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Old 04-06-2010, 05:37 AM   #1
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July trip on Highway 2 - Idaho to Duluth

We're thinking of taking our Safari 25 SE from Sandpoint, Idaho to Duluth, MN on US Route 2 this July. Any tips or advice would be appreciated.. road conditions, campsites, gas, etc... we've never been on that road before.

Thanks!
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Old 04-06-2010, 06:29 AM   #2
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We spent last summer in Havre MT which is on highway 2. We traveled from eastern MT to Glacier on Hwy 2 and the road was good. Big distances in between towns. In Havre, you'll find the County Fairgrounds on the west side of town with camping and camping on the east side of town next to the Best Western motel which is quite nice. Some nice places to eat in the downtown area. Check out the 50/60's hamburger eatery near the library and movie theatre. Also the "Buffalo Jump" when you are in Havre. It's behind the mall on the west side of town.
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Old 04-06-2010, 07:18 AM   #3
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July trip on Highway 2 - Idaho to Duluth

Greetings Eckhart1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eckhart View Post
We're thinking of taking our Safari 25 SE from Sandpoint, Idaho to Duluth, MN on US Route 2 this July. Any tips or advice would be appreciated.. road conditions, campsites, gas, etc... we've never been on that road before.

Thanks!
This route is among my favorite drives, and I have taken it three times in the past 15 years. The scenery along this route in Idaho and Montana is breathtaking. While there are a few grades, my '75 Cadillac Eldorado had no problem towing my 1978 Argosy along the route in 2008. Once you get East of Glacier National Park, the campgrounds do become a little more sparse.

My favorite RV parks along the route include:
  • Hungry Horse, MT -- Mountain Meadow Campground and Cabins
  • West Glacier, MT -- West Glacier KOA
  • Troy, MT -- Kootenai River Campground
  • Libby, MT -- Woodland RV Park
  • Kalispell, MT -- Rocky Mountain HI RV Park
  • Shelby, MT -- Williamson City RV Park
  • Havre, MT -- Havre RV Park (very clean on-site laundramat)
  • Williston, ND -- Lewis and Clark State Park
  • Minot, ND -- Roughrider Campground
  • Bemidiji, MN -- Bemidiji KOA
Enjoy your tour!

Kevin
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Old 04-06-2010, 07:44 AM   #4
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If you travel as far as Duluth please consider traveling along the North Shore of Lake Superior. There are many great state parks and camp grounds along the way.

There are many rivers that empty into Superior form the North Shore and all are beautiful. It would be a shame to get as close as Duluth and not see them

If your staying in Duluth consider looking into staying at the Lakehead boat Basin. There are 30 RV sites located in the harbor. Their website is lakeheadboatbasin.com

Enjoy your trip!!!
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Old 04-06-2010, 08:57 AM   #5
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There is significant roadwork between Wolf Point and the North Dakota line. We were through there in mid-September last year -- 20-30 miles of no roadbed but the surface was decently graded sand/dirt without much gravel. It was wet the day we went through there, so dust was not a problem. I felt comfortable doing 35mph for much of it. They'll certainly not be finished by summer but no doubt will have it resembling an interstate again.

From Glasgow to Minot is beautiful! Nice wetlands, large rolling hills. If you're looking to stop, roll right past Williston and consider Ray, ND. We passed a nice looking campground there. Northwest North Dakota is the economic powerhouse for the state with the lowest unemployment in the country -- oil donkeys everywhere!

I'll echo BradS' recommendation for Lakehead Boat Basin in Duluth's Canal Park (3 photos here). You'll be parked on asphalt but it's a scenic seaport setting with great views, many nearby shops & non-chain restaurants. Watch out for weekends; it's much easier to get in there Mon-Thu nights if you can't nail down your arrival time months ahead.
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Old 04-06-2010, 09:26 AM   #6
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I can't agree more with BradS. Duluth is not a stopping point, but rather a beginning point. The North Shore Drive along L. Superior is breathtaking. Another 94 miles east of Duluth, along the South Shore Drive, takes you to Bayfield,WI and the Apostle Islands. (My favorite place in the USA.) In fact, take an extra week and take the L. Superior Circle Tour. It's only 550 miles! Don't forget your passport.

