Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

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Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby robotland » Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:14 am

Last year I took "The Loneliest Road", I-50, through Nevada and over to Reno to visit Twin City Surplus and load up on supplies instead of my traditional straight shot on '80...("go 2000 miles, turn right") I really liked the change of scenery and plan to take a bigger detour THIS year that swaps Wyoming for Colorado- '80 to '76 to '70 to '50. Aside from new roads, one VERY long tunnel and a bunch of new mountain passes, is there anything Must See on this route? I won't have time to explore Denver or take any detours that aren't basically line-of-sight, but a few spots to stretch my legs and see stuff will be welcomed. This route only adds 100 miles to the entire westward leg of my trip, and I'll probably default to '80 for the return trip so as to see the Salt Lake and Thunder Mountain, and get home just that tiny bit sooner. Any tips?
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby oneeyeddick » Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:33 am

Don't swerve for rabbits.
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby Bob » Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:41 am

Don't pick up Rutger Hauer.
Amazing desert structures & stuff: http://sites.google.com/site/potatotrap/

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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby AntiM » Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:45 am

Plenty to see, lots of scenic overlooks.

Eastbound time lapse:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6m4Xhd0qGVk

Wiki lists all the exits and view areas:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interstate_70_in_Utah

Give yourself extra hours to jog south to Goblin Valley, this is one of my all time favorite state parks:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goblin_Valley_State_Park

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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby Irreverent Moniker » Mon Aug 15, 2011 9:12 am

Bob wrote:Don't pick up Rutger Hauer.


Awesome movie
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby robotland » Tue Aug 16, 2011 5:37 am

AntiM wrote:Plenty to see, lots of scenic overlooks.

Eastbound time lapse:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6m4Xhd0qGVk



WHHHEEEEEeeeeee! extra fun if you watch with your arms over your head! I laughed to also see a clip called "I-80 through Nebraska- Please Kill Me". I feel their pain, and even plan my trip so that I drive through Nebwhereland at night so I can't see how little there is to look at.

Thanks, AntiM! Great resources, and Goblin Valley is VERY tempting. Will have to go EXTRA FAST through the Flyovers and make time to stop and behold the spot where all those great Road Runner cartoons were shot...Would you believe that kids these days think they were ANIMATED?
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby AntiM » Tue Aug 16, 2011 5:47 am

If you can make the time, a few hours down and back, Goblin Valley is very much worth it. If you are a Galaxy Quest fan, it is a must.

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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby Sail Man » Tue Aug 16, 2011 10:53 am

I as well plan to change my routing this year, but will do it on the way back as we have an extra week off after the burn, and the route you suggested is what we plan on using for the most part. Your trip on 50 last year inspired me to check it out this year. We plan on camping at either Great Basin or Arches for a couple nights, not sure which one yet. But we will look at the timeline when we hit Denver, and either take 76 back up to 80, or continue on 70 and hang a left at 69 :wink: :D

Though I am disappointed that some jackass(es) cut down the shoe tree :evil:
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby Sail Man » Tue Aug 16, 2011 10:56 am

Ohhhh, that Goblin Valley looks real cool AntiM. Thanks for giving me another destination to have to choose from LOL :P
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby illy dilly » Wed Aug 17, 2011 1:07 pm

Hey Robot land, you've driven I70 from Denver to Utah before?

I agree, I70 is way prettier than I80, thats for sure!
For those of us living in Denver, the extra cost and time makes I70 not worth it. But we can also shoot over to Grand Junction or Moab anytime we feel like.
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby percussivepaul » Wed Aug 17, 2011 2:39 pm

I did some of that drive once. As you come down the mountains on the western edge of Colorado, the I-70 goes through Glenwood Canyon, which is totally stunning. There is a park that parallels the highway where you can get out and walk along the Colorado River. According to Wikipedia "the canyon is widely considered one of the most scenic natural features on the Interstate Highway System of the United States" so you have a lot to look forward to!
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby robotland » Thu Aug 18, 2011 6:51 am

