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  1. #1
    aprildiamonds Guest

    Default uhaul from Detroit to Los Angeles

    I'm planning a moving trip from Detroit, MI to Los Angeles, CA.
    I will use a 24' truck (approx. LBS 12,000) and I will tow a Jeep Grand Cherokee (using car carrier).
    Which route should I choose ?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    RoadTripper Brad Guest

    Default ah... my specialty!

    Stick with the interstates as much as possible when moving, especially with something like that uhaul and your jeep in-tow. I would suggest getting down to I-40. That seems to be the lowest place to cross the Contenential Divide, and where you will least likely burn up your brakes (I have seen this happen in my own move up to Washington from San Francisco, at the Siskious Pass).

    Looking at my US Map, the best way would be somewhat south-westerly. Try I-75 south to I-70, I-70 west/sw to US 71 (detouring you around Toll-ways through Oklahoma). US 71 South into Arkansas where it merges with I-540 near Springdale. I-540 will connect you with I-40, and from there you bypass tolls through the Okalahoma and OKC, in to Albuquerque, NM. Once in Arizona, you do have the option of finding a place to park the uhaul for a bit, and take the jeep through the Petrified Forest National Park for a wee bit of sight seeing.

    I-40 will take you into Barstow, CA, and from
    there its south in I-15 into ol' Las Angeles!

    Good luck on the move!
    -Brad M.
    Last edited by RoadTripper Brad; 06-14-2005 at 08:08 PM. Reason: Mis-routed... said East versus West once...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Agreed with a caveat

    Quote Originally Posted by Cascadia4-brad m
    Once in Arizona, you do have the option of finding a place to park the uhaul for a bit, and take the jeep through the Petrified Forest National Park for a wee bit of sight seeing.
    A parked U-haul is pretty inviting target. Other tips, at motels try and park in a way that the desk clerk can keep an eye on the truck. Tipping, although rare is always appreciated. Brad's route is probably the best one for ease of travel.


  4. #4
    aprildiamonds Guest

    Default Thanks!

    thanks for the info

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default uhaul

    While I-40 is the flatest route, Taking I-70 across Colorado really isn't that bad. I've made the trip in a 17ft truck pulling a car on a trailer, and I didn't find the mountains to be a problem. I actually think driving a truck of that size is much more challenging in traffic than in mountains, so I would recommend is finding a route that avoids as many major cities as possible, which would probably make I-40 a better choice. I-80 wouldn't be a bad option either, but you would be stuck going through Chicago that way.

    The most important tip I can give for driving a uhaul and trailer - try to avoid having to back up at all costs. If you're using a 2-wheeled dolly you can't back up at all, and if you're using the full trailer, it's still quite challenging if you aren't very experienced with that sort of thing. This particularly goes into play at gas stations and motels. I ended up at the dead end of an L-shaped parking lot at a motel in Barstow, CA, and spent half an hour pulling off an "Austin Powers" U-Turn. I'd also recommend truck-stops (flying J is my favorite) when you need to refuel, they generally have more room than convience stores to manuvuer, even in the gasoline section of the station.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default A couple more tips

    Quote Originally Posted by aprildiamonds
    I'm planning a moving trip from Detroit, MI to Los Angeles, CA.
    If this is your first time with a larger truck, you will need to "acquire" a top view perspective about how tall you are. Make sure you know how tall you are from the highest part of the truck to ground and keep that measurement taped to your dashboard (until you have it memorized) and pay attention to the marked heights at overcrossings -- on Interstate highways this won't be much of an issue. Same measurement for the total distance from the front of the truck to the rear of the jeep. When you are loading and unloading the truck if there are trees on the streets -- ALWAYS get out and look and see if you will clear the trees.

    If you can do this -- this is good teaching tool for imagining how tall you are -- get a friend to stand with a pole (bamboo maybe) about 30 feet in front of the truck (with you in the driver's seat) and mark the pole with a piece of flagging or tape or something bright that compares with the height of the top of your truck. Use this pole to visualze your height with the relative size on nearby trees and buildings -- hold this vertical frame of reference in your mind's eye as you travel down the road. Also have the pole bearer go to the right front and both sides of the rear so you can see where your "blind spots" are.

    Buy a hand-held CB and a magnet mount antenna and use it to check on weather and general road conditions (monitor Ch. 19) as you travel. Plus you can chat with professional drivers if you want. They are a friendly bunch.

    Imported_ Midwesterner's tips are well taken -- backing a trailer is pain if you are not already skilled at the manuever. And I would agree that I-70 isn't all that tough a route to drive (even with the Rockies) and may well be the fastest route for you.

    Have fun!

  7. #7
    RoadTripper Brad Guest

    Default Uhauls

    Yes... I forgot about the CB.

    As with heights, most uhauls come equiped with a sticker already on the dashboard that notes the height. It alerts you that you cannot use drive-thrus at fast food joints, and need to watch out for overpasses.

    I-70 may be faster and have a better view (I haven't driven that particular route, so I don't know about the grades). Just remember steeper grades equal more fuel consumption, but at the same time you are paying per its a toss up!

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