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Old 08-07-2011, 09:45 AM   #15
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Honestly, I'd stay off 1 with the trailer. You can camp and take day trips on 1, but there are spots I wouldn't want to have anything but a car. Besides, you will want to be looking, not driving, and having to pay attention to the trailer will take away from your "gape time".

you think so? i was wondering about that. and i have a big trailer. where in particular should is it really tricky with a trailer.
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Old 08-07-2011, 10:18 AM   #16
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Despite the sign that says "no camping," the CA Highway Patrol says you can stay overnight in any CA rest stop, as long as you don't start unloading "making camp."
Mhh, where do you get this from? My sense is that you'll be kicked out no matter how you behave. As far as I recall, most of the parking areas also specify no overnight parking or closed sunset-to-sunrise or equivalent.

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Originally Posted by overlander63 View Post
Honestly, I'd stay off 1 with the trailer. You can camp and take day trips on 1, but there are spots I wouldn't want to have anything but a car. Besides, you will want to be looking, not driving, and having to pay attention to the trailer will take away from your "gape time".
Given that adwriter73 seems to have a 31' trailer, I'd second this for some sections of PCH. In particular the Big Sur part is iffy. Where the road tends to slide the pavement often has quite some waves and you can easily bottom out in a 31' . Also, where to road winds down into a cove and then back out the curves often have no visibility and the lane isn't wide enough for such a long rig, so you have to swing out half way into the opposing lane. I've gone there in a 23' which was fine, but then I'm also used to pulling that up&down any mountain road. So if you're the adventurous type that goes anywhere with your 31' then go slow and have fun, but if you're used to the flat and highways don't go there...
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Old 08-07-2011, 11:20 AM   #17
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I talked directly of a CHP officer about staying at rest stops. The only place I've been chased out of at night in CA was a known [to locals] make-out spot. That made sense. As part of that discussion, the officer said that the signs were there to make it easy for the CHP to "evict" campers/RVs that were abusing the location.This was just from one officer, but seemed reliable and has proven correct on several occasions. I guess there are no guarantees.

As for taking a 31' on Route 1 in CA south of Monterey--I think the rewards are well worth the trouble. Go slow, be nice, have a great time.

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Old 08-07-2011, 11:50 AM   #18
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Mhh, where do you get this from? My sense is that you'll be kicked out no matter how you behave. As far as I recall, most of the parking areas also specify no overnight parking or closed sunset-to-sunrise or equivalent.



Given that adwriter73 seems to have a 31' trailer, I'd second this for some sections of PCH. In particular the Big Sur part is iffy. Where the road tends to slide the pavement often has quite some waves and you can easily bottom out in a 31' . Also, where to road winds down into a cove and then back out the curves often have no visibility and the lane isn't wide enough for such a long rig, so you have to swing out half way into the opposing lane. I've gone there in a 23' which was fine, but then I'm also used to pulling that up&down any mountain road. So if you're the adventurous type that goes anywhere with your 31' then go slow and have fun, but if you're used to the flat and highways don't go there...

Good advice. I break out into a nervous sweat just driving in traffic with this thing. Don't need to be stuck hanging off a cliff. : )
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Old 08-07-2011, 02:02 PM   #19
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don't miss PCH

I went through this discussion last year and i finally dedided to go and just slow down. Do not miss the thrill and scenic beauty of pulling your airstream down or up this great stretch of highway. We jumped on Hwy 1 at Leggett down and to Fort Bragg where we stayed at the harbor rv park and the view was great. From there it is onto Bodega Bay...overlooking the bay with a view of "the birds", then thru san franscisco and across the bridge and a stay at half moon bay, again right on the oean.

San Simeon, Cambria, Morrow Bay, the county park at Lompoc and lake casitias are all beautiful spots not to be missed. we too stopped at the rv park in malibu and it was great.

we can't waith to make the trip again this winter.


we are currently finishing up our tour up the oregon coast and are now inland at mcminneville and tomorrow we head for sauvie island before venturing up the washington coast....
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Old 08-07-2011, 05:20 PM   #20
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The PHC is no worse a driving experience than any of the THE hi-ways (5,405,10 etc) in California.....70 or 10mph over a washboard, twenty feet in front of and behind a very stressed out fellow traveller.

Had no problems at all with the Classic last year or the Safari 20yrs ago.
Slow and steady...it's a trip that shouldn't be missed.
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Old 08-07-2011, 05:34 PM   #21
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Bob...glad to hear you say that. I know it is a winding and potentially stressful route sometimes, but that's probably part of what makes it so spectacular. If you can do it with a 25' with no trouble we should be able to do it with a 19'! I guess we should start plannigng it now for next summer. Any hints on the best time of year to do it?
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Old 08-07-2011, 05:52 PM   #22
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I havent spent any time on HW101 in California, but have spent a lot of quality time between Yachats and Astoria. Most of it on a motorcycle stuck behind those damn RVs...
Anyhoo that stretch of road is a little twisty, but not treacherous like the descriptions of it down south and it sees bigger RVs all the time.
What you will find somewhere between San Fransisco and, say, Bandon Oregon is a demarkation point where 101 no longer goes along The Beach and starts going along The Coast.
THe Beach is where people gather together in bathing suits to sunbathe, frolic in the water and surf. The coast is where people wear Goretex and polar fleece to dig for clams, drink beer and identify non-locals by the way they pronounce the town names.
Its also a fantastic drive and probably one of my favorite stretches of road in the country.
Ive been toying with the idea of making and extended trip with my wife & kids in the ol' Avion and have daydreamed a few things.

