Often while planning routes I would like to know the elevations, mile by mile, what kind of 'pulls' there are coming up. I have GPS that give real time elevation , however havn't found anything that will give me that info i.e. 80 miles down the road. I suppose there is an 'App' but haven't switched to 'smartphone yet. I currently have Microsoft Streets & Trips and Garmin GPS.
Have you tried using Google Earth for planning. You need to open Google Earth and then zoom in to where you would like to start from and add a place mark.You do this by clicking on the push pin on the top tool bar. You can give the push pin a name before selecting ok if you like. Now zoom in to the spot you would like to use for your destination and add a push pin there and rename and select ok.The more you zoom in the more accurate the placement of the push pin. Now right click on your first push pin and select directions from here then go to your next push pin and select directions to here you will see the route highlighted. Now right click on the highlighted route and select show elevation profile.When the profile screen shows up slide your curser along the profile and you will see a red arrow moving along your route with the elevation percentage...if you left click on the route it will give you the distance and an estimate of the time to get there....Hopefully I have explained this correctly....Have fun.......Mike
Abby's Doghouse... 31'Winnibago Chieftain
"Any Day you wake up is a good one" Mike/Ulla/Abby
thanks to all for suggestions, another two months before we hit the road, I am sure I'll be prepared, I do like the idea of having the percentages, however I am not sure all states use the same criteria, one guys 6 may be anothers 5, however if I am going 'there' I am going anyway.
Jerry & Judy McDonald MOLLY (THE BASENJI) Motosat Datastorm F-1 Auto dish .74m HughesNet 83W 2003 DP Escaper 3979/330 cat MH
What are some highways, grades or passes that have given you problems in the past? Since you are in Arizona, you might have dropped down on I40 toward the western state line. Or how about one of the mountain highways east of Phoenix (US60, US191)?
Interstate standards are all the same.
Google Maps with terrain mode on are a good source for elevation information. Zoom in enough and you can see all the curves. In addition most highways have 'streetview', so you can see how frightening the drop offs are.
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edited 02/20/12 07:48pm by paulj *
Here is the cheap way. The Rand McNally paper maps list mountain passes with the elevation. Then do a google search for the name of the pass. We have pulled a 14K fifth wheel all over the west and parts of Canada with a 2004.5 2500 GMC diesel so am sure your Ford can do it!
Also on paper maps, and some online ones, National Forests are colored green (or something like that). In the West, these forests are in the mountains. So if a highway passes through such a forest, or in a narrow band between two, it is likely to be crossing a mountain pass - unless it is obviously following a river (a blue line). If it follows one river, and then another, it probably has crossed a pass or ridge separating the two drainage basins.
The NOAA 7-Day Forecast webpage allows you to type in a beginning city,state... then when it brings up the weather forecast, note the latitude/longitude and ELEVATION information for it at the top left.
Now scroll down to the bottom right of the screen and a detailed map will appear. You can grip the map with your mouse and move the map. Click on any point along your route and you will get a refreshed page with THAT point's lat/long and ELEVATION.
My TLD 2011 only lists the higher elevations as +6. I have never pulled in mountainous terrain but I will this summer. Should I plan to avoid anything rated +6 with my 15K fiver pulled by an 2010 F350 Diesel (3.73 gears)?
You need not avoid anything because of grade, with that rig. You will be slowed down by the grade, yes, but so will everybody else. When grade get over 10% you are usually into slow highways with switchbacks, because the highway engineers couldn't find an easier way across. If you want to avoid that kind of road as a driving preference, OK, but it will not be a capability issue for your truck.
FWIW, OP's question, I use DeLorme Topo for elevations and grades. The profile tool works along your travel route (one of the options) and will provide average grade for the segment you define, and also local gradients. For example, Skyline Drive out of Mena is an average 6% with a couple of short stretches over 20%. While almost anything can get up a 20% grade going slowly (if not icy) but nothing will be doing it at 60 mph in overdrive. More like down to 2nd in a car, first gear creeping with a tow. That's in the Ouachita's, elevations lower than western Kansas, short local grades something fierce.
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edited 02/24/12 05:30pm by tatest *