Towing through Colorado Mountains?

Tristan

Tremor Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2021
Messages
6
Reaction Points
6
Location
Colorado
Miltary
Army
Current Ride
2021 F350 Tremor
Hey everyone,

I have a 2021 F350 Tremor 6.7l on order and want to pull a Montana 5th wheel (16500 GVWR) through the Rockies here in Colorado. I see several of you are pulling heavy 5th wheels, but couldn't find a thread regarding pulling through the Rockies. Is anyone pulling these heavy 5th wheels through the mountains? And if so, how well does it do? We don't want to be slowing to 55mph and struggling to keep up with traffic. We currently have a 2016 F150 3.5 ecoboost that pulls our 9500# travel trailer through the Colorado Rockies easily at 65mph with power to spare. We are hoping the 6.7 Tremor can do the same with the heavier 5th wheel. Thank you for sharing!
 

optx002

Tremor Buff
Joined
Nov 12, 2020
Messages
71
Reaction Points
64
Location
Los Angeles, CA
Current Ride
2020 F350
I did my 12k at 75mph up and down the mountain and even at 11k ft, it pulled like nothing was behind it. I think you can do 100+mph up the hill if you wanted(not saying you should, but you could). You will be fine. My old 7.3 powerstroke would need to slow down to 50-55 but the 6.7 pulls amazing.
 

MTTremor

Tremor Junkie
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
785
Reaction Points
1,245
Location
Montana
Current Ride
2020 Ford F250 King Ranch Tremor
Pulling in the mountains you always need to keep your engine break on. Make sure your trailer brakes are not set to hi so the lock up this will cause you to slide. Remember you have alot of weight behind you and your breaks are rated for so much weight. I now tow with my Sportchassis more than with my 3/4. Because my horse trailer is a LQ with 4 horses that I'd 49.5 feet long. I tow my Harley Trailer with my Treanor love it.
Also remember there is a lit of stupid people out there that can not drive in mountains and snow.
Please be careful and have a safe journey. Enjoy your venture.
 

Rich Pune

Founding Member
TOTM Winner
Joined
Jan 18, 2020
Messages
484
Reaction Points
686
Location
Montana USA
Current Ride
F250 Lariat Tremor
Hey everyone,

I have a 2021 F350 Tremor 6.7l on order and want to pull a Montana 5th wheel (16500 GVWR) through the Rockies here in Colorado. I see several of you are pulling heavy 5th wheels, but couldn't find a thread regarding pulling through the Rockies. Is anyone pulling these heavy 5th wheels through the mountains? And if so, how well does it do? We don't want to be slowing to 55mph and struggling to keep up with traffic. We currently have a 2016 F150 3.5 ecoboost that pulls our 9500# travel trailer through the Colorado Rockies easily at 65mph with power to spare. We are hoping the 6.7 Tremor can do the same with the heavier 5th wheel. Thank you for sharing!
I want a Montana real bad. Every time I see one, I just stare as it drives by.
 

Patriot

Founding Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Messages
823
Reaction Points
2,529
Location
Western North Carolina Foothills
Miltary
USAF Gulf War Vet
Current Ride
6.7 liter Tremor
First Responder
Retired LEO
Pulling in the mountains you always need to keep your engine break on. Make sure your trailer brakes are not set to hi so the lock up this will cause you to slide. Remember you have alot of weight behind you and your breaks are rated for so much weight. I now tow with my Sportchassis more than with my 3/4. Because my horse trailer is a LQ with 4 horses that I'd 49.5 feet long. I tow my Harley Trailer with my Treanor love it.
Also remember there is a lit of stupid people out there that can not drive in mountains and snow.
Please be careful and have a safe journey. Enjoy your venture.
@MTTremor Good points! And that engine brake is always auto on in tow haul mode. It works great when I am towing in our Blue Ridge Mountains.
 
OP
T

Tristan

Tremor Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2021
Messages
6
Reaction Points
6
Location
Colorado
Miltary
Army
Current Ride
2021 F350 Tremor
Why do you think I'm buying a 6.7? 17K won't even faze it. Saw a SD towing a 40' container uphill yesterday and there was no moss growing on his backside!
Haha, thanks Loshad. Good to know!
 
