Driving long distances on major highways and freeways is already an arduous task that takes focus, awareness, and patience. Driving in the mountains adds another element to highway travel and learning how to safely navigate the steep inlines and descent of a mountain pass is crucial for your safety, those traveling with you, and those driving near you. Read our safe driving tips for mountain travel and remember slow and steady wins the race.
5 Safe Driving Tips When Driving On A Mountain Pass
#1 Keep A Safe Speed
Heading up or down a mountain, you need to regulate your vehicle’s speed and drive much slower than if you were on a flat highway. Mountain passes get crowded, and you will be sharing two lanes with heavy work vehicles and 18 wheelers. Take it slowly.
#2 Follow Roadside Carefully
Mountain passes are littered with roadsigns informing you of speed limits, sharp turns, steep inclines and drops, emergency lanes, and runaway ramps. While traversing the mountain, be sure to read them and follow their instruction.
#3 Use Your Hazards
Using your hazard lights is always a good idea when driving through a mountain pass. Especially if there is inclement weather in the area. With all the sharp turns, steep dips and peaks, and smaller lanes to navigate, having your hazards flashing will help others maintain distance.
#4 Shift Into Lower Gear
When inclining or declining at such drastic levels, it is much easier on your vehicle’s transmission and components to be in low gear. Shift into the low gear before you begin your descent or ascent, not during.
#5 Stay In Your Lane
It is easy to sway between lanes on a long mountain pass and many times, you’ll find you are hugging the center on the two lanes as you take sharp curves and steep inclines. Remember, there are many other cars around you, and keeping safe in your lane will help avoid slamming on brakes and accidents.
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