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Old 10-16-2016, 08:13 AM   #11
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It still amazes me the info one can glean from this forum.

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Old 10-16-2016, 08:35 AM   #12
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Hello waiter21,
This November my wife & I will be coming from Ottawa but
following much the same route as you on our way to Mesa, AZ for the
winter. Could you describe what you mean by: In the winter the I-40
is a mess in NM?
Thanks
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Old 10-16-2016, 09:22 AM   #13
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That section is part of the Plains and storms can blow through and wreck havoc from OKC to ABQ.

We spend Christmas with the family in Lubbock Texas and I always go to the Amarillo area to goose hunt while we are up there. The last 2 years we have canceled the New Years hunt due to weather.

I might suggest planning a few different routes and letting the weather tell you which to take.
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Old 10-16-2016, 09:55 AM   #14
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Dear DKRitter,
Thanks for the heads up.
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Old 10-16-2016, 09:57 AM   #15
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Our first winter in Az. we took I-40 across from OKC to Flagstaff in February. It was during a major storm north of us and the crosswinds were pushing us around. We shut it down for three days in Amarillo because we were tired of the winds and white knuckles. I've heard there are times I-40 gets shut down. It's a major truck route cross-country and it is taken care by the hwy dept. Just watch the weather and plan for options.
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Old 10-16-2016, 12:08 PM   #16
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I would stick to I-25 and I-40. Winters are mild in NM, so storms are usually short lived and the major freeways get cleared first. I would not use 54 to Alamogordo. If there is something specific you want to see on 54 do it on a day trip after you get to Las Cruces. 54 is narrow, not well maintained, and rather rough. Enjoy Las Cruces!!
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Old 10-16-2016, 01:54 PM   #17
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This is dangerous, be careful

We do this every year leaving Florida to Michigan and then to Los Angeles. 3 years ago we hit black ice in Dallas are and stuck for 10 days. We left Thanksgiving and I thought we were going to die. Last year we hit snow on I-10 in New Mexico. Accumulation about 1 inch. Still dangerous pulling a 30ft trailer with crosswinds. I purchased a Hensley hitch which stopped all sway. This year we are leaving next week for Lansing and heading to Dayton, Ohio to see the other kids and I will monitor the weather everyday watching the weather coming from the west. I do not care how many miles extra I put on to get to I 10, I will drive out of our way. Plans now is to go through Oklahoma city, but that can change in a minute. I know we will not stay until Thanksgiving even though I would love to spend time with my family. We usually come up in the summer, Florida to Michigan, but we postponed due to the leaf change. We also had renters wanting to come in early, (snowbirds) renting the house until April. Bottom line is be safe and let weather dictate when you leave and what route you take. BTW we hit crosswinds on I 10 in April heading home to Tampa and I was all over the road south of Austin, TX. 40 and 50 mph crosswinds. Did not have the Hensley on yet and I have drove in 40 MPH crosswinds with the Hensley since then and it tracked straight as could be. Be careful and flexible.
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Old 10-18-2016, 10:49 PM   #18
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Our first winter in Az. we took I-40 across from OKC to Flagstaff in February. It was during a major storm north of us and the crosswinds were pushing us around. We shut it down for three days in Amarillo because we were tired of the winds and white knuckles. I've heard there are times I-40 gets shut down. It's a major truck route cross-country and it is taken care by the hwy dept. Just watch the weather and plan for options.
I've been across I-40 in the winter and it is usually clear. Watch the weather because a strong winter storm centered south of Albuquerque produces up-slope winds on the east side of the mountains that will bury I-40 between Tucumcari and Tijeras Pass east of Albuquerque. The I-25/I-40 Spaghetti Bowl can be a bit daunting getting onto I-25 southbound as the traffic will be very heavy. If you go that route, the Bosque Del Apache NWR is something to see but RV park facilities at Socorro are a bit limited and can fill up fast. Also, be sure to try the Owl Bar and Cafe in San Antonio for a green chile cheeseburger, fries and a Coke. There is a burger war with the Buckhorn Bar up the road to the west as to who has the best green chile cheeseburger. My vote is always the Owl.

An alternative route is to take US 54 south from Santa Rosa to Vaughn then down US 285 to Roswell. That will allow you to avoid US 54 through Carrizozo, which wasn't rough the last time we drove through there in 2013. At Roswell, turn west on US 70/380 to Ruidoso, across Apache Summit down to Tularosa to Alamogordo and Las Cruces. Of course, if there is a storm over eastern New Mexico along I-40, you might consider turning south at Amarillo to Lubbock, then angle southwest to Brownwood to US 380 to Roswell, then US 70 to Ruidoso, Alamogordo and Las Cruces. That is a very easy pull with gentle grades and very scenic west of Roswell.

Safe travels and enjoy your trip!! Watch the weather and be ready to re-route if necessary.
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