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Calif to Seattle, Wa, in Jan


blackyam

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Hi, everyone. Blessed Advent. I have to be in Seattle, Wa, the second week of Jan. Is riding there from Ca at that time an iffy idea (bad idea)? If it is, what about driving a four-wheel drive (Subaru) as an alternative? Should I carry chains if I drive, or will M+S tires do? I've never been to Wa. Thanks in advance.

 

---John.

(email better than PM)

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I'd say the biggest downside is that, if you're planning to ride up I-5, it is going to be a really boring ride. N.Cal/S.Ore is kind of pretty when you go through the mountains, but then it's basically a straight line up to Seattle. Typical weather once you're north of Ashland, OR that time of year is damp and chilly, but usually not snowy/icy (though both are possible - two winters ago, just about that time, my wife, son and I went to a Ural demo day in Salem - the snow/ice were so bad that only four people showed up...and we were three of them!).

 

It's entirely possible the Siskiyous will be snowy/icy/unfun on a motorcycle. You could go up the coast, which will be much prettier as well as warmer/amost surely ice-free, but it will take longer. Parts of it will also likely be wet/rainy and mabye quite windy.

 

If all that sounds like fun, you'll be fine (I'd do it if I had the time). If it doesn't sound like fun, and you don't want to fly, I'd suggest the Subaru. It will handle it all no problem - you probably won't "need" chains, but I would certainly carry a set (and if they were a new set, I'd practice putting them on somewhere warm and dry before heading out).

 

josh

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I live a 100 miles north of Seattle and I suggest you drive or fly! The weather has been the pits and predicted to continue. Also you are going to get into snow for sure in the mountains. GT

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I've been seeing FB posts about chain controls or closures this past week or so on Siskiyou Pass on I-5. The PNW has had a steady train of storms. Who knows what it will do in January?

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I-90 closed between western and eastern Washington. Been that was off and on for a week now. Ice on I-5 in the Portland Oregon area. This is getting to be a PIA!

 

GT

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I-90 closed between western and eastern Washington. Been that was off and on for a week now. Ice on I-5 in the Portland Oregon area. This is getting to be a PIA!

 

GT

 

No ice here recently. Just LOTS of rain. We've only had maybe a couple of nights below freezing this season, and those were a while back. Which is not to say we won't have more any time between now and March.

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Thank you all for your replies. Since I've never driven in snow or ice, I decided to bite the bullet and fly. Found roundtrip flights to Seattle/Tacoma on Southwest for $49 each way, and I figured I might not be able to find a similarly-priced flight a few days before my trip if I were to need one then. Of course, now that I have bought (non-refundable) air tickets, I'm sure that the weather will be brilliant.

 

Cheers, and merry Christmas and happy New Year to all.

 

---John.

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Thank you all for your replies. Since I've never driven in snow or ice, I decided to bite the bullet and fly. Found roundtrip flights to Seattle/Tacoma on Southwest for $49 each way, and I figured I might not be able to find a similarly-priced flight a few days before my trip if I were to need one then. Of course, now that I have bought (non-refundable) air tickets, I'm sure that the weather will be brilliant.

 

Cheers, and merry Christmas and happy New Year to all.

 

---John.

 

Good choice!

 

GT

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While it sounds like you'll be saving money by flying, if id known you'd never driven in the snow I would have said to drive it just for the experience.

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Yep, you are right I got stuck in Flagstaff a couple of years ago for two days and we couldn't ride out until it thawed.also got into snow on the Devils hi way. That is one of the best rides in AZ. You have a great state for riding. I'll be doing more.

GT

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Flying is the smart choice, weather has been nasty, this week is sunny, but temps in low 20's. Snow pack report is 120% of normal. Not a good idea to ride your RT, car might be ok, but for $49, fly!!

 

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Pixk a better time to go (like April) and I will ride with you. Leaving my bike in Yorba Linda, after riding from Phoenix in January.

Plan to fly down and ride back this spring..

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you all again for sharing. At $49 per person each way, my wife and young daughter accompanied me to Seattle. This was our first time there. I enjoyed a very good conference, and they enjoyed the sights and (especially) foods. The weather was brilliant, that is to say, it didn't rain---yea! It turned out to be a marvelous trip for all. :-)

 

---John.

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