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 > Your search for posts made by 'paulj' found 95 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
RE: Hwy 395 North through Oregon and Washington

US395 in Washington is quite flat, and divided. About half way up it joins I90. I don't see the point to turning east on 12 and then north on 195. That gets you deeper into the Palouse. I have enjoyed taking 12 to Lewiston, but that was on the way to the Snake/Salmon River country, not points north. The hilliest portion of 395 is northern Oregon, between US20 and I90.
paulj 03/09/20 10:54am Roads and Routes
RE: Cody, WY to Gardiner, MT

Google Maps routing through Yellowstone is tricky right now. GM knows that most roads in the park are closed (due to snow), so it won't route that way. If you change the depart/arrive times to sometime in June, you should see some routes through the park. US14 to the east entrance is a good choice - for most people. 120 to the NE entrance has a more serious climb - look at the zigzags over Dead Indian Hill. Turn on terrain mode, or sat view and zoom. It joins US212 and goes into the park. 212 to the NE (toward Red Lodge) is too challenging for most RVs. That's the Beartooth Pass that most recommend against.
paulj 03/08/20 10:24pm Roads and Routes
RE: Utah route from Torrey to Bryce Canyon ?

Double check the settings and/or routing points on your software. It shouldn't be sending you on Hwy 17. Don't ask for the shortest route. That's more likely to send you on dirt 'short-cuts'. Fastest route (with in reason) is usually better, since it takes into account road conditions (at least crudely).
paulj 03/08/20 08:18pm Roads and Routes
RE: In Quartzsite, thinking of Montanna.. don’t like mountains..

Yellowstone is a mountain - the lake is about 7000 ft altitude. The eastern half is flat(ish), so I suppose you could keep mountains off in the distance if you come up US25 (from the 5000 ft Denver area).
paulj 03/03/20 03:23pm Roads and Routes
RE: In Quartzsite, thinking of Montanna.. don’t like mountains..

I15 goes north to Montana, without crossing anything significant. Well, there's a broad pass on the ID/Mt border. And the I90 crossing at Butte is relatively high. But what do you expect from a state that's called Mountain?
paulj 03/02/20 09:49pm Roads and Routes
RE: Hwy 395 from southern Idaho to Lake of the Woods, Oregon

Why are you asking about just US395? According to the Google Maps suggestion you are spending a lot more time on US20 (Ontario past Burns). After a short length of 395 you are on local (county) roads through Christmas Valley, Silver Lake and on to US97. Most of these roads are fairly flat, crossing the Oregon 'Outback'. Closer to Lake you start to climb into the southern Cascades. I haven't driven all this route, but what I've seen are fine. Towns are small and far a part. Cell service may limited.
paulj 02/09/20 09:37pm Roads and Routes
RE: Best route Gallup NM to Page Arizona

Usually Google routes (and GPS as well) rank results by minimum time. But that time depends on the speeds assigned to each segment. But GM shows both time and distance, and suggests several alternatives. It is also easy to tweak a route. And use Streetview to judge the road condition. So you can judge whether a 30 minute time savings is realistic and/or worth it.
paulj 02/01/20 02:31pm Roads and Routes
RE: Best route Gallup NM to Page Arizona

89 isn't exactly in the middle of civilization either. I see that Google Maps directs you off 89 on to Indian 20 (at the Gap Gas Station). Ignore that and stick with 89. Several years ago there was a major landslide on 89, north of the 89A turn off, where it climbs a bluff. The initial detour took 160 to 98. 20 (a dirt track) was paved to give a shorter detour. The Flagstaff route is 50 miles more, but only 30 minutes, so GM must be using a slightly higher speed limit, mainly for the I40 stretch. An alternative that GM gives use 264. That's across the middle of the Navajo reservation, and past the Hopi mesas. There are a number of touristy stops on this way 191 north is also well settled (for Navajos). 59 is probably more remote. 160 is along the major route from Utah to Flagstaff, past Monument Valley and relatively big town of Kayenta. Did I mention that 89 has a major grade, near the Grand Canyon Vista on the Google Maps? Look at it with Streetview.
paulj 01/31/20 09:16pm Roads and Routes
RE: I-95 Death Row takes 3 more.

