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Old 05-14-2020, 02:16 AM   #1
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101 From San Luis Obispo to the Redwoods

I searched for this to no avail so here’s the question:

My wife and I are flying to Houston on Monday to pick up our new-to-us 2014 Tiffin Allegro RED 38QBA and will be driving it back home to SLO.

Our first real trip will be taking 101 north to visit the redwoods north of the San Francisco Bay area. It’s been a long time since I’ve driven 101 across the Golden Gate Bridge and have never done it in a motorhome. What’s the scoop with staying on 101 through San Francisco and crossing the Golden Gate Bridge northbound?

The second part of the question is where is a good place to stay to take advantage of the redwoods? We won’t have a toad in time for this trip so we plan on renting a car somewhere north of San Francisco for the two days we will be there.
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Old 05-14-2020, 08:06 AM   #2
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We love Ancient Redwoods RV Park in Redcrest. It is on Ave of the Giants. Stunning and peaceful park. You can probably rent a car in Eureka. For only two days i don’t think i would bother renting a car, but that is me.

As to the GG Bridge, i can not speak to that. We always go around it taking 880 to 580.
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Old 05-14-2020, 10:12 AM   #3
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Usually I would advise to avoid going through S.F. on the 101 as it routes you through city streets. However, given the current pandemic, it's quite possible that traffic is very light, even through the city, making the trip not as intense. No guarantee on this, but S.F. is one of the hard hit areas where reopening is going to be very slow and methodical. Possibly do some traffic research and see how the flow is through the city on 101. Otherwise, I would follow Jake21's advice and by-pass the city.
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:09 AM   #4
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We have been across the Golden Gate Bridge a couple of times, once in our previous Tiffin DP .... had no issues whatsoever.
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:28 AM   #5
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We crossed the Golden Gate with our 38' plus Jeep GC toad southbound.

At the time we also encountered road construction immediately after leaving the bridge. That was a bit of confusion.

However, we stayed on Hwy 1 to Hwy 280 to avoid Hwy 101 downtown San Francisco streets and heavy traffic conjestion.

We made it through fine with a few tense moments that were self inflicted.

Having done that route, given your destination, I would head up to Richmond and over to San Rafael.

But we have experienced the Bay and the Bridges so would not need the visual experience.
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:53 AM   #6
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Do a search on 101 golden gate traffic cams or similar and you can see what the traffic looks like. You should be able to find some SF cams too.
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Old 05-15-2020, 10:35 PM   #7
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Thank you to all who responded. We have family visiting from Texas who've never been on the GG before and we wanted to treat them.

I think I'll do the research on the traffic cams before we set out and maybe cheat by using Hwy 1 on the actual approach.
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Old 05-16-2020, 12:34 PM   #8
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If you're determined to see the Golden Gate then you're better off taking I280 from the San Jose area - it still takes you through city streets in San Francisco, but it's an easier drive - just stay in the center lane and you'll be good. The merge back onto US101 at the southern end of the bridge puts you in the right-hand lane for crossing the bridge.


Also - there is no toll when crossing the bridge going north. If you followed others' advice and go up the East Bay to cross on the Richmond Bridge you're be paying a toll going west on that bridge. They don't have human, or machine, toll-takers anymore: they take photo of your vehicle and send a bill to the registered owner of the vehicle. If you don't pay it in a timely manner they start adding on penalties.
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Old 05-16-2020, 12:54 PM   #9
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101 From San Luis Obispo to the Redwoods

X2 for I280 from San Jose. Then 1 at Daly City thru the W side of SF and like the previous poster said 1 will merge into 101 and across the Golden Gate Bridge. Basically a fairly easy drive thru SF. Make sure you get a RV park reservation, a lot of the CG are still closed and opening date is a moving target.
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Old 05-16-2020, 01:12 PM   #10
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X3 on 280 north, then I take 19th ave. thru the city to 101 just before the GG bridge. 19th ave. a little tight, but buses drive it all the time so...then on the return trip take The Richmond–San Rafael Bridge east so you get free direction both bridges.
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Old 05-17-2020, 10:31 AM   #11
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I used to live in the south bay area and when taking an RV north and having to go through SF, we would take the 101 N from Gilroy, to I 280 then take the 19th St exit and follow that to the GG bridge. At that time, we were towing a 31' 5th wheel. Just have to watch the traffic, and timing is also important. The earlier you can pass through SF, the better the traffic is.
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