Best Route from Denver

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Best Route from Denver

Postby stormlight » Thu Aug 27, 2009 6:46 am

Just wondering whether anyone from Denver made the treck and which route they took. Google says up to Cheyenne and west on 80 (which I'm leaning toward) but 70 west to 50 across Nevada looks like a straighter shot. Also, any thoughts on Jungo Rd if I take 80 ( have very good off road capabilities) THANKS!
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Postby AntiM » Thu Aug 27, 2009 6:56 am

If you're towing, 70 has more severe grades. There's not much on 50, keep your tank topped off. If you're doing Jungo, have spare tires. Plural. If you're towing, Jungo may not be the best road.
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Postby Craftsmn » Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:03 am

80 is the quickest but 50-70 is more scenic. Never tried Jungo Rd.

We always take 80 to Burning man and 50-70 home. There are some nice hot springs to stop at near Austin, NV (search web for info). Don't assume you can ask the locals for help. One year I was fairly certain how to get there but stopped and asked at a few places in Austin where the hot springs were and everyone said they did not know of any hot springs......hehe....... On the way out of one restaurant there was a tourist newspaper with directions...lol..... I guess they don't want them over run with dusty burners after the event. So lets just keep it our little secret........

Oh and as AntiM says get gas at every town that has a gas station on 50. It's not called the loneliest road for nothing.
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Postby stormlight » Fri Aug 28, 2009 5:15 am

Do you remember how long it took you on 80? Showing around 18 hours from Colorado Springs, which is actually where I'm from. Sometimes these are off. Probably leave Saturday just to break it up. As far as Jungo goes, I have large off road tires and have done a lot of of these, is there something unusual about Jungo to cause flats?
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Postby Craftsmn » Sat Aug 29, 2009 1:34 am

16 to 17 hours from Denver to Fernley. It just depends on how often you stop for gas or food and for how long. Enjoy the pilgrimage.
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Postby OmniSpyder » Sat Aug 29, 2009 1:06 pm

i like to cut accost highway 287... just a lack of gas stations so grab some in fort Collins. [/code]
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Postby Thecatman » Sat Aug 29, 2009 9:02 pm

stormlight wrote:is there something unusual about Jungo to cause flats?
Not if you have 8ply or better tires. We (my wife and I) sliced a tire just west of Sulphur a few years back. There are rounded, fist sized rocks for a few miles west of Sulpur that will claim a tire on any unsuspecting off-roader. I knew of the possible dangers but went any way with Les Schwab A/Ts.
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Postby Thecatman » Sat Aug 29, 2009 9:06 pm

Plus there are plans to build a dump :x (landfill) west of Winnamucca to take trash from the "bay area." :evil:
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Postby PlayaMagic » Sun May 16, 2010 6:42 pm

I agree with Craftsmn; taking I80 there and 50 to I70 on the way back is a great way to do it. The I70/50 route is slower, but 50 is very scenic, with big open spaces and hardly any other cars on the road. Be sure to fill up whenever you can though; there is literally nothing out there.
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Postby Playa Foot » Sun May 16, 2010 8:58 pm

I-80 across Nevada is not especially exciting but is fast and more services are available. The 'Lonliest Highway in America' is a fun and beautiful drive and if you stop at the towns along the way you can receive a "I Survived Highway 50" award fron the State of Nevada. It follows the old Lincoln Highway and the route of the Pony Express.
If you have good tires with at least a couple spares a vehicle in very good condition and the ability to drive at a reasonable speed on a potentially dangerous road you may consider the Jungo Road.
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Postby Snow » Sun May 16, 2010 9:22 pm

As an experienced NV backroads traveler I always carry multiple spare tires AND have needed them (and some other things too). You want all the tires to be good ones (8ply), in damn good shape. I always carry spare fuel as well. Washed out areas can come suddenly and unexpectedly.

Both 50 and 80 everyone was right on above. 50 has more grades, 80 is better if you have a big load.

Those are my favorite springs in the state, don't go messing them up with hippie scum. Near the springs there are some cool native pictographs (in cave) petroglyphs (right off highway), both sites have camping/hiking. If you camp at the springs watch out for the wild ass who likes to bray next to your tent in the middle of the night, and you thought that only happened at the burn.
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Postby CapSmashy » Sun May 16, 2010 11:27 pm

We cut across to Denver to visit my brother in 08 via the 50 to 70 route.

As already mentioned, top off the tank as stops have a lot of miles in between them.

HIGHLY recommend The Rancher Cafe in Delta, Utah. Hands down the best fresh strawberry pie I have ever eaten in my life. Food was home cooked goodness, not some crap out of a Sysco can.

