Results 1 to 3 of 3
  1. Default Seattle to San Diego in late December?

    Hi all,

    I know that taking I-5 through Oregon and California can put you into some mountain passes with the potential for snow. How likely is that usually during the holiday season? Also, I know I can take 101 as an alternate route, but I've heard about landslides due to rain. Is that a usual occurance in late December as well? Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default Winter Weather

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Bad weather is certainly a possibility along I-5 over the holiday season. I remember just 2 or 3 years ago The I-5 pass over the grapevine just north of Los Angeles was shut down on Christmas eve.

    The thing is, if the interstate is blocked by snow, odds are taking US-101 will not be significantly better and could be much worse. Interstates are the 1st priority for getting snow cleared, so if you do run into problems, you'd probably be best off stopping and waiting for the roads to be cleared.

  3. Default Grapevine closures are possible, but very infrequent

    The Grapevine pass into LA which goes over Tejon pass (at over 4000' elevation, I believe) does sometimes get snow and sometimes gets closed. The longest I've ever heard of it being closed is about 24 hours (and that was in the record breaking snow levels of a year or so ago). Since its on I-5, the major North-South freeway in California, the California Department of Transportation really puts a premium on keeping it open.

    There are alternative routes -- 101 south, 14 south via Lancaster/ Palmdale, Pacific Coast Highwy (but you have to get to Ventura area), or even cut far enough east to come over the pass near Victorville into LA.

    But its really uncommon that the pass ever gets closed. In all my years of living and driving in LA, I've only ever been concerned over the Christmas time period once -- and since I was going through the pass in day time, just had some rain. (They had a 3 hour closure that night, when the temperatures dropped below freezing in the pass...). And the only time I had to detour was in April (!!) due to a brush fire which was burning along side the I-5 near Magic Mountain, and they had closed the highway to give the fire vehicles the full access to the freeway since they were using it as a fire break.

    Bottom line on this -- I wouldn't worry about it. But if its pouring rain and the area is going through a cold snap, then its something to listen to on the radio. Try to hit the pass in the mid-afternoon if you're concerned, instead of the middle of the night, and keep in mind an alternative route. They also have signs for 200 miles north of the pass to alert drivers of conditions if its being closed.

    The one time I was heading south and had to divert (due to a brush fire right along the freeway), I saw the warning on a highway sign and confirmed it on the radio. Then I headed west at Lost Hills to Paso Robles, had dinner in Solvang, and made it into LA about an hour or two later than I planned..

Similar Threads

  1. December road trip San Francisco to San Diego
    By Malkana in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-08-2006, 01:24 PM
  2. Seattle to Dallas in late June
    By adrock47 in forum Share the Gas
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 06-01-2006, 02:20 PM
  3. Seattle to San Diego
    By biag12 in forum Spring RoadTrips
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-02-2006, 02:25 PM
  4. San Diego to Seattle
    By emmybear in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 07-23-2005, 11:58 PM
  5. NY to Seattle in Late December
    By ASolo in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 02-01-2004, 10:08 PM


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name