Best route to BRC from Seattle

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Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby themightyaghabheegy » Sat Aug 13, 2011 7:35 pm

Any tips on this?? any routes to avoid? best just to google the route and go?

Any advice is always appreciated :)
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby Savannah » Sat Aug 13, 2011 7:52 pm

http://www.burningman.com/preparation/t ... o_brc.html

Seattle to
Eugene . . . to
Klamath Falls (I like to get water & bread here at the full-service Fred Meyer; you can google it) . . . to
Alturas, CA (Fill up on gas--in case it's night, esp. if worried about Cedarville's gas station being closed) . . . to
Cedarville (BBQ available, even fairly late) to . . .
just North of Gerlach (not actually passing through it, but turning left North of Gerlach and driving to the playa).

It will take about 15 hours at the fastest, plus the multiple hours in line you will wait at the busiest times, so I highly recommend breaking the trip into 2 days with a sleep stop in central Oregon some time after Eugene. Careful about taking impromptu potty breaks near rivers; there are some vicious biting flies near Oregon's rivers.

In the last few hours of the trip you have to slow down--one reason why Google Maps' estimate of 12.5 hours (haha!) for the entire trip is not going to be accurate. Route 447 is twisty, and there are free-range cows in the road occasionally; they like the warmth of the asphalt at night. Avoid. :) The kamikaze bunnies, alas, you must mow down, because it's safer to hit them than to swerve. (Some of those roads have no shoulder--or a really soft shoulder--and you can get stuck at minimum.)
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby trueform » Sat Aug 13, 2011 9:14 pm

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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby aknod » Sat Aug 13, 2011 9:45 pm

Last year we had more problems with suicidal squirrels than bunnies, but with the bus they squish the same. What we usually do is leave ~noon saturday, camp somewhere that night, hit Klamath falls walmart on sunday, then Eagle's Nest in Tionesta, CA, leave there about 2-3am, gas up in Alturas and hit the Playa about 6:30-7:30am. The sun is coming up about the time the rabbits and squirrels get moving.
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby headquarters » Sat Aug 13, 2011 10:01 pm

Went about every way you can think of and the best/fastest way has always been the way the BM website tells you. Seattle to Eugene then over the mountains to klamath falls and alturas etc.
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby Simile » Sun Aug 14, 2011 5:25 pm

The route given above (and suggested on the BM website) is the way I've always gone from Seattle. Klamath Falls is the last stop with big-box stores (Mal*Wart, Fred Meyer, Home Depot and such) and mega-sized supermarkets. There are smaller food stores and a drug store in Alturas (Rite-Aid?) for anything else you might have forgotten (and a good place to fill up your tank with gas). Buy any fresh fruits in Alturas, too. If you buy them earlier, you could have trouble with the agricultural check-point coming into California. Alturas is also the last place with multiple motels before getting to Burning Man, or after a later departure.

I also like to stop and wander around Cedarville a bit. It's a cool little town and they seem really supportive of the burners, so I like to pick up a few things there as a nice gesture. Cadarville also has the last convenient porta-potties (at the corner, across from the gas station and corner store) before hitting the playa. As others have said, take it slow from Cedarville to your camping spot.

I still have never been to or through Gerlach, so I have no idea what's there (you can just turn towards the playa before you ever get there).
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby Stickygreen » Sun Aug 14, 2011 9:42 pm

I've taken all the routes listed on Gwally, and Svannah is right that's the best route in my opinion. Gwally calls it route #1
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby mdmf007 » Sun Aug 14, 2011 9:45 pm

Takes me 10 hours from The Narrows Bridge. I stop for nothing... I have a bladder of a moose, bucket of soda, and an empty bucket of soda to refill as i drive. of course this year I have some guests coming, so will have to stop for food i guess.

later.
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby StaceyS » Sun Aug 14, 2011 9:58 pm

I'm coming from Bend, so I hook up with the route in Klamath Falls. There's a great local chain called Big R there that has a ton of good things for outdoors. It started as a ranching store, but has expanded. Its right off the main road through town, so its really easy. On the left toward the south end of town.
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby thirt33n » Sun Aug 14, 2011 11:51 pm

best part....no 447 south of gerlach!!!!!! we win!
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby dragonpilot » Mon Aug 15, 2011 2:02 pm

If you can leave around 8 AM on Saturday (Aug 27), make it a leisurely trip with an overnight stop for pre-Burn fun at Summer Lake Hot Springs (OR Hwy 31 just north of Paisley, OR). It's Called G Wally Route #3, Low Pass Summer Lake. Some also like the Eagle's Nest camp...and I think that's along the Klamath Falls route.

The route to Summer Lake takes you down US 97 thru Bend, OR. From Summer Lake pass thru Lakeview, OR...nicely stocked Safeway there that stocks extra Burner supplies to their shelves, including plenty of water! From Lakeview you'll go to Cedarville...with an optional stop in Alturas, CA.

I've done Summer Lake for the last 4 years and wouldn't miss it! It's become integral to my Burning Man trip. And if you have time on the back end, you'll run into plenty of folks there on the trip home, but due to time constraints we usually go thru Klamath Falls to Eugene.

Which ever way you'll go, you'll be there!
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby Stickygreen » Mon Aug 15, 2011 9:59 pm

[quote="dragonpilot"]If you can leave around 8 AM on Saturday (Aug 27), make it a leisurely trip with an overnight stop for pre-Burn fun at Summer Lake Hot Springs (OR Hwy 31 just north of Paisley, OR). It's Called G Wally Route #3, Low Pass Summer Lake. Some also like the Eagle's Nest camp...and I think that's along the Klamath Falls route.

