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Author Topic: Northwest "must drives"  (Read 7926 times)

Landshark

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Northwest "must drives"
« on: May 16, 2011, 11:15:54 PM »

Inspired by the North Cascade thread, what stretches of roads in the Northwest are must drives?

Some of the ones that quickly come to mind are:

- WA-20, entire length
- EB WA-410 from its junction with US-12 over Chinook Pass to Enumclaw
- US-101 from Long Beach, WA to San Francisco, CA (or if you want be be technical to this thread, where it exists the NW to the south)
- Going to the Sun Road, Glacier National Park
- WA-11 Bellingham to Burlington
- WA-129/OR-3
- WA-14  Maryhill to Washougal
- Crater Lake Rim Drive


« Last Edit: June 21, 2012, 07:10:18 PM by Bickendan »
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corco

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2011, 11:22:10 PM »

The entire length of WA 31- the whole Selkirk Loop if possible

Washington 27 is also really scenic through the Palouse

If we're counting Idaho that adds several more

Landshark

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2011, 11:24:52 PM »

^ WA, OR, ID, Western MT, heck the old Oregon territory if you dare. Even BC if you want. 
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agentsteel53

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2011, 11:25:34 PM »

old US-97, Blewett Pass, Washington.  It is a harrowing drive - the road has been abandoned since the 1960s so there are spots where you get about 12 inches margin past the width of your car between the proverbial rock and a hard place.  

still, though - the source of my favorite photograph which I have ever taken, Oct 2007.  

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2011, 11:37:50 PM »

OR-242 (the old McKenzie Pass Highway) is an interesting drive . . . it's definitely a harrowing road, but it becomes worth the effort once you get up to the lava fields near the summit.

The old Vantage Highway (former US-10) from Ellensburg, WA to Vantage, WA is an interesting drive, too.  It used to have these really archaic looking guardrails and look like a bit of a relic, but from what I've seen on Google StreetView, they've recently upgraded a fair bit of it, most likely because of the big wind farms that went in there.

US-197 is also a surprisingly underrated drive for pretty much its entire length.
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xonhulu

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2011, 11:48:18 PM »

I agree on OR 242 - that's a great drive.

I recently discovered OR 380 from Prineville to Paulina, especially if you continue on the county/forest road east of there to US 395.  Goes through some great remote ranching and canyon country.

Others would include OR 205 through Frenchglen continuing down county roads to Denio, the loop up Steens Mountain, Old Highway 30 in the Columbia Gorge, and also the Old Highway 30 routing called Old Emigrant Road in the Blue Mountains, in addition to the roads you guys have already named.
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nexus73

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2011, 11:54:22 PM »

State Route 38 (Oregon) was noted as being one of the 10 best scenic routes in the nation by a travel magazine a bit over 30 years ago.  See the Umpqua River, which is surprisingly wide from Scottsburg to Reedsport.  Lush pastureland, green hills, forests, narrow river fronts, a large elk viewing area that the elk actually like to stay in and as you drive it, there are plenty of 3-lane sections for passing plus there is only one real grade to deal with and it's not that bad for a highway going through the Coast Range.

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Landshark

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2011, 11:59:09 PM »

Another one is Hurricane Ridge, Olympic N.P.
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corco

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2011, 11:59:14 PM »

Since we get Idaho too I'll have to toss in Idaho 55, the Salmon River Rd east of Riggins- continue that by making the loop towards Burgdorf and then back to McCall, Idaho 13, Idaho 14, Idaho 72/Oregon 86, and Idaho 3

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2011, 04:20:55 AM »

OR-140 on the Oregon Outback scenic loop is a rather fantastic drive last I was out there. Off of US-395, Abert Rim (and the endoheric lake directly beneath the fault scarp) is absolutely stunning. There's also the Redwood Highway (US-199), especially just past O'Brien and all the way through to Crescent City.
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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2011, 03:56:37 PM »

Any recommendations for Spokane - Couer d'Alene - Kalispell? We're taking a trip this summer.
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Landshark

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2011, 08:08:37 PM »

Any recommendations for Spokane - Couer d'Alene - Kalispell? We're taking a trip this summer.

I recommend heading to Sandpoint from either Spokane or Couer d'Alene and take ID/MT 200 from Sandpoint to US-93 and take that north around Flathead Lake.   Great views of both Lake Pend Oreille and Great Flathead Lake, plus impressive mountain views if you are heading eastbound.

US-2 from Sandpoint to Kalispell is also nice.  Another way is to take ID/MT-200 and then cut through the Cabinet Mts on MT-56 to US-2 near Troy.  This is the favorite route of my Whitefish cousins to Spokane.


If you are visiting Glacier N.P., Going to the Sun is great, if it is open.  On nice days it can be crowded.

« Last Edit: May 17, 2011, 08:13:10 PM by Landshark »
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Bruce

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2011, 10:41:07 PM »

Although not a state route all the way and partly a gravel road, the Mountain Loop Highway in eastern Snohomish County. Good views of mid-Cascades. Starts at SR 9 in Lake Stevens, travels via SR 92 to Granite Falls and loops up to Darrington and SR 530, where you can travel west back to I-5 and SR 9 through Arlington or north to SR 20.

Another good drive: SR 20 Spur (its a ferry route through the San Juans mostly).

bookem

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2011, 04:48:36 PM »

OR 138 along the North Umpqua between Roseburg and Crater Lake is amazing.  There are some nice-looking campsites along this stretch as well.
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drummer_evans_aki

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2011, 11:05:09 PM »

Lake Of The Woods Highway (OR 140 from White City to Klamath Falls) is absolutely gorgeous. Lots of trees. And going over the Doaks Mountain Summit is quite nice.
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agentsteel53

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #15 on: June 24, 2011, 11:46:36 PM »

Lake Of The Woods Highway (OR 140 from White City to Klamath Falls) is absolutely gorgeous. Lots of trees. And going over the Doaks Mountain Summit is quite nice.

absolutely.  I've driven 140 only once - in the dead of winter, no less! - and it was quite the drive across the passes, up and down the 8% inclines.
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drummer_evans_aki

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Re: Northwest "must drives"
« Reply #16 on: June 25, 2011, 04:07:42 PM »

Lake Of The Woods Highway (OR 140 from White City to Klamath Falls) is absolutely gorgeous. Lots of trees. And going over the Doaks Mountain Summit is quite nice.

absolutely.  I've driven 140 only once - in the dead of winter, no less! - and it was quite the drive across the passes, up and down the 8% inclines.

Oh nice. US-26 through Mount Hood is beautiful. I didn't get to see anything on 26 east of Madras though I'd like to. US-97 from OR-58 to Klamath Falls is nice as well. I personally think 97 from Klamath Falls to Bend should be a four lane highway and add another rest area near the Klamath/Deschutes County Line.

If they improve OR-35 near the US-26 interchange at Mount Hood, that would really be a gorgeous drive through Barlow and Bennett Pass. I drove up there a couple weeks ago and it was bumpy.
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