Jump to content

Pulling an OTT on Beartooth Hwy, Mt./Wy.


MarkC
 Share

Recommended Posts

  • Moderators

I've been over/on the Beartooth Highway numerous times - but - always on motorcycle.  Having said that, I would not hesitate to tow my Elite II over it with my F-150 3.5 liter twin turbo.  There are plenty of pull-outs for both letting faster traffic by and for observing the wonderful scenery.  Be sure to use them in either case. 

Note that there is really not all that much at the northern end (Red Lodge) and/or I-90.  So, if your intent is to only go for the drive I'd leave the camper near Cooke City, drive the Beartooth both ways, camp and then either head into Yellowstone National Park (northeast entrance) and the Lamar Valley (bunches of animals) or head towards Cody via the Chief Joseph Highway - another wonderful road.

Last year (2021) they were doing construction on the Beartooth and closing the entire road after (I believe) 7pm.  Be sure to check both when it opens for the season and for any construction details.

Bill

  • Like 7

2023 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing, Max Payload, 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I haven’t done that road, but have done similar very high up (11,000 feet) and twisty roads, like the Million Dollar Hwy at Ouray. I think it depends mostly on your tow vehicle. A big HD turbo diesel, no worries. A Land Cruiser like mine, worries, definitely. I have on occasion dropped down into 4 Low when towing up super steep hairpin turns, and that was a HUGE help, especially for greatly reducing the transmission temperature, but I am not aware of any other tow vehicle that can do that without risking drivetrain damage.

If you have a nervous copilot, then it might be best to leave the Ollie at base camp. Also, that is a very popular route in the summer for sports cars and bike clubs, make sure there is not a 3000 rider Harley tour going the same day as you…..

I love that part of Yellowstone, Chief Joseph Hwy headed east is also stunning. Hard lock haipin turns and a 65 mph speed limit!

EDIT, Bill beat me by 4 minutes, darn it. This is simply luscious:

B9327064-7460-4EB3-805E-83C79EB5D7A2.thumb.jpeg.1b83e207fde4c20cb938b7f14bb053cf.jpeg

https://www.visityellowstonecountry.com/photos-that-prove-that-the-beartooth-highway-is-the-most-beautiful-drive-in-america?slide=1

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

 

  • Like 5

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags, Safari snorkel.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I haven't taken the Oli on it, but I bicycled over it.  I did it in late June.  It snowed a few inches made the bike ride a little tough being cold and wet.  I would  take my Oli over it. 

  • Like 2

Early 1999 Ford F250 SD 7.3L Diesel 

2020 Elite II Twin -  Hull # 648

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

@Bobber, just curious.  What's your tow vehicle? Thanks.

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

Florida and Western North Carolina, or wherever the truck goes....

400 watts solar. Dc compressor fridge. No inverter. 2 x 105 ah agm batteries .  Life is good.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, 2008RN said:

I haven't taken the Oli on it, but I bicycled over it.  I did it in late June.  It snowed a few inches made the bike ride a little tough being cold and wet.  I would  take my Oli over it. 

What is the grade?   It looks like a great road to bicycle.   I bicycled over Going to the Sun road in Glacier in 2017.  We're starting from San Diego in April going to Boston.   I hope to stop at Hohenwald on that bicycle tour. 

John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 3.5 liter Ecoboost, with heavy duty tow package. 

2022 Hull #1290, twin bed with Truma package (a/c, furnace, hot water heater with electric antifreeze option), lithium pro package, picked up November 7, 2022

Link to comment
Share on other sites

https://pjammcycling.com/climb/227.Beartooth%20Pass%20South

GTTS is steeper, but a mile lower in elevation, so that is probably the biggest factor. If I were to attempt to cycle any of these roads, which ain’t EVER going to happen, it would be with electric assist and really good hydraulic disk brakes. And an oxygen cylinder. 😳 How long is your upcoming tour? You must be pretty fit.

John Davies

Spokane WA

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags, Safari snorkel.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

SeeDawg, yes I should have included that we towed with a 2019 Chevrolet duramax. We certainly had the power and the engine brake has been an added bonus while traveling in the mountains. We initially bought the diesel to haul our boat and have discovered that more power makes our life easier with the Ollie also. Moved into a 21 GMC duramax.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, John E Davies said:

https://pjammcycling.com/climb/227.Beartooth%20Pass%20South

GTTS is steeper, but a mile lower in elevation, so that is probably the biggest factor. If I were to attempt to cycle any of these roads, which ain’t EVER going to happen, it would be with electric assist and really good hydraulic disk brakes. And an oxygen cylinder. 😳 How long is your upcoming tour? You must be pretty fit.

John Davies

Spokane WA

"How long is your upcoming tour? You must be pretty fit."

We figure about two months.   On the last two cross country trips,  I averaged 55-56 miles/day carrying about 58 pounds of gear in panniers.   I have mechanical disc brakes that work very well.   We start with low miles initially then increase as we get more fit.   Leaving San Diego, you start climbing almost immediately which isn't too great.   Depending on terrain and wind,  some days are in the 30+ range due to climbing.   I had one day leaving Cut Bank,  Montana going east where we did 126 miles.   Thanks for the info on that road. 

