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Route to Vegas from Denver

Diane M.

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Hi group, I

   Just wondering what is the best route of these two from Denver to Vegas ---  NW Via  I70 to 15  or SW Via I25 to 40 to 93?

Is one route more mountainous or have more facilities along the way, or better weatherwise?




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Except for the Raton Pass between CO and NM, there are no major climbs going the I25 & I40 routes.  However that route is about 250 miles longer than taking I70 & I15.   Going that route, at MP 253 1/2 you start the fun on I70 with Mt. Vernon Canyon aka Genessee Hill at 7,700 ft but that is for eastbound.  Westbound, you should look for Floyd Hill at about MP 246 1/2 westbound.  Be prepared for the curving bridge at the bottom of the hill as it is narrow.  Now the big climb to the Eisenhower Tunnel (Straight Creek Pass ) at 11,000 ft approximately 60 mi west of Denver MP 215 just west of Georgetown, then Vail Pass at at 10,000 ft.  Let me quote from the Mountain West Directory, "The descent on the westbound side of Vail Pass is about 10 miles in length and begins at MP 189."  7% grade for the next 8 miles.  The warning signs for westbound traffic read, "Speed limit 45 mph for vehicles over 30,000 lbs," and "Steep grade next 8 miles - Trucks stay in lower gear."  There are three escape ramps for trucks on this westbound stretch, so you know that this is a 'special' route.  Pretty much clear sailing from there on to points west until the stretch in Utah between Salina to Green River.  There are several sections of 6% grades.   Now prepare at MP 7 near the junction of I70 & I15 for 4 to 5 miles of 5 - 6% grade as you descend the summit.  I don't recall anything challenging once you are on I15, but I have only driven that once.  Others should chime in on that stretch. 

I highly recommend you getting the Mountain West Directory for Truckers, RV, and Motorhome Drivers.  Covers 11 western states.  https://www.amazon.com/Mountain-Directory-Truckers-Motorhome-Drivers/dp/0977629015/ref=sr_1_1?crid=10YF5JTST3DDJ&keywords=mountain+directory+west+for+truckers+rv+and+motorhome+drivers&qid=1584357494&sprefix=mountain+west+directory%2Caps%2C176&sr=8-1

Safe travels and don't wind up in a 'containment zone.'   😄


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