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Advise on long trip please. Tacoma to Atlanta via L.A.

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  #16  
Old 10-28-2011, 11:47 AM
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The time is nie!!! Well, I guess you are about a week away.

Good luck on your trip. Don't forget plenty of film (LOL) and don't forget the battery charges for whatever you take!!!



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  #17  
Old 10-28-2011, 12:09 PM
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Wow, you are right! Well, I have until the 9th, so it's more like 12 days, but I'm sure they'll fly by... The more I think about it, the smaller the Miata appears in my mind
I sure hope I can minimize everything but take enough gear and food to be comfortable.
I will carry my tent, pad & sleeping bag with me from Atlanta, but I will probably purchase whatever else I might need in Seattle for my trip back.
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  #18  
Old 10-28-2011, 01:31 PM
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Well, I'm sure you're taking more than that, like clothing otherwise your "shop when you get there" plan will be way high!!! Maybe you can use a good size duffle to carry your stuff and find a way to lash it to your Miata for extra storage room.

Wow, what fun to enjoy a trip through someone else's eyes and wallet.



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Last edited by artmart; 10-28-2011 at 01:35 PM..
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  #19  
Old 10-28-2011, 02:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artmart View Post
Well, I'm sure you're taking more than that, like clothing otherwise your "shop when you get there" plan will be way high!!! Maybe you can use a good size duffle to carry your stuff and find a way to lash it to your Miata for extra storage room.

Wow, what fun to enjoy a trip through someone else's eyes and wallet.
Well yeah, I will take basic clothing and toiletries in addition to my tent and sleeping gear, and of course my camera, lenses, etc. But not much else. I'll buy the bag liner and other odds and ends in Seattle (food etc.).
I think that before I go, I'll see my Miata driving friends and try packing the stuff I think I will have in a similar car. That ought to help me decide what to do.

Last edited by silverz51; 10-28-2011 at 05:05 PM..
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  #20  
Old 10-29-2011, 01:49 PM
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Good news!!! I found this site that can provide some picture status of some parts of the Hwy 1(PCH)/Hwy 101 roads in Washington and Oregon. Cameras positioned at a few spots give you an idea that Hwys 1/101 are not like the interstates AND you can see what the weather conditions are at those points.

While not many are shown along the way at least it's better than nothing, but it reminded me of how wet and cold things are in the Northwest states especially this time of year.

TripCheck - Oregon Department of Transportation

Just click on a camera and it will show the road and it's current conditions. Remember you'll only be interested in the Hwy 1/101 cameras.

I hope you can use this. It does require an internet connection and a suitable browser.



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  #21  
Old 11-03-2011, 01:57 PM
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A question comes up. I was in another forum about traveling and had posted questions about my Tacoma~Atlanta trip. One person posted that trying to avoid bad weather by taking I-5 to LA and I-10 to go East was not such a good idea as the added time to the trip would increase the chances of finding worse conditions in the South...

In fairness, I had not posted about taking PCH and 101. Still, he suggested taking I-90 through Montana, SD, and the I-29 South Through St. Louis, etc. I thought, hey, I'll check this out. A check of the weather in Coeur D'Alene, Spearfish SD, and a few other random places along the route, show cold snowy weather at this time... I thought this was crazy advise. However, he came back to say that generally the roads are clear and they are used to snow so they know how to maintain the roads, etc.

Of course, since I want to camp, it makes more sense to take the warmer route. Still, he brought up a good point for discussion. What do you all think of this?
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  #22  
Old 11-03-2011, 02:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverz51 View Post
A question comes up. I was in another forum about traveling and had posted questions about my Tacoma~Atlanta trip. One person posted that trying to avoid bad weather by taking I-5 to LA and I-10 to go East was not such a good idea as the added time to the trip would increase the chances of finding worse conditions in the South...

In fairness, I had not posted about taking PCH and 101. Still, he suggested taking I-90 through Montana, SD, and the I-29 South Through St. Louis, etc. I thought, hey, I'll check this out. A check of the weather in Coeur D'Alene, Spearfish SD, and a few other random places along the route, show cold snowy weather at this time... I thought this was crazy advise. However, he came back to say that generally the roads are clear and they are used to snow so they know how to maintain the roads, etc.

