Reddit Reddit reviews Bicycling The Pacific Coast: A Complete Route Guide, Canada to Mexico, 4th Edition

We found 45 Reddit comments about Bicycling The Pacific Coast: A Complete Route Guide, Canada to Mexico, 4th Edition. Here are the top ones, ranked by their Reddit score.

Individual Sports
Sports & Outdoors
Bicycling The Pacific Coast: A Complete Route Guide, Canada to Mexico, 4th Edition
Check price on Amazon

45 Reddit comments about Bicycling The Pacific Coast: A Complete Route Guide, Canada to Mexico, 4th Edition:

u/OranginaDentata · 23 pointsr/Portland

Three good options listed here, I've done #3, Nestucca River Road and it was great, low-stress and passes through some beautiful country. From Portland take the MAX light rail to the end of the line in Hillsboro (shoot for mid-day so you aren't trying to cram a bike and panniers on a crowded rush hour train).

Elevation profile

Oregonian article from a few years ago

We left a little late, maybe 1pm and just barely made it to our BLM campground (Dovre maybe?) at dusk. It's all downhill after that to Beaver.

I will add that a few miles of 101 south of Beaver are a little uncomfortable to ride as there's little / no shoulder, unlike most of the rest of 101. If you pass through this section from further north (the Tillamook option, for instance) I believe they route bikes around on a scenic alternate road-- these are well marked and a common feature of 101. However the Beaver / Cloverdale area isn't very long, so it's not a huge concern IMO.

If you have the Adventure Cycling maps they might come in handy. Much more detailed info (accurate elevation profiles!) than what's included in the book everyone gets, but the later has a nice narrative.

EDIT: typos

u/[deleted] · 9 pointsr/Portland

I did it last year. Took just under two weeks.

great place to start: Bicycling the Pacific Coast by Vicky Spring

we also had the rather detailed maps from Adventure Cycling, which had much, much more detailed elevation profiles plus the locations of grocery stores, bike shops and many alternate camping locations that The Book smooths over. We took to calling it The Book because seemingly everyone on the route had a copy.

If you do the trip in August, you'll likely not need to worry about rain gear. I had a fleece and long underwear for the eves, a wool long sleeved jersey for the wet, foggy mornings and a few short-sleeved jerseys for the afternoons.

Expect to spend about $5 / day / person for State Park camping. Showers are free in Oregon, but not in California. The road becomes considerably less comfortable when you leave Oregon-- less shoulder (often none at all), crappier campgrounds, and the pay showers.

If there's one thing you absolutely need to do, it's the scenic detour off 101 on Newton B Drury to Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park.

edit: start training as soon as possible. do some practice bike camping trips with Cycle Wild to shake down your gear and get used to your setup.

u/silence7 · 8 pointsr/pics

The pacific coast from north-to-south is probably the easiest place in the US to do this. There are campgrounds with designated hiker/biker no-reservation campsites at regular intervals, the prevailing winds work to your advantage, and there are cycling-oriented guidebooks and maps covering the route in detail. Those have the advantage of telling you key things like where the last place to buy food before the campground is, and which towns have a shop where you can get a spoke replaced.

u/thespeak · 8 pointsr/bicycletouring

I'm not sure how flexible your itinerary is, but I'd highly recommend reversing course and touring from Vancouver to LA. There are two main reasons, 1) Wind! Winds typically blow north to south during the best touring season and this can severely impact your milage. I can cross Oregon comfortably (not going for any records here, I'm an old man) in 5 or 6 days (but more is more fun) heading north to south, but I'd expect it to take at least 10 days in the other direction.

The second reason is that you'll get a very different experience with other people on tour. Especially through Oregon, where there are established hiker-biker camp sites at intervals designed for bike tour (always $5, no reservation necessary). If you are touring from North to South, you will inevitably meet many other folks touring the same route. The option to cycle solo and avoid the other tourers always exists, but if you are going the wrong direction, then you'll miss out on meeting some of the most interesting bike tourers I've met anywhere.

And a final bonus consideration, the view! If you are traveling south, you've got the ocean on your immediate right and the views are unimpeded by the road.

