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Old 05-17-2010, 08:39 PM   #1
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Driving the Pacific Coast Hwy

I'm a newbie with a 39' Fleetwood Excursion DP towing a Nissan Murano on a dolly. My wife and I are planning a summer on the California Coast and I would like to drive the Coast Highway. However, I'm a bit concerned with the length of my rig on that road. Any advice from those of you who have driven that beautiful road would be appreciated.
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Old 05-17-2010, 09:17 PM   #2
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Cal coast

Did it with my 2000 Discovery 37V towing a Sidekick a few years ago. Some places a little tight but doable
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Old 05-17-2010, 09:24 PM   #3
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We drove it several years ago in a 36 ft MH without a toad. We started in San Fransisco & drove north to Fort Bragg. The hard part was just north of San Fransisco because of all the bicycle riders. Many times we had to slow down to a bicycles pace until there was time to pass. People behind us weren't very happy and I don't blame them. There is also no place to pull over and let the cars behind go by. I won't do it again, just too stressful.
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Old 05-17-2010, 10:50 PM   #4
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PCH in LA or RT 1 by Big Sur

When you say PCH what comes to mind is the busy old Rt 1 along the coast in LA. If you are careful the Route through LA should not cause too much problem. It does NOT sound like fun for a newby though. I would recommend a better way.

Now if you are talking about the coast road from San Simeon to Big Sur and Carmel you only want to do that going north and I also recommend against that in such a big rig. Going south, forget-about-it. You will be right on a huge drop off with very scary views and not fun at all.

And if you are talking about the north of SF Mendocino Rt 1 I also do not recommend that for a newby. We drove by car on that route last year and it is certainly doable in an RV but not fun for any level of driving skill for an RV your size. Likely very scary for a newby.

On the other hand Rt 101 is a great road for RVs and there are lots of very good parks to stop at.
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Old 05-18-2010, 09:54 AM   #5
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I have done it in a 32ft Class A going north and it's very tight in spots,especially around San Simeon. The problem is the Europeans in rented Class c's coming south taking up both lanes. We went all the way to Washington and it was a beautiful trip, ONCE. The other consideration is the time of your trip. The summers get lots of traffic and are the most congested with unskilled drivers looking at the views and not the road.
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Old 05-18-2010, 11:44 PM   #6
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I have driven NORTH from Ventura to Monterey. I was driving a 35' class A and towing an SUV.

It is not a difficult drive if you are able to "look ahead" and know exactly where the sides of your coach will be as you pass that point ... the views are spectacular ... there are ample spots where you can pull off and take pictures and enjoy the view.

It is not a difficult drive but you do need to keep your attention on the road ...

There is a very nice state park near San Simeon as I recall ...
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Old 05-19-2010, 08:25 AM   #7
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As SF natives we've made the trip several times in our 40'DPw/toad but followed the advice above about using US 101. It parallels PCH and, with a little research you can learn which stretches are ok to be on and where you might want to jump over to 101 to avoid difficulties.

Take your time and use your toad to explore the tough spots. You don't want any part of the stretch from San Simeon to Carmel in your rig.

Check out Pismo Beach Village RV Resort.

Good luck and stay safe!
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Old 05-25-2010, 12:33 PM   #8
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PCH bets trip ever

We drove from Costa Mesa to SF last October. One of my Bucket Lists. We stayed on Hwy 1 when ever possible (had to use 101 a couple of times). We also stayed at several state parks right next to the beaches. A bit pricey but worth it. We have a 36' MH and no problems. Like others have said, take it easy and pay attention. I say it was the most beautiful ride I have ever been on. Sometime in the near future my next trip will be from Washington down to SF on Hwy 1 and will probably take our toad on that trip. Another point is the PCH for the most part is very good, there are a few parts that are narrow and steep and this is when caution must be taken.
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Old 05-25-2010, 01:57 PM   #9
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It's a beautiful drive for tourists and plain old sight-seers - but it IS winding and narrow. Hard to say who would be more tic-ed off and peeved, you because of road conditions, or that LOooooong string of cars lined up behind you that then could not pass, OR enjoy the scenery THEY came there for.

Neat road for passenger vehicles - but NOT for long MH's, trucks, or those "prisoners" lined up behind them!.
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Old 05-26-2010, 11:20 PM   #10
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We have been traveling North since we entered CA and stopped in San Diego. We have followed US-101 with no problems. We have taken day trips down CA-1 (PCH) from our base camps when we stop. The views are wonderful. After a while it all starts looking the same. The roads are narrow, twisty, steep, and in a MH, slow would be a word I would use. We drove it in the TOAD for sightseeing. There are areas that would raise the hair on my back in a MH. I had fun in the TOAD. Others have done it, it is doable, it may be considered dangerous because of impediment of traffic flow, and my suggestion is to not do it in a Class A MH. But that is just my humble opinion.

There are portions of that highway that you can check out your entire TOAD as you go into a turn. And that is with it connected.
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Old 05-27-2010, 04:27 PM   #11
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Smile PCH

I've driven 1, 101, PCH, many times, the worst part is along the cliffs and going through the Redwoods.
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Old 05-27-2010, 06:51 PM   #12
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Max,
Enlighten me about going through the redwoods please, if you could. I'm about to head that way.

Thanks
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Old 05-27-2010, 07:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne M View Post
Max,
Enlighten me about going through the redwoods please, if you could. I'm about to head that way.

Thanks
It's just more of the same narrow, winding road as the PCH - just different scenery...

It's a shame that such scenic areas are so limited as to access for MH's and similar vehicles - but I guess there are those in decision-making positions who prefer it that way...
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Old 05-27-2010, 11:54 PM   #14
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Well, I'm schedule to make that run from Petaluma to Klamath tomorrow. Wish me well. Forty feet and the TOAD is probably close to the 65 ft limit. I will stay on 101 though.
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