Preparing for Poor Conditions

It is safe to say that nearly every RV owner and driver would prefer to travel when conditions were perfect. With no rain falling and no ice or snow to worry about, traveling in an RV can be a pleasant and enjoyable experience. Of course, such conditions only exist some of the time, and if you use your RV extensively, you are likely to encounter some poor weather along the way. Keeping track of the weather that you might run into is an important part of being a responsible RV traveler.

 

Unfortunately, Signs Like This Rarely Pop Up on the Highway
Unfortunately, Signs Like This Rarely Pop Up on the Highway

Thanks to the amazing technology that is available today, there are more ways than ever before to track weather and road conditions. While weather is notoriously unpredictable, you can use the latest tools to keep track of what conditions are expected to exist. By looking ahead and knowing what to look for, you can improve your chances of staying safe out on the roads.

Check Your Route First

Before you concern yourself with specific weather conditions, start by checking your intended route for any road closures or construction issues. The best way to do this is by using the Department of Transportation website in each relevant state. So, for example, if you are traveling through Washington, Oregon, and California, you would use the DOT sites for each of those three states in order to check on your path. Most states do a great job of keeping the information accurate and up to date, and there might even be a phone number for you to call if you need further info.

Don’t make the mistake of skipping out on this step in the summer months, thinking that the weather will be fine so there is no cause for concern. While the weather might be good in the summer, there is a very good chance of construction projects taking place along your route. Summer is construction season on highways and freeways, so make sure there are no major projects which will stop you from reaching your destination on time.

Weather as the Trip Approaches

Many weather websites will offer forecasts as far as two weeks out, but predicting weather that far in advance is pretty close to impossible. Instead, you should really start to think about the weather forecast once you are within four or five days of leaving. Weather predictions at this point are much more likely to be correct, so you can take this information and actually use it to make decisions. Consider using two or three different weather sources to get a good overview of the likely conditions during your travel.

Have a Backup Plan

With a few exceptions, there is generally more than one way to get just about anywhere you are going to go. For example, the fastest route to a particular destination may take you over a mountain pass, but you could probably go the long way and stay lower if there was snow in the pass. Before your trip arrives, pick out at least one alternate route that would allow you to get to your destination – even if the drive winds up being longer than you had hoped.

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