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Discussion Starter #1
:-[ I forgot how to drive in the mountains. I learned it when I took driver's ed in the Summer of 08, but haven't drove in the mountain since then. Use it or lose it, really.

I THINK (but not entirely confident) what we did when I drove my teacher around in their car is we downshift to 3 going uphill, then went back to D on flat road... then when we went downhill I think we downshift twice, first to 3 then to 2. I'm not sure about it, nor can I remember if I needed to do something before downshifting. I just don't want to drive off the mountain or somehow break my already problematic car in the middle of nowhere.

Would somebody be kind enough to give me a reminder? I have a 2003 Subaru Legacy Wagon with automatic transmission. Thanks!! :D
 

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put it in D and go......

I prefer my manuals for all driving situations. Your 2003 is only 8 years old, I'm sure it still had another 5 years of good service left in her, and another 5 after that of decent service.....the trick to hills, get lots speed before you get to them and you got no problems.
 

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It all depends on how heavy your rig is, and how steep the grade is. Especially coming down the hill, downshifting to 3rd might save you from having to ride the brakes, saving wear and tear and repair costs. I doubt you would have to go down to 2nd in very many instances.
 

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unless you are towing something, you shouldn't need to downshift going uphill... the tranny will do it when it needs to.
as far as going downhill, if you need to use your brakes a lot to control your speed, downshift one gear and see if it holds you back enough... if not, go down another gear. always watch the rpm's on the tach and don't ever go beyond the "red line".
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I think one day I'd like to go as far as Estes Park, but for now I think right now I am just willing to go as far as Gross Reservoir. Though I'm not going their until late Spring to Summer.

In the meantime, I suppose I'll practice driving around the Lyons area since it a little bit mountain-y, hopefully won't get lost so I'll still be close enough to civilization in case things get bad...

How are the roads to Gross Reservoir? What should I expect?
 

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sswan said:
Sorry--I don't know how to drive an automatic.
X2

I've tried, but it is to annoying to try to figure out what to do with my other foot.
 

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How are the roads to Gross Reservoir? What should I expect?

if you go through Boulder be prepared to fight with the bicyclers and the switch backs. better to go to coal creek canyon
 

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Anticipate hills and speed up before them. Don't get stuck behind a semi when going uphill either, you will piss everyone off who got over ahead of time when you finally get over to pass the semi. And some peoples cars just aren't powerful, if they lose momentum they can't get it back. Just be mindful of others. Driving in the mountains is no big deal during summer. Things can get really tricky when they get icy though. That's when it comes in handy to know when your car will shift and how much power you should give it, smooth shifting is vital, so practice now.
 

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Sashimi said:
I think one day I'd like to go as far as Estes Park, but for now I think right now I am just willing to go as far as Gross Reservoir. Though I'm not going their until late Spring to Summer.

In the meantime, I suppose I'll practice driving around the Lyons area since it a little bit mountain-y, hopefully won't get lost so I'll still be close enough to civilization in case things get bad...

How are the roads to Gross Reservoir? What should I expect?
You wont need any other gear but Drive to get to Estes Park.... Follow ItsaBigun's advice if you are going down hill and riding the brakes down shift, if you are still riding the breaks because the car is going fast down shift again. Newer cars like yours wont shift if you are going to fast it will wait until you reach a safe speed before downshifting.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Okay thanks guys for your help!! I will give it a try. Seems like I should leave it at 'D', a friend of mind also dirves an Auto and she leaves it in D as well... :D

:eek: Hopefully I don't get stranded in the mountains, cuz my mom is supremely extraordinarily way-out-of-this-world challenged in getting anywhere outside where she is familiar with.

Seems like there is a quite a difference in manual vs automatic (more pedals?), for myself I've only driven automatics hehe :p
 

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Sashimi said:
Okay thanks guys for your help!! I will give it a try. Seems like I should leave it at 'D', a friend of mind also dirves an Auto and she leaves it in D as well... :D

:eek: Hopefully I don't get stranded in the mountains, cuz my mom is supremely extraordinarily way-out-of-this-world challenged in getting anywhere outside where she is familiar with.

Seems like there is a quite a difference in manual vs automatic (more pedals?), for myself I've only driven automatics hehe :p
If you are worried about becoming stranded, sign up with Triple A. It's not too much money a month, I think $8, and you get 2 or 3 free tows and discounts on some other stuff like car rentals, hotel rooms and other stuff.

http://www.colorado.aaa.com/Default.aspx?zip=80222&stateprov=co&city=denver
 

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What I would do to save your brakes, is accelerate to unsafe speeds, and then shift the car to N, when finally at unsafe speed, instead of using the brakes, just drop your transmission into reverse and that should save your brakes a ton. I do this with every new car I get. I would only use this method when there is no traffic or other cars on the road. Enjoy.
 

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Fistfullafish said:
What I would do to save your brakes, is accelerate to unsafe speeds, and then shift the car to N, when finally at unsafe speed, instead of using the brakes, just drop your transmission into reverse and that should save your brakes a ton. I do this with every new car I get. I would only use this method when there is no traffic or other cars on the road. Enjoy.
:D :D :D That could do some damage.
 
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