Mom & Dad driving down West Coast-Input?

thermographer

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Mom and Dad are driving down the west coast. Left Houma, Louisiana 2 weeks ago and made have made it to Wala Wala and Seattle, Portland area over the weekend. I've have not been to the west coast alot and wanted to ask about Hwy 101 and Hwy 1.

Dad was wanting to know a good place to drive south while looking at the Pacific, and has never been to the west coast. I was thinking the Oregon 101 and down to about Eureka, CA , visiting the Redwoods, and then heading inland to I-5.

I've been to San Francisco and about 5 hours north on Hwy 1 and although beautiful, didn't make much time.

They are planning on going down I-5 to L.A, then I-10 back to the house taking another 2 weeks.

Thanks for any input guys/gals.
 

whitedog

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Walla Walla.

And 101 would be great this time of year as long as they aren't looking for sunny weather or crowds. Heck this time of year they may be able to get up to 60 MP in most places.

They could go West to Tillamook and check out the Cheese factory, they head south and hit all of the cool stuff like Depoe bay and the Aquarium at Newport.

The NoCal Redwoods are wonderful and certainly worth the extra time to explore. It sounds like a great trip.
 

nicklockard

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What a trip :)

My Dad and I drove from TX to Oregon via CA when I was learning to drive. We got on the 101 as soon as possible and stayed on it, camping along the way. What a perfect way to go. The 101 is truly legendary for scenic beauty.

I mean it is just awesome: one one side you see crashing waves below and on the other towering redwood trees and mountains...lots of places to camp and plenty of good hotels (shouldn't need reservations at this time of year for most of them.)

From Portland, they could head for Cannon Beach, then turn south on the 101 all the way to Carmel if they have time. Don't forget to see the San Diego Zoo and aerospace museum when you get that far south either. (It takes 3 days to see the whole thing unfortunately, but nevertheless worthwile.)

One tip: avoid driving I-5 through southern Oregon. It is tedious beyond belief constantly sawing at the wheel and staring at the same darn trees for hours on end.
 

TornadoRed

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thermographer said:
I was thinking the Oregon 101 and down to about Eureka, CA , visiting the Redwoods, and then heading inland to I-5.... They are planning on going down I-5 to L.A, then I-10 back to the house taking another 2 weeks.
But then they'll miss Big Sur, the aquarium in Monterey, the Hearst Castle, lovely Santa Barbara, and a leisurely visit to Simi Valley and the Reagan Library!
 

Left Coast Resident

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101 and 1 are always good choices. 1 is very scenic, but VERY twisty for miles and miles around Big Sur -- if this makes you sick don't do that section on 1, take 101. 5 is just for getting there, nothing more or less -- certainly not for enjoying the ride. And the smell of cow sh!t for a couple of miles both directions from Harris Ranch in the middle of 5 will make you toss your food. Take my word for it -- and I'm a true omnivore.

PM me if you want more specific info related to the greater Los Angeles area.

Al
 

jkeller

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nicklockard said:
One tip: avoid driving I-5 through southern Oregon. It is tedious beyond belief constantly sawing at the wheel and staring at the same darn trees for hours on end.
Interesting. I find I-5 north of Cottage Grove much worse. At least the road has some turns down here. :)
 

rdkern

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Inland to I5 is fine if they are heading east. If they want to see San Francisco, 101 is much quicker - about 5 hours vs 2.5 just to get to I5, then the trip down and back west. If they are just trying to make time to LA, it still might be better to go down 101 - you can't see the golden gate bridge unless you do!

They will miss Eureka by going to I5 on 299 (and half of the redwoods).

If they do go down 101, they might try to get a room at the Benbow Inn - 1.2 hours south of Eureka and about 4 hours from SF.
 

thermographer

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Thanks for all the tips and help, I'll phone dad and tell him all your suggestions. They are not pressed for time and in no hurry.

I do know they plan on heading to San Francisco and over the Golden Gate. $5 when I went in 2004. I'll pass the info about the 101 rather than I5. Also, They want to go visit Sacramentio and touring the Capital Building.

Cheers, Kevin
 
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rdkern

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Over the GG Bridge is still $5. SF - then to Sacto, and down I5 to LA. Personally, with no time pressure, I'd still skip LA. But we don't have the population in our county that goes on I5 through LA in an hour.

Much nicer drive, and if they want to visit wineries in Mendo/Sonoma, let me know and I'll provide some guidance (if they want).
 

whitedog

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owr084 said:
I recommend the "Inn at Spanish Head" in Lincoln City Oregon. Beautiful place right on the beach. Their website is here http://www.spanishhead.com/ They have some off season specials in the "Web Specials" link.
Right on the beach is right. it's what 10-15 stories tall and the top story is at the highway level and the bottom floor is at beach height, right on the sand. Literally built on the cliff. Never stayed there, but driven by it many, many times. Parinking lot is on the other side of the highway with an underpass for walking people.
 

swampmarine

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Highway 1

The wife and I rode our motorcycle from San Fran south on Highway 1 to LA this last summer. It was one of the most spectacular trips I have ever taken. Yes, as has been posted, it is a twisty drive, but the scenary is well worth the drive. Besides all that, seeing Big Sur, the aquarium in Monterey, the Hearst Castle (great tour), and Santa Barbara are worth the trip in itself! If they want to tour Hearst Castle (highly recommended) I would recommend staying at the San Simeon Beach Resort (866-990-8990). Extremely reasonable rates, very nice room, directly across the street from the beach, and just down the road from the castle. It would a real shame to come that far and miss Highway 1. They can drive roads like I-5 back home.

Life is just to short to take it seriously!
 

thermographer

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Mom and dad are finishing up the road trip. Made it through San Fran, down to San Diego Zoo, Tucson, and right now just west of San Antonio headed east back to Louisiana. The have plenty of pictures and I can't wait to see them.

I'm just green with envy, also due to the 8-10 foot seas on the rig.:eek:
 
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