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Author Topic: Crater Lake round trip  (Read 2256 times)

Max Rockatansky

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Crater Lake round trip
« on: April 15, 2016, 04:18:14 PM »

I'm heading up to see some friends in Oregon that I haven't seen for about five years in Klamath Falls.  I'm figuring that I might as well make the best of it and take in some sight seeing.  This is what I have planned, any input or thoughts?

Day 1
Start:  Bakersfield, CA
End:  Klamath Falls, OR
Route:  :  CA 43, CA 99, US 50, I-5, US 97, CA 161, OR 39, OR 140 and US 97

Sites of Interest
-  Mount Shasta on US 97
-  An old alignment of US 97 just north of the Mount Shasta overlook on US 97
-  Tule Lake
-  Lava Beds National Monument

Map Link
https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Bakersfield,+CA/Lava+Beds+National+Monument,+California/Klamath+Falls,+OR/@38.7036517,-125.222923,6z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m20!4m19!1m5!1m1!1s0x80ea6bc8b994cb0d:0x59360c0998fe74c8!2m2!1d-119.0187125!2d35.3732921!1m5!1m1!1s0x54cea67ae59ba40d:0xd388a0ca3c885cfb!2m2!1d-121.5098159!2d41.7142224!1m5!1m1!1s0x54c8d45968f20ee3:0xf48d7ff528b99726!2m2!1d-121.7816704!2d42.224867!3e0?hl=en

Day 2
Start:  Klamath Falls, OR
End:  Crescent City, CA
Route:  :  US 97, OR 62, OR 238 and US 199

Sites of Interest
-  Crater Lake National Park
-  Jacksonville, OR mining town.
-  If I have time Oregon Caves National Monument
-  Parts of Redwood National Park

Map Link
https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Klamath+Falls,+OR/Crater+Lake+National+Park,+Oregon/Jacksonville,+OR/Oregon+Caves+National+Monument+%26+Preserve,+Cave+Junction,+OR/Crescent+City,+CA/@42.3362131,-124.113233,8z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m37!4m36!1m5!1m1!1s0x54c8d45968f20ee3:0xf48d7ff528b99726!2m2!1d-121.7816704!2d42.224867!1m10!1m1!1s0x54c6170840e5e339:0x902bf2e1452fe3a3!2m2!1d-122.1684785!2d42.8684411!3m4!1m2!1d-122.4783774!2d42.8056248!3s0x54c609705a555839:0x2f4aeae810f3b417!1m5!1m1!1s0x54cf9c601d18ecf1:0xe8c70a05ce75c30!2m2!1d-122.9669865!2d42.3134584!1m5!1m1!1s0x54cfee79fbf2127d:0x928f6fc902b33e73!2m2!1d-123.4074226!2d42.0985306!1m5!1m1!1s0x54d066375c6288db:0x76e89ab07375e62e!2m2!1d-124.2025913!2d41.7557501!3e0?hl=en

Day 3
Start:  Crescent City, CA
End:  Sacramento, CA
Route:  :  US 101, CA 299 and I-5

Sites of Interest
-  Parts of Redwood National Park
-  Klamath, CA ghost town site
-  Helena, CA ghost town site
-  Weaverville, CA gold rush mining town
-  Whiskeytown, CA ghost town site
-  Shasta, CA ghost town site
-  Old Sacramento
-  Sutter's Fort

Map Link

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Crescent+City,+CA/Shasta+State+Historic+Park,+California+299,+Redding,+CA/Old+Sacramento,+Sacramento,+CA/Sutter's+Fort,+L+Street,+Sacramento,+CA/@40.1432404,-125.0797798,7z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m26!4m25!1m5!1m1!1s0x54d066375c6288db:0x76e89ab07375e62e!2m2!1d-124.2025913!2d41.7557501!1m5!1m1!1s0x54d2f7cb5886f22d:0xf3f6d63424b0fc6f!2m2!1d-122.370811!2d40.6109656!1m5!1m1!1s0x809ad1346fc169f7:0x5d22e86bd345e49a!2m2!1d-121.5038343!2d38.5835131!1m5!1m1!1s0x809ad0ea808f20cd:0xefd00504fd86b51a!2m2!1d-121.4711808!2d38.572358!3e0?hl=en

