Southern California to Canada


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darwood
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Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:07 pm
Location: Los Angeles, California
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Southern California to Canada

Postby darwood » Sun Feb 02, 2014 1:24 pm



Hi All,
I am planning a trip this year, taking to coast all the way to Canada. Has anyone has done this trip? If so, please share the do's and don't during your experience.
My brother and I took at 3,500 mile trip last September, first ever on our Goldwings. Everyone was a virgin at one point of their life, right? We went through Northern California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, Arizona and then unfortunately, back to California. Being our first trip ever, the wealth of resources on this site really helped us prepare for the trip. We had an amazing time!

Thanks.



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themainviking
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby themainviking » Sun Feb 02, 2014 3:31 pm

I have been back and forth across the border more times than I can count, but I am looking at it from the Canadian side. Should be pretty much the same though, except your money will be good anywhere in Canada, whereas, lots of places in the U.S. do not like mine. Make sure your passport has at least three months to go before expiry, bring no guns and no illegal drugs, and if you take prescription drugs, ensure they are in the Pharmacy bottles with your name on them. Other than that, expect motels to cost more, and restaurants as well, and have a great time. One tip on money if you intend to use Canadian, is to get it from your bank or a bank closer to the border, before you come across, so you are exchanged at the proper rates. Businesses in Canada usually make an extra couple of percentage points to accept your money. It ain't a lot, but it ain't really fair.
It ain't about the destination - it's all about the journey

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radionut
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby radionut » Mon Feb 03, 2014 12:07 am

If I can throw in a favourite side trip off of the coast highway, check out this restaurant, located on one of the most scenic drives I have been on, with views looking west to the ocean, and east into the valley. Great food and motorcycle friendly.
http://www.alicesrestaurant.com/

17288 Skyline Boulevard Woodside, CA 94062 (650) 851-0303

Ride Safe
Rick

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newday777
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby newday777 » Tue Feb 04, 2014 11:36 am

Be prepared for cool weather riding as there can be lots of marine layer fog with cold wind along the coastal route. I was glad i had my gerbing liner and heated seat & grips in late July this past year coming down the coast (much more fun direction). I actually took some of the Twisties roads inland for the fun, and the warmth. 55° on the coast with fog/drizzle, up to 104° inland. I got to appreciate both extremes.

If you haven't been to Mt St Helens and the Ranier area in Washington, do it. Well worthy of the side trip for you. Awesome beauty and riding.
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RoadRogue
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Location: Castlegar BC, Canada
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby RoadRogue » Thu Feb 13, 2014 3:07 am

How far into Canada are you planning riding? What point of entry ? How long do you have to spend up here. There are some must see places depending on time and location. Let me know when and how long you have to spend north of the 49th and I can offer some worth while suggestions as this is my corner of the country you are headed to. 8-)
Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome

harvey01
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby harvey01 » Thu Feb 13, 2014 10:58 am

some VISA and Mastercards charge a fee for every charge you make in Canada so check with your credit card issuer. I have been told that Capital One issues a credit card with no such fees. And if you want a cash advance go into the bank, do not use the ATM which is more expensive. However, I have found it easier to go to a Canadian bank and get money exchanged or an ATM withdrawal and they pay cash in Canadian money for most things. Then stop at a Canadian bank when leaving and exchange Canadian money for US.
harvey
Ride Safe and Ride Often

darwood
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Location: Los Angeles, California
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby darwood » Mon Feb 24, 2014 9:17 pm

Thanks for the information. Never considered the coastal climate being cold and inland being really hot. I will pack accordingly. As for going in to Canada, not too far. I still need to get a passport, assuming I will need one. The post for Alice's, I wonder if that is the song from Arlo Guthrie? Either way, I am going to go check it out. Mt. St. Helens, I will be going there to check it out. Plase keep the information coming......I really apreciate the Godwing riders sharing the do'sand dont's. I love this site!!!!

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Mag
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby Mag » Mon Feb 24, 2014 10:06 pm

What time of year you going? Later in the summer the better for no clouds on the mountain.

I live just 40 mile west of Mt St Helens....there are a couple of roads....

If you are driving north on the I-5, about 25 mile north of Portland is Woodland, go east (only one major road east) will take you past Cougar, then you follow the signs to Mt St Helens....up over and through the park then go north which will take you to a highway to get you back to the I-5....it is actually a long ride, but a wonderful one. My highway is 504 (Castle Rock) which takes you east about 50 mile right to a visitors center across the valley from the crater, you look right at it.

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Fatwing Chris
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby Fatwing Chris » Tue Feb 25, 2014 6:23 pm

darwood wrote:Thanks for the information. Never considered the coastal climate being cold and inland being really hot. I will pack accordingly. As for going in to Canada, not too far. I still need to get a passport, assuming I will need one. The post for Alice's, I wonder if that is the song from Arlo Guthrie? Either way, I am going to go check it out. Mt. St. Helens, I will be going there to check it out. Plase keep the information coming......I really apreciate the Godwing riders sharing the do'sand dont's. I love this site!!!!