Sail Man wrote:I as well plan to change my routing this year, but will do it on the way back as we have an extra week off after the burn, and the route you suggested is what we plan on using for the most part. Your trip on 50 last year inspired me to check it out this year. We plan on camping at either Great Basin or Arches for a couple nights, not sure which one yet. But we will look at the timeline when we hit Denver, and either take 76 back up to 80, or continue on 70 and hang a left at 69 :wink: :D

Though I am disappointed that some jackass(es) cut down the shoe tree :evil:



Whaaaa? Dang! Maybe I'll have to plant a Sock Seedling in its place as memorial....
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby ygmir » Thu Aug 18, 2011 6:54 am

robotland wrote:
Sail Man wrote:I as well plan to change my routing this year, but will do it on the way back as we have an extra week off after the burn, and the route you suggested is what we plan on using for the most part. Your trip on 50 last year inspired me to check it out this year. We plan on camping at either Great Basin or Arches for a couple nights, not sure which one yet. But we will look at the timeline when we hit Denver, and either take 76 back up to 80, or continue on 70 and hang a left at 69 :wink: :D

Though I am disappointed that some jackass(es) cut down the shoe tree :evil:



Whaaaa? Dang! Maybe I'll have to plant a Sock Seedling in its place as memorial....


There's another shoe tree, along hwy 50 in Utah, west of "Delta" I think.
I stopped and took pics on my trip to CO a few weeks ago.
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby robotland » Thu Aug 18, 2011 6:57 am

illy dilly wrote:Hey Robot land, you've driven I70 from Denver to Utah before?

I agree, I70 is way prettier than I80, thats for sure!
For those of us living in Denver, the extra cost and time makes I70 not worth it. But we can also shoot over to Grand Junction or Moab anytime we feel like.


well, technically....I was the passenger, with my Dad, when I was about 9 years old. I did the Utah and Nevada part last year but haven't been on '70 in nearly 40(!) years....

Tell me more about this "extra cost and time"- The route I plotted is very close to the '80 route by length, but I suspect there's more up-and-down-and-around in the Rockies on '70. Is that where the time and money go?
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby robotland » Thu Aug 18, 2011 6:59 am

ygmir wrote:There's another shoe tree, along hwy 50 in Utah, west of "Delta" I think.
I stopped and took pics on my trip to CO a few weeks ago.


Ah! THAT is the one that I remember....on the way to Eureka, west of Delta. Hard to imagine why someone would BOTHER cutting THAT one down!
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby robotland » Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:05 am

http://www.roadsideamerica.com/blog/memorial-shoe-tree/


NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!


Rats. It WAS that one. Maybe there's a new one closer to Delta now!
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby ygmir » Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:15 am

robotland wrote:http://www.roadsideamerica.com/blog/memorial-shoe-tree/


NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!


Rats. It WAS that one. Maybe there's a new one closer to Delta now!


That's the one that was in Nevada.

The one I'm referring to is in Utah.
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby Fabricator » Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:54 am

Great post. Coming from northern Ohio and have been wrestling with which route to take. I80 vs I70. I80 is the shortest route

Pretty much just trying to avoid the toll roads on I80 from Ohio to west of Chicago.Seemed about 180 miles more to take I70 (get down to it, and then back up to I80 before Nevada) But I HATE the Ohio turnpike, Indiana Toll Road, and all the ridiculous tolls getting by Chicago in Illinois.
Spent way too much time yesterday on the web trying to get an accurate count of what tolls will be driving I80. What I save in tolls I think I've figured I pay out again in the added fuel in my 15mpg van.

I70 it is... I think... I'll change my mind again tomorrow.

Anyone else experienced in the drive that can also weigh in regarding the grades/hills I might encounter in traveling I70 vs I80? Van will be heavy. Afraid I might find out I'll be pulling more like 10-12mpg that could add hundreds in my costs.

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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby ygmir » Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:54 am

Fabricator wrote:Great post. Coming from northern Ohio and have been wrestling with which route to take. I80 vs I70. I80 is the shortest route

Pretty much just trying to avoid the toll roads on I80 from Ohio to west of Chicago.Seemed about 180 miles more to take I70 (get down to it, and then back up to I80 before Nevada) But I HATE the Ohio turnpike, Indiana Toll Road, and all the ridiculous tolls getting by Chicago in Illinois.
Spent way too much time yesterday on the web trying to get an accurate count of what tolls will be driving I80. What I save in tolls I think I've figured I pay out again in the added fuel in my 15mpg van.

