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Old 06-23-2014, 08:54 PM   #1
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Best route Los Banos, Ca. to Lee Vining, Ca.??

We are going from Los Banos, Ca. to Lee Vining,Ca. with our 25' FC.
I know that we will take Hwy 120 over Tioga Pass thru Yosemite.
What I am looking for is the best approach from Los Banos to Hwy 120.
Thanks in advance for your help!!!

Ken & Patty
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Old 06-23-2014, 09:40 PM   #2
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If going from downtown Los Banos, I would take 165 up to 140 and follow that into Yosemite Valley to 120. There is a spot on 140 (between Mariposa and Yosemite) where a slide occurred several years ago and they have one lane traffic control there. There is a length limit of 45 feet for vehicles at that spot so if you are over 45 feet total length, you may consider another route. With a 25' trailer you should be OK unless your tow vehicle is super big!

Have you towed over Tioga Pass before? I've done it many times towing my 28'. It's exciting!
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Old 06-23-2014, 09:44 PM   #3
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The opening scene in The Long Long Trailer with Lucy and Ricky was filmed on way from Tioga Pass to Lee Vining before it was paved.

Bill

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Originally Posted by CA Streamer View Post
If going from downtown Los Banos, I would take 165 up to 140 and follow that into Yosemite Valley to 120. There is a spot on 140 (between Mariposa and Yosemite) where a slide occurred several years ago and they have one lane traffic control there. There is a length limit of 45 feet for vehicles at that spot so if you are over 45 feet total length, you may consider another route. With a 25' trailer you should be OK unless your tow vehicle is super big!

Have you towed over Tioga Pass before? I've done it many times towing my 28'. It's exciting!
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Old 06-23-2014, 09:49 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by wkerfoot View Post
The opening scene in The Long Long Trailer with Lucy and Ricky was filmed on way from Tioga Pass to Lee Vining before it was paved.

Bill
Yes! And the trailer was full of souvenir rocks and preserves that Lucy collected.
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Old 06-23-2014, 09:58 PM   #5
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If you are longer than 45' an alternate route may be to pick up Hwy 49 at Mariposa to Oakhurst and take Hwy 41 to 120 from there. A longer drive but very do-able. Also here is a number for Yosemite road information...209-372-0200. Never hurts to call and find out about construction. I'll be staying in Los Banos overnight on Saturday!
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Old 06-23-2014, 10:01 PM   #6
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That would be a good test to see if your trailer pushes you or pulls you, coming down Tioga pass.
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Old 06-23-2014, 10:49 PM   #7
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You must be hungry!

To drive all that way just to go to the Whoa Nellie Deli. (It is at the Mobil gas station about a block east of Hwy. 395 on Hwy. 120). It really is good. Also if you are going to Lee Vining allow me to recommend the Mono Vista RV Park. It is a good break, very tranquil, many spaces parking on grass, in Lee Vining overlooking Mono Lake. You can reserve on the phone but they don't (or at least the last time I was there) take credit cards...cash or checks! (Yes, checks when most of their patrons are from out of state). Makes me proud of RV'ers.
Their phone # is: 760-647-6401. (I should ask them for a commission for this).

Randy Bowman
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Old 06-23-2014, 10:55 PM   #8
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Thanks for all the great advice and heads ups!!!
We are just over 45'... Never towed over Tioga before but have driven it many times in both directions......& my wife LOVES rocks!!! Oh Noooo!!!!

Steve..any thoughts on 132 to 120??

We just dropped "Buttermilk" off in Los Banos for a new AC unit etc and will be there at the end of July to take her over the hill for our annual trek to Silver Lake.

Hope to see all of you on the road!!!
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:08 AM   #9
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I've never been on the stretch of 120 between hwy 49 and Crane Flat in Yosemite so I don't know. If you look at Google Street View, you can usually get a good idea of what the road is like. Using GSV I can also look for signs at intersections that may indicate size restrictions. It's also handy for determining ahead of time what gas stations I may want to use while towing, and wether or not they have diesel. Also, if you see something like this photo capture in GSV, it's more comforting knowing I can handle the road! This is on hwy 49 between 132 and 120 junctions...
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Old 07-01-2014, 12:22 AM   #10
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Saddlebag Lake on top of Tioga pass, just east of the park entrance has a very cool campground that will accommodate your 28fter, if you get there midweek. Its all first come first serve. Take the water taxi across for a great hiking trail. And for sure Randy's recommendation of the mobile mart. Great food! they also have a dump station there. You can also park overnight up at their flagpole over looking Mono Lake. Thursdays and Sundays in the summer they have bluegrass bands play outside. Its a great spot!
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Old 07-07-2014, 11:38 PM   #11
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Great advice !!! Thanks to all who shared their knowledge and discoveries along the route of our next adventure!!!

Ken & Patty
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Old 07-09-2014, 09:14 AM   #12
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If you're at the Airstream dealer in Los Banos, I would suggest making a right turn out of there onto the 152 freeway and go to the 59N to intercept the 140E in Merced. You can gas up in Catheys Valley, because the gas stations in Mariposa are on the left side and there's not much room to maneuver around. Crane Flat has a gas station but there's usually a line. The hill up to Crane Flat is skinny, as is some of the road up to the summit. The problem is some of the rental RV's that are coming from the other direction tend to stay away from the steep edge of the road and crowd your lane. A lot of mirrors get knocked off up there. The scenery is spectacular. Your alternate route, if you don't want to go through the slide area east of Maraposa is to continue on the 152 until you intercept the 99S. Take the Yosemite exit in Madera and follow the signs to the 145. That will take you to the 41N towards Oakhurst. All of the gas stations are on the right so that's a good place to tank up. Follow the 41 to the South Gate and tell the you're passing through to Tioga. They should let you in, and now you get a good view of Half Dome and the Valley floor on the way. The Falls aren't going now.
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