Best route to Portland by Car?

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hamfist
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Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by hamfist »

Hi.
May need to make a quick road trip to Portland, Oregon in late December. Have never been?
Any suggestions as to which route might be best (shortest, good road conditions, etc.)? - small pickup truck, studded winter tires.
Seems I could go to Vancouver, cross at Sumas border crossing, and take Hwy. 5 all the way down the coast to Portland, but was wondering about going south through Oroville and using Hwy. 97 to eventually run in to Hwy. 84, then turn west paralleling the Columbia River right in to Portland. Not sure what that route might entail in terms of weather, road conditions though.
Any experiences?
Thanks!
zookeeper
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by zookeeper »

hamfist wrote: Oct 24th, 2021, 7:37 pm Hi.
May need to make a quick road trip to Portland, Oregon in late December. Have never been?
Any suggestions as to which route might be best (shortest, good road conditions, etc.)? - small pickup truck, studded winter tires.
Seems I could go to Vancouver, cross at Sumas border crossing, and take Hwy. 5 all the way down the coast to Portland, but was wondering about going south through Oroville and using Hwy. 97 to eventually run in to Hwy. 84, then turn west paralleling the Columbia River right in to Portland. Not sure what that route might entail in terms of weather, road conditions though.
Any experiences?
Thanks!
We've done both, 97 is gorgeous in the Spring, if you don't want to sight see (Leavenworth) on your quick trip I'd do the I-5 in the winter, major highway all the way. We took the 2 to Spokane one September and already hit snow.
stuphoto
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by stuphoto »

If it was me, I would look at the weather first.
If it's going to be beautiful, take the coastal highway, I believe route 101 down and then 97 back.
They are both beautiful trips.
I say 101 down because you get a better view of the ocean.

Nasty weather, then the no.5 is the safest route.
However you have to get West, and those highways can all be nasty at times.

Honestly, the safest way there in December is just fly down and rent a car when you get there.
It's probably even cheaper after spending a couple nights in hotels along the way.
zookeeper
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by zookeeper »

Couple nights in a hotel along the way? It's only maybe a 9 hour drive assuming the op is near Kelowna.
hamfist
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by hamfist »

Flying is not an option unfortunately (have to bring part of a car shell back), so it's starting to look like over the Coq to Van., then straight down I-5 to Portland.
stuphoto
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by stuphoto »

Part of a car shell, now you have my interest.
What are you working on?

I imagine you looked into just having it hauled up by truck already.
If it's a lightweight 20's or 30's coupe shell a couple people could probably lift it on the truck keeping your costs low.
If it's heavy and requires a winch or forklift you are better off to drive over for it.

I was thinking a couple nights in a car if a nasty storm hits.
During the summer, no worries take the car every time.
seewood
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by seewood »

I picked up my car shell many years ago south of Portland. I crossed at Sumas and got onto I-5. Quickest route south but came back over the Snoqualmie pass and over to 97 and crossed at Oroville.
After that, I'd stay on I5 and follow the same route back as you took down.

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hamfist
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by hamfist »

Thanks for all the advice.
I had heard about the iffy conditions on the Snoqualmie Pass in the winter so it looks like Sumas and I-5 there and back is the safest route (not necessarily the shortest, but...).
Earlier poster -- back half of a '69 Alfa Spider (body cut in half, but with very useful panels still on it)
Thanks all for the input!
stuphoto
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by stuphoto »

Nice,
I know someone on this board with the Fiat version, around the same age.
Not me.
rustled
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by rustled »

Our favourite route:
Via Soap Lake.JPG
Happy travels!
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GordonH
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by GordonH »

rustled wrote: Oct 25th, 2021, 6:36 pm Our favourite route:
Via Soap Lake.JPG
Happy travels!
I haven’t driven to Portland, it makes sense to avoid major centres so I choose rustled route.
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zookeeper
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by zookeeper »

GordonH wrote: Oct 25th, 2021, 7:46 pm
rustled wrote: Oct 25th, 2021, 6:36 pm Our favourite route:
Via Soap Lake.JPG
Happy travels!
I haven’t driven to Portland, it makes sense to avoid major centres so I choose rustled route.
I love that route too but would not risk it for a "quick trip" in the middle of winter.
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Glacier
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Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by Glacier »

If it's wet, snowy, or stormy, follow the route by rustled. Actually, not quite as Rustled shows, but rather like this:
trip1.png
But the sky is the limit on different ways to get there. You could follow rustled's way, or take 97 all the way down through Wanatchee, or take Snoqualmie Pass etc.
trip2.png
If the weather is good, and you want the quickest route, take the Coq. because it will save an hour.
trip3.png
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hamfist
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Joined: Mar 7th, 2006, 5:49 pm

Re: Best route to Portland by Car?

Post by hamfist »

Thanks for all the responses (and the possible routes plotted out).
Lots to think about.
Cheers!

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