The route to Summer Lake takes you down US 97 thru Bend, OR. From Summer Lake pass thru Lakeview, OR...nicely stocked Safeway there that stocks extra Burner supplies to their shelves, including plenty of water! From Lakeview you'll go to Cedarville...with an optional stop in Alturas, CA.

I've done Summer Lake for the last 4 years and wouldn't miss it! It's become integral to my Burning Man trip. And if you have time on the back end, you'll run into plenty of folks there on the trip home, but due to time constraints we usually go thru Klamath Falls to Eugene.

Which ever way you'll go, you'll be there![/quote]


Personally, I stay at summer lake on the way home...

Summer lake is a bit of a shit-hole On the way down, It's kinda like drinking OJ after you brush your teeth. – a dark dirty cement pond (literally) in a old rotting barn is a bit anticlimactic before the adventure that is BM.
On the way back though, that Shithole becomes Shagra-la!
With showers and running hot water for dirty playafied folk Summer Lake campground / Hot springs is a great place to clean yourself up for the trip home.- and after a week of living in filth and dust – that Rotting barn is a Five Star resort. Also you usually have about 200 other Burner campers you have just shared a great experience with, who you can talk to and connect with (now that BM has pulled you out of your shell)

just my 2 cents.
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby lunasmiles » Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:24 pm

Hi everybody!

We're getting excited and panicked at the same time, as we have only 8 days before we leave Seattle! First timers here, so I'm sure we'll take too much of some stuff and not enough of important stuff, but I think we'll survive.

We've acquired a partially converted city bus from another long time burner, so it'll be an adventure getting there. We've been advised to take GWally's Route #3, as it has fewer steep grades.

Our plan is to pick up a friend in Portland on Saturday, drive all day Sunday to Lakeview or Alturas, then head out early Monday morning for the final push to the gate. Hopefully we can bypass Gerlach on the way in.

So what can we expect as far as slow traffic and wait lines? Will we be sitting for hours with our motor running? Any guestimates at how long it'll take from Cedarville until we're through the gate and on our way to camp?

Here's a photo of our bus: https://picasaweb.google.com/Lunasmiling/BurningManBus?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCK6kxa_BrInFLA&feat=directlink

Thanks so much!
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby lemur » Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:24 pm

lunasmiles wrote:drive all day Sunday to Lakeview or Alturas, then head out early Monday morning for the final push to the gate. Hopefully we can bypass Gerlach on the way in.

So what can we expect as far as slow traffic and wait lines? Will we be sitting for hours with our motor running?


in my experiences from the time you turn off of the pavement on to the playa road you can expect 4-5 hours to get through the gate from midnight to pretty much anytime on monday up till at least 5pm/when it starts to get dark..

it will probably be a slow crawl, with some opportunities to turn off your engine..(probably more so for vehicles in the truck/bus lane as they get searched)

arriving on monday is pretty much always a long wait...
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby some seeing eye » Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:47 pm

I've used all the GWally routes and some more. Summer Lake hot springs is great for meeting new friends, and getting cleaned up outbound. Getting clean will improve your outlook, in my experience. It's a long push between there and Seattle, so Portland might be a good overnight if you are tired. Klamath Falls has some inexpensive and charming motels and sit down dive restaurants if you need that inbound or out. You can figure out your gas tank range, ideally you can get in and out on one tank from Alturas! Gerlach is busy and congested in and out. But if you find yourself outbound in Gerlach, the fire department will wash your bus (daytime as far as I know) for a donation for the schools which is cool. Cedarville gas is not reliably open late at night, especially on Labor Day weekend.

The 447 turn left to get to BM without going into Gerlach comes up fast and is not well marked, go slow and watch your mapping (not sure if you are on the cell phone net for phone GPS mapping at that point). If you are behind a posse of burners, someone will get it right. Seriously watch out for cows on 447, especially at night they are invisible, they can weigh up to a ton and a half and no one wins in that collision.

Enjoy, looks like you have an epic spaceship for your first burn!
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby lunasmiles » Thu Aug 18, 2011 10:20 pm

That's good info, thanks!

Google map isn't very helpful in figuring out how far the gate is from the Gerlach turnoff, but I suppose I shouldn't get too anal about planning, eh?

I'm wondering, though, if we'd be better off timing our arrival for later in the afternoon on Monday, if there's a possibility the lines will be shorter. How early does it get dark out there? We don't need to set up everything when we first get there, because we'll have a place to sleep, but wouldn't want to be driving around on the playa in the dark trying to find our camp.

Given that this year is a sell-out, I imagine it's anyone's guess about wait times throughout the week!

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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby Savannah » Sat Aug 20, 2011 5:19 pm

Current sunset in Gerlach is 7:49pm, and it gets dark about an hour later.

A good halfway point on the drive down is Eugene, at minimum. I would say further, if you feel safe to drive that far (i.e. to one of the tiny towns, like Chemult in Central Oregon, or a campground) because you can haul ass the first day and then sleep a full 8 hours and be fully rested for the next day of driving and the long wait at the entrance.
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby OregonRed » Sat Aug 20, 2011 5:26 pm

Oakridge, OR is a good stop if you're up to driving East from Eugene on 58 for about an hour. There is a campground and a hotel there, plus fast food, real food, and a few gas stations.

Hwy 58 is fairly twisty-turny tho, so if you're tired, I'd recommend stopping in Eugene.
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Re: Best route to BRC from Seattle

Postby some seeing eye » Sat Aug 20, 2011 6:12 pm

The city moves slightly every year but here are just a few gravel transitions from the road 34 to the playa. Figure ~10 miles each way from the 447 junction.
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