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2-Day Drive from Los Angeles to Portland OR/Vancouver WA

Los Angeles...
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2-Day Drive from Los Angeles to Portland OR/Vancouver WA

Hello Everyone!

I'm new to trip advisor. I posted this question on the Los Angeles and Oregon forums, and it was suggested that I post on the Road Trips forum, as well, so here goes. . .

I'm helping a friend move from LA to Portland and we're leaving LA on June 5th (Wednesday) around noon or maybe even 1pm. We need to arrive in Portland on the morning of June 7th (by about 10am). We'll be driving with a pet so we can't leave the car for long periods of time except when we're checking into our pet-friendly hotel. I feel comfortable driving about 8-10 hours in a day, but am willing to drive more if it's required to meet our deadline. I would love to see as much of the coast as possible, but I am aware that it makes for a longer trip and we may not have that luxury.

Here's what I'd like to know:

Which route is recommended? Is there a way to incorporate some coastal driving into the trip while meeting our goal of arriving on the morning of June 7th?

Where is it best for us to stop overnight?

Is this doable? Or do we need to include all day Friday in our driving plans?

Any advice would be extremely helpful. Thank you!

Chula Vista...
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1. Re: 2-Day Drive from Los Angeles to Portland OR/Vancouver WA

Hi and welcome to the forum,

Given your short time constraints, it's going to be very difficult to do any sightseeing at all even taking the fast route of driving I-5 all the way:


Google Maps shows it to be just under 1,000 miles and nearly 15 hours of driving time. But what Google Maps doesn't include are stops for food, fuel, rest breaks, or delays for traffic, construction, or weather.

A more realistic estimate might be closer to 18 - 22 hours, again, depending on how frequently you stop.

That means your trip would shape up like this:

Drive 6 - 8 hours Wednesday afternoon/evening

Drive 8-10 hours all day Thursday

Drive the remaining 4 hours or so on Friday morning to get you to Portland by 10 AM (and that's hitting the road around 6 AM)

In my opinion, driving I-5 all the way and skipping the coast is the only option to make your time constraints.


P.S. You don't mention if you're in a U-Haul truck or pulling a U-Haul trailer if you're moving. If you are, that will slow you down even more.

Seattle, Washington
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2. Re: 2-Day Drive from Los Angeles to Portland OR/Vancouver WA

You don't say where in the LA area you're leaving from. If it's Woodland Hills it's a different picture than if it's Long Beach or Pomona.

Regardless, I don't think the coast is really going to work for you. Overall going by US 101 then cutting over to I-5 in Oregon adds around 4-6 hours drive time, plus you run the risk of getting traffic slowdowns in the Bay Area.

Wanting to get to Vancouver WA by 10 AM on Friday really means you should be there Thursday night, otherwise you'd have to poke through Portland commuter traffic in the morning - why bother?

So with an early afternoon departure from the LA area I'd shoot to stop someplace north of Sacramento that night - maybe Red Bluff or Redding. Just load up on tunes for the boring, fast drive over the Grapevine and through the valley.

From Red Bluff it's around 8 hours to Portland, maybe 7 1/2 from Redding, so with allowances for dog and people breaks you could probably make Portland by 7 or 8 PM without pushing too hard.

Presumably you know about these, but just in case...



Los Angeles...
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3. Re: 2-Day Drive from Los Angeles to Portland OR/Vancouver WA

Thank you for the helpful replies! And thanks for the pet-friendly links, I didn't know about them.

We're leaving from the west side of LA proper, near the 405. Fortunately, we're driving a regular car and not hauling anything.

I thought we had plenty of time for this trip, but I can see now that we're really pushing it. Looks like we're going to hit the 5 all the way, as suggested, although I'd much prefer to drive along the coast.

This info has been really helpful, now I have a good idea about where to plan our overnight stop and what to expect as far as driving time each day.

4. Re: 2-Day Drive from Los Angeles to Portland OR/Vancouver WA

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