Merry Folk of Opposite Lock,

I am thinking about a road trip out to LA from Eastern Ohio in early December. I am planning on a northerly route headed west and a southerly route coming back home with both trips taking about a week of somewhat wandering days.

Westbound: Ohio to Wisconsin to Minneapolis to Yellowstone to Vegas to LA.

Eastbound: LA to New Orleans via Texas and on to Ohio.

My question to you out there is am I setting myself up for a brutal trip from Minneapolis to Yellowstone, through North Dakota and Montana, and then down to Vegas through Salt Lake in December? I will be driving a 4x4 with good tires but have never been out that way, let alone in early winter. Is the weather a crap shoot that time of year? I am assuming that the DOTs are much better prepared for the heavy snow and I will be able to keep moving, is that the case? I would appreciate any information/thoughts/sites which I should see that you all could pass along.

Thanks, David