We have been to California numerous times…to see family, to taste wine, to see sights…. Actually, we both grew up there so it was home turf. But this trip had several goals….again to visit family, but also to find the sun, and to see if getting away, for an extended few months in winter, was in our DNA. We had our Airstream as our traveling home which gave us our own beds, our own cooked meals and a place for our dog. At 25 feet, it served well as our home for a couple weeks but now, for a couple of months? Not sure if it will work out. Towing was no problem….unless I had to use the chains I bought….geez….Traveling in Winter is a whole other planning scenario.
Its all about the weather windows….If the weather is sunny and warm, then no problem going straight down I5 and over the Oregon/California pass: The Siskiyou’s Pass at 4300 feet. Not too high but long and slushy in snow with lots of opportunity to get into trouble. But our problem wasn’t the pass but Portland itself. They got a freak snow storm which shut down the city and they didn’t have enough plows to clear the roads including I5.
So we headed west to the coast where it was cold but clear. At Reedsport, in southern Oregon, we cut back over to I5 and made the pass in 45 degree clear weather….a great window. We like to stay at Nehalem Bay SP at the coast and at Seven Feathers RV Resort when traveling I5.
Nehalem Bay SP in Oregon
Seven Feathers RV Resort in Oregon
We made it to Oroville California where family lives and set up camp for a week. Not much sun though as California was getting an ‘atmospheric river’ which deluged the Sierra’s with feet upon feet of snow and the valleys with enough rain to cause flooding. Just two days after setting up camp, they closed the Siskiyou’s Pass to traffic….whew!
We had a great stay in Oroville, helping where we could and catching up with the family. We then headed south to Coyote Creek Resort south of San Jose. A nice spot, as there are not many RV places in this area. We wanted to go down Hwy 101 to Pismo Beach SB. They have two different campgrounds but one was flooded from all the rains. We also noticed a lot of ‘road closed’ signs due to slides and flooding.
On happy puppy on the beach. We also visited one of our favorite wineries, Turley. They make great Zins. That night, appetizers and a great wine was on store for us.
After 2 days we were off to San Clemente SB about an hour south of LA.
The sunshine was prevalent here and we enjoyed driving around, visiting areas we hadn’t visited before. The State Beach was wonderful with private sites, lots of hikes, and even some classic trailers they rent out. The negative was that dogs were not allowed on the beach which meant we had to drive a few miles to a private beach which allows dogs.
It is time now to head inland and change from maritime, beach, ocean breezes to desert. Not sure what to expect but the prospect for sun was good….