Ca route 80 or 395 HELP?

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Ca route 80 or 395 HELP?

Postby SHARPER » Fri Jan 09, 2004 4:36 pm

I will be driving a 22 ft 1974 Dodge motorhome and I am concerned about the ascent of the roads. I figure rt 80 is the flatest, but 395 is more direct. I'm coming from the Palm Springs area. Does anyone have any experience with these routes or know where I can get drving information?
Thanks in advance!
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Postby Chai Guy » Fri Jan 09, 2004 6:18 pm

I drive a seriously overloaded 68 aircooled volkswagen bus to Burning Man and have for the last 7 years. I've tried every route and my personal opinion is that although the 395 route may require more frequent rest stops for my bus and the head winds in the desert portion of the drive can be hell (i.e. going 30mph with your foot pegged to the floor and feeling like someone is pointing a hairdryer on "High" directly at your face). It is still the best route, if nothing else the scenery is much better.

Even with the 5 to the 80 you are still going to pull hills, including the Grapevine, so no way around that. I haven't found that there is much difference in the amount of time it takes me to get there either way.

2 years ago my brother moved to Carson City and I have to say that stopping and sleeping at his house and then driving the rest of the way to the playa has really made the difference for my quality of life those first few days back at Burning Man (and decompressing at his house makes the drive home so much more bareable too!) So if you have the time, I really suggest stopping and getting a good night's rest before you make the final drive to BRC.
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rest when tired and drive as a team

Postby joel the ornery » Sat Jan 10, 2004 7:37 am

After 20 years of convoys and a guess-timate of about 1 million miles driven... two pieces of advice;

1. When weary, stop and rest... it is best to get there late than not at all.

2. Always drive with a co-driver... someone that stays awake along with the driver... no sleeping co-drivers.... refer to #1 above.

Fatigue should be one of your concerns and rest one of your top priorities.
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Postby Badger » Sat Jan 10, 2004 12:06 pm

I'd take 395 up to the Kern River Canyon and head down to Bakersfield and then on to I-80. Not quite as tortuous as 395 North nor is it quite as bad dealing with the Grapevine (either way).
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Postby III » Sun Jan 11, 2004 10:06 am

i've done the trip from so cal a number of different ways, sometimes hauling some serious loads.

the most heavy load friendly route is to take 395 into bishop, and then cut over into nevada on the s6, and take the 95/alt95 up into fernley/wadsworth. the most mountainous sections are right after ridgecrest, and crossing the state line, neither of which is nearly as strenuous as either crossing by mammoth, or going through donner pass.

(besides which, it's also my favorite scenic/traffic/mentalspace wise)
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Postby Bob » Mon Jan 12, 2004 3:04 am

OTOH, plenty of nice rest stops N of Bishop, eg Convict Lake.
Amazing desert structures & stuff: http://sites.google.com/site/potatotrap/

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Postby Badger » Mon Jan 12, 2004 10:23 am

Convict Lake.


Oooh. Convict Lake. VERY nice place. The view from the lake (lloking west) affords a view of probably THE best example of roof pendants on the planet.

http://instruct.westvalley.edu/lopez/trips/east_sierra/images/convict_lake_pendant.jpg
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driving to the event

Postby Crankful » Mon Jan 12, 2004 11:46 am

I took my 1969 Dodge Ventura class A up 395 via Bishop and then down the spooky highway route without any trouble....this year I am going to go to Primm in Nevada and head north skirting the mountains... 8)
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Postby Chai Guy » Mon Jan 12, 2004 1:21 pm

the most heavy load friendly route is to take 395 into bishop, and then cut over into nevada on the s6, and take the 95/alt95 up into fernley/wadsworth.


Agreed, I just got back from Lake Tahoe and the CHP was stopping traffic just outside of Bishop and so we turned around and took the S6 route, very flat and didn't take that much longer than taking 395 all the way.

Joel's advice is also worth repeating- Don't drive tired! If you are pounding redbulls and driving with the stereo cranked up full volume and sticking your head out the window to stay awake, just pull over and get some sleep. Co-drivers need to stay awake too! I find that not driving at night is a lot safer too.
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If tired

Postby naga brain » Mon Jan 12, 2004 4:07 pm

My sister and Brother in Law own a motel, campground and restaurant just south of Bridgeport on 395. THey've got cheap places to camp and a good fishing stream. And that basin has some incredible hot springs. And I know Chai knows those springs (ala Tribes)...Anyone interested post and I will give you PM info on the localle.

Is that north of where most of the SOCal folks head north instead of Northwest?
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looks like we have a winner!

Postby SHARPER » Tue Jan 13, 2004 12:17 am

thanks to all! Seems like the 395 has the most votes (here as well as other resources for pulling a motorhome) Would like the info re place to stop and fish! Please PM me the info, thank you.
After a weekend at Joshua Tree with some new friends, it looks like I will have a co-pilot in the form of my husband Bill. Added advantage is that he is a mechanic and knows our motorhome inside-out! Can't beat bringing your mechanic along for the ride! Don't you agree Chai? :wink:
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Postby Chai Guy » Tue Jan 13, 2004 5:02 pm

Can't beat bringing your mechanic along for the ride! Don't you agree Chai?


That, or a spare 1600cc Single port engine.


Did someone mention fishing?


http://convictlake.com/the_lake.html

http://www.easternsierrafishing.com

http://www.rockcreeklake.com

http://www.crowleylakefishcamp.com/

http://www.395.com/index.shtml?/fishrep ... togo.shtml

You catch em' I'll cook em!
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Fishing=me

Postby naga brain » Thu Jan 15, 2004 6:45 pm

>Did someone mention fishing?

Yeah I did. I dig that whole Owens River drainage for fishing. It is just amazing. On Crowley I caught some beautiful wild rainbows. Then the Walker Creek area's bitchen too. My sister's place is right on Virginia Creek and those little trout are just so damn sneaky... It's a challenge...


>You catch em' I'll cook em!

You are on! But, I dig cooking them too tho...

But perhaps we ought to start a different thread for this...or Tribes?
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Postby Dr. Pyro » Mon Jan 19, 2004 12:25 pm

There's another plus, using Trey's suggestion, of 395 to S6 to 95N to Fernley: As you approach Schurz, NV, just one mile befor the 95/Alt 95 split, is the Four Seasons tabacco shop in the Wind River Indian Reservation. They have an excellent selection of pyrotechnics, from morters to Roman candles. Now since fireworks are expressly prohibited from Black Rock City, you will need to set them off before you arrive ;D.

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