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Old 09-24-2016, 05:53 PM   #1
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Question Best Route in CA from Yosemite - Carmichael - San Francisco

For reference our rig: 36ft fifth wheel towed with a FL M2 - total length 57 feet.

We are planning a trip to Yosemite next May. Our plan is to stay at the Mariposa KOA and after spending a few days there plan on going to Carmichael to visit family. We then plan on traveling to the San Francisco area for a couple of days and then on to the 101 to head North up to Oregon.

Does anyone have recommendations for the best route to take from Sacramento to the 101 avoiding as much San Francisco traffic as possible?

Any suggestions or comments would be appreciated...... Thank you!
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Old 09-24-2016, 08:45 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ratler01 View Post
For reference our rig: 36ft fifth wheel towed with a FL M2 - total length 57 feet.

We are planning a trip to Yosemite next May. Our plan is to stay at the Mariposa KOA and after spending a few days there plan on going to Carmichael to visit family. We then plan on traveling to the San Francisco area for a couple of days and then on to the 101 to head North up to Oregon.

Does anyone have recommendations for the best route to take from Sacramento to the 101 avoiding as much San Francisco traffic as possible?

Any suggestions or comments would be appreciated...... Thank you!
I think I might be able to help you as I was born and raised in the bay area, but I'm a little confused. You say you will be travelling to the San Francisco area but then want to know how to avoid SF traffic.

Just where in the SF "area" will you be heading?
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Old 09-25-2016, 11:29 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by BobGed View Post
I think I might be able to help you as I was born and raised in the bay area, but I'm a little confused. You say you will be travelling to the San Francisco area but then want to know how to avoid SF traffic.

Just where in the SF "area" will you be heading?
Sorry for the confusion..... This is our first get in and drive for a couple of months type trip since we retired and my dear wife keeps changing her mind of where we are going so I too am somewhat confused!

What I meant was we will be leaving the area of Sacramento and plan on hooking up with the 101 in the area of San Francisco so we will only be skirting the San Fran area.

I am also trying to determine how best to get to Carmichael area from Midpines.

Thank you for your response.
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Old 09-25-2016, 11:36 AM   #4
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Sorry for the confusion..... This is our first get in and drive for a couple of months type trip since we retired and my dear wife keeps changing her mind of where we are going so I too am somewhat confused!

What I meant was we will be leaving the area of Sacramento and plan on hooking up with the 101 in the area of San Francisco so we will only be skirting the San Fran area.

I am also trying to determine how best to get to Carmichael area from Midpines.

Thank you for your response.
Two more questions. Are you planning on doing any sightseeing in SF?
What is your destination on Hwy 101?
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Old 09-26-2016, 12:28 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ratler01 View Post
For reference our rig: 36ft fifth wheel towed with a FL M2 - total length 57 feet.

Does anyone have recommendations for the best route to take from Sacramento to the 101 avoiding as much San Francisco traffic as possible?

Any suggestions or comments would be appreciated...... Thank you!
Depending what town in the Bay Area will determine which freeways to take.

Traffic is busy throughout the day(more-so during rush hour traffic) on I-80 towards SF and gets heavier the closer you get to the SF-Oakland Bay Bridge. I haven't taken any of the other bridges into the West Bay Cities below SF in many years, so, I don't have any suggestions other than I-80 to SF.

However, if your not going into SF, and headed to North Bay Cities:

- I-80 W to I-580 in Richmond will get you to the closest towns north of SF off US-101; or,

- I-80 W to CA-37 W in Vallejo to US-101; or, CA-37 W in Vallejo to Lakeview HWY to US-101 in Petaluma.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ratler01 View Post
I am also trying to determine how best to get to Carmichael area from Midpines.

Thank you for your response.
If your coming up CA-99 N, you'll have several choices to get to Carmichael:

- CA-99 N to I-80 Business Route, then, your choice of surface street E towards Carmichael(I don't recommend Marconi Blvd exit. It is pretty tight right turn for a 57' setup); or,

- CA-99 N to US-50 E to:
a) Watt Ave N to Fair Oaks Blvd E; or,
b) Sunrise Blvd N to Fair Oaks Blvd W.

I-80 Business Route or US-50 E are ok but not good choices during rush hours.

If arriving to the Sacramento area during rush hours:
- at Elk Grove, take Grant Line Road E, then you could take Watt Ave N, or, Sunrise Blvd. N, as noted above. Both of those Northbound roads cross over the American River and get really congested, but, I prefer Sunrise Blvd. over Watt Ave.

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Old 09-26-2016, 08:16 AM   #6
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On the portion of your trip to the San Francisco Bay Area, there are not a lot of campgrounds in the Bay Area proper. A lot depends on which direction you want to go on 101. I'll cover the north part. If you. Want to visit the wine country, I'd take 80 to 12 and head toward Napa. There are lots of wineries in the Napa, Sonoma, Petaluma areas as well as some really beautiful scenery. The Russian River area is beautiful. Heading north, Willits, Uriah, Garberville and Eureka are interesting places to see, and Avenue of the Giants is simply breathtaking.

Staying in the Novato area you would have easy access to both the Bay Area and wine country.

If you aren't interested in the Bay Area or wine country from Sacramento take 5 north to Williams and then 20 across Lake County through Clear Lake to 101.

Depending on how far you're planning to go further north Gold Beach Oregon is an interesting place as is all of the Oregon coast.

Hope this helps. Although we live in Florida now, DW and I lived in Sacramento for 18 years and lived in Eureka for one summer before that and took several trips to both the wine country and Northern California coast.
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Old 09-27-2016, 12:30 PM   #7
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Two more questions. Are you planning on doing any sightseeing in SF?
What is your destination on Hwy 101?

Is response to your questions:

1) No we will not be doing any sight seeing in San Francisco.

2) Destination on the 101 will be going around the Northern part of Washington through Port Angeles and Sequim.

This trip is a "viewing nature" trip not really interested in the "Big" cities of California, Oregon or Washington .... Already been there done that.
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Old 09-27-2016, 03:19 PM   #8
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Is response to your questions:

1) No we will not be doing any sight seeing in San Francisco.

2) Destination on the 101 will be going around the Northern part of Washington through Port Angeles and Sequim.

This trip is a "viewing nature" trip not really interested in the "Big" cities of California, Oregon or Washington .... Already been there done that.
In that case I would agree with the following route that Rich posted:
Quote:
Originally Posted by r___r View Post

- I-80 W to CA-37 W in Vallejo to US-101; or, CA-37 W in Vallejo to Lakeview HWY to US-101 in Petaluma.
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Old 09-28-2016, 05:49 PM   #9
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Big thanks to all the information that has been shared! We are really looking forward to this trip.

Next week we head to the Ozark Hills of Missouri for 6 weeks to enjoy the Fall colors!

Travel Safe!
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Old 10-08-2016, 01:59 PM   #10
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I daily drive a semi from the ports in Bay Area back to Sacramento or Reno or L.A. My guideline for driving in the Bay Area and to generally avoid as much traffic as possible is to drive in the opposite direction that commuter traffic is going.
Commuters drive towards S.F. and Oakland areas on I80, I880, I580 at 7a.m. (+/-) and go back in the other direction at 4p.m. I plan to point my rig in the opposite direction at those hours. I drive from Central Valley towards S.F. (I580) in the sfternoon. The freeway can often be empty in my direction and absolute mayhem in the opposite.
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