo. At the south end of Ely (next to McDonalds), US Highway 6 goes west and intersects highway 318 South. If big rig traffic has been frustrating on US-93 from either end consider taking US-93 through Caliente. There is a heck of a grade on US-93 outside of Ely that discourages big rigs; making that extra 45 miles enticing for a car.

    Keep and eye out for wild horses in the high country and bands of desert elk.

    Donna

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    10,112

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    I would stick to the Interstates. US-93/NV-318 only saves you about 60 miles, it's just as mountainous, it does not save time, and there are a lot fewer gas stations and less cell service.

    What year, make, and model is your truck, and which engine? What model R-Pod do you have?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    11,672

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    Is your aim just to get there or have you got time to stop and enjoy the ride ? We liked US93 as an option and would much prefer it to Interstate given the choice. If you are interested in making a few stops along the way the early part of this trip report follows US93 from LV to Missoula and beyond.

  5. Default Right Idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Southwest Dave View Post
    Is your aim just to get there or have you got time to stop and enjoy the ride ? We liked US93 as an option and would much prefer it to Interstate given the choice. If you are interested in making a few stops along the way the early part of this trip report follows US93 from LV to Missoula and beyond.
    Thanks for all the input; I do like to enjoy the road and not just get there. I would be camping and exploring along the way and even stay longer in areas that are appealing.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Central Missouri
    Posts
    5,676

    Default

    There is public camping along that route, though I never finished the Camping Guide for that road. (That's on my To Do list.) Great Basin National Park and a few state parks are along the road in Nevada, some national forest campgrounds are in certain places in Idaho and into Montana.

    I think you just kick-started me into finishing that Camping Guide before I go back to work.

    Edited later! It's done! Camping along US-93.


    Donna
    Last edited by DonnaR57; 08-13-2020 at 09:26 AM. Reason: added link to camping US-93

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