I70 it is... I think... I'll change my mind again tomorrow.

Anyone else experienced in the drive that can also weigh in regarding the grades/hills I might encounter in traveling I70 vs I80? Van will be heavy. Afraid I might find out I'll be pulling more like 10-12mpg that could add hundreds in my costs.

Sincerely,
Compulsively mathematical driver.


you can take 50, all the way to Fallon, then, it's not far to Fernley, and I80. no need to detour north to I80 once you hit the CO/UT border, it's about the same amount of time.
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Re: Fresh Roads- escaping I-80

Postby illy dilly » Thu Aug 18, 2011 11:18 am

robotland wrote:Tell me more about this "extra cost and time"- The route I plotted is very close to the '80 route by length, but I suspect there's more up-and-down-and-around in the Rockies on '70. Is that where the time and money go?

Precisely.
It also greatly depends on what you're driving and how well it goes up and down huge hills aka mountains. And how well it will do this with a shit ton of gear.
Also, what you are driving and how competent you feel driving it down 6%, 7%, and 8% percent grades.
For us, we take a motor home, with a relatively new engine (8,000 miles) but it is still an old gas 34' RV. Sadly, not a Diesel Rear Pusher. So going up hills we will start going 80, but will inevitably be going 40 after the first few hundred yards. The longer the hill the more time we're going 40. If you are able to travel 55-65 mph the whole time, you will get to the CO/UT border quicker going on I70.
Also, going up these hills will cost you plenty in gas. Though, going down these hills you will save plenty in gas.
Which brings us to competency going down grades in big heavy vehicles. I love flying down grades in cars, with little more than a few passengers, a tank of gas, and a bit of luggage. I personally am a little intimidated by going down grades in huge big vehicles loaded with camping gear, hundreds of lbs in beer and water, and passengers. I actually feel more comfortable going down grades in our RV+gear than in the Suburban+Trailer+gear. The RV is designed to run at huge loads, where the Suburban can run at huge loads but isn't designed as its main function.
Godda keep in mind, that your brakes can over heat. Personally I feel 35-48ish is a good speed to go down grades with big heavy loaded vehicles. 40 is slow enough that I can actually stop relatively quickly with out loosing control or over heating my breaks. In any vehicle loaded to capacity you must understand the relationship with lower gears and pulse breaking, and how lower gears get you up hills better, but not necessarily quicker.
I70 is way prettier, but you're continuously going up and down hills at 40 mph (at least in the vehicles I take camping).

I cannot comment on the I70 route to BRC after Moab/Arches National Park. I do believe that it can get a little twisty turvy after Green River.

Not to say that I80 doesn't have a couple of grades to be respected. I believe the first is coming down from Elk Mountain, its a nice little 6%, not super long, and the road quality is great. Its perfect figuring out your vehicle's current condition if you haven't had a chance yet. Wyoming does a really good job maintaining I80- though it also means the construction along I80 never ends. The next grade that is worth mentioning is coming down from Park City, UT into Salt Lake. It is long, and has bends in it. Also, be aware that you are climbing it. On the east side it is very slow and not steep, on the west side it drops pretty quick. Then there are other minor grades at the UT/NV border but nothing too intimidating.

I70 is a beautiful drive compared to I80. As far as scenery goes, they don't even compare.
As mentioned Glenwood is amazing! The hot springs are not far off the road, a great place to stay the night if you've been driving for a while. The huge contrast and how quickly it happens from Glenwood Springs to Grand Junction will blow your mind! The weekend before labor day the traffic into the mountain on I70 probably wont be too bad. But probably will be terrible later that week. Though all highway towards camping areas are crowded the days before labor day weekend.

We choose I80 because it is an easier drive on the driver, it is quicker over all, and costs less gas. But we also make weekend and 3 day trips west on I70 all the time, so in the case of getting to Bman seeing the mountains is not a priority.

I also must add that the drive around Green River, UT is beautiful. In less of a trees and mountains type of way but more of a beautiful rock sort of way. It has been years since I've done it, but I do remember it being great.
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