I found this book of limited use when I was actually on the road, but I got some great advice from it while I was in planning stages:

u/Alucardbsm · 7 pointsr/bicycletouring

I've used Bicycling the Pacific Coast successfully from Vancouver all the way to the Mexican border.

Highly suggest that book. The places it has you stops is frequented by other bike tourers, so there's always people to meet.

u/klimlover · 4 pointsr/bicycletouring

The Pacific Coast bike tour is one of the most traveled bike tours in America. I'm a huge proponent of it. If you google pacific coast in this subreddit, you'll see a ton of results and information.

Not only that but there are maps and a book.

The maps:

The book:

I recommend the book. My GF and I did the full tour in 6 weeks about 2 years ago - and we took our time. Many of the folks we met were doing it in 30 days. It's about 1800-2000 miles. We started in Vancouver, many start in Seattle.

I've ridden bits and pieces of the same route several times now. Feel free to ask me any questions - I love discussing the coast tour/best campsites/best routes, etc. (see my profile, that's all it is :-)

u/efiala · 3 pointsr/bicycletouring

There's a book called Bicycling The Pacific Coast which is very useful for the whole route. I'd recommend getting a hold of a copy if you can.

u/Monkeyget · 3 pointsr/bicycling

I'll be doing this very trip next month.

*handlebar high five*

I plan on using this book : Bicycling The Pacific Coast

u/geronimo2000 · 3 pointsr/bicycletouring

also this route guide is kind of the bible for the west coast ride:

u/tony3011 · 3 pointsr/bicycletouring

People tend to go N to S due to winds. This book makes a good case for going that way in the first few pages.

Two other sources you might want to Google for route info would be the Adventure Cycling Association as well as Crazy Guy On A Bike journals. Journals are also a good place to see what other people packed.

u/pmdboi · 3 pointsr/bicycletouring

I highly recommend getting Bicycling the Pacific Coast and following the route it describes once you get out to the coast.

u/bigredbicycles · 3 pointsr/bicycling

I've ridden parts of it. Don't feel like you have to reserve campsites ahead of time. There's a book called Bicycling the Pacific Coast ( which is an amazing resource.

u/vox35 · 2 pointsr/bicycletouring

Almost everyone I met on my tour was using this book (and I used it as well). I would recommend it.

u/cruftbox · 2 pointsr/BikeLA
u/cralledode · 2 pointsr/bicycling

this book lays out exactly which state parks have hiker/biker sites, where on the coast they are, and what other amenities there are.

u/nonxoperational · 2 pointsr/bicycletouring

I rode from Newport, OR to San Francisco a few years ago. We used a book called "Bicycling the Pacific Coast."

I highly recommend it. I lays out some easy ride days (50-60 miles) and has useful information about the state camp grounds, and even some restaurants and stores along the way.

On a personal note, if you find yourself with some time in the Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, make sure you see Fern Canyon. It was unbelievable. One of the highlights of my trip for sure.

Have fun and hydrate!!!

u/ineedmyspace · 2 pointsr/bicycling

I did seattle to Santa Cruz, I can tell you a bit about my trip. I did it a little differently than Ben I believe, by going along the coast the whole time.

  • I really didn't plan my trip, and I liked it that way. I knew I was going to visit a friend from high school in Seattle, and visit a friend in Humboldt, but that was it. I bought a map for each state I passed through, and carried a book with me called 'bicycling the pacific coast':

    -I mainly stayed on the 1/101. Sometimes you have, or want to, veer off onto smaller highways, just look at a map.

    -I used a jetboil, a handy backpacking cooking thing. Good for heating up liquid substances, bad for stir-frying and stuff like that. A common meal for me was bread, beans, and avocado.

    -I camped every night. I use a hammock for backpacking, and I love it because it is very comfortable and keeps you completely dry when it rains. For biking, it is a godsend. It stretched out my legs while I slept so my knees felt good in the morning. I slept one night on the ground, and it was awful.

    -Sunglasses, rocks and bugs are scary.
    Even thought these fit into the 'spare parts' category, bring extra screws. I never would have thought of that, I there were times where i was.... screwed.