Of course, since I want to camp, it makes more sense to take the warmer route. Still, he brought up a good point for discussion. What do you all think of this?
Well, I seriously doubt you will even SEE snow through Texas, which most of your I-10 trip will be in. It's in the 80's outside right now. This weekend they are expecting mid 60's for lows. It will be a bit cooler than this when you actually make your trip, but you shouldn't be dealing with any snow.
If you were driving straight though and staying at hotels, i'd suggest taking a shortest route, but if you plan on making it a several day camping trip, might as well do it where you can enjoy the weather.
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  #23  
Old 11-03-2011, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
Well, I seriously doubt you will even SEE snow through Texas, which most of your I-10 trip will be in. It's in the 80's outside right now. This weekend they are expecting mid 60's for lows. It will be a bit cooler than this when you actually make your trip, but you shouldn't be dealing with any snow.
If you were driving straight though and staying at hotels, i'd suggest taking a shortest route, but if you plan on making it a several day camping trip, might as well do it where you can enjoy the weather.
Any good ideas about nice camping places along the route? Would Big Bend be a worthwhile detour?
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  #24  
Old 11-03-2011, 05:31 PM
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I kinda agree with Shadow. If you stay along I-90 to the Dakota, then head to the St Louis area you are constantly in the path of snow possibilities for several days and this will eliminate any camping possibilities.

Your route down 101/1 gets you out of snow possibilities much quicker. It might be cold going south too, but being that close to the ocean, the salt air makes it hard for snow to form unless it's real wintry and it might be too early in the year for that.

At least the weather should be better going south. You've gotta imagine that whatever weather you run into going south, it would have been a LOT colder in the North. Please realize weather tends to go Eastbound and gets colder as it does, during this time of year. No doubt it's gonna be cold all the time, but in the future, you will be quite happy with the trip down the western coast. Save I-90 for summer travel when the south gets too hot!

Adding Big Bend National Park in Texas is another nice diversion and would add another day to the trip because after you get there you might want to spend some time. I have many friends who have been there and will take their RVs there for the winter snowbirding. Funny thing about Texas. When you don't go straight, you will be adding a lot of distance. Texas is BIG, not like I-40 through the Amarillo panhandle. Any angular change adds quite a bit of distance if you remember your geometry.



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Last edited by artmart; 11-03-2011 at 05:35 PM..
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  #25  
Old 11-04-2011, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverz51 View Post
Any good ideas about nice camping places along the route? Would Big Bend be a worthwhile detour?
I have a friend that goes to Big Bend a couple times a year. Based solely on her pictures and description, it sounds nice. Depending on your time table, you might elect to spend an extra day there if you go.

One park I can recommend that I have actually been to is:
Lockhart SP
TPWD: Lockhart State Park

It's right outside the town, but it's a nice little park, with some hills to go hiking in, with some old ruins to explore. It's about a 20-25 mile detour off the freeway north of Luling TX.

An alternative just south of Luling is Palmetto SP.
TPWD: Palmetto State Park

It's only about 3-4 miles south of I-10.

Actually, I was looking at the route and I might suggest bypassing San Antonio, and jumping off I-10 at Boerne, TX and taking Hwy 46 East.
This would bring you close to :
Guadalupe River SP
TPWD: Guadalupe River State Park

This is obviously on the Guadalupe River, and is usually packed in the summer months by people tubing and rafting down the river, but this time of year it shouldn't be busy.

Continuing on East on HWY 46 brings you back to I-10 at Seguin TX, which is about 25-30 miles west of Luling TX which I mentioned above is close to a couple parks.

Best thing is find how far you want to drive each day, then look on map for state parks in the area where you want to camp for the night. Pretty much all TX SP's are well maintained and have something that makes them special.

Once you figure out your itinerary, send me a copy, If I am off work when you are passing through the area, maybe I'll come up and pitch a tent near you.,


EDIT: I was looking and I just had an even cooler idea. Jump off I-10 onto US 290 and head into Fredericksburg TX, where there is both the Nimitz Naval Museum, and the Bush war museum, check out the town and go a bit north and camp at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area. http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/f...nchanted_rock/

This is one of the coolest parks I have been to in Texas so far. Hike around in the morning, then climb to the summit (no gear necessary, its about the same as walking up stairs) and watch the sunset. I would even recommend spending a second day here.
After that, if you wanted, you could pop into Pedernales Falls SP http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/f...ernales_falls/

This I put up as #2 best park I have been to in TX.

Leaving Pedernales, you can go on East to Austin TX, then take Hwy 71 down past Bastrop SP (I think its closed due to wildfire damage currently though) and Bruecher SP (which I have been to and is really nice)

Hwy 71 continues ESE through La Grange TX (ZZTOP's song La Grange is about this town) on down to Columbus TX where you pick up I-10 again. A lot more scenic, and though the speeds you will be travelling aren't as fast, you cut many miles off your trip.