There is a very good reason Hwy 50 was dubbed the loneliest road in America. Heading east, Ely is pretty much the last town on the Nevada side with about 65 miles to the state line where there is a gas station. After that, its about 90 miles to Hinckley & Delta, the first of anything you'll come to in Utah once you cross the state line.

The drive on I-70 dropping into Denver is spectacular, but lots of grades.
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Postby Snow » Mon May 17, 2010 9:06 am

There is gas in Fallon, Eureka and Austin (smallest but cool town). I have spent a lot of time in Ely. If you have time you should also check out Great Basin National Park. Beautiful Mountains (w/ active glaciers) and great caves (one has tour).
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Postby Craftsmn » Mon May 17, 2010 9:34 pm

Snow wrote:If you camp at the springs watch out for the wild ass who likes to bray next to your tent in the middle of the night, and you thought that only happened at the burn.


Oh yes. I forgot about the wild ass. I received a heads up before camping there but nothing can prepare you (even Burning man) for the horrifying sound and subsequent fright and disorientation when one of them brays next to your tent breaking the complete silence out in the middle of nowhere.
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Re: Best Route from Denver

Postby Kinetik V » Mon May 17, 2010 10:50 pm

stormlight wrote:Just wondering whether anyone from Denver made the treck and which route they took. Google says up to Cheyenne and west on 80 (which I'm leaning toward) but 70 west to 50 across Nevada looks like a straighter shot. Also, any thoughts on Jungo Rd if I take 80 ( have very good off road capabilities) THANKS!


Yes, I've made the trip you're asking about while living in Denver (and coming from Kansas City and from Nebraska to Denver) and I've done so with and without pulling trailers. If I have a very heavy load I take I-25 to Ft. Collins and take 287 up to I-80 at Laramie, WY, then head West to Winnemucca and decide on Jungo Road which I will get to in a minute. I-80 saves you from climbing an additional 2000 ft of elevation, but in turn you also get to experience a LOT MORE WIND. The area around Elk Mountain can be especially treacherous...I have a family member who drives I-80 from Lincoln, NE to Salt Lake City 3x per week and Elk Mountain is prone to causing trouble in many ways...rain, ice, snow, 70 mph + wind gusts...you name it.

If you take I-70 keep in mind you'll go through the Eisenhower Tunnel which is 11,006 ft. A gasoline engine loses 3% of it's power for every 1000 ft of altitude you climb...so if you're loaded down things will suck getting to the tunnel or climbing Vail Pass (10000+ ft) about an hour later. But after that you get to experience Glenwood Canyon...it's always good to shock and awe the first timers with the tunnels and rest areas with Colorado River access. Stay on I-70 to Green River in Utah, take US 6 North through Price and on to I-15 over Soldier Summit. US 6 is two laned...and kinda sucks to drive but the scenery can be interesting. BEWARE OF THE HIGHWAY PATROL AT PRICE AND HELPER. Once you drop off Soldier Summit and hit I-15 it's a nice 45 min run up to I-80 West...and off to Winnemucca you go.

As for Jungo Road...since the gold mine has reopened the road from Winnemucca to the halfway point of Sulphur is much better than in years past. The second half...is still able to kick your rear end. Rough rock, dips, washboards, kamikaze jack rabbits...it can be slow going. But the view in the daytime is not bad. If your tires are not in tip top shape, forget about Jungo. Stick with I-80 to 447 and stay on the pavement.
Since you state you have good off road capabilities...I would strongly consider Jungo Road. Make sure you have the means to fix tires, and good SPARES as it's 130 miles across there and cell phones die 30 miles into it. I've done Jungo for many years...and it is one of the highlights of the entire BM experience for me. If you have further questions or want more specifics, please PM me.

One last note. I've take I-70 all the way through...from Green River across the San Rafael Swell, down into the Sevier Valley and on to Cove Fort, UT and I-15. I-15 from Cove Fort to Spanish Fork where US 6 meets up with it has two special test sections posted at 80 mph...the only other place you can legally run that fast is in West Texas. I know a lot of people who like this little fact and so I thought I'd mention it here. It's a long drive...but if you love the West this is some great scenery.
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Postby AntiM » Tue May 18, 2010 5:22 am

Two little details about Utah... US 6 consistently cropped up on the Top Ten Most Dangerous Roads lists until this year. I think it may have gotten better, a good road, but take it easy and stay sharp.

