Michigan to Washington State, then Ptown
hi everyone. I am driving from MI to Wa, and then on to Portland OR in the early part of August. I have a lot of time for this trip (almost a month), so I am wondering about the most scenic (yet easy on my geo ie less miles and steep elevations) enjoyable way to take. I'd like to spend about two weeks on the road, and the rest of the time in Portland with friends. In the past I have stuck to i-80 and i-90 for most the way out there. Does anyone have any good suggestions for state highways or lesser travled roads that still have facilities within reasonable distances? (only have an 8 gal gas tank... will that matter though since I get better milage?) ALso, if anyone else has tripped in a metro-- did you experience problems in the mountains? any recs/ preventative advice?
I might suggest turning off I-90 in Missoula and going onto Hwy 12 which will take you through the Clearwater and Nez Perce national forests and skurt the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness. A wonderful drive. From Lowell, ID, until Kooskia, ID, you'll be driving along the "Middle Fork Clearwater Wild and Scenic River". A most beautiful drive.
At Kooskia, continue south on Hwy 13 through the Nez Perce reservation to Grangeville, where you will take Hwy 95. You will drive by the Nez Perce Historical Park, the Payette NationAL Forest and along the Salmon River (or is it the Payette River?) for much of this drive. It's stunning. Continue on 95 until you get to Ontario, Oregon.
From Ontario, OR, take Hwy 26 across the north-central section of Oregon, going through fun little town like Prairie City and the John Day Fossil Beds area. You'll also go through the Warm Springs Indian Reservation and the Mt. Hood Wilderness/National Forest. Hwy 26 meets up with I-84 just as you're entering the Portland Metro area so you can continue on I-84 for just a short hop into Portland.
The Idaho portion of this trip is stunningly beautiful. The Oregon portion is somewhat similar to what you have seen on I-90 going through Eastern WA before but a bit less habitated.
You shouldn't have any problems finding services and fuel. Just fill up when you're at 1/4-1/3 a tank and you should be fine. There is no place where you don't have services every 50-60 miles or so at the longest.
I can't speak for how a Metro would handle. I'm sure it will be fine. Just make sure your fluids, belts, etc. are checked and get a tune-up if it's older and hasn't had one for awhile. Also check your tires.
And if you're going slower, stay in the right lane. If no right lane, please pull over and let faster cars go by if you have several blocked behind you. The Idaho portion of this route is rather twisty so be a considerate driver!
Have a great trip!
I really appreciate the advice and will follow your suggestions. Thanks again!
I don't know how much time this will add to your trip compared to going the freeway...I didn't do a comparison...but it will sure be a lot more interesting and new roads are always the best roads, IMHO.
Let us know how your trip went, OK?
will definitely let you know how it went... im really starting to get excited about leaving now!--- :D:D:D:D
counting down those days til im on the road again,