OP
T

Tristan

Tremor Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2021
Messages
6
Reaction Points
6
Location
Colorado
Miltary
Army
Current Ride
2021 F350 Tremor
I did my 12k at 75mph up and down the mountain and even at 11k ft, it pulled like nothing was behind it. I think you can do 100+mph up the hill if you wanted(not saying you should, but you could). You will be fine. My old 7.3 powerstroke would need to slow down to 50-55 but the 6.7 pulls amazing.
Awesome! That is great news!! I currently have the 2016 3.5 EB and it pulls about 9500# through the mountains fast and strong... however, I went from stock 32" tires to 34" BFG KO2s... and it dramatically changed the performance, transmission heated up, struggled over Wolf Creek Pass at about 50mph. On mild grades it still cruised along, but steep grades not so much. I was really surprised the somewhat small tire size increase would make such a difference for the 3.5 EB. I see the regular F350s pulling well, just hoping the larger tires on the Tremor F350 doesnt result in less actual pulling speed in the mountains. So glad to see your Tremor is not phased!!
 

MTTremor

Tremor Junkie
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
785
Reaction Points
1,245
Location
Montana
Current Ride
2020 Ford F250 King Ranch Tremor
Should i be looking into why my engine brake doesnt go into auto mode in tow haul? I always have to select auto in tow haul.
I should always come on in tow. You might want to have your dealership check it out before you tow anything. Just incase you are in a wreck with another vehicle and their insurance brings that up and wants to check if your break was operational at the time of the wreck. You know insurance companies alway try to find away to put you at fault.
 
OP
T

Tristan

Tremor Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2021
Messages
6
Reaction Points
6
Location
Colorado
Miltary
Army
Current Ride
2021 F350 Tremor
Although a dually, it’s the same engine

Thank you Apparition! Yes I saw this too, but I could not confirm if they are using the same Tremor 3:55 gearing in this video? Did you happen to hear them cover that? I see the DRWs have options for 4:10s and 4:30s. This can make a big difference in the Rockies I've found. I had the 2007 F150 5.4 that listed a tow rating of 9200#.... it did great in Tennessee Smokies pulling a 7500# trailer... but then we came to Colorado and it just could not get through these mountains! I'd be in 2nd or 3rd gear and seriously struggling to get it over a pass, I then changed the rear end from 3.73s to 4.10s... and that helped some, but it was still working like hell to get up anything over 3% grade. Obviously turbos make all the difference at this altitude.
 
OP
T

Tristan

Tremor Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2021
Messages
6
Reaction Points
6
Location
Colorado
Miltary
Army
Current Ride
2021 F350 Tremor
Pulling in the mountains you always need to keep your engine break on. Make sure your trailer brakes are not set to hi so the lock up this will cause you to slide. Remember you have alot of weight behind you and your breaks are rated for so much weight. I now tow with my Sportchassis more than with my 3/4. Because my horse trailer is a LQ with 4 horses that I'd 49.5 feet long. I tow my Harley Trailer with my Treanor love it.
Also remember there is a lit of stupid people out there that can not drive in mountains and snow.
Please be careful and have a safe journey. Enjoy your venture.
Thanks MTTremor! I definitely agree. I've been pulling heavy trailers for about 25 years now, and the scariest thing is the influx of people buying campers here in Colorado that have never pulled a trailer. I see someone with a heavy camper coming down the hill behind me and I am thinking, "dang, I hope they know what they are doing"...LOL.
 

Apparition

Founding Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2020
Messages
837
Reaction Points
1,154
Location
Minnesota
Current Ride
Mach 1
Current Ride #2
Wrangler LJ
Thank you Apparition! Yes I saw this too, but I could not confirm if they are using the same Tremor 3:55 gearing in this video? Did you happen to hear them cover that? I see the DRWs have options for 4:10s and 4:30s. This can make a big difference in the Rockies I've found. I had the 2007 F150 5.4 that listed a tow rating of 9200#.... it did great in Tennessee Smokies pulling a 7500# trailer... but then we came to Colorado and it just could not get through these mountains! I'd be in 2nd or 3rd gear and seriously struggling to get it over a pass, I then changed the rear end from 3.73s to 4.10s... and that helped some, but it was still working like hell to get up anything over 3% grade. Obviously turbos make all the difference at this altitude.
I don’t remember what the gearing was but they also had more weight.
 
