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  1. Default Vancouver, canada to Toronto via US

    Hi,
    I am moving from Vancouver to Toronto around November 3rd or 4th week.
    Looking for some advice regarding, snow, animals, dangers, places to stay, altitude, weather, app etc
    It looks like driving between seattle to Miles city,Montano, 59301 looks worrysome..
    I drive alone in Odyssey (front wheel drive & no winter tires)
    I can take longer safer routes & i can spend 5 days in driving..
    Also planning to drive via south Dakato rather than North Dakato thinking about snow
    Never drove this long in US.. Drove in Canada in summer..
    Any advice is greatly appreciated

    Thanks
    Pkody

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Central Missouri
    Posts
    5,745

    Default

    Welcome to RTA!

    This comes up often in our forums, the need to move across country in the middle of winter. First thing I would suggest would be "stay flexible". It is quite a possibility that your travel time could be lovely weather and not the fearsome snowstorms at all. So watch your weather forecast, plan accordingly, and be sure to have an extra day available in case you DO have to hunker down somewhere to wait out a storm.

    At 4300 km (about 2700 mi), you are going to be driving some long days (845 km; 525 mi). So right there, you might want to get yourself a 6th day -- plus another one for a "weather hedge".

    Places to stay - if you are on the interstates, you will find hotels in plenty of places. To prevent yourself from driving too long on any given day, set a goal for the day in the morning, look up motels, and make yourself a reservation. Take care like you would at home and use your intuition.

    Dangers - the biggest danger, other than staying on the highways when the weather is getting really bad, is staying on the highway for too long. Take lots of stretch breaks, at least once every 2 hours. Ten hours on the road is plenty for one day.

    I'm sure our other regulars will chime in, especially those with more experience in winter driving than I am!


    Donna

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    10,173

    Default Hope for the Best, but Plan,,,

    I very much agree with Donna, under the best case scenario, you're going to need every minute of every day that you've so far budgeted. You simply can't count on everything going to plan, and I also urge you to add a day or two to what you have available. If you get out into the plains and the weather ahead looks good, then and only then can you start making the choice as to whether to continue to Toronto in five days or to spend some of your 'extra' time seeing some sights along the way. The important thing is to have that choice to make, safely.

    You've already discussed one of another set of choices you should keep in your back pocket, the choice of routes. The choice between using I-94 through North Dakota or I-90 through South Dakota is one that would cost you essentially nothing in extra miles or major cities to get through. This is where you might be deciding you have a day's worth of time to make stops along the way. So yes, have a route in mind but recognize that things may change between now and then. There's no guarantee that North Dakota will be less likely to see snow or that going through South Dakota would help you avoid it. Early winter storms are just too capricious to predict.

    You have another such choice for the route between the Mississippi River and Toronto. The route most mapping routines will give you is the one down through Chicago and then re-enter Canada at Detroit/Windsor. There are, to my way of thinking at least, better routes that are not significantly longer. If you come through North Dakota, from Fargo take USA-10, MN-34, MN-200 and US-2 to I-75 south and I-69 north/east to Sarnia ON. If you come through South Dakota then just stay on I-90 to Tomah WI and then strike out 'cross-country' for about 120 miles to Appleton WI, then I-41 and US-41 north to US-2 and then as previously described.

    So, that's the general idea. Have multiple choices in your back pocket to be able to deal with whatever the road and the weather might do to interrupt you plans. But almost the only way to have any choices is to first choose to set aside an extra day for this trip.

    AZBuck
    Last edited by AZBuck; 11-03-2021 at 09:32 PM. Reason: Edit: Corrected route numbers. Thanks to glc

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,759

    Default

    I will remind you that you will have to review the COVID guidelines for crossing the border. While it is open, there are restrictions and you'll have to see how they apply to you as a Canadian citizen. Generally speaking, to reenter Canada, you will need to download and use the ArriveCAN app as well as present a Negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of the border crossing. Finding a test while on the road - that will get you results back within the needed timeframe - is something that you'll want to research. The last time I went to Canada, I took a test late Thursday afternoon, with the intent of crossing on Sunday - and I didn't get the results back until Sunday morning, so I had a very small window where I could cross.

    While not completely disagreeing with Buck, I would encourage using a lot of caution before following his route suggestion, particularly across Upper Michigan. You'll find few people who love the UP more than I do, but late November is very much winter in that part of the country. If you do find yourself in a winter storm, you'll be on 2 lane roads with limited traveler services that are fairly far apart. If the weather is clear, it's a wonderful place and it's perfectly safe to travel, but I would use extra caution to make sure the weather is actually clear when you'll be traveling.

  5. Default

    Hi Donna,
    Thanks for your reply & kindness..
    I really appreciate it..
    Pkody

    - - - Updated - - -

    Hi AZBuck
    Thanks for your reply & kindness..
    I really appreciate it..
    Pkody

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thanks for your reply..
    I really appreciate it..
    Pkody

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    10,173

    Default The Gist of It

    I would also agree with Donna and Michael, because I think we're all saying the same thing:

    Your three basic needs for this trip are knowing your options, remaining aware of the weather ahead, and leaving yourself enough time to exercise your options. this is especially true if you have limited experience in driving in snow/ice at highway speeds. Best of luck and I hope you move/RoadTrip is very enjoyable and not too 'interesting'.

    AZBuck

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