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Portland to San Francisco- Success!

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Portland to San Francisco- Success!

Old 09-27-18, 06:57 PM
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Portland to San Francisco- Success!

I rode from Cape Lookout to San Francisco, well to Danville, CA to be exact. I really appreciated all the advice and information provided on this forum so I wanted to share my experience with others, so they could benefit.

First let me say there is no right way to do this. I could have easily shed several days off the trip if I had wanted to, but I wanted a leisurely pace so that I could explore the various areas. I typically got to camp in the early afternoon the earliest was 11:30am and the latest was 3pm. I got up at 6am and was typically riding by 7:30am. My shortest day was about 44 miles my longest 74. I met people who were faster and slower, it really is a function of what you want. To me it was not about the destination, if that was the case I would have flown. I wanted to have ample time to explore places as a rode as well as be able to explore the various state parks I camped at. I did a fully self-supported ride, camped at the hiker/biker camps and cooked as well. The nice thing about this was that I got to meet lots of people, mostly foreigners. However if you wanted to stay at hotels and eat out each night you could easily do it. The hiker/biker camps are very inexpensive $5-$10 a night. I also did go out for meals on occasion and always stopped for a beer or two in the afternoon, especially when a good brewery was on the route!

My schedule along with the actual miles I did. is attached:

I generally followed the Bicycling the Pacific Coast guide. Even though the book is out of date it still has lots of useful information in it. There were two issues though: The camp site at Marine Garden Grove is now Burlington, Marine Garden is for groups only, an additional 2 miles to Burlington, but they have showers. Manchester Beach was closed, so I went to the KOA up the street which was a killer deal $10, hot tub, and showers.

I brought two spare tubes and had two flats. I was able to repair one tube the other was shot. My total mileage was ~ 840 miles, that includes the ride from Bart in Dublin to Danville. I would bring three tubes. I was going to get another tube in Fort Brag after my 2nd flat, but the bike shop was closed for two weeks. I also found that by the 2nd week I could tell my chain needed to be oiled, it was not shifting as smooth as it normally did, fortunately someone left a can of oil at one of the hiker biker camps so I was able to lubricate my chain.

I was not the slowest nor the fastest, I typically averaged 11 -13 miles moving speed an hour depending on the terrain. I am 56 years old.
This was a fantastic trip I really enjoyed it; a bucket list item that I had wanted to do for some time. If you want to see my daily posts of the ride take a look at my Instagram OCIR_Adventures. I hope you find this useful.

Enjoy!
Attached Files
File Type: pdf
bike ride.pdf (393.5 KB, 96 views)

Last edited by pdxsforider; 09-27-18 at 07:02 PM.
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Old 09-27-18, 07:29 PM
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Congrats. I might do that with my kid this spring when (if?) he graduates from Reed. Last time I went down the West Coast (from Port Angeles) was 1991. I still have "the textbook". Glad to hear it still works (mostly).
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Old 09-28-18, 01:47 AM
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Nice report. Ty
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Old 09-28-18, 05:51 AM
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Nice writeup as you made it seem like a very reasonable ride. I really like your leisurely pace as you explored the many nice stops along the way.

I would love to do this ride but may first try the Portland to Seattle, both are paths that I would really like to ride and explore the many state parks and enjoy breweries

Nice work on the attachment!

Last edited by joesch; 09-28-18 at 05:54 AM.
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Old 10-01-18, 08:26 AM
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Good job and thanks for the trip report. I rode from Medford Oregon down to San Francisco years ago. I like the MO of taking a leisurely pace and leaving time to explore. For each place I visited on my trips I knew it was pretty unlikely that I would ever set foot there again, so I tried to make the most and see everything I could. It sounds like aside from the flat issues you had a pretty successful trip.
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Old 10-04-18, 12:52 PM
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I love the Southern OR coast.......N Ca ain't too shabby either.
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Old 10-07-18, 09:27 AM
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EVERY tour is a success! A BAD DAY touring beats a GOOD DAY Workin'!
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Old 10-09-18, 01:29 PM
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Sounds like a great trip. I drove up the CA coast from San Francisco to Crescent City on US 1 a few years ago, and was surprised by how hilly and winding the road was. It must have been quite a workout. I was also surprised by how wild and undeveloped the CA coast was, as I was expecting lots of houses and hotels like the East Coast.
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Old 10-16-18, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by tarwheel
Sounds like a great trip. I drove up the CA coast from San Francisco to Crescent City on US 1 a few years ago, and was surprised by how hilly and winding the road was. It must have been quite a workout. I was also surprised by how wild and undeveloped the CA coast was, as I was expecting lots of houses and hotels like the East Coast.
A few years ago, I was riding through Crescent City. A nasty little windstorm kicked up, and I swear, it picked me & my bike up off the ground, for a second or two. I wasn't hurt at all, but a couple of older ladies stopped to make sure. They said it looked pretty scary, no matter, so I guess I got lucky. 🙂
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Old 12-21-18, 02:17 AM
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Originally Posted by wgscott
Congrats. I might do that with my kid this spring when (if?) he graduates from Reed. Last time I went down the West Coast (from Port Angeles) was 1991. I still have "the textbook". Glad to hear it still works (mostly).

