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  1. #1
    bee Guest

    Default Walnut Creek, CA to Spokane, WA

    Help!! We will be travelling from Australia to Walnut Creek in late February 2006.

    We have hired a chevy express (12 seater) to drive from Walnut Creek to Spokane and i was wondering if there was anyone out there who could advise me of what the weather conditions tend to be like at that time of year.

    Being from Oz we don't have a great deal of experience in driving in the snow but am hoping that if we stick to the main highways and allow 2-3 days of travelling we should be ok???

    Would also appreciate any ideas on great little spots to stop on the way up!

    If anyone has any advice/info for us we would love to hear it!

    Thanks!
    Last edited by bee; 10-20-2005 at 11:05 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default Mostly rain

    Quote Originally Posted by bee
    to drive from Walnut Creek to Spokane and i was wondering if there was anyone out there who could advise me of what the weather conditions tend to be like at that time of year.
    Bee, welcome to the Forum!

    Rain is likely for most, if not all, of the journey. Although snow is possible when you cross the Cascade Mtns. What route were you planning on using?

    Mark

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,318

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Editor
    Rain is likely for most, if not all, of the journey. Although snow is possible when you cross the Cascade Mtns. What route were you planning on using?
    If you're going up I-5, you might see a little snow and ice going over the Siskiyou Pass (this is located shortly after crossing over the border from California to Oregon). And there's a good chance that you will see some of this in eastern WA. However, when you are on the major highways, it normally doesn't stick or last too long. They are pretty good about keeping these clear and the heat of all the cars on the road tend to help things melt fairly quickly.

    And you can avoid any snow/ice problems in the Cascades by avoiding going over the Cascades. Just turn east in Portland and go to Spokane along the Columbia Gorge on I-84. You'll then take I-82 north to Kennewick, then 395 to meet up with I-90 that will take you the rest of the way into Spokane.

    What route were you planning on taking? 2-3 days should be enough in most road/weather conditions. Although it wouldn't hurt to plan an extra day in order to have time to do a bit more sightseeing and to allow a buffer in case you don't get poor weather and roads for a short part of your trip.

    It would be a very odd occurrence if you have any problems along the majority of your route. Any closures or slow-downs due to weather would likely be very termporary and very local.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default An exception to every instance

    Quote Originally Posted by Judy
    And you can avoid any snow/ice problems in the Cascades by avoiding going over the Cascades. Just turn east in Portland and go to Spokane along the Columbia Gorge on I-84. You'll then take I-82 north to Kennewick, then 395 to meet up with I-90 that will take you the rest of the way into Spokane.
    Like Judy says, it is unlikely that inclement weather will slow you too much. However, I have spent a lot of time in the Tri-Cities area of southeastern Washington in February and I can guarantee you that it can be slick, frosty, icy and snowy on the roads in the vicinity of Richland, Kennewick and Pasco and along the Columbia River gorge. Just take it slow and enjoy the views.

    Mark

  5. #5
    RoadTripper Brad Guest

    Default

    I agree with Judy and Mark. They do a great job of clearing the highways, but my best advice is to keep track of the weather. Get a CB Radio with NOAA Weather/All Hazards Radio Alert. Washington State Law requires that the National Weather Service (part of the NOAA Government Agency) broadcast frequent traveler alerts, usually about every 15 minutes. These include pass conditions and any major route conditions that could cause any problems. The Washington State Department of Transportation also has alot of usefull information, including road reports and travler information. Washington also uses the 511 system, which is accessable on any Washington based land line phone or any cellular phone that is 'logged in' to a Washington based tower. The 511 system will also give you up-to-date road conditions from the WSDOT, Washington State Patrol, and local transportation authorities.

    But if you do get stuck, the Washington State Patrol (I call them WASP's) and the Oregon State Patrol frequent major routes in the winter, and they will give you a hand.

    And like Mark said... take it slow and easy. Just remember don't hold the brakes when you get on slippry roads, lightly pump them and keep off the accelerator.

    -Brad M.

  6. #6
    bee Guest

    Default

    I can't thank you all enough for the info you have provided us with. We are so looking forward to our trip and can now 'stress less' about the drive!!

    Congratulations on a fantastic website.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default Winter Driving Tips

    Quote Originally Posted by bee
    I can't thank you all enough for the info you have provided us with. We are so looking forward to our trip and can now 'stress less' about the drive!! Congratulations on a fantastic website.
    Well, thanks. By the by, be sure to check out Uncle Bob's superb Winter Driving Tips!

    Mark

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