    -Do it!
u/SmilingSage · 2 pointsr/bicycletouring

I used this on my pacific coast tour:

Worked well enough. You will be camping most of the time, but I would highly suggest making use of

u/Suckermarket · 2 pointsr/bicycletouring

I took "the book" which you can find here and that was totally good. The details get a little shady the farther south you get but I'd recommend just taking that. I took an ebook version of it too which was super handy.

u/ooleary · 2 pointsr/BAbike

Ride the coast. Logistics are really easy with this book.

u/3rdInput · 2 pointsr/bicycletouring

I haven't done the Pacific Coast Route yet. I was planning for this May but going to Europe with my wife and can't take that much time off of work to do both. So I'll go next May.

But I have been researching the PCR for awhile.

There is a lot of info out there about the trip.

Search "Pacific Coast Route on this sub and Google, you'll get tons of info.

Get this book there is lots of info on the route, camping, side trips, etc.

I have read a lot about it and talked with a lot of people that have done it, but I can't give you any 1st hand info, "yet"

u/1880orso · 2 pointsr/bicycletouring

Buy this book:

It covers everything from Vancouver to the Mexican border and is basically the bible for the Pacific Coast route.

Maps out each day for you into manageable chunks, has campground info etc etc. It has everything you need for that trip, and the people you'll meet along the way will fill in any gaps.

This is a great run down of lightweight sleeping pads (there's a second link in the article for an updated list too):

u/altec3 · 2 pointsr/bicycling

So, I have done Vancouver to Tijuana and used almost exclusively this book:

I ended up hating it, some things are wrong,it's hard to use a book while riding, etc. but it got the job done.

Another alternative that is really useful are the adventure cycling maps:

Or like fayette said, ditch the preplanned route, it honestly is way more fun and feels more like you are on your own adventure. A lot of areas will have free bike maps of the region, like the Discovery Trail on the Olympic Peninsula. And you can just use road maps bought at a gas station. The downside to this is that many times you will take a big highway when there was a barely used country road that you could have taken.

Luckily for you there are hiker/biker sites in most campgrounds all the way up the coast. They normally cost around $5 a person and will have warm showers. Or, what it took me forever to learn was to bush camp. Go to a park and find somewhere hidden, get out your sleeping bag and sleep. Not having a car really helps hide in the park and it ends up saving a lot of money.

Also, I would consider taking Highway 1 up as far as you can. The grades are a little steeper and the shoulders a little smaller, but it is much better riding than the 101. Once you hit California(from Oregon), highway 101 turns into a highway, 4 fast lanes, wide shoulders and shallow grades. This comes at a cost, it is hotter, dustier and less scenic. While this doesn't sound so bad, it gets old quick.

For food I'm not sure what your plan is. I highly recommend getting a backpacking stove and lightweight pot. It will save you a lot of money and make you much more flexible. Usually you can go to most places and they will fill up your water or you can fill it up at their soda machines.

u/Gillingham · 2 pointsr/FixedGearBicycle

You need to have a helmet and an ID, check to make sure the base isn't closed due to some security stuff

Also get if you want some really good advice and plenty of routes to do the Pacific Coast top to bottom.

u/tupperwhatever · 2 pointsr/bicycling

started in portland, got a ride to the coast, then pretty much followed the book rest of way.

i also had the gpx file of ACA route and the pdf of brochure from oregon department of transportation that had a recommended route.

reading the book every morning/evening to get an idea of the route and points of interest was really nice.

u/mrJ26 · 2 pointsr/bicycletouring

Just got back from a Portland-SF ride, 14 days, 797 miles. I rode a Kona Dew commuter, my dad rode my Specialized Tricross, and we had zero bike issues whatsoever - not even a flat tire. The roads are in good shape, so you can do that ride on pretty much any bike. Just make sure its comfortable.

For breweries - we weren't as concerned with them as you seem to be, and didn't spend time at any of them, but would have if we had planned them out a bit more in advance. The North Coast Brewery in Fort Bragg is easily visited from Highway 1, they did tours and had a taproom and pub. If you can book in advance, the Anchor Brewery in SF offers tours for free on weekdays.