Last edited:

northernmisfit

Tremor Fanatic
Joined
Jan 8, 2021
Messages
157
Reaction Points
233
Location
ab canada
Miltary
ex army, PPCLI
Current Ride
2021 tremor f350 platinum 6.7
Current Ride #2
2019 jeep wrangler, 2017 Z06 2016 challanger Hellcat
I should always come on in tow. You might want to have your dealership check it out before you tow anything. Just incase you are in a wreck with another vehicle and their insurance brings that up and wants to check if your break was operational at the time of the wreck. You know insurance companies alway try to find away to put you at fault.
engine brake only comes on when you hit the button. When you hit tow haul itll downshift more to use that to slow you down, but the exhaust brake wont come on until you hit the button. Been this way since 2015 when it came out on the fords, and its this way on every other truck also.
I should always come on in tow. You might want to have your dealership check it out before you tow anything. Just incase you are in a wreck with another vehicle and their insurance brings that up and wants to check if your break was operational at the time of the wreck. You know insurance companies alway try to find away to put you at fault.
Should i be looking into why my engine brake doesnt go into auto mode in tow haul? I always have to select auto in tow haul.
no, your truck is fine. It wont engage until you tell it to by pushing the button. Auto engine braking doesnt mean automaticaly turns on, the Auto mode will actually downshift (so the exhaust brake can work) even without you touching the brake at all. If it is on, the system memorizes your exact speed the moment you let off the gas pedal completely. If your speed begins to increase significantly, the auto mode downshifts the truck so the exhaust brake can slow you down. normal on mode will work regardless of in tow haul as well, but wont give any downshifting to help assist it until you put it in tow haul.
 

Spenda864

Tremor Buff
Joined
Sep 17, 2020
Messages
91
Reaction Points
121
Location
Greenville, South Carolina
Miltary
Army
Current Ride
18 Ford F250, 6.7, SRW, Platinum
I have towed my 5er (Montana High Country) up many a mountain in western SC, NC, and eastern TN. They are smaller mountains than CO but can be fairly steep all the same. On open roads and interstates, I have literally done it with my cruise control on going up the mountian.

I did tow my 5er over a steep, narrow, twisty road (and I mean you can barely maintain a lane twisty) and got the transmission temp up pretty high. I was actually trying to see what the truck could do so I was getting on it pretty hard coming out of the switchbacks. It pulled like a boss and got a little workout in. If I backed off the throttle just a bit, the temp came down and was perfectly fine.

The reality is, going up aint the issue... its coming down where the biggest danger lies. Use your engine brake and take your time.
 
OP
T

Tristan

Tremor Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2021
Messages
6
Reaction Points
6
Location
Colorado
Miltary
Army
Current Ride
2021 F350 Tremor
I have towed my 5er (Montana High Country) up many a mountain in western SC, NC, and eastern TN. They are smaller mountains than CO but can be fairly steep all the same. On open roads and interstates, I have literally done it with my cruise control on going up the mountian.

I did tow my 5er over a steep, narrow, twisty road (and I mean you can barely maintain a lane twisty) and got the transmission temp up pretty high. I was actually trying to see what the truck could do so I was getting on it pretty hard coming out of the switchbacks. It pulled like a boss and got a little workout in. If I backed off the throttle just a bit, the temp came down and was perfectly fine.

The reality is, going up aint the issue... its coming down where the biggest danger lies. Use your engine brake and take your time.
Hey, that's great news Spenda! Which Montana did you get? Did you have to lift the 5th wheel in order to clear the bed rails and still ride level? Thank you for your service by the way!
 

optx002

Tremor Buff
Joined
Nov 12, 2020
Messages
71
Reaction Points
64
Location
Los Angeles, CA
Current Ride
2020 F350
engine brake only comes on when you hit the button. When you hit tow haul itll downshift more to use that to slow you down, but the exhaust brake wont come on until you hit the button. Been this way since 2015 when it came out on the fords, and its this way on every other truck also.


no, your truck is fine. It wont engage until you tell it to by pushing the button. Auto engine braking doesnt mean automaticaly turns on, the Auto mode will actually downshift (so the exhaust brake can work) even without you touching the brake at all. If it is on, the system memorizes your exact speed the moment you let off the gas pedal completely. If your speed begins to increase significantly, the auto mode downshifts the truck so the exhaust brake can slow you down. normal on mode will work regardless of in tow haul as well, but wont give any downshifting to help assist it until you put it in tow haul.
Thanks. Thats how I've been using it.
 

DezertTr3mor

Tremor Fan
Joined
Feb 4, 2021
Messages
28
Reaction Points
27
Location
The Desert
Current Ride
2021 F350 Tr3mor
i think the engine brake has 2 or 3 settings on it as well. pressing it one time is the highest braking setting i believe. I always have to hit mine to turn it on in tow mode...Was that way on my 19 f450 as well. The new 10 speeds tow like a champ...crazy that everything is built by ford now...not farmed out.
 
Top