Other sights to see in MN near US 2, Itasca State Park, the Mississippi Headwaters, near Bemidji. The largest open pit iron mine and Bob Dylan museum in Hibbing.

Enjoy your trip!

Jim
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Old 04-06-2010, 10:17 AM   #7
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Thanks for the great feedback.

I really appreciate all the good information and specific advice. My understanding is that Rte 2 is often 2-lane, with stretches of 4-lane in North Dakota and Minnesota. I don't mind 2-lane unless there's a lot of truck traffic, which can really slow things down. Any thoughts?

We do plan to spend quite a while in Duluth (we used to live there), so we agree completely with the praise for the north shore of Lake Superior, Bayfield and the Apostles.

Thanks.
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Old 04-07-2010, 08:25 AM   #8
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I don't think you'll see much for through-trucks on Minnesota's section of US 2. Should be local mainly. Same for Wisconsin's section of the highway ... speaking of which, they've widened the right of way for the latter and cleared trees well away from the highway -- excellent sight lines.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:30 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eckhart View Post
We're thinking of taking our Safari 25 SE from Sandpoint, Idaho to Duluth, MN on US Route 2 this July. Any tips or advice would be appreciated.. road conditions, campsites, gas, etc... we've never been on that road before.

Thanks!
There will be a lot on nothing in Montana. Towns are far and wide. Fill up or carry extra fuel every chance you get.
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Old 04-08-2010, 10:02 AM   #10
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Just heard today -- Duluth is just starting two construction seasons of renovation on I-35 through the city. Probably needed it. A large piece of road machinery fell off a flatbed from an overhead ramp onto I-35 two years ago and took out a section. The repair was only temporary.

I'm sure they'll have access on I-35 but weekend traffic could make that brutal on Friday and Sunday afternoons. Good thing you're familiar with alternate routes!
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Old 04-08-2010, 05:15 PM   #11
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There will be a lot on nothing in Montana. Towns are far and wide. Fill up or carry extra fuel every chance you get.
Thanks for the warning.

I did wonder about gas. My TV averages between 11 and 13 MPG when hauling the trailer, so the 28 gallon tank just barely gives us a (theoretical) range of 300 miles.
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Old 04-08-2010, 05:29 PM   #12
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Just heard today -- Duluth is just starting two construction seasons of renovation on I-35 through the city. Probably needed it. A large piece of road machinery fell off a flatbed from an overhead ramp onto I-35 two years ago and took out a section. The repair was only temporary.

I'm sure they'll have access on I-35 but weekend traffic could make that brutal on Friday and Sunday afternoons. Good thing you're familiar with alternate routes!
Thanks for the traffic updates. A running joke among locals in Duluth when we lived there years ago was the difficulty of enduring "the rush minute" - but I guess with increasing summer tourism, the situation has changed.
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Old 04-11-2010, 11:34 AM   #13
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July trip on Highway 2 - Idaho to Duluth

Greetings Eckhart!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eckhart View Post
Thanks for the warning.

I did wonder about gas. My TV averages between 11 and 13 MPG when hauling the trailer, so the 28 gallon tank just barely gives us a (theoretical) range of 300 miles.
I don't think that you will have any problems with the range on your tow vehicle. My Cadillac Eldorado/Minuet 6.0 Metre combination averaged 8 MPG for this segment of my trip. With a 25 gallon fuel tank, I never ran out fuel - - but I filled the tank at every opportunity. Also, the closer it gets to sundown, the more difficult it can be to find an open gas station along some stretches in Montana, and North Dakota.

Kevin
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