There doesn't seem to be any good way to get through the Long Beach / Wilmington area. I recently tried Sepulveda Blvd / Willow St. to the north of PCH, and although it was a nicer street in terms of surface (which was newly repaved) and more-attractive surroundings, there were more ignorant drivers who thought they had time to turn in front of me and right lanes with no room for a car to pass a bike. Years ago I tried Anaheim St. to the south, but didn't like that either. So, I'm back to PCH. There's a section of PCH though there that is no fun (and Spring and Kirkendall mention this) but it is doable. I definitely recommend mirrors. Being fresh is good too, but at least you'll have a good tailwind if it's in the afternoon. Depending on when you arrive in the area and whether you have a phone with you, there's a small chance I'd be available to accompany you through there. Depending on where we meet, it would take me an hour and a half to two hours to get to you from home. When you get out of Long Beach and into Seal Beach, it's easy and pleasant again, and there are very few tricks until you're practically into San Diego.
Edit: Now that I see WesternFlyer's response in the other place you put the same post, I gather that Long Beach is also a place in the northwest, and that you didn't mean the one in the Los Angeles area. My apologies, but hopefully the info here will still be of use to you or someone.
This message was edited by whittierider on 7-27-08 @ 11:18 PM