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Driving w/ Trailer From Austin, TX to Portland, OR In Two Days

Driving w/ Trailer From Austin, TX to Portland, OR In Two Days

Feb 7th, 2013, 11:51 AM
  #1  
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Driving w/ Trailer From Austin, TX to Portland, OR In Two Days

My fiancee is leaving Austin on Saturday, headed for Portland with a 2WD vehicle and a trailer. What roads will ensure a minimum in elevation change? The concern is adverse weather conditions and avoiding scary mountain passes with the trailer. This is not a scenic drive, but a straight-through "do not pass go do not collect $100." Any thoughts about how to maximize efficiency, minimize danger/hazards, would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance for your thoughtful feedback and assistance.
sparkledarkko is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 11:58 AM
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Thats a ~2100 mile drive in 2 days. Google advises 32 hours of driving. I couldn't imagine doing that in a car, let alone with a trailer.

Hopefully someone can help you with an easy route but you have to cross the Rockies at one point.
tchoiniere is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 12:04 PM
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<<>>
'
Unless you go via southern California, in which case Google says it will take 35 hours.
sf7307 is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 12:08 PM
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Not really doable. If it was me, I'd go west on I-10 to Los Angeles, then north on I-5. One would still need to go through the Siskiyou mountains at the California/Oregon line, but you'd probably avoid much chance of snowy/icy conditions up till then. But that would add a couple hundred miles to the route. Given the time of year, short daylight hours would also be an issue, and I can't see driving a trailer for 15 hours a day, some of them in the dark.
Gardyloo is online now  
Feb 7th, 2013, 12:12 PM
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Not doable IMO. The only way to get there w/o serious mountains/possibility of snow/ice is through the desert and up I-5. And even that route has mountains/ice/snow in N. California/Oregon. The ONLY route to totally avoid mountains/snow is across the desert and up the CA/OR coast

None of these are 2-day drives.

Because one wants to do something doesn't mean it can be done.
janisj is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 12:13 PM
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was posting the same time as Gardyloo . . .
janisj is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 12:14 PM
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Remember that driving tired can be just as risky and irresponsible as driving drunk, and urge your fiancee to take her time (I'm assuming it's a woman based on the use of the word "fiancee").
WillTravel is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 12:59 PM
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If you look at the dates involved, I think the OP is saying that the driver is _leaving_ in two days, i.e., Saturday, not trying to make the trip in two days.

In that case I-10, I-5 make perfect sense: three days of driving and an extra day in case the passes are closed in Oregon.
Ackislander is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 01:17 PM
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Ackislander, I hope you are right and that we misinterpreted his ambiguous title.
tchoiniere is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 01:29 PM
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If you look at the dates involved, I think the OP is saying that the driver is _leaving_ in two days, i.e., Saturday, not trying to make the trip in two days.

Doh.
Gardyloo is online now  
Feb 7th, 2013, 01:34 PM
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Unless your fiancee is adept at backing with a trailer, be sure to always have a way to go forward--parking at the motel, etc. BTDT!!
Gretchen is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 01:59 PM
  #12  
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Thanks everyone! Appreciate the helpful advice and feedback. I'm sorry if I made it sound like the trip would need to happen over two days. Not the case. The I-10 to the I-5, and then cutting through SF to the 101 and up the oregon coast seems like the safest route. Does anyone know the risk of snow or ice on the 101 near the oregon/california border?
sparkledarkko is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 02:23 PM
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Does anyone know the risk of snow or ice on the 101 near the oregon/california border?

Zilch. (Okay, 1%. It's not unknown for it to snow on the north coast or Oregon coast, but it's a real longshot.)
Gardyloo is online now  
Feb 7th, 2013, 03:57 PM
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In between Weed CA and Grants Pass OR is the only place you might have trouble. This is the webcam that you have to look at.
http://www.oregontravels.com/_roads/...ummit_512.html
You can also dial 511 to get traffic info when you are close to the Oregon border. I would not detour to 101 unless it was really bad on the Siskiou summit.
tomfuller is online now  
Feb 7th, 2013, 04:04 PM
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In between Weed CA and Grants Pass OR is the only place you might have trouble. This is the webcam that you have to look at.

We drove I-5 last week and actually the most snow and dicey conditions we encountered (snowing, not sticking on the road but plenty on the roadside) was between Grants Pass and Roseburg (Hugo, Sexton, etc.)

Pulling a trailer, I too would stick with I-5. The chance of having to wait for some snow to clear would be less a concern than having to navigate through the Redwoods, and along the parts of 101 between Ukiah and Garberville that are twisty-turny two lane roads. There are also some quite steep grades on 101, just as there are on I-5.
Gardyloo is online now  
Feb 7th, 2013, 04:10 PM
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tomfuller: While today's snow should end before this weekend - low temps are forecast to be in the low 20's over the summit for the next week and ice is a very real possibility. I would not advise someone not used to mountain driving to take that summit.

If she opts to take 101 then no 'detours' are necessary -- and that would be one huge detour.
janisj is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 04:23 PM
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sparkledarkko: as you can see from the discussion -- there really is no easy answer.

If she is not used to towing a trailer and not used to mountain driving and ice, it is going to a nasty drive. No getting around that.

If that's the case, - me personally - would rather drive 101 than over that stretch of I-5. I have many relatives in Mt Shasta/Weed/Roseburg and make that drive fairly often. More than once I've had to cut the journey and stay over in Mt Shasta or Dunsmuir before returning back down the Sacramento Valley.

Ice, snow, fog, jack knifed big rigs - can all close or restrict travel on I-5. . . . Or it could be clear and easy.

The drive up 101 is longer and more twisty/turny - but not bad.

So choose your poison . . .
janisj is offline  
Feb 7th, 2013, 09:22 PM
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The good news is that I watched the weather forecast from KDRV12 (Medford)and there is no precipitation forecast for the next week. Overnight lows will be below freezing but daytime highs will be in the mid 40's. There was a mention of fog.
Spend the night in Redding. Drive over the Siskiou Pass in the morning. In good road conditions using I-5 it is 7 hours from Redding to Portland. ODoT has been doing a good job keeping traffic flowing over the passes on I-5 this winter.
Please check the tire pressures before leaving Redding.
tomfuller is online now  
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