California in October

  • paduk

    Posts: 58

    Aug 02, 2014 7:44 AM GMT
    Hello guys,
    Just wanted to ask some advice for travelling across California and possibly Oregon during October.

    I shall be there for around two weeks so not much time but I am planning an itinerary to make the most out of it. Ideally, I know it is difficult, I'd rather avoid renting out a car as I prefer to travel by bus, train or whatever.

    My idea is to land in LA and go all the way up to Portland. Ideally I would spend a couple of days in LA and after that I am thinking about visiting Yosemite and the Death Valley. Would anyone know how to go from a park to another? Also, has anyone stayed in one of the campgrounds? What's your experience? After the parks I am thinking to move back to the coast (haven't figure out which location yet so suggestions are welcome) and travel all the way up to SF spending a night in a place on the coast (Montery? Again suggestions are welcome). Finally (after a week) i should be getting to SF where I would like to stay for three days and the travel to Portand.

    My main concerns are how to move around without a car, I mean if this is easily feasible or it is going to be a nightmare and if I am trying to squeeze in far too much for a two weeks holiday. Ideally I would like also to relax a little bit.

    Thanks for all your inputs you might want to give me, I am still trying to figure things out so any suggestions is greatly appreciated.


  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 02, 2014 6:18 PM GMT
    Good luck. California is the land of the automobile. The US has far more limited train service than England, let alone what England used to have. You can get to/from Yosemite by bus/train from either San Francisco or LA. (The train stop is Merced, and a bus from there to the park)
    (Has links to Amtrak (railroad) and Greyhound (bus) websites)
    Yosemite lodging: No place that I know of to set up your own tent and camp in the valley. They do have "tent cabins" to rent - flimsy and bare, but adequate. Reservations pretty much required.

    You could try for a tour to Yosemite.

    Death Valley is probably not doable unless you are on some sort of tour group. It is much closer to Las Vegas than LA.
    "Public Transportation: At this time, there is no public transportation available to Death Valley National Park."

    You could try visiting San Diego instead of Death Valley (beaches probably still warm enough for swimming at that time).

    There is train service from San Francisco to Portland - overnight (Amtrak).

    On getting around California generally, you might find more specific information on (the California forum) or on forums on (they might even have a forum on Yosemite or Death Valley)

    You can take a train from LA or San Francisco to Santa Barbara.

    Both San Francisco and Portland are easy to get around in without a car. I don't know about LA.

    Maybe find some guidebooks on California at

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 04, 2014 1:38 AM GMT
    Traveling by train or bus is pretty miserable here in the States. The train might not be too bad. But it's net necessarily cheaper. Here's a story where a couple took the Amtrak from LA to Seattle.