Colorado info - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-14-2016, 09:40 AM   #1
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Name: Bob Ruggles
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Colorado info

Somewhere around March 20 I'll be heading home to Michigan from AZ. I want to go up to Moab, UT and then take I-70 to Indianapolis. Looking for info on what the likely snow situation and campground/rv parks availability. Would some of you Colorado residents weigh in on this? Thanks.
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Old 02-14-2016, 01:25 PM   #2
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I'm not in CO, but I have vivid memories of an early April trip there one year. We ate supper in Colorado Springs, and it was raining. We set out to the west and found ourselves rapidly gaining altitude. The rain turned into wet, heavy snow so fast it made my head spin. And since it turned dark, too, I was driving 25 mph trying to follow the taillights ahead of me because nothing else was visible, but the guy ahead must have been going 30 because suddenly I could see nothing at all. Fortunately a lit 7-11 sign appeared and I crept into the parking lot, asked permission, and we spent the night right there in the U-Haul CT. We only made it halfway to Woodland Park... I can only imagine what it was like up there!

Weather-wise, anything's possible. But I am sure they plow I-70 well, so if you hit a really snowy day just pull off and wait it out.

Moab should be great at that time of year. Wish I could be there then. Average high 60*, average low 31*.
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Old 02-14-2016, 02:21 PM   #3
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Colorado info

It's in the 50s and 60s this week along the front range, but things may be different in late March! Many campgrounds are closed for the winter, but not all. The State Park near us (Lathrop SP) offers winter camping, but they're at 6600 ft elevation. When you start getting up higher you might not find State Parks open. Check the State Parks maps here and see what strikes your fancy and which ones offer winter camping:

State Park Map

You can find some private campgrounds open year round, but they're limited in the higher elevations. For instance, Ouray only has 1 campground open in the winter. I think all the campgrounds in the Southfork and Creede area are closed for the winter.

If you stick with I-70, you might want to avoid weekends (especially Sunday when traveling east) since the ski traffic can make things tough.

Have a backup plan. Seems like the northern part of the state has had the most snow this winter. If you head this way and the forecast calls for snow, check the southern routes......crossing the state on Hwy 160 or Hwy 50 could offer a much easier trip than I-70. Come across Hwy 160...stay the night in Cortez or Pagosa Springs. Then, you really only have Wolf Creek Pass to cross the next morning. La Veta Pass shouldn't be any problem unless it's an active snow going on.

Check the CDOT Road Conditions map here:

Road Conditions, Speeds, Travel Times, Traffic Cameras, Live Streaming Traffic Cameras, Road Closures and Road Work Information provided by Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) a branch of Colorado Department of Transportation

The website is reporting today I-70 has snow & ice. But, Hwy 50 and 160 are showing clean and dry.

I much prefer Hwy 160 myself....not as much tourist traffic and beautiful scenery. Then you can stay at Lathrop State Park.

Good luck,
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Old 02-14-2016, 06:30 PM   #4
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If you do the southern route (160), consider visiting the Great Sand Dunes. A special place.
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Old 02-14-2016, 06:45 PM   #5
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The southern route is so beautiful. I would definitely check the weather and check in with CDOT before starting out. You can look at the cameras and see what the actual roads look like. https://www.codot.gov/travel

Edited to add: Sorry PiperJim! Didn't see you had already posted this!
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Old 02-14-2016, 07:18 PM   #6
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Worst weather I hit, driving from MN to UT in late March last year, started as soon as I hit Denver. Continued all the way up Vail Pass, then finally tapered off. Pretty sketchy, crazy wet snow.

Spring in the Rockies. Could be sunny and 70, could be a blizzard. Just keep an eye on the weather as it gets close to time.
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Old 02-16-2016, 06:26 PM   #7
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Hi rgrugg,
Look what just happened on I70 in the Glenwood Canyon:
Massive rock slide closes major Colorado highway indefinitely | Fox News

Only a few years ago a huge boulder punched a hole in one of the viaducts, not too far from this place. They will try to stabilize the cliffs, not just sweep the road, so it will be a while.

Glenwood Canyon is still one of the most spectacular rides. Hope they can reopen it soon.
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Old 02-16-2016, 07:31 PM   #8
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I believe I saw that a stretch of I 70 was closed today due to a landslide, 400 mile detour. Point being when you get ready to cross the divide, make sure you are current on road conditions. Going around the block in the west can be a long way.
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Old 02-17-2016, 03:49 PM   #9
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Google sand flats rd campground moab, ut
Is my fave. No hookups.
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Old 02-17-2016, 04:35 PM   #10
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I read elsewhere that they will only have one lane open from later this week until sometime in August. A lead car will alternate the eastbound and westbound traffic through that single lane.

Sand Flats looks pretty cool! I will have to see if there are some fairly tame 4wd trails that I could try in there, now that I have a real 4wd vehicle.
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Old 02-17-2016, 09:10 PM   #11
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Hi Bob

I'm currently in AZ (Quartzsite and Yuma) but live in the Denver area and travel I-70 from Utah to Illinois frequently. I don't think this is the year to try crossing CO on I-70. My sources tell me that there will be severe delays in the Glenwood Springs area for months due to the rockslide. Also, the weekend traffic from Vail to Denver turns the interstate into a parking lot for hours and when it snows it only takes one idiot to completely block the road.

Most of the campgrounds near the interstate are closed for the season and the few that are open have no services, just a place to park, and they don't offer any discount from their normal rates.

I would suggest making the Moab stop at a later date and taking the southern Colorado route to I-25 then up to 70 for the rest of your trip or if you are further south in AZ take I-40 to I-17, then to I-25.

BTW - When you get to KS you can remain overnight in parking loops specifically for campers at the rest stops. Most also have water and dumping stations. The one at Wabausnee on the top of the hill has a "real" campground but it is pretty well hidden. You have to look for it.

We have also parked overnight at the rest stop at Arriba and Burlington in CO.
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