June 23, 2018, 08:25:24 PM

Author Topic: Route to California advice needed  (Read 8499 times)

Offline Gordie Allen

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Route to California advice needed
« on: November 13, 2013, 12:11:48 PM »
We just returned from a 1400 mile shakedown trip from Augusta, MI to Hayesville, NC and back.  4104 (671) with Spicer 4 speed.  No major issues.  Some long 6% climbs at the end on two lane roads (1st and 2nd gear both climbing and descending).  I'm WAY more conscious of elevation changes now, and I thought I was being careful before.  We're planning to leave Michigan around Dec. 22nd headed to San Mateo, CA.  Although the shortest route is through Denver, there is no way I would do this in the winter.  I doubt I'd even try it in the summer.    We're going to head straight south via I-69.  My question is should I take the I-40 route or the I-10 route through the southwest?  I looked at the elevation profile for I-40 using Google Earth.  It doesn't show anything over 3.5%, but it's hard to tell if there are any short stretches bigger than that.  Is I-40 still in possible snow territory?  Are there any bad climbs through the Sierras?  Any and all info would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks!
Augusta, MI
1956 4104
DD 671

Offline John316

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2013, 12:19:26 PM »
Me personally? I would go I10. You could (will?) have snow in Flagstaff. I like I-10 because we stop at Joshua Tree National Park. That being said, with where you are located, I10 adds quite a bit more time to the trip. I would just watch the weather, and sneak over on I40.

Otherwise six of one, half dozen of the other.
Sold - MCI 1995 DL3. DD S60 with a Allison B500.

Offline lvmci

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2013, 12:45:12 PM »
Hi Gordie, I agree with John, I10, you are gonna hit mountains no matter where you go in the west, if you go on the 10 you could stop in Quartzite in mid Jan, truely amazing to see all those RVs, and the desert rally near scottsdale, see another posting here, I70 has some gigantic long climbs, the E tunnel, and snow and ice, lvmci...
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Offline Utahclaimjumper

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2013, 02:22:29 PM »
 You really can't miss California, just keep going west,,,,,,,, you'll find it.>>>Dan
Utclmjmpr 
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Cedar City, Ut.
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Offline TomC

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2013, 02:24:05 PM »
I once picked up a load in Detroit that was heading to Boise, Id. And there was a giant ice storm heading my way. I dropped down to 40, then 30, 20, 10 and back up on I-15. Was several hundred miles further, but didn't have any bad weather. The shipper drove through it and slid twice off the road.

Go down to I-10 and enjoy the desert in winter. Good Luck, TomC
Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.

Offline B_K

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2013, 04:14:27 PM »
Augusta, MI to San Mateo, CA quickest route is across I-80 @ 2294 miles.
Augusta, MI to San Mateo, CA most practical route is across I-40 @ 2505 miles.
Augusta, MI to San Mateo, CA most southern route across I-10 @ 2594 miles. (that's taking I-40 to Holbrook, AZ and dropping down to Phoenix on 377/260/87.

There are as many different variations of these routes as there are members here on the board.

If it was me I'd take 69 to Indy, 70 to St. Louis, 44 to OKC, and 40 to Barstow, 58 to Bakersfield (see Don Fairchild for Tri-tips), 99 to Chowchilla (stopping by Freshno for a free pepsi from RJ), 152 to Gilroy, and up 101 right into San Mated.

At least back when I was trucking that's the way a lot of my friends & I ran it.
;D  BK  ;D 

Offline Cary and Don

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2013, 04:46:56 PM »
If you are talking about the Sierras on I80,  it will be all down hill from just west of the state line.  If our drought ends,  you will most likely hit snow. Nevada gets a lot of snow also.  We liked I10,  really flat, nice overnight reststops. Once in California,  HWY99 is much better than I5.  5 has gotten really rough.

Don and Cary
1973 05 Eagle
Neoplan AN340

Offline John316

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2013, 05:39:41 PM »
Okay, I have to disagree with BK and Don. I don't know how long it has been since you all have driving 99, but I do NOT like driving 99 with the bus. I am in the Central Valley several times a year (busless). 99 is always a drag race, little shoulder, and just a pain.

Last year we took the bus all the way up I-5 and it was fantastic. Wide lanes, good shoulder, and good road. Also, there was way less traffic on most of 5. No question about it. I take I-5 anytime I possibly can. That being said, maybe there are stretches of 99 that are better than 5?

Take that, and five dollars, and you can afford a gallon of diesel.