The 80 mph test stretches: they do mean 80 and since it is monitored, NOT even a little over the limit. Been up and down it often, see many four wheelers being ticketed through there. Play nice.
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Postby illy dilly » Wed May 19, 2010 4:03 pm

I think I80 is the only way to go. Even the drive to Grand Junction sucks if you're loaded down, and you're still in Colorado. In the same amount of time you'll be about as far west in Wyoming, but the drive so far has been much easier, and will continue to be much easier. The only grades that really pose a problem along I80 are right as you enter/leave the east side of Salt Lake City.
I-70 from Denver to Green River is a very beautiful drive, especially if you're in a good car with just enough luggage to stay in hotels. Though the drive out to Moab, with a ton of camping gear and a trailer, is kinda a pain in the ass, but also worth it! Still, to much of a pain in the ass if I were going anywere in North Utah or Nevada.
The only bad part about the drive through Wyoming is that you can almost guarantee rain and lots of wind in the afternoon.
If you leave Sunday morning, you'll get to Salt Lake at sunset or just after. So the boring drive the rest of the way doesn't really matter cause its dark and there is nothing to see anyway.

I can't say any thing about the drive after you get off I70. I've only taken it out to Utah 89 and down into Panguitch to see family, and then out to I15 to Vegas.
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Postby Kinetik V » Wed May 19, 2010 6:30 pm

I-80 from Parley's Summit down into Salt Lake City as you're heading West is...shall we say an interesting drive. Climbing up as you're heading home can be a challenge too.

AntiM's comment about the 80 mph test sections on I-15 is dead on. Utah Highway Patrol has a published ZERO tolerance on those 2 sections.

illy dilly brings up something...Moab. I've made the drive down to Moab several times. If you have some time to spare Arches National Park is a 20 minute drive from I-70, Canyonlands National Park is not too much farther. Both are worth the time to check out if you can.

I know I-80 is easier with a load...but I love the challenge of driving through the Rockies and through the Wasatch Range on US 6. It's beautiful country..well at least I think it is. YMMV!
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Postby Mulligan » Fri May 28, 2010 1:46 pm

We took I-80 last year. We don't have ac in the van, so we travelled mostly at night. The farms stank (I-25 N) from about Ft. Collins through Wyoming.

We had a flat tire and the spare was about as bad. Come to find out, we had odd sized tires that basically nobody caried in 2 states. Somehow we made it to Reno where they put in an order for us to pick up after the burn. We limped into the Playa and back out again. I would recommend that if you have odd tires, to just go ahead and call near some of the lcoations you'll be just to see if those locations have it in stock.
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Postby gyre » Fri May 28, 2010 8:41 pm

How odd could they be on a van?
You only have to match the two rear diameters.
Everything else can be different.

Are your tires in british standard or something?
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Postby Mulligan » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:37 pm

It's a 30 year old 1 ton GMC van.
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Postby gyre » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:46 pm

Sounds like the truck I was just looking at.

Other than maybe being 14", what was going on?
What is the diameter and width?
And what tire did they say you needed?

I can't believe no one suggested an alternative.

I would expect that it would be easy to upgrade the rims, even with junkyard rims.

The van I'm working on now is older than that.
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Postby Mulligan » Tue Jun 01, 2010 2:30 pm

It was like 16 3/4 or something weird like that. They had an alternative, but since the other back tire was bad too, everybody told us that we just needed both tires replaced. And since they would be a different diameter than the front tires, it wasn't worth buying new tires to use for a week and have to buy 2 more new tires to replace those.

We were able to get replacements, it just took a few days and we weren't willing to wait. We had places to be ya know!
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Postby gyre » Tue Jun 01, 2010 3:58 pm

That's very weird.

I have half sizes on the semi tires, but don't remember anything like that on light trucks.

Check tire rack next time and other mail order.
They are the only place I can find good light trailer tires.

Maybe 16.5"?
i didn't think they were that recent, but I remember something like that for load capacity.
Most replace the rims, I think.

Is this maybe more than one ton?
A bob truck or bread van type?
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Postby FIGJAM » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:39 pm

Those old gms had 16.5 on the 3/4 and 1 tons. Sometimes the tire stores dont have them and 16in. rims can be tricky to find in that bolt pattern, but check the junk yards for rims. its the cheapest fix.
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Postby illy dilly » Wed Jun 02, 2010 7:56 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Those old gms had 16.5 on the 3/4 and 1 tons.

FIGJAM and gyre, how do you guys know this sort of shit? I honestly couldn't even tell you what size tires were on my old Durango, and its only been a year and half since I owned it.
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Postby FIGJAM » Wed Jun 02, 2010 8:04 pm

lol......owned the trucks and had to search for the damn 16.5s.
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Postby illy dilly » Mon Jun 07, 2010 5:42 pm

Did you ever find them?
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Postby FIGJAM » Mon Jun 07, 2010 5:59 pm

Their not that hard to find if you dont need them right away, but if you had a flat and needed one badly, tire stores dont always have them in stock.
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Postby illy dilly » Mon Jun 07, 2010 6:02 pm

Yeah we are currently on the hunt for a matching wheel and tire to my buddies trailer. The trailer hasn't been registered in 5 years, needs a bit of work, and the spare tire is not on the mount.
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