Oakland to Portland

Old Dec 21st, 2011, 10:52 AM
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Oakland to Portland

We are planning a last minute trip to Portland next week...... 2 adults and our 3 children (19, 12, and 8). Plan is to leave Oakland about 8am. Stop off in Redding for lunch at In-N-Out Burger and visit the Sundial Bridge. Journey on to Ashland, OR (rest for the night). Up next morning, travel to Portland.

I checked the website for the Sundial Bridge ---- I see the Turtle Bay Exploration Park is closed on Tuesdays. Will this prevent us from visiting the bridge as well? Is the Turtle Bay Park worth spending time at (or not a big deal)?

Other places to visit between Redding and Ashland? Shasta Dam? Is it out of the way?
I've read a lot about Ashland as a place to visit for the Shakespeare Festival --- How about things to do there in December?

Places to see between Ashland and Portland?

abrianthodges is offline  
Old Dec 21st, 2011, 11:12 AM
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If chains are required on I-5, you may want to take the more interesting drive on 101 up the Oregon Coast. Brookings, Bandon, Newport, Yachats, and Cannon Beach are our favorite places to stay on the coast.

We like the scenic drive from Shasta to Eugene, but we haven't found much of interest between Ashland and Portland except for Crater Lake (and the coast), which are way off I-5.

happytrailstoyou is offline  
Old Dec 21st, 2011, 01:08 PM
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The trip to the coast from Ashland is a terrible drive. The drive up the coast will add substantial time. You'll need another night's stay somewhere unless you want a long driving marathon, much of it in the dark.
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Old Dec 21st, 2011, 03:30 PM
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The drive to the Oregon coast from Oakland would be via Ukiah, Eureka, and Crescent City--not Ashland. It is about 780 miles and 16.5 hours driving (without stops) compared to 630 miles and 11 hours straight up I-5.

happytrailstoyou is offline  
Old Dec 21st, 2011, 04:49 PM
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Either by I-5 or by US 101 it's one night. I'd personally definitely opt for the coast. There's a good chance of poor driving conditions on I-5 - snow in the Siskiyous and (IMO worse) black ice in the Rogue Valley (Medford/Grants Pass etc.) which you could encounter either the first night or the next morning.

On the coast, the main issue will be rain, maybe wind, but I much prefer it in the winter vs. the inland route, and I've done both way more times than I'd care to count.

With an 8 AM start from Oakland, you could be through the Redwoods and close to the Oregon border by 3 or 4 PM; maybe spend the night somewhere around Gold Beach or even Bandon if you make good enough time, but remember the days are really short. The next morning, head north on US 101 to Reedsport, then cut over to I-5 on Oregon 38, which is quite scenic. (Look for lots of elk in the reserve just inland from Reedsport.) Eugene for lunch, and you're in Portland by mid-afternoon.

Hit Ashland on the way back, but don't expect much to be going on in mid-winter.
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Old Dec 22nd, 2011, 10:52 AM
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we were able to walk the bridge in Redding without paying to go into the buildings themselves. Fun place to visit
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Old Dec 22nd, 2011, 01:46 PM
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I like Guardyloo's thought of Ashland on the way back. You could take 299 west from Redding and spent the night at Crescent City or the little town of Klamath. From Crescent City depending on the weather, you can take US 101 north along the coast or US 199 North-east to get back on I-5 at Grants Pass.
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Old Dec 28th, 2011, 01:29 PM
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Driest December on Record.
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