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Old 09-09-2014, 09:18 AM   #1
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Help with trip from FL to CA

We'll be traveling from FL to CA. Leaving on Oct1. and arriving at the Grand Canyon Railway RV Park on Oct 4. Mostly Interstate and bigger Highways. About 1040 miles in 4 days. More ambitious than I want but we want to spend 3 days in Grand Canyon and 2 weeks with daughter in San Francisco and be back home by end of Oct. We've used trip makers from several sites but haven't found one with good advice to avoid steep grades or narrow passes. No plans to go near Rocky Mtns. I10 to I20 to I40 to CA. Our biggest concern is the leg from Bakersfield to the San Francisco RV Resort in Pacifica approximately 300 miles on Oct 8. Our trip planner has us taking I5 north to Los Banos, then Pacheco Pass Hwy west (Hwy 152?) to Gilroy where we should then head north on US 101. Read a few post relating Pacheco Pass Hwy could be difficult. We live in Florida and all of our trips have been fairly localized to southeast so flat driving just using automatic transmission. This will be first time to adjust transmission mode and make gear changes due to grades. We're driving a 2010 Jayco Insignia (Now called Entegra Coach) 40' DP with a Cum ISC 360hp and Allison Trans 3000MH pulling 2013 Honda CRV toad. Thoughts on routes avoiding difficult terrains would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for your help.

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Old 09-09-2014, 03:57 PM   #2
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I've found from experience the southern route west you've planed is the best for avoiding most of the steep grades, But for the most part, east to west travel to CA is an up hill run until you enter mid way of Texas. The prevailing winds will also work against you most of the time as westerly winds will average a head wind of approximately of 10 knots. You may want to plan fuel stops accordingly.

I see you're thinking to go into CA from (I40). The destinations you'll planning makes it hard to bypass all the steep grade areas, as (I-40) will have a few to deal with, but I don't see an issue with narrow passes. I'm talking truck routes, main roads and interstates. If you're planning scenic routes, your map recon and other research is important.

A trucker's atlas should be used as part of your planning. Then you'll have the big picture and can set up your GPS to keep you on track. I'll cut my inputs short here so other experienced travelers can add more valuable information, as I don't have an answer to your concern with the shifting question. I've never had a personal issue with mountain driving, and find it mostly an enjoyable experience. Some may disagree, and that's where differing opinions clash.

Hope you have a great trip.

Dan & Loretta, US Army Retired Aero Scout Pilot
2012 Fleetwood Providence 42P Class A/DP
Spartan Chassis, 8.9L Cummins 450HP
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Old 09-09-2014, 05:09 PM   #3
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Hi GLE2,
Welcome to posting on iRV2. The only change I ask you to consider is to stay on the 5 to 580. Take 580 west and go over the San Mateo/Hayward bridge over to Pacifica. This is longer mileage but keeps you on the interstate and multi lane roads. I have taken this route and am happy with it. I have not taken the 152.

If you have never been to the SF RV Resort, the spaces are very tight. However, I would return to the resort due to its' location.
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Old 09-10-2014, 02:54 PM   #4
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Gle2 First off nice park Grand Canyon Railroad U can take day trip to the canyon by train from there shuttle to train depot Directions U are already on I 40 take 40 west toBarstow at Barstow 40 will connect with I 15 15 for very short distance stay right lane proceed on Cal 58 west to Bakersfield.This route flat across the dessert. In Mojave expect wind while going around town find a truck and watch them AtTechhachapi u will have a long decline. the hills going west are notbad just b4 Bakersfield another long decline with curves By now u may want find aspot for the night if so at bottom of decline is Orange Grove Camp grounds very nice with easy on and off to 58 InBakersfield 58 connects with 99 north 99 north to 43 west to I 5 north to 152 west 152 wll have hills also wind west is the better direction on the west end will be another decline. A good break area is Casa De Frutia exit plenty of parking along frontage road on in dirt lot 152 will connect with 101 Just west of CasaDe Fruta rode will bend to right and become 2 lanes When u get on 101 north take I 280 north toward sf I280 will meet 92 west to Pacifica This route will miss the grape vine toll on the sm bridge and scoot around San Jose and the cities on 101 up to 92 Hope this helps alittle long winded but I lived in t5his area for over 30 years Now near Yosemite have a safe trip any questions pm me

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Old 09-11-2014, 05:37 PM   #5
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We did a similar trip from the Emerald Coast a year or so ago in a 37' Class A pulling a CRV with no issues on hills. You'll be fine. Likewise, 152 won't be an issue for you, but it's not the route I'd use. From Bakersfield I'd head up 5 and cut over to Paso Robles on 46, then up 101. I'd suggest you spend the night at Betabel RV before heading in to Pacifica.
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