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Towing in CA, I-5 or SR 99?


paulin

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We are headed for Yuma, AZ next month (Jan. 2016) and will be leaving from Manteca, CA. We will be towing the VUE behind the motorhome and therefore can only be doing 55 MPH.

 

Considering the speed of only 55 MPH, which route would be better and safer, SR 99 or I-5

 

Thanks in advance,

paulin

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A lot of the big rig traffic uses SR 99. They are both pretty easy drives. SR 99 does go through more towns than I5 does, so that can slow you down some. I use both. In the car I prefer I5 because speeds are usually faster and there is typically less truck traffic. In the RV, it really depends on my final destination and which one is more convenient to get me close to that point.

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Its really a personal preference between 2 bad choices. in my opinion, 99 has much more traffic and many more exits & entrances where the locals will be jumping in front of you. So I would prefer I-5, but others will prefer 99. Going 55, even though its the law, will get you run over on either.

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I travel 99 all the time it's lot smoother and then take 58 out of bakersfield. Once leaving Bakersfield it's like leaving civilization as we know it :huh::D

 

We've run both, but I would agree to take 58 out of Bakersfields, up over Tehacapi to come east. As to which one to travel - I-5 is rough from Sacramento south. Haven't been on US99 south for a few years. Kind of six of one, half a doze of the other.

 

Barb

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Through Sacramento, definitely I-5, it runs mostly outside the city while 99 goes right though it. Further south, they both work and we have taken both. My wife recently took our 40' motorhome south on SR99 from Modesto and then SR58 east without me and had no problems, while I took the car north for a family emergency.

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I would choose I 5 over 99. There is a lot more traffic and more on/off ramps and some curves on 99 - so there are more 'decisions per mile' to make and it is more tiring. I 5 is wide and straight with few on/off ramps so less merging traffic. I came down 99 this October and felt 'never again' back to I 5 in future.

 

Both have been repaved over much of their length so the surfaces are quite good.

 

John

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My thanks to all. We will probably decide at the last minute but will definitely take 58 east and then one of the routes south to I-10.

 

Thanks again, paulin

You will need 99 to get onto 58 so if you take I 5 dont wait until Bakersfield to cut over to 99 It's one stop light after another.

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I'd take 99 south to Selma, then go south on CA 43. After you get through a couple of Selma stoplights it's a smooth, well maintained rural road following the Southern Pacific railroad tracks all the way down the valley.

 

You can go east on Hwy 46 in Wasco or Lerdo Highway in Shafter to rejoin 99, but my favorite way to bypass Los Angeles is to take 43 all the way south until it meets I-5, then take I-5 up the Grapevine pass to it's summit. Just take your time and stay over to the right with the trucks and you'll be fine for the 5 mile climb.

 

At the top of Grapevine, CA 138 goes east to CA 14. It's a smooth, level, lightly traveled road.

 

If you go about 2 exits south on CA 14, the Apple Valley Fairgrounds has a clean and reasonably priced overnight RV park to break up your trip. It's just a big fenced asphalt parking lot with a camp host but it's clean and safe. $20 for a 30 amp full hookup back-in site around the edges, $25 for 30 or 50 amp pull throughs in the middle. Go west past the fairgrounds and Rite Aid distribution center, take two rights and go along the north side of the fairgrounds to the RV park.

 

Then continue south on CA 14 to Palmdale and take CA 138 east. Go one exit past the CA 138 exit to Avenue S and take that road east to 138 and you'll miss going through central Palmdale.

 

I drive 138 in my car a couple of times a month for work, coming the other way up Highway 14 from Los Angeles, then descending over the Cajon Pass to rejoin Highway 10 in San Bernardino. It's been greatly improved in recent years and is now a mostly level, 4 lane divided highway. There are a couple of short two lane sections going through small towns but they go by quickly. If you want kitschy, stop in Charlie Brown's Farm Store on the north side of the highway in Littlerock.

 

A few miles before the18/138 split the road returns to 2 lanes. Continue on 138 for 8.5 miles after the split, then turn left on Phelan Rd. and take it east to US 395. Go south on 395 to join I-15 just before Cajon Pass. This misses a couple of long climbs on 138 that are easy to avoid by taking Phelan Rd.

 

Take I-215 south to I-10, go east to Indio and take CA 86 down the west side of the Salton Sea. 86 is 4 lanes divided highway with a couple of stoplights at each end. Between Westmorland and Brawley, turn left onto the 78 bypass to the 111 expressway and take 111 south to I-8.

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