I am thinking in some near future to try a nice touring trip from the Olympic Peninsula down to California (not really know where to exactly but starting on thinking about it).

I did this past Summer a nice loop from Redmond - Mukilteo - ferry - Clinton - Coupeville - ferry - Port Townsend - Kingston - ferry - Edmonds - Redmond. All really nice except the Coupeville ferry cancelled for about 2 hours because of low tide

The previous year I did a ride from Port Gamble to Sul-doc hot springs (rode the south part of the Lake Crescent)


@wgscott: From Port Angeles to Oregon, which route did you took (more specifically the south part)? Is "the textbook" the best guide for touring the west coast down to California?

How you guys come back home? Amtrak ca be a good one reserving a nice bed.
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Old 12-21-18, 03:00 AM
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Originally Posted by wgscott
Congrats. I might do that with my kid this spring when (if?) he graduates from Reed. Last time I went down the West Coast (from Port Angeles) was 1991. I still have "the textbook". Glad to hear it still works (mostly).

I am thinking in some near future to try a nice touring trip from the Olympic Peninsula down to California (not really know where to exactly but starting on thinking about it).

I did this past Summer a nice loop from Redmond - Mukilteo - ferry - Clinton - Coupeville - ferry - Port Townsend - Kingston - ferry - Edmonds - Redmond. All really nice except the Coupeville ferry cancelled for about 2 hours because of low tide

The previous year I did a ride from Port Gamble to Sul-doc hot springs (rode the south part of the Lake Crescent)


@wgscott: From Port Angeles to Oregon, which route did you took (more specifically the south part)? Is "the textbook" the best guide for touring the west coast down to California?

How you guys come back home? Amtrak ca be a good one reserving a nice bed.
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Old 12-21-18, 12:10 PM
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Originally Posted by phtomita
I am thinking in some near future to try a nice touring trip from the Olympic Peninsula down to California (not really know where to exactly but starting on thinking about it).

I did this past Summer a nice loop from Redmond - Mukilteo - ferry - Clinton - Coupeville - ferry - Port Townsend - Kingston - ferry - Edmonds - Redmond. All really nice except the Coupeville ferry cancelled for about 2 hours because of low tide

The previous year I did a ride from Port Gamble to Sul-doc hot springs (rode the south part of the Lake Crescent)


@wgscott: From Port Angeles to Oregon, which route did you took (more specifically the south part)? Is "the textbook" the best guide for touring the west coast down to California?

How you guys come back home? Amtrak ca be a good one reserving a nice bed.
I was a grad student at Berkeley at the time, so the end was home. (We did SF to LA a few years previously.) I flew into Seattle and we had a friend drop us off at Port Angeles. The route was US 101 the whole way (becomes CA1 at Leggit.) We followed the book mostly, but also what were then called Bikecentennial maps.
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Old 12-21-18, 02:13 PM
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Sounds like a great trip...thanks for sharing!
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Old 12-21-18, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by wgscott
I was a grad student at Berkeley at the time, so the end was home. (We did SF to LA a few years previously.) I flew into Seattle and we had a friend drop us off at Port Angeles. The route was US 101 the whole way (becomes CA1 at Leggit.) We followed the book mostly, but also what were then called Bikecentennial maps.
Thank you - I looked at couples places from street view and looks there is good paved side-walk along the 101. Bridges are narrow, but overall looks quite safe.
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Old 12-22-18, 09:43 AM
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Congrats. Yeah, hard to have a bad time on that route. Did it in '89. Bask in the GLORY!
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Old 12-24-18, 08:27 AM
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OP - Thanks for the ride report. Sounds like you had a great trip. I am planning on doing Seattle to Eugene, then if I can swing it, continue to San Francisco.

Originally Posted by phtomita
I am thinking in some near future to try a nice touring trip from the Olympic Peninsula down to California (not really know where to exactly but starting on thinking about it).
How you guys come back home? Amtrak ca be a good one reserving a nice bed.
The issue with the Amtrak for me is that the train goes inland from Eugene to Oakland, so it's either spend a couple of days riding inland, or plan the trip to end in either Eugene or SF. I am also considering Bikeflights and fly, which would necessitate boxing the bike and shipping from a bike shop.
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