4th of July Summit – Bad Roads for RVs is on Interstate 90 east of Coeur d’Alene Idaho. this road is steep and should be avoided in the winter.
Of course, you could say that RVs should avoid traveling in the winter in the northern Rocky Mountains and I would agree. It goes double for steep roads in the winter.
In the summer, Interstate 90 east of Coeur d’Alene is merely a steep road but I think you should know what you are getting into before you go there. Really the road is very nice, wide, but does not have slow lanes for climbing or descending, and overall the grade alone isn’t a good enough reason to not travel on Interstate 90 east of Coeur d’Alene.
Expect large vehicles to be traveling at very slow speeds relative to traffic or speed limits.
Here is a link to our blog post about our time in northern Idaho. Stunning beauty in Northern Idaho
This is a link to the Idaho Department of Transportation interactive map. Idaho 511
Elevation: 3080 feet
Length: 8 miles
Terrain: 5 1/2% grades on both the east and west side of the pass. The east side of the pass is slightly steeper than the west side. Near the top, eastbound there is a sign recommending low gears and a maximum speed of 55 miles per hour. Caution signs on both sides pertaining to patchy ice in the winter.
Turns: The turns mostly gentle. On the east side, the curves are closer to the top.
Turnouts: Brake check areas at the top for both east and westbound vehicles. One section near the bottom on the west side for eastbound traffic that breaks into four lanes for eastbound traffic. A similar section at the bottom of the grade for westbound traffic that breaks into four lanes. These areas double as chain-up areas.
Bridges: All bridges in the winter should be assumed to be icy anytime the road is wet.
Turnaround locations: None until at the top.
Chain up areas: One on each side serves both east and westbound traffic
Runaway truck ramps: None
4th of July Summit – Bad Roads for RVs — Our Experience
We drove over 4th of July Summit eastbound and westbound The road was dry and overall, other than slow speeds pertaining to the steepness of the grade we didn’t have any difficulty. Assuming you have enough power to travel the pass and assuming the road is dry, you should not have any problem.
Expect slow climb speeds eastbound in the 45 miles per hour range. Expect slow descent speeds for the first two miles on the east side, eastbound at about 40 miles per hour.
Here is our link to our interactive map. Bad Roads for RVs