You will need a passport.
If I'da known it would last this long,I'da taken better care of it.
Chris
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wishbone63
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby wishbone63 » Sun Mar 02, 2014 9:06 am

We always ride highway one along the coast. A ride through the Redwoods is really cool! Bodega bay was really cold the last time we rode through in August but it looks just like it did in the Alfed Hitchcock movie "The Birds". And if you take the ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria, be sure to check ou the museum. I could easily spend a day in there and there is a wooley mammoth on display that is also in this months National Geographic.

vffrwm
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby vffrwm » Sun Mar 02, 2014 9:23 am

My wife and I made the trip about 8 years ago from Huntington Beach to Bellingham WA. We didn't cross the border as having been a resident in Washington I don't have much use for anyone or anything north of Bellingham, but that's up to you.

The only challenges we had from time to time on the ride were weather related. Not a lot of rain but some and in several places some on shore winds that were in excess of 50 mph.

The ride is beautiful, well worth the time and energy. We now live in southern Utah and spend our days wandering around the canyons of Utah, Arizona and New Mexico.

Have a great trip and stay safe.

Doc Spratley
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby Doc Spratley » Sun Mar 02, 2014 6:20 pm

Time of year is so important. Last year we set records with the lack of rain and cloud and record high temps. for July thru Sept. A really beautiful ride is the Duffy Lake road. My wife and have done it many times as the first ride of the season. We would go up the Fraser Canyon (which is very scenic in itself with Hell's Gate as a good photo op) to Lillooet; overnight there then head South to Whistler via Duffy Lake Road. Going this way the mountains etc. are in front of you making it very picturesque. It is about 700km (440mi) round trip if memory serves me, and many do this as a day trip. We like to enjoy a more relaxed time schedule hence the overnight. From Lillooet there are other lovely trips through places like Seaton Portage. Another nice ride is Hwy 3 or Crowsnest thru the southern part of the province. This will take you into the Okanagan area which is rated as desert. This area is where most of our wine industry is (similar to Napa etc.) so lots of world class tasting available. This road goes all the way into Alberta then an easy drop down into Idaho back west via Hwy 20? through the North Cascades back towards the coast.

To vffrwn: an arbitrarily drawn line does not stop the beautiful scenery and winding roads. We are really very nice up here.
let me know if you want more info -
Cheers
Doc Spratley

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themainviking
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby themainviking » Mon Mar 03, 2014 7:19 am

vffrwm wrote:We didn't cross the border as having been a resident in Washington I don't have much use for anyone or anything north of Bellingham, but that's up to you.


WOW. Just WOW............
It ain't about the destination - it's all about the journey

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Doc Spratley
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby Doc Spratley » Mon Mar 03, 2014 12:19 pm

Oh yes you definitely need a passport and if you can get 'Nexus' (a security approved fast lane at the border) get that too as in the summer the regular line ups to get thru the border can be a couple hours long in either direction. Worst case scenario of course.

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WingAdmin
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Mar 03, 2014 1:09 pm

Doc Spratley wrote:Oh yes you definitely need a passport and if you can get 'Nexus' (a security approved fast lane at the border) get that too as in the summer the regular line ups to get thru the border can be a couple hours long in either direction. Worst case scenario of course.


Nexus cards are good, as they let you bypass some of the wait, but there are a few problems with them:

- They're expensive, and need to be renewed
- If the traffic backup is more than 30 minutes, you are stuck in line with everybody else just to get TO the Nexus lane
- You have to go in person to the border crossing you want the Nexus card for, and the card is good only for that crossing

Nexus cards are meant really for people who cross back and forth often. I had one when I was crossing back and forth between Detroit/Windsor a few times a week. For a one time trip, it's really an unnecessary expense.

Doc Spratley
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby Doc Spratley » Mon Mar 03, 2014 1:46 pm

Good information and I'm not sure how it works for applying in the US but I only paid $75 for mine I believe quite few years ago and good for 5 years, ( and you do need one for each person true). Now that they have been in place for several years now, we can renew online (took 15 days to get new card last spring and cost $50) and apply on line; we have 5 border crossings within an hour drive and have used ours at most of them so maybe the singularity of crossing choice has changed too. At the Peace Arch and Pacific crossings (which they would probably be using having come up the coast) Homeland Security and Canadian Border Patrol have just spent mega dollars redoing all the approaches and have alleviated the "can't get into the Nexus lanes due to the regular traffic backups". At peak times there are as many as 4 Nexus lanes open too.
To me the cost and hassle would be worth it if it was, perchance, raining and I had to wait in line for a couple hours : (
It would also be good for the next trip as surely they will love it up here and right now the dollar is in your advantage!

Cheers
Doc Spratley

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RoadRogue
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Re: Southern California to Canada

Postby RoadRogue » Tue Mar 04, 2014 4:13 am

vffrwm wrote:My wife and I made the trip about 8 years ago from Huntington Beach to Bellingham WA. We didn't cross the border as having been a resident in Washington I don't have much use for anyone or anything north of Bellingham, but that's up to you.


Sounds to me like someone bet on the wrong hockey team to win gold 8-)


Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome


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