Parley's Canyon – Bad Roads for RVs

Parley’s Canyon – Bad Roads for RVs

Parley’s Canyon – Bad Roads for RVs is on Interstate 80, east of Salt Lake City, Utah. It is steep and should be avoided in the winter.

Of course, you could say that RVs should avoid traveling in the winter in the Rocky Mountains and I would agree. It goes double for steep roads in the winter.

The beginning of the descent starts at Parley’s Summit the intersection of Parly’s Lane in Summit Park and follows the Parly’s Creek and ends in Salt Lake City (milepost 130).

In the summer, Parley’s Canyon 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 a nice four-lane divided highway and overall the grade alone isn’t a good enough reason to not travel on Interstate 80 in Parley’s Canyon.

In the winter expect snow and ice. The road is maintained well but melting snow will run across the road and turn to ice nightly making for very hazardous driving.

Expect large vehicles to be traveling at very slow speeds relative to traffic or speed limits.

As for the Utah Department of Transportation, they have adopted twitter to get the most up-to-date road information to the public. They also have their own Apple and Android App. Tweets and App information is on this website. UDOT


Elevation: 7050 feet at the top – 4920 feet at the bottom.

Length: 12 miles

Terrain: up to 4-6% grades, typically 6%, all downhill with few breaks in the grade. Westbound truck speed is limited to 40 miles per hour.

Lanes: Six-lane highway

Turns: In the steep sections the turns are gentle.

Turnouts: Mulitple

Turnaround locations: Mulitple

Brake check area at Parley’s Summit westbound.

Chain up areas: Multiple locations to install and remove snow chains. One huge dedicated area west of milepost 130 for eastbound traffic includes concrete barriers to separate the highway and the chain-up area.

Restrictions: Interstate 80, in Parley’s Canyon, will occasionally close in the winter for deep snow. More likely than being closed, snowplows will continuously operate clearing the snow both night and day, when required.

Runaway truck ramps: one on the left side 3 1/2 miles from the summit.

Parley's Canyon Runaway Truck Ramp
Parley’s Canyon Runaway Truck Ramp

Parley’s Canyon – Bad Roads for RVs, Our Experience

We bypassed Parley’s Canyon in our RV choosing to travel on Provo Canyon (Provo Canyon – Bad Roads for RVs) and Weber Canyon on Interstate 84 instead. We have traveled up and down each of these canyons in our car multiple times. Of the three, Weber Canyon is the shortest and most gradual. But of course, it depends on where you want to go. Parley’s Canyon is our last choice for travel in this area, assuming you want to cross the Wasatch Range.

I would not hesitate to travel down Interstate 80, in Parley’s Canyon, in our RV — in the summer, but it is not the easiest route.

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Utah Department of Transportation

Here is the link to our interactive map. Bad Roads for RVs

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