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Old 01-25-2013, 12:56 PM   #1
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SF to Phoenix via San Diego

We're sitting in Pacifica, CA and want to get to Phoenix by Feb 2. Came out on I-10 and thought a different route would be interesting. Any thoughts on:
1. SF to Los Angeles area
2. LA to San Diego

Appreciate your recommendations.
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Old 01-25-2013, 01:25 PM   #2
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Considered Route

As we're examining the map, we're considering going from:
Pacifica to Bakersfield via I-5 or CA 99
Bakersfield to Barstow via CA 58
Barstow to I-10 via I-15
I-10 east to Coachella
Coachella to El Centro via CA 86
El Centro via I-10 north of Tucson via I-8, and
I-10 north to Phoenix.

Sounds like a lot of highway changes, but it takes us through areas we've only flown over. Not sure where we would spend nights, but I have to believe there would be acceptable RV camps along the route.

Any thoughts?
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Old 01-25-2013, 03:05 PM   #3
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Your route (post #2) is easy and has scenic sections.

I suggest I-5 for speed and safety over 99 - but 99 is more interesting as you go through some smaller towns, that = traffic.

Be aware that eastbound CA-58 has a massive up-hill section over Tehachapi...we did it with a truck and travel trailer. It's not a problem, but only a bit better than if you were looking to avoid the climb on the southbound (north side) of I-5 at Grapevine.

When I do this drive (Bay Area to SoCal) which gets me near I-10, I go:
- I-5 to CA-138, just past Gorman - into Lancaster.
- CA-138 - joins CA-14 through Lancaster/Palmdale.
- East on 138 (Pear Blossom Hwy) to South I-15 - Then right at the split on I-215.
-I-215 to I-10.

The PearBlossom Hwy is a scenic but small 2 lane Hwy (sometime opposite direction), but it has very little cross traffic and plenty of pull outs.

Whatever you do, you are smart to avoid the L.A. area...it is heavy traffic 24X7.
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Old 01-25-2013, 05:00 PM   #4
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Thanks,

Scarab0088,

Thanks for the suggestion. We've marked it on our map and may give it a try.

You're right about LA. We tried to skirt it on the way here, stayed on the north side to I-5. The less metro traffic the better!

The best thing about traveling in our MH and being retired is that our schedule is VERY flexible.

Thanks, again.
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Old 01-26-2013, 03:47 PM   #5
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Your original post mentioned going to San Diego ... your second post eliminates San Diego ... but still goes south to I-8 and then back north to I-10 so I am a little confused on the desire of where you want to travel.

Is there something along the I-8 that you definitely want to see:
  • sand dunes just west of Yuma
  • Yuma's winter mecca for snowbirds
  • lettuce, carrot, alfalfa fields
  • date and pecan orchards

Hints:
  1. There is a short-cut AZ 89 from Gila Bend to Buckeye that is a good road (I was over it about a month ago)
  2. There are many RV parks all along any route that you choose and there will be plenty of vacant spots
Note: In my opinion the most scenic section of I-8 is between San Diego and El Centro


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Old 01-27-2013, 05:04 PM   #6
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Not to be a troublemaker.........but is not/was not Hwy 138 also known as Blood Alley?
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Old 01-27-2013, 06:46 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooter View Post
Not to be a troublemaker.........but is not/was not Hwy 138 also known as Blood Alley?
Yuuup - see Wiki: Slaughter alley - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

And that's probably due to the lack of center divider.

But, having driven it 4-5 times a year in both direction since 1997, I have never seen an accident. It has many miles of straight-away, so a drunk could go a long way and not run off the road until there is opposite direction traffic.

I pick it over the other routes to avoid backtracking and traffic. With the desert on the north and the mountains on the south, and so many cute little desert towns along the way it's a very scenic drive.
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Old 01-27-2013, 11:41 PM   #8
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I suppose you are already on the road by now. Yuma has been much more enjoyable then we expected. We've been here most of the past three months and have found lots to see. We spent some time in the Imperial LTVA and also campgrounds in Yuma. Right now we're in Tacna AZ a shady little town, on I-8, but still a lot of interesting places to visit in the area.
We went to the Painted Rocks Petroglyths and the Oatman massacre site a couple weeks ago.
Have a good trip.
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