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Old 07-08-2015, 05:42 PM   #1
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How Crazy are we?

Ok... so our trailer is going to be finished the first week of January. We're in Maine... Escape is in Chilliwack, BC.

January... Maine... British Columbia.

We're thinking of driving to BC from Maine in January to pick up the Escape. Shortest route takes us north of Lake Superior, then through Michigan, North Dakota, etc.. Optionally, we could have it delivered to Indiana for $3,000... but I'd kind of like to go to the factory and have the TV and hitch set up by them... then we would head south to the LA area to see our two kids who live in that area (so there are some other fun reasons to travel all the way out there).

Whaddayathink? Thoughts? Advice? Ridicule? I'm ready!
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Old 07-08-2015, 05:52 PM   #2
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It sounds like fun as long as you're willing to stay in one spot as long as you have to if the weather is bad. We did it in the summer so we didn't have to deal with weather.. Also, there are places where roads are closed for long periods during snow season so that might call for detours. If you have lots of time then it could work
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Old 07-08-2015, 05:55 PM   #3
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As long as you're not tight for time, forcing you to travel on a day that would better be spent waiting for the weather to improve, it's quite possible to do it in Jan.

Here to LA is a case in point. Most of it could be quite clear sailing but there are a couple of passes down Oregon way that can have weather problems temporarily but if you can afford a few days to sit out poor conditions; go for it.

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Old 07-08-2015, 05:58 PM   #4
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No, no one is crazy. It just depends how much time you have. Take a southern route back, head back up the east coast, and watch the weather. I would avoid the great plains. And visiting children is the best excuse there is. Loren
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Old 07-08-2015, 06:01 PM   #5
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Guess it depends on the weather & road conditions. A drive north of Lake Superior sounds sketchy to me....is there a southern route, longer, but with better road conditions? You would be better off with a 4 wheel or all wheel drive tug. You could hit a swell sweet spot of weather or horrific conditions, so who can say? Dead of winter, but we're "supposed" to have a mild, El Nino influenced winter........warmer, but wetter.

What about shipment to LA for pick-up? Cheaper than Maine, and you can skirt a lot of rough snow country.
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Old 07-08-2015, 06:27 PM   #6
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reasonable to me

I would go south to good/ better weather then go west. Return trip same, go south first, then you can visit kids twice. Stay close to oceans if you can for the longest time.
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Old 07-08-2015, 06:36 PM   #7
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Exciting! Beautiful trailers!
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Old 07-08-2015, 07:24 PM   #8
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I would go south to good/ better weather then go west. Return trip same, go south first, then you can visit kids twice. Stay close to oceans if you can for the longest time.
Jack
I agree, Most northern roads will be closed in the winter at least some of the time so going south on I81 down to I40 west would be the best route. You can always take the northern route next summer when you attend the Escape Rally in Osoyoos, BC
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Old 07-08-2015, 07:33 PM   #9
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I would avoid the northern route entirely unless you have alot of time (and it could be weeks) to spend stuck when the roads are closed.
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Old 07-08-2015, 07:40 PM   #10
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Salleman, while I don't know how much you've traveled in the West and Upper Midwest, as other posters have noted, they have gates on those Interstates for a reason, and sometimes they are down for several days. Even though a Southern route will take a little longer, you could easily eat up the additional fuel cost in motel costs hunkered down for two or three days, and it might not just happen once. It's nice to think about the success of "running the gauntlet", Mother Nature can be a cruel lady and straightening out sheet metal on your TV ain't cheap. We detoured around the Bighorns for a 12 inch snowfall on our way to Osoyoos in late may this past Spring.
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Old 07-08-2015, 07:41 PM   #11
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Very doable, but like others said, just be ready to sit out extreme weather conditions. As long as roads are clear, a bit of snow and ice on the surface are no problem if you are used to towing. I have hauled all kinds of trailers around in the middle of winter, and often through bad snowstorms. You don't have a choice workwise when living in Canada.

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No, no one is crazy.
Thank you. You are one of the first to ever say that about me.

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Old 07-08-2015, 07:46 PM   #12
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Think I'd let it sit at ETI till later in the year, maybe April.
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Old 07-08-2015, 07:59 PM   #13
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Think I'd let it sit at ETI till later in the year, maybe April.
Exactly what we did Bob. It killed us to wait another couple of months, but it was a wise decision. Only a few flurries in the higher elevations, and a much more pleasant trip. Plus, campgrounds were actually OPEN on the way home.
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Old 07-08-2015, 08:14 PM   #14
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I believe in being adaptable. I'd say, plan several different routes. Try to find routes that intersect where you can expect weather to be bad. If the weather is good... stay on one route, if the weather is bad, detour to the other one.

I don't think anything beats picking up your trailer at the factory. But, I also live six-eight hours from Chilliwack...

Best of luck!
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Old 07-08-2015, 09:10 PM   #15
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You can always plan for January, and monitor the weather for a travel window west, probably on I 80.

Once you leave Chilliwack, you'll be on the I 5 corridor, which is rain in Washington and Oregon, until you get to Eugene, Oregon. Then you must negotiate Siskiyou Summit near the Calif. border, at 4310 ft. ±.
I 5 is kept open and has heavy truck traffic year around (lots of tires on the pavement!), so it's driveable all year. You may have to wait for a passing storm, then follow the snowplows over the pass.
Once you're in CA and off the Siskiyou mts. (at Redding), it's rain or fog only until Tejon pass between Bakersfield and Los Angeles, at over 4000 ft. It can get snow but not many storms make it this far south, so the probability is low that you have to wait for the plows.

Watch the weather, and take your time.
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Old 07-08-2015, 09:48 PM   #16
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Other than the Siskiyou Summit (CA border) that you need to pay attention to.... in Oregon on I-5, there's two passes: Stage Coach Pass and Myrtle Creek. ODOT trip cams are your friends in the winter.
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Old 07-08-2015, 11:29 PM   #17
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Really great information. Thanks so much to you all. Will keep you posted on our plans.
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Old 07-09-2015, 12:26 AM   #18
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"How crazy are we?". About average I'd guess.
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Old 07-09-2015, 11:42 AM   #19
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I agree with a southern route - I think last January you could have driven across Lake Superior - no need to 'go around' Not to mention, you guys had an awful lot of snow in Maine last winter. Maybe wait a few months and enjoy the trip.
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Old 07-09-2015, 02:47 PM   #20
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You're not crazy. Maybe we're too cautious Our trailer will be ready in November and we are waiting until March/April to pick it up. And we only have to worry about the southbound west coast leg of your trip! But then again we are new to towing and don't want to take on anything too challenging. As it is, our current plans are to hug the coast all the way back and avoid the mountain passes. With a (probably) January retirement we are looking forward to taking our time.

Having said all that, if we have a 'light weather' winter again, and we get tired of waiting, we may head out sooner. It sure seems that the closer the finish date arrives, the more real the trailer becomes and the excitement seems to build faster too!
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