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Road Trips Discussions about road trips you have made with your TDI.

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Old September 23rd, 2019, 20:11   #1
Dan C.
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: western WA
Default western WA to MT 1586 miles in three days

recon for an elk hunting trip next year. Some friends had a campsite in the Beaverhead-Deer Lodge National Forest, about 45 minutes SE of Jackson, MT.
Decided on Wednesday to take a road trip there on the weekend. Since I work 4 days/week I had a three day wknd to drive, hang out, scout around, and make it home in time for work Monday.
So a buddy and I left his place near Puyallup, WA at 2am Friday morning. Filled up the Passat at Fred Meyer (2.89) with $52 of #2 and headed east.
Stopped in St. Regis, MT for breakfast at Jasper's. Huckleberry sweet cream pancakes so good they didn't even need syrup. Fuel level great.
Headed down I-90--Montana kicks us up to 80mph--Not too long down the road we're looking at the Anaconda Smokestack and took that little detour over for pictures and some stretching. Nice chat with the fine folks @ Dee Motors, the friendly local GMC/Chevrolet/Buick/Cadillac/Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge/Ram dealer in town. Almost bought a new 2018 Ram 2500 Tradesman diesel, the deals are getting good. The sales guy (Jake) gave us a tip about the back road over the mountains opposed to running I-90 all the way. So we topped off the tank that was still over 1/4 with Town Pump Exxon #2 (2.77) and off we went, turning onto Mill Creek Rd. heading south towards nothing but forest and road construction. The Passat handled the gravel well, almost too well, and generated lots of looks from the locals and the out of staters in their bow season camouflage. A few lefts and rights along the way we made it to SR 43 and eventually to Wisdom.
From Wisdom we hit Jackson and turned right on Skinner Meadows Rd. heading straight into the Beayerhead-Deer Lodge NF to the campground 17 miles up in the hills at around 6400 ft. Car did GREAT, we backtracked and went down SR 278 to Dillon, stopping at the Bannack ghost town State Park along the way.
Got the room and a great prime rib dinner, then the next morning topped off the tank (2.76) and hauled ass back up 278 to the campground to meet up with our friends. Decided around noon on Saturday to head the rest of the way up Skinner Meadows Rd, and 40+ miles of NF road gravel over 7600 ft, down through the Fish Ranch, onto Bloody Dick Rd, past Reservoir Lake, down to Brenner Rd, Lemhi Pass, and finally to SR 324 and up to Dillon again.
From Dillon, we saw what we needed to see and talked to who we needed to talk to and headed off up I-15 to Butte and eventually I-90 back to Puyallup by 4pm Sunday (yesterday).
total drive from the first fill up in Puyallup back to my bud's house was 1,586 miles. I used a total of 41.14 gallons of fuel for the trip. Montana highway speed limits of 80mph and all the gravel didn't help the avg but 38.55mpg I'll take it any day with the kind of travel we did.
I wish the TDI Passat AllTrack cars were in the USA but I can live a little with just front wheel drive if I have to.
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'15 Passat SEL CPO wrnty til 8/2020

Last edited by Dan C.; September 23rd, 2019 at 20:32.
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