Both accidents appear to be the kind that could happen on any highway. One was a chain reaction where the initial accident was relatively minor. The other is described as a 'RV driver lost control, and drifted off the highway' and hit the tree line. I took a quick look on Streetview, I95 in this county is wide open, lined with trees, but not particularly close. Judging from the photo of the RV wreak, I'm guessing it would have been survivable if the passengers had been restrained and protected as required in modern cars. Is the highway to blame, or RV safety?
paulj 01/27/20 10:04am Roads and Routes
RE: State Bridge, CO to Kremmling

The sat view and streetview images are dated. In the one link the Streetview is 2009. Check those if there seems to a difference, and you suspect the county found some money to finish the paving :).
paulj 01/26/20 01:51pm Roads and Routes
RE: Traveling to the NW

US 212 from Red Lodge into Yellowstone is one federal number road that most RV owners shouldn't take. Not a bad road, but just a lot of high altitude climbing. Teton Pass from Jackson to Idaho (22/32) is another pass you should avoid. McKinzie HWy OR 242 is off limits to longer rigs because the summit area winds through a lava field with sharp turns. I haven't driven it myself because it hasn't been open when I've passed the area (late spring snow). In the Columbia Gorge, I84 is freeway, allowing the driver some chance to rubberneck. US30 lets you get closer to the forest and waterfalls, but is an old, pre-RV, route. The mountains on the Washington side aren't as high, but WA14 lets you look at the Oregon side from across the river - just be sure to do that when stopped!. You can drive on paved forest service roads from Carson to Randle, with a side trip to the east side of Mt St Helens. But you do need to be comfortable with grades and curves. Learn to use online mapping tools like Google Maps. With terrain mode and Streetview, it is possible to 'drive' most paved routes (and some gravel) in the western USA. Practice on familiar roads to get a feel for how those map images reflect the real world. We have far more information roads across the USA than we did decades ago with paper maps and AAA routing guides.
paulj 01/24/20 04:07pm Roads and Routes
RE: Absolute positively the worst road ever

OR-31 between Valley Falls and La Pine, OR. 120 miles. An absolute Washboard for a good 80-90 miles of that route..... I've driven that about a dozen years ago and don't recall it being bad. OK,it was in cute-ute not a RV. And come to think of it, I didn't drive the whole way. We spent the night at Summer Lake Hot Springs - nice rustic camping and soaking. And then back tracked to Paisley for breakfast, and then drove up into the mountains to the east. And didn't get back to 31 until Silver Lake. The forest service roads in the area were normal gravel. Even drove most of the way up to Hagar Mtn Lookout. After Silver Lake I detoured to Fort Rock. On a gravel road near Hole in the Ground I got a flat from a broken piece of chain saw file (talk about a bumpy ride!). I was able to plug it, and drove on to La Pine. One of the worse pieces of washboard that I recall was the Sun Pass road (623) between OR62 and US97, just east of Crater Lake. On the paper map it looked like a nice straight shortcut. It was a wide and straight, without much of a grade, but gravel that hadn't seen a grader in a long while. It was the kind of washboard that you either go slow, or fast, skimming the bumps, while still trying to maintain control. That too was in a cute-ute, a first gen RAV4. Gravel with varying degrees of washboard is the norm in eastern Oregon - both in the mountains and the high desert. On the subject of the Oregon outback, just last summer a back country bikepacker came upon a severely dehydrated man on a dirt track between OR140 and Hart Mtn Refuge. He had a Spot emergency beacon, and was able to signal for help. And in the mean time he provided a bit of water and shelter. Turns out the man had gotten his pickup stuck in one of the ruts/gullies near there, and tried to walk out. He had two small dogs as well. All three survived, largely thanks to the fortuitous encounter with a long distance bike rider.
paulj 01/24/20 03:54pm Roads and Routes
RE: Absolute positively the worst road ever

