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Old 12-27-2014, 02:42 PM   #1
K1LLswitch
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Default Drive from Vancouver to Calgary?

After several months of searching for a used SUV that met the exact requirements my wife wanted, we finally found a vehicle at a dealership in Vancouver that met our needs and put a deposit on it.

The dealer has offered to ship it to Calgary OR pay for our flight to Vancouver to drive it back. A mountain drive sounds like a lot of fun and I would prefer to see the vehicle before closing the deal, but when I mentioned this to my Dad he said we were insane to drive the Coquihalla / TransCanada in the winter.

SUV is a 2012 X5 and I had the dealership include the winter tire package.

Thoughts? We are planning to fly out on the 2nd, but have not booked flights yet and can still opt for shipping.

Thanks.
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Old 12-27-2014, 02:45 PM   #2
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Coquihalla is an evil snow and ice strewn abyss.

Drive safely and you should be fine though.
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Old 12-27-2014, 02:48 PM   #3
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Got back from Tofino last Saturday. Took hwy1 the whole way. I drove a 2012 Malibu. It was a little harry in places but nothing a good set of winters couldn't handle.
I took 2 days to do it as I was in no rush and I didn't want to drive in the dark.
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Old 12-27-2014, 02:51 PM   #4
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Wasn't the Coquihalla closed due to snow a few days ago? The conditions on the passes (especially Coquihalla) would be worth checking out online before leaving
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Old 12-27-2014, 03:08 PM   #5
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It sounds like there is some new snowfall (5-10cm overnight) expected, but it doesn't appear to be closed now.

We are planning to do in 2 days so we can avoid the night drive as well.

Where did you stop keratosis? Can't decide between Kamloops (seems too early in the journey) or Revelstoke (seems like too far). Salmon Arm seems small every time I have driven through in the past but maybe it is more substantial than I realize?
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Old 12-27-2014, 03:12 PM   #6
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I left Abotsford at 7am then stopped in Revelstoke, but could easily have made it to Golden.
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Old 12-27-2014, 03:16 PM   #7
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I stopped in Revelstoke, but could easily have made it to Golden.
^ And if you get to Golden, you're just going to go all the way.

I would just get the car shipped. In the summer this might be more fun but the conditions on the Coquihalla can change in an instant to the point where, winter tires or otherwise, you will be very scared. Couple that with a vehicle you won't be familiar with -- just doesn't seem like a great idea.
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Old 12-27-2014, 03:20 PM   #8
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That's why I went hwy 1 all the way. Takes longer than the Coq, but lighter traffic and much less stressful.
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Old 12-27-2014, 04:33 PM   #9
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I use to drive straight through but I travelled at night to avoid the traffic and make better time. It never bothered me if it was winter or not, just drive a little more carefully and if the Coc is bad just take the canyon (#1).

My worst experience was a snow slide coming down in front of me, causing me to get a motel in Golden for the night and than having to detour south to get around it. Be flexible and stop for the night if needed or detour if needed and you should be fine.
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Old 12-27-2014, 04:46 PM   #10
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I also drive it at night. Less traffic makes for a more consistent travel. That and the road crews seems to have it nice and clear during the nights if it isn't actively snowing.
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Old 12-27-2014, 05:35 PM   #11
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Omg, you've the winter tire package, it's a great test drive for your new vehicle.

Sure the Coquihalla can be a nightmare but check the road conditions and adjust accordingly.

Take the flight and enjoy the trip.
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Old 12-27-2014, 05:41 PM   #12
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I always take #3 from calgary to castlegar, its a super nice drive. Probably way longer than the #1 though
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Old 12-27-2014, 05:47 PM   #13
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Plan accordingly. The Coq and the Canyon can turn bad in an instance. The rogers pass in the Selkirks is the other one that you really need to plan out to. Got stuck in Golden once for 3 days because of a Avalanche.
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Old 12-27-2014, 06:24 PM   #14
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Great place to buy a BMW. Lots of them and usually in great condition because of the mild winters.
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Old 12-27-2014, 08:26 PM   #15
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Quote:
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I always take #3 from calgary to castlegar, its a super nice drive. Probably way longer than the #1 though
Yeah the #3 is a lot longer, nice drive though. Some great motorcycling roads in the Castlegar area.
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Old 12-27-2014, 08:53 PM   #16
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Great place to buy a BMW. Lots of them and usually in great condition because of the mild winters.
Older Mercedes too. Like my 1981 300d. No road salts being used here in Victoria . same thing with Vancouver.
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Old 12-27-2014, 11:31 PM   #17
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Plan to drive for two days and make good use of daylight as it is much safer to drive during the day. No major snow storm is in the forecast so you might get lucky on Jan 2.
With winter tires, your X5 should be able to handle all but the absolute worse driving condition.
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Old 12-29-2014, 09:49 AM   #18
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I did the Coq run a couple of weeks ago in my Volkswagen Jetta. Mostly night driving, big storm through the passes, and took about 15 hours to complete the journey. I think that an X5 with good tires (M+S) will be just fine.

Here's the catch though - accidents and heavy snow WILL shut down portions of the road. Sometimes these are 30 minute waits, sometimes they are overnight. On my last trip, I had 2 long delays.

If you're in a hurry, ship the vehicle. If you're in a position to 'just roll with it' and can spend a day, two, three.....go for it, it's a great drive.
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Old 12-29-2014, 11:23 PM   #19
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In BC it is law to have mud and snow or winter tires to drive the roads at this time of year. Honestly I will drive the Coq over the Revestoke to Lake Louise stretch any day. The Coq is a first world highway. Many parts of the Trans Canada are still a national embarrassment.
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Old 12-29-2014, 11:29 PM   #20
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Wrong thread.
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