Mountain Road Grade Guide? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-01-2011, 02:56 PM   #1
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Mountain Road Grade Guide?

Hi, All

I'm tooling up to go to California and I wondered if anybody's familiar with this guide.
(I don't carry electronics such as cell phone, GPS etc- it's paper maps and atlases for me!)
Might this be a worthwhile addition to the kit?


http://www.rvtechstop.com/articles/mtndir.pdf

Thanks!


Francesca
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Old 08-01-2011, 04:33 PM   #2
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We carry it with us, the eastern one as well. It was particularly valuable with the motorhome; it seems less necessary with the trailer. Motorhomes are poorly braked, the tow vehicle, trailer combo has better brakes.

We usually look at the route the night before and it's always nice to know what's ahead.

Safe Travels

Norm
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Old 08-01-2011, 05:11 PM   #3
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We stop at the State Information rest stops and ask the lady behind the desk what the best route for towing a camper is.

We also use a GPS. You can get new ones for as little as $70 and used ones at Pawn Shops for even less.
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Old 08-01-2011, 08:58 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
We carry it with us, the eastern one as well. It was particularly valuable with the motorhome; it seems less necessary with the trailer. Motorhomes are poorly braked, the tow vehicle, trailer combo has better brakes.

We usually look at the route the night before and it's always nice to know what's ahead.

Safe Travels

Norm
I've got good brakes on car and trailer, too- I'm not so concerned about coming down as I am about going up!
I've been over just about every pass in Washington State and some are a lit-tle more work for my Kia than others...
Most maps/atlases give the pass elevations, but little info about the grade.
I'll never forget the steepest grade I ever struggled up in Oregon...
I chose what looked like the shortest route and it was short, all right.
Trouble is it was practically verticle- or at least it seemed that way!

Think I'll invest in this guide.

Thanks!
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Old 08-02-2011, 05:31 AM   #5
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Clincher

The Clincher for us was our first trip west. We took RT 2 from the east down into Wenachee and really heated our brakes. It was a two lane twisty road, steeply downhill with no pull offs to the right. Scary enough to convince us to have advance information. It's definitely not the way up, though that can sometimes feel queasy, at least you are in control.

Norm
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Old 08-02-2011, 11:58 AM   #6
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Boy howdy, I know just the stretch of road you're talking about.
Coming down off the Waterville Plateau...those miles between the Plateau and the river can be tricky!
I think that kind of downhill is another reason I like my manual transmission.
Going down a grade like that, downshifting combined with judicious braking works real well for me.
And if there's snow or loose gravel on the road, 4wd helps to "anchor" the rig, too!
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Old 08-02-2011, 12:19 PM   #7
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Manual Transmission

Quote:
Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post
Boy howdy, I know just the stretch of road you're talking about.
Coming down off the Waterville Plateau...those miles between the Plateau and the river can be tricky!
I think that kind of downhill is another reason I like my manual transmission.
Going down a grade like that, downshifting combined with judicious braking works real well for me.
And if there's snow or loose gravel on the road, 4wd helps to "anchor" the rig, too!
Francesca,

I'm with you on the manual transmission. Our CRV is a manual. Unfortunately Honda has discontinued the manual in the USA. We're hoping that by the time we are ready to by a new Toad Honda will well their diesel in the USA.

After the Wenachee grade, we were always careful to down shift with the automatic. I just took out our book and now I remember the worse part. After taxing your brakes for 7 miles on a 6% grade with no escape ramps you come to a stop sign. Happily they give you a warning 1 mile ahead.

We camped in the town park and stayed in Wenachee for a few days. Had a great time. gotta love the fruit.

Norm
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Old 08-02-2011, 12:40 PM   #8
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I can see the Stop sign in my mind's eye... and that gorgeous stretch of the Columbia River just beyond!
I hope you were able to enjoy the scenery along that road-
it has such breathtakingly beautiful examples of the remnants of the Great Floods that carved those Scablands.
Hard to believe such barren, dry country was once (briefly) covered with water...
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Old 08-02-2011, 01:38 PM   #9
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Travelling, camping, RVing since 1963, have done it in every state except Hawaii. Only one road where I wouldn't take a trailer or motorhome is in Colorado over Independence Pass east of Aspen. Straight up on one side and straight down on the other side with only slightly more than one lane on a couple of curves.
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Old 08-02-2011, 02:17 PM   #10
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Bob,
Just read about Independence Pass, exciting just to read about it.

Francesca,
The geology of Eastern Washington is very interesting, I can still see the dry falls created when that area drained west, scraping the landscape. We'll be out there aain next year. This time east on route 2 from Wenachee.

Norm

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Old 08-02-2011, 02:42 PM   #11
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If you're coming over by Hwy 2 again and are in a meandering mood, take a right turn at Wilbur and take the Keller Ferry across Lake Roosevelt.
It's a hoot!
It's one of the last free ferries maintained by the State, and it holds 3 or 4 cars at a time.
Schedule is "when we get to your side", from early morning to late evening.
The road down to it is a pretty steep switchbacked knuckle-whitener too, now that I think about it.
When you land, you're on the Colville Indian Reservation.
And as long as you're on the other side... Hwy 20, the most northerly route across the Cascades, is due north about 45 miles.
Another beautiful road! The pass is closed in the winter, though.
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:18 AM   #12
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Hi: Honda03842...Is there any mention in your copy of the Eastern Grades book about the road thru Warsaw N.Y. Although not mountains per se, more like a crack in the earths crust, it is exciting to tow down hwy. 20A into town. All signs forbid trucks over 9000 kilo's and turn around ramps are provided for those who don't have the directory...I presume. We found this on a shortcut to Letchworth St. Pk.
Gives a whole new meaning to "You are higher"!!!
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 08-03-2011, 08:44 AM   #13
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Its not in the book. Though you don't find as many long grades in the book, there are a number of short ones that are sometimes worse than the long ones.

I remember one in PA on an old narrow road, heading into a small town, severely down hill to a river bottom, at the end of the hill was a right angle turn onto Main Street.

Discounting our trips to Canada, we actually do less RVing in the northeast than the south and west, partially because we're usually trying to get out before the snow and don't do a lot during the summer.

Norm
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