Author Topic: San Francisco to San Luis Obispo  (Read 3781 times)

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Offline happyriding

Re: San Francisco to San Luis Obispo
« Reply #15 on: July 31, 2011, 12:51:36 am »
 
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I settled on the southerly route from SF only because it's a classic one, but I'm certainly interested in alternatives.  Only hitch is I have to start and end in San Francisco,
One option would be to ride north and into Oregon.  The redwoods are north of San Francisco, and the Avenue of the Giants was probably the most incredible thing I saw all summer on my tour.  You also follow the Eel river for quite a ways, which is really beautiful.  So, riding north you would experience the scenic riding in the redwoods, and then the beauty of the Oregon coast.   Or you could start out by taking a train north, and then ride back to San Francisco--that way you would be going in the same direction as most of the other cyclists.  For me, the riding from San Francisco to Los Angeles was the low light of my trip.

« Last Edit: July 31, 2011, 01:25:30 am by happyriding »

Offline adventurepdx

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Re: San Francisco to San Luis Obispo
« Reply #16 on: July 31, 2011, 01:50:00 am »
Quote
I settled on the southerly route from SF only because it's a classic one, but I'm certainly interested in alternatives.  Only hitch is I have to start and end in San Francisco,
Quote
One option would be to ride north and into Oregon. 
'

Riding north would mean encountering the famed wind out of the NW as a headwind for the ride. Plus, the OP has only 4-5 days to do the ride. There isn't a heck of a lot of good transportation options north of San Francisco. There is an Amtrak Thruway bus that goes from the Bay Area to Eureka. This could be a workable option as Eureka to SF is approx. 300 miles, meaning it could be broken down into five 60 mile days.

If you wanted to ride a part of the Oregon Coast and had only four to five days to play with, you could fly/Amtrak into Portland, take a bus to Astoria, and then ride down the coast from there. You could either ride as far south as Newport, head inland from there to Albany and take Amtrak back to Portland, or go even further south to Florence and then inland to Eugene and then Amtrak back to Portland.

Offline MrBent

Re: San Francisco to San Luis Obispo
« Reply #17 on: August 11, 2011, 07:11:05 pm »
As noted, there are TONS of threads about this and too many (mine included) tour reports on Crazyguyonabike. Do some reading.  In general, the only hairy part for me on that section is the  Pacifica to Half Moon Bay--or a little before HMB, actually.  This should soon be improved by the tunnel bypass of Devil's Slide, but some of the early steep, narrow nasty riding will remain, but overall, I think the situation will be improved.  The tunnel and bridges, once complete, will have designated bike lanes.  I figure they'll be done next year.  Re. camping: South of Pfeiffer camp at Kirk NOT Plasket Creek, which is kind of a dump, relatively speaking.  Also, last year there was a problem with potable water south of Lucia.  You may want to load up with water before the drop to Kirk.  There's a little store up there where I think you can do this.

Overall, it's a great ride, and one I will do again at some point.  I've already done it three times.  It's a great long ride when the interior of the country is baking hot.  Always go N to S to get the consistent tailwinds. 

I'm one of the few (only?) not excited about the Oregon coast as a tour spot for the summer.  I found too much of the route choked with astronomical traffic anytime after about 10am.  We're talking thousands and thousands of cars--CONSTANT traffic.  Not my idea of great touring.  It's beautiful and the camping is very nice, but the riding is pretty sucky. Brace yourself for the cars.  Only in a few places does the route leave the main highway.  When it does, the riding is bliss.  I guess lots of people have a higher tolerance for traffic than I do.  The section you will be riding is not as bad, although it, too, has a few high-traffic sections.  You'll find, however, that in many places (far more than Oregon) the route follows secondary roads, and when you slip onto the Big Sur coast, you're not dealing with big population centers.  The serious commercial traffic takes Hwy 101, a bit inland, leaving the remote Hwy 1 much quieter.  San Luis Obispo is a nice place to end the tour, too.  Beautiful town.

Cheers,

Scott