Day 4
Start:  Sacramento, CA
End:  Bakersfield CA
Route:  :  I-5, CA 160, I-5, CA 4, CA 99 and CA 43

Sites of Interest
-  Locke, CA

Map Link
https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Sacramento,+CA+95811/Locke,+Walnut+Grove,+CA/Bakersfield,+CA/@36.9546867,-122.5173106,7z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m20!4m19!1m5!1m1!1s0x809ad0d2fda0dbc3:0xaa1fd53beeed51a4!2m2!1d-121.4941738!2d38.5967128!1m5!1m1!1s0x809ab113d647f497:0x16e1845e4d9bdb16!2m2!1d-121.508808!2d38.2505673!1m5!1m1!1s0x80ea6bc8b994cb0d:0x59360c0998fe74c8!2m2!1d-119.0187125!2d35.3732921!3e0?hl=en

There is a lot more freeway driving than I would like on this trip but really it's the only way to get north quick on a four day weekend.  If this was July I would probably take CA 89 around Lassen Peak but alas the road won't be cleared likely for another 45 days.

oscar

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Re: Crater Lake round trip
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2016, 04:56:51 PM »

Much of the Crater Lake park is still closed by snow for a few more months, though your route (OR 62) is open for through traffic, and you can go into part of the park from there. Check for road conditions and chain requirements on highway 62, anyway. When I went there a few Octobers ago, there were warnings that a chain requirement might be imposed on short notice, and so I got some chains, though I wound up not having to use them.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: Crater Lake round trip
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2016, 05:02:23 PM »

Much of the Crater Lake park is still closed by snow for a few more months, though your route (OR 62) is open for through traffic, and you can go into part of the park from there. Check for road conditions and chain requirements on highway 62, anyway. When I went there a few Octobers ago, there were warnings that a chain requirement might be imposed on short notice, and so I got some chains, though I wound up not having to use them.

Yeah basically it's just going to be the area at the top of the Rim near the Lodge that will be open with possibly some of the western loop.  Usually the western loop opens in June while the eastern is usually July if I remember correctly?  Anyways, fully equipped with chains, snow tires and an alternate route via 66 if needed.  Basically I knew these people I'm meeting up with from Arizona, they just moved up to Oregon last year and haven't even been to Crater Lake at all.  All I really care about is catching up and grabbing a couple pano shots of the lake with snow surrounding it.

Max Rockatansky

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Re: Crater Lake round trip
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2016, 10:14:16 PM »

Well day 1 is down and in the books.  It was a miserable slog through San Joaquin Valley with the rain....Sacramento was a disaster during rush hour but I made it to Lava Beds NM.  So far the weather has been gloomy and rainy but it looks like the temperature is holding above freezing at least to 7,000 feet.  So basically I have my eye on Crater Lake through webcam, Park weather data and Oregon 511.  So long as nothing freakish happens tonight it should be clear for most of the day tomorrow but I'll confirm in the morning.

Tule Lake and Lower Klamath Lake...on the flip side are interesting as all hell since they both managed to survive the Klamath project...even if it's to a small extent.  Can't say the same about others like Tulare Lake.

Max Rockatansky

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Re: Crater Lake round trip
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2016, 12:36:59 AM »

Almost forgot to recap today.  Getting to Crater Lake was no issue at all, no traffic and no bad weather.  I met up with some family friends that moved this way a couple years back and spent much longer than I was anticipating.  Ironic thing is that the packed in snow actually gets you a much better view of the lake if you are careful enough to note where the walk paths are buried.  Basically all that meant was skipping the Oregon Caves but still squeezed a trip through Jacksonville into things.  One observation about Oregon as a whole....when the hell do the speed limit increases take affect?  Seriously there were parts of OR 62 and US 199 that should be 60 or 65 MPH and not the current 55 MPH.  Speaking of US 199, boy is that a fun ride once you hit the California side all the way through the Redwood Groves.  Lots of tight but fast turns to be had along the river banks and plenty of passing areas to get past the slow folks.  It's kind of surprising to me how much traffic US 199 really gets after half a dozen trips.  I suppose that's why it stayed a US Route all these years past the demise of US 99.

