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Author Topic: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno  (Read 192 times)

Dreamsend

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Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« on: June 29, 2020, 02:22:15 AM »
Hello Again,

So the plan is to visit Kings Canyon and Sequoia NPs.  #1 issue is that I'll be coming from the west, and entrances to these areas are from the EAST, over the Sierras.

What is  the lowest elevation, easiest tow route going from Reno/Carson City, NV area west over the mountains to Fresno, CA or Visalia, CA. ?  The later two cities are the jumping off points into the parks. 

Can I skip going all the way into Sacramento area and head south on 41/49?  Can I even get over the Sierras and avoid 10% grades?  I have no experience of roads in this area of CA.

Three campgrounds in NPs open for reservations today!!!  So any help is much appreciated.

Linda

Linda with kitty Sara
2019 Outdoors RV Timber Ridge
27BHS
2017 Ford F250 Lariat aka Gypsy Rose

Arch Hoagland

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Re: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2020, 02:43:22 AM »
Take I80 from Reno to Sacramento then take 99 south to the Fresno area.

There is no easy way to get into the central valley of California without going over big mountains.

I live in the Fresno area and believe me...if there was a flat route I'd know it.

I've been over all the roads that you could possibly take but it was in a Miata when we did Miata road runs.

In the motorhome the ONLY road I'll take is I 80 to and from Reno.
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jackiemac

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Re: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2020, 03:44:09 AM »
Hi Linda

We drove the 49 and 41 with the trailer last year staying at Coulterville and Lemon Cove to visit Yosemite and Sequoia. It would be nice to stay in the parks though. Just be aware of the limitations there too.

Between Moccasin and Mariposa the road is winding in a few places and you would need to be very careful, particularly the Coulterville to Mariposa section.

The road is steep in short sections but we can't recall if it was over 10% or not. The road was fairly quiet when we drove it.

Please look very carefully at the maps and make your own decision.this website is useful...

https://dot.ca.gov/programs/traffic-operations/legal-truck-access/truck-network-map


Edit - we took the 140 out of Coulterville to Lemon Cove.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2020, 03:09:12 PM by jackiemac »
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Roy M

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Re: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2020, 09:36:14 AM »
You will be fine on the grades as long as you don't try to push going up, stay in the right lane and let the faster traffic by. At the START of the downgrade gear down and let the engine do the work. Hit the brakes firmly as necessary to scrub off speed, DON'T panic and ride them.

Dreamsend

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Re: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2020, 09:50:05 AM »
You will be fine on the grades as long as you don't try to push going up, stay in the right lane and let the faster traffic by. At the START of the downgrade gear down and let the engine do the work. Hit the brakes firmly as necessary to scrub off speed, DON'T panic and ride them.

Hey Roy.  Could you tell me what roads you think I'll be okay driving?  Do you mean I80 only, or US 50. or CA 41/49? 

I appreciate the advice, and pretty comfortable with going up and down grades up to 10% - I know how to use the engine for braking, do it all the time.  I'd just rather avoid the 10% + uppers if I can.

Linda
Linda with kitty Sara
2019 Outdoors RV Timber Ridge
27BHS
2017 Ford F250 Lariat aka Gypsy Rose

Lou Schneider

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Re: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2020, 11:04:01 AM »
The biggest tip is avoid weekend travel (Friday PM to Sunday PM).  That's everyone is traveling to and from CA to Reno and South Lake Tahoe.

I-80 is the easiest route with downgrades posted in advance for truckers.  US 50 is OK for RVs as is CA 88.  I-80 has transcontinental truck traffic, US 50 is the main route to and from the South Lake Tahoe casinos and is two lanes with pullouts until you get to Kyburz.  CA 88 to CA 49 takes longer than either of the above but it is lightly traveled and can be accessed either via CA 89 in South Lake Tahoe or from Gardnerville.

Avoid CA 89 south of CA 88, CA 4, CA 120, CA 108 and CA 49 between 120 and 140.  49 has sharp switchbacks and steep uphill grades south of Coulterville.  It also passes through gold rush era towns with narrow streets and limited parking and can easily double your travel time compared to taking the freeway down the Central Valley.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2020, 11:39:26 AM by Lou Schneider »

Dreamsend

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Re: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2020, 04:18:28 AM »
Many thanks for the helpful replies you'all. 

Decided I think to plan on a driving break up around the Reno/Lake Tahoe area for 2 or 3 nights  Anyone have any suggestions for a FHU park somewhere in that area? Maybe something scenic nearby?  I'll need to dump and clean tanks around that time anyway.

I am so frustrated with reservation.gov. Every time I logged in to try and reserve a spot in Sequoia when they opened up some CGs yesterday, it kept flashing that my "cart had expired" and then another popup would blank out the main screen so that I couldn't log off, or continue or do anything.  Result is that I didn't get a camp spot!!!  Tried for 4 different ones, which then disappeared before my eyes because I couldn't complete the process.  Bummer, bummer!!  I tried clearing cookies and browser etc. but it didn't help.  Phone line was a 20 minute wait.   This happened last time I made a one=night reservation in Dinosaur NP about a month ago but that time I could reach them by phone as there was no rush on.

There are some FS CGs that look like decent alternatives, so I may try for reservations today.  I feel like staying in the trees! as opposed to 2 weeks in a trailer park. 

BTW to my most kindest helpers == McPhee Reservoir was AWESOME! Just a perfect spot.  Quiet for sure, but the landscape and surroundings were just the best. Nicely spaced sites.  Numerous birds at the feeder which is always fun for kitty and me.  It was hot - but that seems the norm so far this summer.  I was ready to move to Cortez and enjoy the AC. 

My best to all, and thanks again.

Linda



Linda with kitty Sara
2019 Outdoors RV Timber Ridge
27BHS
2017 Ford F250 Lariat aka Gypsy Rose

Lou Schneider

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Re: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2020, 08:36:54 AM »
Fallen Leaf Lake CG near Camp Richardson about 5 miles north of the South Tahoe "Y" (50/89) is a nice Forest Service campground but it's dry camping, no dump station.  Otherwise you're looking at Reno/Carson City.  Tahoe Valley Campground Resort is the only FHU I know of in the Tahoe area and is pricey unless you have Encore/TT.

You might want to stay clear of that area until after the July 4 holiday weekend.  It will be very busy with people coming up from CA over the holiday.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2020, 08:48:54 AM by Lou Schneider »

jackiemac

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Re: Route for Crossing Sierras Out of Reno
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2020, 12:42:23 PM »
Linda

You can camp at the Grand Sierra Resort Casino. It has full hook ups. We stayed for 1 night. Not free currently $50 for pull through,  back in cheaper,  nothing exciting but OK. We arrived late so didn't even go into Casino.

https://www.grandsierraresort.com/rv-park/

Or you could go into one a bit further North which looks nice....

http://www.bordertowncasinorv.com/location
Jackie n Steve - Happy Scottish Travellers

2017 Heartland Sundance 288rls
2016 Dodge Ram 2500 6.4L Hemi

Back in the UK til who knows....