Google Maps does suggest 104 if the destination point is far enough to the east. It is a bit shorter than the 84/40 route. Time is also less, but that may be off if the estimated speed on 104 is too high. I don't doubt that the escarpment drop would be uncomfortable for drivers in a big rig, especially if they aren't prepared for it. There's plenty of room to turn around at the Trujillo turn off, or the ranch entrance just beyond that. It's once you start down the 3 mile grade that you are committed. On streetmaps I see a familiar truck on grade sign, and watch from falling rocks, but no major grade warnings - you know the routine - check your brakes, use run out lanes, etc. OR 140 just west of the Nevada border has a larger Doherty Slide escarpment. That's in the middle of 200 mile stretch between towns. Moki Dugway on US261 is another RVers' boogieman. GM Streetview drove it in winter, with snow on the ground. That has true switch backs. On the other hand I've seen puzzled discussions about a Mountain Directory warning on US191 north of Blanding UT. New Mexico Highway 104: 110 Lovely, Lonely Miles Sabinoso Wilderness, just NE of Trujillo A blue highways photo essay Loneliest road in NM "NM 104, though often disregarded, is a favorite route for knowing motorcyclists and geology junkies." Video down Corazon Hill
paulj 01/24/20 01:08am Roads and Routes
RE: Absolute positively the worst road ever

My only dedicated GPS is an old TomTom. That asked me if an potential route included non-pavement. These day's I'm using Google's routing on my phone. That seems to handle traffic circles just fine - even warning about upcoming ones. Washington has quite a few on its state highways - WSDOT likes to use them on intersections were there's enough space, and traffic doesn't call for a more expensive stop light or full interchange. WSDOT ones have overrun aprons that are meant to accommodate large rigs, including long trucks. What did we do in the old days of paper maps, where the only hint that a road might be difficult (in a big rig) was the 'scenic route' coding? And National Forest color coding?
paulj 01/23/20 04:05pm Roads and Routes
RE: Absolute positively the worst road ever

What is the worst road you've ever traveled and why? Two lane, no where to turn around, mountain road with switchbacks (fun in a 40 footer towing) no guard rail, 8,9, and 10% grades. WHITE KNUCKLE all the way and all day with 10 and 15 mph curves. . NM 104 on Google Maps doesn't look all that bad, not with Terrain mode or Streetview. Yes, 2 lane, but mostly flat and straight. There is one 3 mile stretch of 6% grade down an escarpment, alot of 25 mph curves, but no switchbacks. And plenty of guard rails.
paulj 01/23/20 01:37pm Roads and Routes
RE: Yellowstone - west or northwest enterance?

On Google Maps, terrain mode, I see that Livingston is about 4500 ft. Gardner 5400, Mammoth Hot Springs 6400 (and climbing). The road south climbs to 7400 and stays around that. Madison CG is 7000. West Yellowstone 6800. 191 starts around 4800, and climbs to a high point of 7200 (a broad pass). Bozeman Pass between Livingston and Bozeman is about 5800. US287 is an alternative route from I90 to W Yellowstone. It runs in a broader valley than 191. Major stretches of 191 run along a mountain river, so are curvier.
paulj 01/14/20 09:41pm Roads and Routes
RE: Yellowstone - west or northwest enterance?

I think the main grade of 89 occurs inside the park, past Mammoth Hot Springs. Grades to West Yellowstone, and from there to Madison are gentle.
paulj 01/13/20 03:34pm Roads and Routes
RE: Kings Canyon to Yosemite to Carson City

If coming up 120 from 49 (or points west),don't let the gps send you up Old Priest Grade. Stay on the longer New grade, hwy 120 itself.
paulj 01/11/20 08:27pm Roads and Routes
RE: Kings Canyon to Yosemite to Carson City

49 crosses the foothills, hence the curves and hills even though it doesn't cross a major pass. So using a flat highway in the valley might be worth your while. Even if your paper map doesn't show the details, there are online maps (e.g. google) that show terrain - the hills and valleys, even elevations. And zoomed enough show all the curves, and streetviews.
paulj 01/11/20 11:02am Roads and Routes
RE: Well didn't know it was Tumbleweed Season

That night, New Years eve, the winds were SSW 20+ gusting to 40+. This was the first of week long set of windy rain storms passing through the PNW. Major traffic accidents due to winter wind and dust storms are regular occurrences in central Washington.
paulj 01/02/20 12:34pm Roads and Routes
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