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INLAND Portland to Sacramento

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INLAND Portland to Sacramento

Old 02-18-18, 10:50 AM
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SEAJAYBIKE
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INLAND Portland to Sacramento

Ride with GPS gives me Eugene Oakridge Klamath but narrow highways and quite a few sections not covered by Googlemaps. Anyone with thoughts getting through here?
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Old 02-18-18, 04:44 PM
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Wow. Getting though the mountains inland, southern Oregon/Northern California, is going to be a real slog. Alternative routes are few.
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Old 02-18-18, 05:21 PM
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You might want to check out some of Wayne Estes tours over on Crazyguyonabike.com or just post your question there. He has apparently tour extensively around Oregon. I know Wayne has made some recommendations on routes south out of Eugene which may be helpful.
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Old 02-18-18, 07:14 PM
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Thanks Davet and mrveloman. I liked the idea of inland for May weather...we'll see if its more than I want to handle. Will look into W.E tours.
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Old 02-18-18, 07:36 PM
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When are you doing the ride?

A year and a half ago I did a ride from Eugene to Crater Lake.

Roughly this route, with the biggest change being picking up the bike path around Dorena.

https://www.strava.com/routes/6229282

There are a couple of possible routes between Eugene and Creswell/Cottage Grove. I chose the route east of the freeway that I'm most familiar with, but Loraine Hwy is also popular, if not a little bit longer.

Dorena to Steamboat was a narrow road, and a good hill climb, but pleasant with very little traffic.

From Steamboat to Crater Lake was on the Umpqua Hwy. Moderately busy, an unrelenting climb, but good visibility, and mostly good road shoulders.

Hmmm, my map shows picking through some side-roads. Something that I didn't actually do, but might look at some alternative routes the next time.

From Crater Lake, you can drop down into the K-Falls area very easily.
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Old 02-18-18, 07:48 PM
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CliffordK
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Originally Posted by SEAJAYBIKE View Post
I liked the idea of inland for May weather.
Ummm... May

That may exclude Crater Lake. Notes I'm seeing indicate the north entrance and east drive are typically the earliest to open, generally in June.

The main East/West roads will be open in May, but it may be touch and go with some of the secondary routes.

The McKenzie Pass is wonderful. HWY 126 up there, not so much, although I have some ideas to make that more pleasant. The McKenzie Pass is generally closed to vehicles until June or July. Bikes may be able to get through depending on the day, but it is hard to find notes on the actual conditions, so I dislike planning early spring through routes through the pass.. out and back are fine, as one can just turn back when it is impossible to go further.

I'm not sure when roads like Century Drive open.

I did plan a trip from Eugene to Medford last year, but didn't actually do the ride, and unfortunately apparently didn't save the route. But, that seemed like it would be possible using secondary roads. I'm not sure about Medford to Sacramento without using the freeway though.
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Old 02-19-18, 01:10 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I'm not sure about Medford to Sacramento without using the freeway though.
One really can't ride the freeway from Medford to Sacramento. It's not that it's illegal, it's that around Lake Shasta CalTrans has created some bridges that are simply lethal. Really, don't do it.

You've got to either go east, preferably east of hwy 97, or go west and cross into California on one of the many tiny roads that comes down to hwy 96. You better enjoy climbing if this is what you do. I'd give more details, but it's been a long time since I rode that way.

The OP says this is for a May trip. that's kind of iffy for any high mountain minor road unless it's a particularly dry winter/warm spring.
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Old 02-19-18, 10:26 AM
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Thanks CK and BCarfree. This lowlander appreciates you reminding him about SNOW. I'm taking all your advice and opting West.
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Old 02-19-18, 03:58 PM
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My wife and I rode from our home in the Willamette Valley to Fresno, CA, going through Sacramento on the way. We did it the hard way by riding up to Mt Lassen and down to Sacramento.

We crossed the Cascade the first time by riding Highway 58 from Eugene, and then staying east of the mountains until we reached Weed CA on Highway 97. From there we took Highway 89 and 44 to Lassen National Park. From there it is an easy ride into Sacramento.

I can PM you the details of the route, if you are interested.


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Old 02-20-18, 01:05 PM
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What time of year? From SE Oregon until the Valley there is hardly any traffic. I wouldn't worry about small roads...but if you wanted there are tons of logging roads through there. The trouble is getting lost, possibly really lost, if you make a mistake. Plus mud and mountainous slow going, but you do avoid cars that way. How adventurous do you want to get?

Once you hit the SJ Valley it is some of the worst riding in the world. Strong winds, lots of dust mixed with ag chemicals and long straight flat roads with semi-trucks. I would avoid it at all costs.

Ride down to Carson City on the other side of the Sierra and get transport from there if possible.
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Old 02-20-18, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by fantom1 View Post
What time of year? From SE Oregon until the Valley there is hardly any traffic. I wouldn't worry about small roads...but if you wanted there are tons of logging roads through there. The trouble is getting lost, possibly really lost, if you make a mistake. Plus mud and mountainous slow going, but you do avoid cars that way. How adventurous do you want to get?

Once you hit the SJ Valley it is some of the worst riding in the world. Strong winds, lots of dust mixed with ag chemicals and long straight flat roads with semi-trucks. I would avoid it at all costs.

Ride down to Carson City on the other side of the Sierra and get transport from there if possible.
In my experience this was not the case, even though we rode it in October, the harvest season. We came down Highway 44 and Dersch Rd. from Lassen NP to Anderson. The ride from there to Sacramento was on secondary roads, and was actually enjoyable. You can follow the Sacramento River from quite a way north of Sacramento, and there are quiet roads and some good campgrounds.

Having said all that, the ride does not agree with everybody Near Sacramento


We were a little north of Sacramento, when we came upon this fire. My wife called 911 and reported it. The fire was in the Sacramento Fire District.

Last edited by Doug64; 02-20-18 at 05:58 PM.
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Old 02-20-18, 05:52 PM
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Lol, well to each his own I guess Ridden a few times, driven many many times, and each time misery. Guess maybe I'm just unlucky, or you are really lucky haha.
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Old 02-20-18, 06:14 PM
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To put my comment into perspective, we had just spent about 10 days crossing the Cascades in Oregon and then riding to 8000' in Lassen NP. The ride down to the Valley was nice, and we did not mind the flat roads at all. It was also warm in the evenings. We had just spent several nights where temperatures dropped close to freezing.

I have also driven it numerous times, my wife's family lives in Visalia, which is where we were heading. It was more enjoyable riding it than it is driving. Sure there was some dust from harvest operations, but wind was not an issue. Yes, we were probably lucky.
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Old 02-20-18, 07:02 PM
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I've crossed Oregon NS four different ways.

Try and stay off 97 as much as you can. It's not a bad road just a noisy one.

Estacata to Detroit is great but Detroit to the Saitum pass junction is below average.

I liked the ride from the start of Medford/Ashland bike trail to Shasta CA. Old hwy 99 from Ashland to the CA border is a must ride.

Other folks have talked about the Cottage Grove to Crater lake route. Done it twice.
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Old 02-20-18, 08:16 PM
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Thanks all. Will look into the locations you mentioned. Climbing is OK but don't need to have the ride be especially "hard core." Snow and Mud on my particular bike doesn't sound fun, so we'll see.
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