Last edited by Shadow; 11-04-2011 at 09:45 AM..
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  #26  
Old 11-04-2011, 10:27 AM
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Excellent suggestions! Since flexibility is one of the things I have, it might well be possible to do several cool stops. I'll examine your suggestions and see what the distances look like so I can adjust my itinerary and hit the right spots at a good interval time wise and location wise.
And it would be cool, to meet you! Perhaps things will work out to make it possible. I imagine that depending when I leave WA, I should be crossing TX between the 16th & 20th.
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  #27  
Old 11-06-2011, 06:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artmart View Post
Good news!!! I found this site that can provide some picture status of some parts of the Hwy 1(PCH)/Hwy 101 roads in Washington and Oregon. Cameras positioned at a few spots give you an idea that Hwys 1/101 are not like the interstates AND you can see what the weather conditions are at those points.

While not many are shown along the way at least it's better than nothing, but it reminded me of how wet and cold things are in the Northwest states especially this time of year.

TripCheck - Oregon Department of Transportation

Just click on a camera and it will show the road and it's current conditions. Remember you'll only be interested in the Hwy 1/101 cameras.

I hope you can use this. It does require an internet connection and a suitable browser.
Big change in plans Art. Looks like I waited too long to try reserving a cabin or yurt in the OR parks in my route... The weather looks too wet and cold to tent camp (I would not mind it if I did not have to break camp each day and pack a wet tent in the car ).

Anyway, I am not going to drive as much on the PCH as I planned/wanted. I found a B&B that looks really neat, it's called The Wolf Creek Inn. It's coincidentally located in Wolf Creek OR. I got a reservation for my first night there after leaving Tacoma.

Then I will go back to the PCH and take a detour before getting back to Ukiah, CA where I found what looks like decent lodging at the Hampton Inn, because the forecast is still not so good.

After Ukiah, I'll go back to the PCH / 101 and head South to LA. I have some friends in LA so I might spend a night as their guest . If that does not pan out, I'll have to find another hotel :P because the Los Angeles Natl Forest is too high in the mountains and so too cold and snowy.

After that, I have only the sketch of a plan. Probably head South on I-10 and go to AZ, perhaps find a campground at a convenient place in the route and camp out if the weather permits.

I guess then I drive through TX. Not sure of the final route yet. Same story with the camping. Then to LA. Either Lake Charles or Shreveport depending whether I go the Southern or Northern route. Should be able to camp there.

Next will be a stop in MS or AL (Gulfport/Mobile) and will try to find a campground. From there I'll go directly to Atlanta.

So far the only plans which are more or less firm, are the stops in OR and CA. Any ideas?

Last edited by silverz51; 11-06-2011 at 06:58 PM..
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  #28  
Old 11-06-2011, 09:22 PM
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I don't know anything about Oregon in particular, but I might be able to make some suggestions in CA. Yup, we are getting lots of rain in the low altitudes and snow in the high altitudes right now.

Other than Big Sur most of 101/PCH won't have much snow. What parts of CA are you interested in? If you are successful, where are your friends friends in L.A. located? I do agree that out of L.A. I-10 is a more suitable route than I-40 this time of year. Beware that campgrounds between New Mexico and central Texas are hard to find, heck so are decent hotels, so don't expect anything to highbrow.

Doing this without advance reservations will be tough or you'll pay a mint. Good luck!



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  #29  
Old 11-06-2011, 10:37 PM
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I will leave Wolf Creek and head down I-5 then take West US199 to Crescent City. Then I'll head South on 101 on to Ukiah. From there I intend to take 101 to SF and then on to Santa Barbara via Santa Cruz, Montery, etc. on the PCH. I might end up in the LA area pretty late in the evening. I don't know yet where in LA my friends live. I will find out before too long.

I figure to head towards Las Cruces, NM via I-10. Thanks for the tip about the scarcity of campgrounds. I'll do a search with Oh Ranger and see... I'll let you know what I find out.
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  #30  
Old 11-06-2011, 10:55 PM
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In TX, at the end of my driving leg from LA, I found among many other parks and recreation areas, the following which seem to be good choices. All have developed campgrounds, Showers, etc.

Leasburg Diversion Dam, (18 miles from Las cruces)
Franklin Mountain State Park (El Paso)
Hueco Tanks State Park, (East of El Paso
Percha Dam State Park 52 mile NW of Las Cruces(off I25)

Do you know anything about these? There are many more scattered around the area....

The Hot Wells Dune Recreation Area in nearby AZ looks pretty good too...

Last edited by silverz51; 11-06-2011 at 11:13 PM..
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