  • Like 3
  • Wow 1

John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 3.5 liter Ecoboost, with heavy duty tow package. 

2022 Hull #1290, twin bed with Truma package (a/c, furnace, hot water heater with electric antifreeze option), lithium pro package, picked up November 7, 2022

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

@John Welte curious. When you do the long distance bicycle trips, do you have a chase vehicle? Do you travel in a group?

We've  met several bike campers, solo, doing long trips ( a couple trans Canada, one was aanchorage to San Francisco,  via the Yukon, etc ), and it seemed to be a long and lonely road . 

Sherry 

  • Like 1

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

Florida and Western North Carolina, or wherever the truck goes....

400 watts solar. Dc compressor fridge. No inverter. 2 x 105 ah agm batteries .  Life is good.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, John Welte said:

What is the grade?   It looks like a great road to bicycle.   I bicycled over Going to the Sun road in Glacier in 2017.  We're starting from San Diego in April going to Boston.   I hope to stop at Hohenwald on that bicycle tour. 

I don't remember the grade being any worse than most Colorado mountain Rides.   Independence Highway from Aspen over the continental divide was much steeper and scarier coming down.  All I remember was the freezing cold and wet snow on Beartooth highway.  I hadn't planned on freezing temps and wet snow on our tour. All I had was a light rain jacket and leg warmers. 

Our ride started at Jackson hole, bike all around Yellow stone, then up over John Coulter pass, Bear tooth and down into Cody.  We had a Swag wagon, that took our camping gear from one spot to another. We were one our own while biking.  I also have done several Credit Card tours in the Colorado mountains and stayed at motels every night. I only needed small rear panniers to carry 1 change of cloths and tools. 

I have never dreamed of going across the US. I think I would wimp out after  2 weeks.  7-10 day rides are enough.  Although I would like to start discovering some of the Rails to Trails as we we take our Oli across the nation.

  • Like 1
  • Wow 1

Early 1999 Ford F250 SD 7.3L Diesel 

2020 Elite II Twin -  Hull # 648

Link to comment
Share on other sites

36 minutes ago, 2008RN said:

 Although I would like to start discovering some of the Rails to Trails as we we take our Oli across the nation.

If you love mountains but don’t want to beat up your body….. this is spectacular.

Route of the Hiawatha Turns 20 (News story 2018)

https://www.ridethehiawatha.com/the-trail

Class 1 pedal assist ebikes are now allowed, but none with a hand throttle. I rode the trail once on a mountain bike, but spent six summers on a dual sport motorcycle exploring this wonderful area. I am a sucker for trestles, tunnels, and steam history.

John Davies

Spokane WA

  • Like 3

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags, Safari snorkel.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, John E Davies said:

If you love mountains but don’t want to beat up your body….. this is spectacular.

Route of the Hiawatha Turns 20 (News story 2018)

https://www.ridethehiawatha.com/the-trail

Class 1 pedal assist ebikes are now allowed, but none with a hand throttle. I rode the trail once on a mountain bike, but spent six summers on a dual sport motorcycle exploring this wonderful area. I am a sucker for trestles, tunnels, and steam history.

John Davies

Spokane WA

I have been on lots of Rails to Trails.   They're great.   My favorite was the Central Lakes/Lake Wobegone in Minnesota.   It's very well signed and paved.   The Erie Canal trail in New York was great too.   I will have to figure out a good way to bring my bike.   Maybe time for a Brompton folding bike.   The perfect number of bikes to own is N+1.  I am a sucker for trestles and steam history too.   Tunnels,  not so much. 

  • Like 2

John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 3.5 liter Ecoboost, with heavy duty tow package. 

2022 Hull #1290, twin bed with Truma package (a/c, furnace, hot water heater with electric antifreeze option), lithium pro package, picked up November 7, 2022

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, 2008RN said:

I don't remember the grade being any worse than most Colorado mountain Rides.   Independence Highway from Aspen over the continental divide was much steeper and scarier coming down.  All I remember was the freezing cold and wet snow on Beartooth highway.  I hadn't planned on freezing temps and wet snow on our tour. All I had was a light rain jacket and leg warmers. 

Our ride started at Jackson hole, bike all around Yellow stone, then up over John Coulter pass, Bear tooth and down into Cody.  We had a Swag wagon, that took our camping gear from one spot to another. We were one our own while biking.  I also have done several Credit Card tours in the Colorado mountains and stayed at motels every night. I only needed small rear panniers to carry 1 change of cloths and tools. 

I have never dreamed of going across the US. I think I would wimp out after  2 weeks.  7-10 day rides are enough.  Although I would like to start discovering some of the Rails to Trails as we we take our Oli across the nation.

"I have never dreamed of going across the US. I think I would wimp out after  2 weeks.  7-10 day rides are enough.  Although I would like to start discovering some of the Rails to Trails as we we take our Oli across the nation."

