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driving route from SFO to Tahoe

Old Jan 31st, 2008, 08:50 AM
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driving route from SFO to Tahoe

Hello: I am wondering if there's a better/less busy route from the San Francisco Airport to Tahoe, rather than taking 101 to 80, which goes right through a high traffic area? Would anyone recommend taking 92 to 580 to 680 and then connecting to 80 near Cordelia? I've been looking at maps, but I'm not sure.

Thanks for any advice!
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Old Jan 31st, 2008, 08:55 AM
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I don't think there will be a huge difference between the two routes. Certainly getting on 80 and staying there is pretty simple. When traffic is heavy - commute times - it will be heavy on both routes.

Let's see what others have to offer.

I happen to drive the 680 route most often, but I don't live in the city.
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Old Jan 31st, 2008, 10:38 AM
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Hello skivt, even with catching I-80 near Cordelia do be aware that Friday's traffic on I-80 going east (toward Tahoe) gets really bad. So if you can avoid driving to Tahoe on Friday it is best otherwise hopefully you will arrive at SFO early and get a head start on the traffic that gets worse as the day goes on. The same is usually true on Sundays going west on I-80 so again if you can depart Tahoe on a day other than Sunday you should have less traffic.

I-80 is a very congested freeway skivt at the best of times unless you are driving before the earling morning commute or after the late afternoon/evening commute. Traffic should be a lot lighter driving to Tahoe on a Saturday or Sunday.

I tend to agree with cabo, I would just get on I-80 from 101..you than will not have to worry about changing freeways as you will have a straight shot to Tahoe. Do keep in mind though if you want to go to South Tahoe you will need to take Hwy 50 from I-80 at Sacramento.

Wishing you a safe trip and a wonderful time at Lake Tahoe.
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Old Jan 31st, 2008, 11:49 AM
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Another option - not sure if this would buy you any time - would be to continue on 580 to 205 through Tracy and then take I5 up to Sacramento - then 50 or 80 up to Lake Tahoe.

We live in San Jose, and this is often the route we take when heading up to Sac and points north or east. I have never done this route starting from SFO though.
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Old Jan 31st, 2008, 01:15 PM
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I can't imagine that the traffic on the 580/205 route is any better than on 80. Our cabin is in Mi Wuk Village so we're on that route a lot and it can be really really bad, especially on a Friday. I say stick with 101 to 80, simpler and also a nicer drive.
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Old Jan 31st, 2008, 05:25 PM
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You could take the 580/205 route through Stockton and then take CA 88 up over Carson Pass if you are looking for a more scenic route to Lake Tahoe.

But, for the most direct route, I-80 across the Bay Bridge and then up to Sac would be the best choice.

Just avoid any of the routes on weekday afternoons during commute hours. And, as others have said, avoid them at all costs on Friday afternoon.
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Old Feb 1st, 2008, 04:15 PM
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You didn't mention which area of Lake Tahoe you would be traveling to. If it is the South Shore you would want to get off of Highway 80 near Sacramento and drive the rest of the way to Tahoe on Highway 50. If it is the North Shore, you would stay on Highway 80 until you get to Truckee.
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Old Feb 8th, 2008, 08:53 AM
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The thing is that when you get to Sacramento you actually have to make the effort to get off 80 to continue on 80. If you donít take the fly over and instead stay on the freeway you will be on 50 headed to South Lake Tahoe.
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Old Feb 9th, 2008, 05:13 PM
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Thank you all for your help. we'll actually be traveling into SFO on a Sunday, so it sounds like we won't have too bad a problem with traffic, and we should just stay on 80 to 50. we'll be headed to Incline Village in North Tahoe, so it sounds like we'll stay on the highway until Truckee. I really appreciate your help.

Any advice for dining? We'll take one romantic dinner at the lone eagle in incline. But does anyone have a favorite other than that?

thanks again, SkiVT
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Old Feb 9th, 2008, 07:28 PM
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No skivt, if you want to go to Incline Village and get there after getting to Truckee you want to stay on I-80..you do not want to turn off on 50. 50 will take you to South Shore and yes you can then drive around the lake and up the east side of Lake Tahoe to Incline Village but it certainly will not be the quickest way. And since you mentioned Truckee..stay on I-80. And do have a wonderful trip!
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Old Feb 9th, 2008, 07:56 PM
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As I have tried to describe before you MUST make an effort to leave 80 in West Sacramento. Take the 80 flyover to go to north Lake Tahoe/Reno on 80. If you don't take the 80 exit and instead stay in the left lanes it becomes 50.
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Old Feb 9th, 2008, 08:07 PM
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Yes, study your map well before you leave SFO. It is not a difficult route, but if not anticipating it, you could easily miss I-880, the freeway that bypasses basic Sacramento downtown traffic. If you accidentally miss it, make sure you follow signs for I-80 North Lake Tahoe so you don't end up on Hwy 50 heading to South Tahoe.

Generaly, you should have a good drive unless there is an accident that causes a delay.
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Old Feb 9th, 2008, 08:34 PM
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skivt: Just remember - on the Highway signs - follow the ones to Reno - not Lake Tahoe.

Yes, you are going to Lake Tahoe, but the "Placerville/Lake Tahoe" signs will take you up hwy 50 which is NOT what you want.

Follow the route to RENO - which takes you up I-80 to Truckee where you turn off to north Lake Tahoe on hwy 267.
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Old Feb 9th, 2008, 10:07 PM
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Wow I don't know how long it's been, maybe since the early 80s, but there is no I 880 in Sacramento anymore. Business 80 is the route that runs between 29th & 30th and then past Arden,around the Marconi curve and then catches up with 80 just after Watt Ave.
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Old Feb 9th, 2008, 11:04 PM
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And the route around West Sacramento and the city of Sacramento is simply identified as 80.
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Old Feb 10th, 2008, 07:26 AM
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oh - I missed elnap's mention of 880. Yes, ignore all that - 880 is an ENTIRELY different road. Just follow signs that direct you to Reno and you will be fine.

(880 is the Nimitz freeway in the East Bay)
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Old Feb 11th, 2008, 09:03 PM
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Oops - sorry. Is the Highway 80 that goes THROUGH Sacramento called "Business 80?" Oh, well, the I-80 to Reno that bypasses central Sacramento is easy to miss if you aren't paying close attention.
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Old Feb 12th, 2008, 08:10 AM
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"Biz 80" or Capitol City Freeway is the name of the freeway that runs through midtown and past Arden to meet up with 80 near Watt Ave.
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Old Feb 12th, 2008, 09:18 AM
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In other words, you don't want to take Business 80 - that takes you downtown. You just want to stay on "regular" 80.
 
Old Feb 12th, 2008, 12:53 PM
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You can't stay on regular 80 and you can't get to biz 80 via 80 going east. Goin east from SF on 80 you will see signs directing you to 80 Reno just as you get to West Sac. You must EXIT in the right lanes in order to take the flyover and continue on 80 going east. If you miss the Reno 80 exit you will be traaveling on 50 east. Eventually you will come to an exit for Biz 80/Capital City Freeway. This route will take you through midtown & past Arden out to Watt and then will eventually merge with 80 going east.
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