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Routing help, Port Orford, OR to Arizona


Chris-n-Dennis

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Our hosting gig is up the end of this month and we would like to head south. Since this will be the first time we done this, looking for advise on routes and what to look out for.

 

Plan is to head south and end up in Arizona. Departing Cape Blanco or Port Orford, OR. There is no rush and we prefer to stay off the major interstates if possible.

 

Any insight from experience would be appreciated.

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Where in Arizona?

 

Take 101 south, stay on it until you hit I-580 at Richmond Bridge. Take it over the bay (no toll going east) to the I-80, then follow that to the I-880 down the east side of the bay, merging onto 101 S again. When you get to Gilroy, you have the choice of staying on 101 south or heading over to US 99 - depending upon where in Arizona you are going and how much a tolerance you have for big city (ie LA) driving. To stay away from LA, at Gilroy cut over to I-5 and then US 99, heading down to Bakersfield. Then take 58 out of Bakersfield, over the Tehacapi Pass, and stay on 58 until you run into I-15. Go north on I-15 and almost immediately take the exit for I-40. East on I-40 until you get to Needles. From there it depends upon where you are going as to which road to take into Arizona.

 

There is a very inexpensive RV park in Boron, CA that is a Passport America park and good for an overnight stop.

 

Barb

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Just depends on weather and road conditions but I'd recommend just heading south on 101. You could exit on Hwy 20 at Willits and take that over to I-5 and then south. There are a few ways to either get on I-40 or to I-10 depending where you're headed. You'll want to avoid the Los Angeles mess, for sure.

 

For I-40, you could get off at Bakersfield to Hwy 58. For I-10 one way we like is Bakersfield Hwy 58 to 395 at Kramer Junction and south to Victorville to Lucerne Valley to Yucca Valley and south on Hwy 62 to I-10. You could also go through Joshua Tree Nat'l Park at Twentynine Palms if you want to check it out.

 

Have a safe trip....bet you'll be glad to escape the rain!

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Depending on your sense of adventure, tolerance for possible below freezing morning temps and possible snow in the passes that would keep you from traveling for a couple to several days, you could take this route.

 

Follow Barb's directions till you get to I-80 then over the mountains to Reno & follow US-395 S to Bishop & Lone Pine. Then go to Death Valley for several days or a week or more.

 

Reno is about 4400', then heading south you have some 6000' to 7500' in the passes. However Bishop is 4200' and Lone Pine is 3700'.

 

This is high desert country. While they get some snow being on the east side of the Sierra's it usually is minimal.

 

This would be a very scenic drive. There should be lots of snow on the mountains.

 

You would want to keep a close eye on the weather to be sure you don't get caught in the 6000'-7000' areas with a winter storm heading your way.

 

Just food for thought.

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We just got back from Port Orford Village RV Park last month. Went north on 101 to Hwy 42 and then over to I-5 and over to 395 via 89/44/36, thru Reno (Sparks Marina RV Park a good stop) and down, stopping along the way before weather chased us home :) We left Sparks a day early to beat a storm, but still were influenced by its preview winds.

 

I-5 south to the 210 east to the 10 at Redlands would probably be most direct, but given your preference, I'd consider 99 or maybe 395 south. Lots to see and do on 395.

 

The only thing to watch out for on 395 option is weather: high elevations, a few passes, wind, road conditions. Even tho we did it early November, there were still areas near Reno and Mammoth with chain control the day after we went thru. Winds can be strong, as we were diverted off 395 between Reno and Carson City due to wind. I'd give this some serious thought this time of year.

 

If you went south on 101, you could take 299 over to I-5 at Redding, another option and likely to keep you out of snow/ice on the 5 near Mt. Shasta.

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Thank you all for the advise. As for our destination in Arizona - haven't a clue. We hope to get down there for Quartsite and some of the SKP activities but other than that will be simply looking for a place to warm up and dry out. May even wander east, just not sure.

 

Again, thank you! I will be pawing over the maps now to see what we do.

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Al Florida, on 23 Dec 2015 - 2:50 PM, said:

Then go to Death Valley for several days or a week or more.

 

Be sure to check road conditions. In October, Death Valley NP received a lot of rain and many of the roads were closed due to flooding and being washed out.