The first two weeks are the hardest unless you had time to train and get saddle time in.   The first time from Seattle to Bar Harbor,  Maine I did train for it.  The Australian guy who planned our trip didn't have the chance.   You just go shorter miles initially and get stronger.   We started with 30 mile days but a month in were doing 70-90 miles on loaded bikes.   Think of it as just a lot of daily bike rides and it's not so scary.   Definitely,  the Rails to Trails are great and I plan to explore more of those.   We will order our Oli soon for March/April 2023 delivery. 

John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 3.5 liter Ecoboost, with heavy duty tow package. 

2022 Hull #1290, twin bed with Truma package (a/c, furnace, hot water heater with electric antifreeze option), lithium pro package, picked up November 7, 2022

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, SeaDawg said:

@John Welte curious. When you do the long distance bicycle trips, do you have a chase vehicle? Do you travel in a group?

We've  met several bike campers, solo, doing long trips ( a couple trans Canada, one was aanchorage to San Francisco,  via the Yukon, etc ), and it seemed to be a long and lonely road . 

Sherry 

Sherry,  usually just one other guy.   No chase vehicle.   We carry everything and camp mostly.   Spring, 2019 was very wet from Missouri to New Brunswick so we moteled it there for the last half.  I have met lots of other bike tourers from all over the world.   A Dutch guy rode from Alaska to southern South America.   Hearing his stories was a bit hair raising.   With the Ollie I plan to bring bikes along and go on some Rails to Trails segments with my wife.   Minnesota and New York have great ones.   Missouri and Nebraska too.   

  • Thanks 1

John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 3.5 liter Ecoboost, with heavy duty tow package. 

2022 Hull #1290, twin bed with Truma package (a/c, furnace, hot water heater with electric antifreeze option), lithium pro package, picked up November 7, 2022

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 1/16/2022 at 9:07 AM, John Welte said:

 The perfect number of bikes to own is N+1. 

I prefer "S-1" where S= the number at which your spouse leaves you. 🙂

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

COKSMONESDTNUTWYmed.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

When I turned 50, I rode solo self contained across the U.S. and started in San Diego. Tough place to start as it goes uphill right away. I ended in DC riding 400+ miles from Pittsburgh down the Gap and C&O Towpath. Anymore,  there are so many crazies on cellphones that I seek out trails. My dream has been to use our Ollie as a sag wagon. This year ii looks like the time is perfect since I am newly retired.

  • Like 2

ALARCTDEFLGAILINIAKYLAMEMDMAMSMONENHNJNY

2020 Ram 1500 Ecodiesel. LE2 hull# 344.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, KeysConchs said:

When I turned 50, I rode solo self contained across the U.S. and started in San Diego. Tough place to start as it goes uphill right away. I ended in DC riding 400+ miles from Pittsburgh down the Gap and C&O Towpath. Anymore,  there are so many crazies on cellphones that I seek out trails. My dream has been to use our Ollie as a sag wagon. This year ii looks like the time is perfect since I am newly retired.

I rode self contained from San Diego to New Brunswick, Canada in 2019.  We did immediately start climbing too.   In April, two of us are starting from the same area (Carlsbad) riding to Portland, Maine.   I have thought of using the Ollie the same way to ride some great portions.   Maybe a Brompton folding bike to store in the tv.   I don't like the idea of having it on the back getting grit in the chain because it is on a bike rack. 

  • Like 1

John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 3.5 liter Ecoboost, with heavy duty tow package. 

2022 Hull #1290, twin bed with Truma package (a/c, furnace, hot water heater with electric antifreeze option), lithium pro package, picked up November 7, 2022

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 1/14/2022 at 12:15 PM, MarkC said:

I’ve been reading about Beartooth Hwy.  And, it seems 50/50, for and against, on pulling a trailer over it.  Has anyone done it in their Oliver?  What are your thoughts?

Can you do it?  Probably.

Can you do safely?  Possibly.

Should you do it?  No.

P.S. Consider joining the Flying Wallendas instead. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

32 minutes ago, John Welte said:

I rode self contained from San Diego to New Brunswick, Canada in 2019.  We did immediately start climbing too.   In April, two of us are starting from the same area (Carlsbad) riding to Portland, Maine.   I have thought of using the Ollie the same way to ride some great portions.   Maybe a Brompton folding bike to store in the tv.   I don't like the idea of having it on the back getting grit in the chain because it is on a bike rack. 

I'm totally with you. I, too, have thought about bringing the bike inside the trailer or the tv. I already have a Bike Friday so I'm pretty much set. I also left Carlsbad. Day 1 was tough because I had too much stuff, and the 50 year old motor was not yet tuned :). 

  • Like 1

ALARCTDEFLGAILINIAKYLAMEMDMAMSMONENHNJNY

2020 Ram 1500 Ecodiesel. LE2 hull# 344.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Been over the Beartooth many times while pulling trailers.  Last time was done using our old 2013 Tacoma & pulling a fairly light (3500# or so) trailer.  The Tacoma made the pull from the North with ease during a fairly hot summer day.  The road is quite good and presents no problems for a vehicle in decent shape.  My concern would be heading back down the pass heading East ... I would want the brakes to be in good shape.

I would not hesitate to tow our fairly light, well behaved Legacy II using our F150 with a 3.5.  

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...