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Old 12-06-2020, 05:07 PM   #43
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I-5 like most major highways in California are a mess. I have avoided California roads for the most part, traveling WA to AZ. Moved out of the Sacramento area 4 years ago and have not missed the I-5 boring drive. Not to mention youíll pay $1 more per gallon for fuel. California is not putting much money into roads, my old employer. Highways 95 and 93 in Nevada are fun.
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Old 12-06-2020, 06:52 PM   #44
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As a former resident of Bakersfield, CA who now resides in WA, I've driven this route more times than I can remember. I feel the worst part of this route is from Stockton, CA north to Sacramento. It is only two lanes in each direction and usually jammed with big rigs. South of Stockton it normally is less congested especially once you're past the I-580 cut-off towards the Bay Area heading south.

Regarding the Grapevine, the Siskiyou Pass both north and southbound is much more challenging. Why? Even though both passes are about a 6% grade, Siskiyous are longer.
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Old 12-06-2020, 08:04 PM   #45
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The Donner party was trapped in the Sierras by blizzard conditions in October. You can get snow any day of the year up there. Pay attention to the weather. The grade from Donner summit to Reno is long and steep. Just pay attention and donít test it. Lived most of my life in northern CA, I would stay to the interstate over the passes and avoid secondary highways.
I don't think it's a useful comparison to equate people traveling over the Sierras in covered wagons in 1846 to me in a self contained RV in 2021. I'm aware that snow happens and I'll keep an eye out. At any rate, not planning on traveling that route on this adventure. But if I see any cannibals, I'll let you know.
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Old 12-06-2020, 08:15 PM   #46
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I 5north is good but weather can be iffy in the winter months. When headed south we always fuel in Oregon a dollar cheaper for diesel than in Calif.


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Old 12-06-2020, 08:46 PM   #47
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Fuel on 99 is cheaper than on 5. I paid 2.79 for diesel in Fresno or you can get it in Bakersfield for 2.59, both at Costco
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Old 12-06-2020, 09:29 PM   #48
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Hey really I just pulled the I5 from SoCal to Oregon and back..I donít see the issue.. yes there can be issues in the grapevine during a winter storm but at highway speeds yesterday whatís the issue.. itís a mountain pass plan ahead and enjoy the trip
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Old 12-07-2020, 01:44 AM   #49
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I understand your concern!

Sacramento north:
* Although the rioters in Portland -- generally -- stay in one area, they can explode anyplace at any time.
* You are prudent to anticipate the rioters in any area along Interstate Five.
* I would add additional concern for remote forested areas because of arsonists.

Sacramento south:
Our last trip through south California was decades ago, so my concern is based on second-hand information:
* According to reports, I would be concerned about traveling through Modesto, Stockton, Fresno, Bakersfield, and Los Angeles/San Diego in anything less than a convoy of Bradley Fighting Vehicles.
* Same with frisco and around there.
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Old 12-07-2020, 06:12 AM   #50
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Why?

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I imagine I-5 from Sacramento south should be avoided at all cost in an RV, but how about Sacramento north?
Why avoid i5 south of Sacramento? Stockton gets a little congested but south of Stockton is the big valley and hundreds of miles pretty smooth sailing.
Iíve driven i5 both north and south of Sacramento A LOT but not in a motorhome. Now that my daughter and her family are in Oregon, we plan to visit in our 43 DP at least once a year.
What am I missing?
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Old 12-07-2020, 07:04 AM   #51
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When we are in a new area of the country that we want to see and explore, we general prefer to avoid interstates. I definitely don't like interstates around cities where traffic congestion becomes stressful and dangerous particularly in an RV. There is nothing in LA, San Francisco, Oakland, etc. that I want to see enough to drive my 5th wheel through.
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Old 12-07-2020, 01:18 PM   #52
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If your Rig is safe and you're a competent driver both north and south should be fine! Personally, I'd rather drive the grapevine than the Siskiyou's as they have less room for traffic and pull-outs. Drive both with respect, don't drive in adverse conditions, hot or cold, and don't abuse your brakes! Use your Transmission to slow you down if at all possible and pump your brakes giving them a chance to cool in between slowing to minimize brake fade.
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Old 12-07-2020, 02:30 PM   #53
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if you do go down 395, which in my opinion is a beautiful drive, there is lots to see. among them Mammoth mountain and June lake. if at all possible go to Lone Pine the second weekend of October for the Lone Pine Film Festival. look it up on Google. lots of places to boondock south of Mono Lake.
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Old 12-07-2020, 04:57 PM   #54
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if you do go down 395, which in my opinion is a beautiful drive, there is lots to see. among them Mammoth mountain and June lake. if at all possible go to Lone Pine the second weekend of October for the Lone Pine Film Festival. look it up on Google. lots of places to boondock south of Mono Lake.
We are staying at Boulder Creek RV Resort in Lone Pine the first week of Oct.
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Old 12-07-2020, 09:58 PM   #55
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What/where is the grapevine??
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Old 12-07-2020, 10:55 PM   #56
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it is the I5 grade from Bakersfield over Tejon Pass
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