On the Road Again


Thom and I drove back to Eugene yesterday, stopped by his dorm, went to dinner (a hippie-style burger enterprise called McMenamin’s), and since it was still fairly early (8:30), I started back south. The weather forecast said a big storm would move in overnight, so I wanted to get over the higher passes along Interstate 5 — especially Siskiyou Mountain Summit, just north of the Oregon-California border — before I stopped. I made it down to Yreka, about 210 miles or so from Eugene and 300 miles from Berkeley, by midnight, then found a motel room. When I got my 8 a.m. wakeup call, I casually looked outside, expecting to see rain. No — snow. I checked online and saw that a winter storm warning was calling for 8 to 12 inches of snow along the route I was traveling. I packed in a hurry, had a cup of Best Western coffee, heard from the desk clerk that chains were required on the highway north but not south, and drove out of the parking lot  at 8:26. This was the scene at Yreka’s traffic light (well, maybe there is more than one).

It snowed pretty heavily off and on for the first 30 miles or so. Then gradually, the snow turned to rain as I descended toward the Sacramento Valley. Drove out from under the storm and got back home just after 1. It finally started raining here in the last hour or so.

4 Replies to “On the Road Again”

  1. Sounds like it could have been hairy. But how about Carbondale to Crete, 18 hours? That alone should have told me a thing or two.

  2. That pass — highest on all of I-5, as you probably know — is a bee-itch in the winter. Snared me more than once when I was living in the Applegate. Fact, was six years ago at Thanksgiving that R, Niko and I were heading back to Oregon after spending the holiday at my folks and we ran into weather at the pass. It was closed due to flipping trucks. There we sat. Niko, two months old at the time, took advantage of the opportunity to unleash a hefty poop. Changing a dirty diaper in a small Saturn jammed with duffel bags, baby bags, etc….yep, that was fun. Then what to do with it? We couldn’t toss it out into the snow — too many witnesses. So we wrapped it in a plastic grocery bag and put it in the trunk. R did the dirty work — but then I had to put on the chains. God I hate putting on chains. Fingers get all cold and scraped up. Pants get wet and dirty. Blah, blah.
    Back to your post: My folks were heading down I-5 on Monday afternoon, returning from a trip to Debbie for TDay. My dad had to put the chains on — not once but twice. But they made it back safely, praise the Lord.

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