 

*Most* of the roads are now back open, but not all. Scotty's Castle was flooded with not only water, but mud, and is closed for the foreseeable future. Also, the road from US-95 at Scotty's Junction to Scotty's Castle Road in DV is still closed because the road washed out near Scotty's Castle.

 

If you are on Facebook, "Like" Death Valley National Park Road Conditions to keep up with current road conditions. Or, go to Death Valley NP's website (www.nps.gov/deva) and click on the Morning Report to see current road conditions.

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Our hosting gig is up the end of this month and we would like to head south. Since this will be the first time we done this, looking for advise on routes and what to look out for.

 

Plan is to head south and end up in Arizona. Departing Cape Blanco or Port Orford, OR. There is no rush and we prefer to stay off the major interstates if possible.

 

Any insight from experience would be appreciated.

Head south on 101.....then take 199 to Grants Pass if the weather looks good for the Siskiyous....they are expecting another storm on Sunday night. there was quite a bit of snow on I-5 Thursday night.If clear......head out 89 in Mt. Shasta to Reno. How did you like Cape Blanco?? Have been there hosting the couple of years.

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As I expected, there would be some cautionary/negative replies about winter weather conditions along US-395 in CA. Indeed this may not be a good year to come down 395 with El Nino pumping in the moisture and winter storms.

 

However the reason to take this route in the winter is the quiet solitude of camping snug and warm in your RV in the desert surrounded by snow covered peaks.

 

The morning sunrises and evening sunsets. Beautiful clear blue skies behind the brilliantly white peaks. As the sun comes up in the morning the bright warm sun, streaming in your windows, warming up your rig.

 

The possibility of seeing the desert covered in the white snow.

 

The rocks and desert plants covered with pretty white snow.

 

And then typically in several hours to a day or two the snow is gone.

 

Certainly this is not for everyone.

 

You do need to take your time. Don't be in a rush to be somewhere. Don't mind morning temps in 20's or possibly lower if the weather systems bring the cold down from Canada. The Pacific storms bring snow, but usually not very cold temps. Of course you don't want to be at 6000' to 7000' when the snow comes through. So you watch the weather, plan your travels between the storms, and be at the 4000' or 3500' level when weather is predicted to be nasty.

 

But again this may not be the year to be in this area. As mentioned with the rains washing out the roads, you can always defer this to another year.

 

This travel is for someone with a desire for some adventure and for someone who like/loves the wide open desert.

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It looks like most of Death Valley is open. Some (most?) gravel roads are closed because of floods earlier in the year. Probably most notable, the October rain storm which has closed Scotties Castle.

 

Links to Death Valley info about roads etc:

 

Death Valley NP new releases.

 

A daily report, PDF doc, detailing current weather & general park conditions.

 

Facebook for road conditions.

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Head south on 101.....then take 199 to Grants Pass if the weather looks good for the Siskiyous....they are expecting another storm on Sunday night. there was quite a bit of snow on I-5 Thursday night.If clear......head out 89 in Mt. Shasta to Reno. How did you like Cape Blanco?? Have been there hosting the couple of years.

Have loved it here - even with the monster storms we've had (70mph sustained, gusts to 90), Lots of rain this year with the road in being closed a couple of times with washouts. We were the testers of a new position of maintenance hosts and the storms have kept us busy. BUT - yesterday we had sunshine most of the day and last night was a full moon with absolutely clear skies which brought a bit of frost this morning. The day looks to be glorious!

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Adding a little weather info about US-395 south of Reno, at Bishop & Lone Pine, CA.

 

The temps for the month of December are pretty chilly, Highs mostly in the upper 40's & low 50's with lows generally in the teens. But 50* with bright sun can be very pleasant. Here is a link to the Wundergound.com monthly history calendar, showing the actual factual temps & weather.

 

One key thing is in spite of the El Nino inspired wet weather there was only 3 days of rain and one day of light snow. Granted the higher elevations will be colder and the rainy days showing in the above link would be snow.

 

Here is the Dec weather for Mammoth, CA at 8000'. A lot colder and much more snow. But there are lots of days that the highways should be snow and ice free to move from the lower elevations around Reno to Bishop, CA

 

Anyways, if you want great historical and factual weather info for most anywhere in the US, Wundergound is the place to get it. The calendar history feature allows you to go back over several years and get a really good feel for what the weather extremes are.

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