Max Rockatansky

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Re: Crater Lake round trip
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2016, 09:20:17 PM »

Recap on today....no major issues.  Made through the coast early in the morning, just had a mild haze and no fog obscuring the beach or Redwoods.  I was actually surprised how few people were actually at Redwood National Park but is Mother's Day....  CA 299 was smooth sailing all way to Weaverville when things went to hell.  The construction on improvements to CA 299 near Whiskeytown is a complete abortion.  The entire roadway is a one lane dirt track through the construction zone on a 6% grade for a couple miles.  I'm not sure what was worse; having run into a full dirt covering on a paved road twice in the last two months or how obvious it was that many of the drivers near me don't have any experience driving dirt roads..... 

So at the end of the day I got to do my run down the river walk from the hotel to Old Sacramento.  So basically it was nothing but mining and railroads all day.  I did get a chance to checkout the old Rail grades near Blue Lake just off 299, sure is different to see the remains of a timber railway.  I did check out the Trinity Mountain mining and ghost towns; Helena, Weaverville, French Gultch, Whiskeytown and Shasta.  I would have to say that Helena was the highlight of the day simply because the town site is basically untouched with numerous almost fully intact structures.  I would probably think that has a lot to do with the location being extremely remote west of Weaverville and off on a side road branching off the Trinity River.  Regardless, all I'm seeing with 299 is that much like 466 it should have remained at minimum a U.S. Route rather than being downgraded.  299 is a pretty damn handy little cut across from US 101 to US 395 and I can't fathom why Caltrans would leave US 199 alone but downgrade 299.

Anyways it looks like the weather is good tomorrow so I'm thinking that I'll take 120 over to Yosemite and 41 back out to bypass most of rush hour 99 on the way home to Bakersfield.  I'm not a big fan of back tracking and it would be a huge mental relief to not have to deal with traffic in Stockton or Fresno on the drive home.

Max Rockatansky

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Re: Crater Lake round trip
« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2016, 09:08:00 PM »

Final day down and back home in Bakersfield.  Well....damn...I made the right call avoiding most of 99.  The ride from Sacramento to CA 4 in Stockton was terrible....  I added my thoughts about the current four lane configuration in the California section.  I ended up checking out the ruins of Telegraph City on CA 4 before dipping down to CA 120 via Copperopolis.  The new Priest Grade got really interesting with a salt truck trying to climb right in front of me but he got out of the way about 2 miles in by taking a left pullout.  Checked out Groveland/Big Oak Flat before heading down into Yosemite Valley proper.  Most of my time in Yosemite was spent getting to Glacier Point which was well worth the trip.  Seriously...if any of you are in California you need to go to Yosemite...don't go to L.A...don't go to San Francisco...if all you do is Yosemite and Big Sur it will be worth it.  After snagging my photos I bailed out via 41 once the tourist crowds hit for the day.  I did make a stop at Millerton Lake to check out the original Fresno County Courthouse and some foundations from Millerton which have surfaced with the lake being low.  Instead of taking 99 back to Bakersfield I swung east and took 180, 63, 198 and 65 to get back home.  Not much doing on any of those four routes but it was nice to have a peaceful drive home as opposed to fighting truckers and boy racers in their hot hatches south from Fresno.  All and all this was a nice profitable little four day trip...got a lot in that I've been meaning to do since I moved back to the state.

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Re: Crater Lake round trip
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2016, 10:21:35 AM »

Sounds like you had a great trip! I love Crater Lake.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: Crater Lake round trip
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2016, 10:41:12 AM »

Sounds like you had a great trip! I love Crater Lake.

Yeah it was worth the trip just to see it packed in with snow.  Spent about five hours up there catching up with some friends that had never been who were relatively local.  Missed out on the Oregon Caves because they were running behind but I'll get to it someday.  Way I figure things the 1,400 miles was a good practice run with the weird weather for the Dakotas next month.

 


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