Late summer/early fall (July 15th - Oct 1) is best bets for weather.
Mo's Clamchowder is a small chain that can be found in Newport, Lincoln City and Otter Rock, well worth stopping in for the bowl of chowder or a bucket of steamer clams. I'm partial to the Lincoln City one, since thats where my Grandma worked at for over a decade, but it would be hard to park a trailer at that location. Otter Rock Mo's is a better bet since it shares a parking lot with Devil's Punch Bowl state park, which is worth viewing itself.
Yaquina bay lighthouse and the Newport waterfront are good tourist destinations. Under no circumstances take a trailer longer than 5' to the Newport waterfront.
Up the road a ways, you have Tillamook (pronounced Till-a-muck) where they have the Tillamook Cheese factory right off the highway. If you like cheese (and really who doesnt) they do tours.
I like Cheese.
Once you hit Astoria, there is the Astor Column at the top of a bluff overlooking the mouth of the Columbia River. A nice place to take in the sights.
Fort Stevens State Park is on the very NW tip of Oregon and nice place to camp. Also the only place in the continental United States to take fire during WWII.
From there, you can take the bridge over to the Washington side (pronounced with an "R") or go 30 or so miles inland on US30 to Westport Or and take the last running ferry on the Columbia River to Cathlamet and take highway 4 to west back 101 or east to I-5.
I dont know what the camping options are in the Olympic National Park, but just the drive up the Olympic Peninsula is worth the trip. Then take the Ferry from Port Townsend over to Whidbey island and up to I-5 to avoid Seattle completely.
Dont get me wrong, I like Seattle, I'd drive my trailer down a burro path to the bottom of the Grand Canyon before I drive it through Seattle traffic.
Plus I could easily spend a week with the trailer planted in Whidbey, living off salmon and mussels.
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Old 08-07-2011, 05:57 PM   #23
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Of course, as has already been pointed out there are a zillion (by actual count) nice places in the south of California, but once you get to San Jose, be sure to get onto the I280 from there to San Francisco.

It's not called "The World's Most Beautiful Freeway" for nothing...
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Old 08-07-2011, 07:55 PM   #24
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Coast Trip

What fun! Suggestions for going up Hwy 1 --- Pismo Beach SB or anything in Pismo is great - be sure to go to the beach!
Morro Bay SB s/b size okay for your A/S - not the strand, but the SP next to the bay. San Simeon SP is pretty nice too - if the sites are too small check out the 2nd campground (it's gravel but is higher and has some great views). Dittos on checking out the elephant seals - not to be missed. We were able to go to Kirk Creek campground north on Hwy 1 - spectacular views - but check out online to see if you'll fit! Good luck north of that point - road is do-able, just take your time!
Skipping north of SF - don't miss the Redwoods and be sure to stop at Jedediah Smith SP --- beautiful spot with a "river running through it".

Have fun!
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Old 08-07-2011, 08:06 PM   #25
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My opinion- do hwy 101 up the Oregon coast you won't regret it! We see tons of trailer trucks, RVs and TT passing our house and it's not a problem really! Plenty of camp grounds, scenery, and ocean air. Hwy 101 is 1.5 hrs from I-5, back and forth makes little sense to me. I know the Oregon coast, "Trust me, I'm NOT from the gov't."
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Old 08-07-2011, 08:08 PM   #26
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Good advice. I break out into a nervous sweat just driving in traffic with this thing. Don't need to be stuck hanging off a cliff. : )
I went around a curve a few years ago, and nearly creamed a tour bus in my lane, when towing our 31'. All I could hear was squealing brakes and screaming passengers, both in the bus and our truck...
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Old 08-07-2011, 08:20 PM   #27
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July can be foggy along the CA coast. My preference would be April-June or Sept-Oct.
If you are going South on CA 1, there are pull outs to stop for views or let cars pass. It's a wonderful trip.
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Old 08-07-2011, 08:38 PM   #28
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We were on Hwy 1 this weekend between San Francisco and San Simeon. You should experience all that this stretch of Hwy 1 has to offer. However, I would not take a 31' trailer between Carmel and San Simeon. Find an RV park, unhook, and spend 2 or 3 days exploring without the trailer. Much safer for everyone else on the road, and you will not be bothered about the trailer. Lots of places to pitch a tent for a night if you are inclined.

Short stretches of single lane road currently exist south of Lucia and south of Bixby Bridge on Hwy 1. I think one other spot closer to Cambria but I can't recall for sure.

If you are DOD-affiliated, check out Monterey Pines RV Park or the RV Park at Camp San Luis Obispo. Monterey would be centrally located. San Luis Obispo would be at the end of the fabulous California Central Coast area.

On the Monterey Bay area, there are 2 KOAs. One in Prunedale (10 minutes from the water) and one in Moss Landing (camping next to the harbor). Also, Marine Dunes RV Park is located on the tall dunes next to the water. Easy beach access.

If you are into water or wildlife, Moss Landing is home of the Elkorn Slough. Good boating opportunities and lots of wildlife to view.

Santa Cruz is a neat town. Good place to surf.

Hearst Castle is really a must if you've never seen it. Last time I looked (years ago), there were 4 tours available. It would have taken 2 days to do the tours, and you still wouldn't see it all.

Any of the Redwood Forest State Parks along Hwy 1 or US 101 are worth seeing.

Lots of wineries along US Hwy 101 south of Salinas to San Luis Obispo if you are into tastings.

Horse rides on the beach in Big Sur. Hiking everywhere.

So much to see. One month isn't enough.

Enjoy.
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