FWIW
Sold - MCI 1995 DL3. DD S60 with a Allison B500.

Online luvrbus

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #8 on: November 13, 2013, 06:15:16 PM »
You never know about I 40 in Az in the winter it is all high altitude till you reach Kingman which is still 3400 ft then it is all down hill,you leave Flag at 7000 ft then Williams is 4100 ft then you go up to AshFork and Seligman both above 5000 ft there are some nice climbs on 1 40 headed west a lot steeper than any 3.5 %

 I 40 is by far the most scenic drive along old 66 if the weather permits but in Dec and Jan it can get nasty plus very cold and they will close I 40 for a day or so for Dec and Jan driving stay on I 10 or catch 93 out of Phoenix to Kingman back to I 40 it's not bad but it has a couple of good climbs before Wixeup

good luck
Life is short drink the good wine first

Offline lvmci

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2013, 06:26:36 PM »
Hi Gordie, I5 in southern california is way past capacity at times, to above magic mountain, the grooves and ruts are terrible, we went up to the montery aquarium 2 years ago, us101, had justbeen paved and was great on the way back, plus Im not a fan of goingover the grape vine, or climbing el cajon pass, even down hill is an effort on these, good luck, low an slow, the turtle always gets there, lvmci...
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Formally MCI5A 8V71 Allison MT643

Offline Van

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2013, 06:33:17 PM »
We always watch the weather out here in the winter months, give us a hollar before leaving and we'll be better able to direct you around the soup if any ;) Have a great and safe trip.







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« Last Edit: November 13, 2013, 06:36:45 PM by Van »
IF YOU'RE NOT LIVING ON THE EDGE, YOU'RE TAKIN UP TOO MUCH SPACE.

Offline B_K

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #11 on: November 13, 2013, 09:20:50 PM »
Okay, I have to disagree with BK and Don. I don't know how long it has been since you all have driving 99, but I do NOT like driving 99 with the bus. I am in the Central Valley several times a year (busless). 99 is always a drag race, little shoulder, and just a pain.

Last year we took the bus all the way up I-5 and it was fantastic. Wide lanes, good shoulder, and good road. Also, there was way less traffic on most of 5. No question about it. I take I-5 anytime I possibly can. That being said, maybe there are stretches of 99 that are better than 5?

Take that, and five dollars, and you can afford a gallon of diesel.

FWIW

John that's OK if you have to disagree with us.

I only ran out to CA every week for 10 + yrs and hated I-5.
 
But with respect to you and your more recent experiences. I will admit things could have changed! I was last out there in a truck in 13 yrs ago 2000. (I have snuck in & out of there a few times since picking up/delivering or just flying in to look @ buses)

For 3-4 of those yrs I left Auburndale, FL every Monday AM and went to Tracy, CA. After delivering at Safeway Foods Distribution Center, deadheaded over to Watsonville. Picked up a full load of strawberries then ran down to Lompoc or Guadalupe and off loaded 1/2 the strawberries and filled back up with lettuce and ran back down to Deerfield Beach, FL. 6150 miles a week.

Like I said it's been 13 yrs since I was out there on a regular basis but I USED to take 99 over I-5 ANY & EVERY day of the week.

Of course if you really want an honest and knowledgeable account of what it's like today why not ask the guys that live on or near it.
What say you Don Fairchild, RJ, Grant, and whoever might live on or near 99?
;D  BK  ;D

Offline John316

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2013, 05:12:40 AM »
BK, it could be that they have improved the road since then. Or it could be that when I drove I5 from LA to Redding last, that it wasn't a correct representation of what it usually is. I have driven 99 so much, that when I was on 5, it was like, ahhhhhh.

You sure put a bunch of miles on out there. Good for you for staying safe. Drivers tend to have their heads up their saddles and not pay attention.

Cheers,

John
Sold - MCI 1995 DL3. DD S60 with a Allison B500.

Offline saddleup

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2013, 06:19:12 AM »
 Drivers tend to have their heads up their saddles and not pay attention.

Cheers,

John

Good one i never heard before....lol
Saddleup

Yuma,Az


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Offline TomC

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Re: Route to California advice needed
« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2013, 06:21:23 AM »
I personally prefer highway 99 going up San Joaquin Valley since it is "the old road" and much more developed with places to stop and things to see. If you just want to drive up the Valley as fast as you can then yes I-5 is the way to go. But just miles of basically nothing with a few rest stops in between. Good Luck, TomC
Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.