You'll meet lots of great people in the summer time. Most of the state parks along the coast offer hiker-biker campsites, $5 a head, which is great for catching up with other bikers. If you want an extremely detailed guide to these places and a route, you want Bicycling the Pacific Coast as your guide. We met a few others with this book and those who didn't have it were envious.

The Oregon coast was beautiful. Fog usually hung around until at least 11am. One night we went to bed under clear skies and woke up in a 2" deep puddle - the rain can hit at any time. The north California coast was all fog. When we split from 101 to follow hwy 1 along the coast, we didn't see the sun for three days. No rain though. Good luck!

u/FidelisknightOR · 1 pointr/Random_Acts_of_Books
u/doublecastle · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

Personally I used this guide book to find both our route and our nightly campsites:, but it looks like it hasn't been updated since 2005. Like mentioned, it would be prudent to call ahead. You might also be able to get some good, up-to-date info by looking at some trip journals at

Edit: Also, I would guess that the Adventure Cycling Association maps have fairly comprehensive and up-to-date info about hiker biker campsites.

u/newtolou · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

The route is very well marked. I brought a copy of this map but really only used it to find camp grounds.

I have some ACA maps from the trip, but this book was better written. I would happily send you some ACA maps if you'd like. I think that I have the Northern Washington to LA sections. I have no need to keep them around. I gave my copy of that book away to someone else towards the end of my trip.

u/essentialfloss · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

I've done this route before. The Northern section is really great, but it can get a little hairy once you get into California. Take all the detours you can, it can be pretty heavily trafficked. The lost coast section near Klamath is really cool if your bikes can handle it. Stop off at casinos for free coffee. Bring a kite, they're a lot of fun. Get lost in the redwoods if you can, try to plan a couple days. There's a great swimming hole (or at least there used to be) along the avenue of the giants near Miranda with a big tree sticking out of the water that you can dive off of. You've got to be a little more serious about planning your days as you get south, it gets more built up.

There's a great book that lists routes, good hiker-biker spots, local history, and activities along the way.

Adventure cycling makes some maps with milages and elevations that list campsites, etc. They're expensive new, but you can get used copies.

u/ColorMute · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

I more or less followed this guys route - Bicycling the Pacific Coast, I highly recommend it. It breaks down the day by day and gives you good advice on where to stop/see along the route even though it's 20 years out of print. A lot of people I met along the way, I was traveling by myself, were doing the same route.

u/DarkLeafyGreenz · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

I don't have much experience yet with stealth or bike camping above Santa Barbara (100mi north of LA) but you can look here for California State Park campgrounds that have a "Hike or Bike" camping option (click on By Feature on the left and check the box that says Hike or Bike). These campsites are usually $5-$10 per person per night with a 2 night max. I would try to use these when you can because they're a great resource. Unfortunately, many people abuse them by not paying, and the State Parks Commission is pulling them out of some campgrounds and not putting them in new ones.

From what I hear, it's easier to stealth camp once you're north of SF and especially north of California in general. A great resource for touring the coast is Bicycling the Pacific Coast with lots of directions and camping info. I think others may have a better idea of stealth camping options but that's what I know so far!

u/np2fast · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

Grab this book. A lot cheaper than the ACA maps and works great for the route. When I rode it a few years back, a lot of people used this as a route guide.

u/2fuckingbored · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

Not sure this book has the area listed because I don't have it downloaded anymore, but its useful for finding the best sites on the west coast. Highly recommend it.

u/hundred100 · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

Good luck on the trip! I just bought this book on Amazon. Canada to Mexico guide. $10 used.

u/prairiewizard19 · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

I rode from portland, oregon south to San Francisco this past summer. If your unfamiliar with the weather patterns on the west coast you may want to check out the wind situation. Every afternoon a powerful wind would come from the northwest, and I mean EVERY night. I met many north bound riders who had to stop riding by 4 or 5 pm because the headwinds were just to harsh. either way i hope you have a great trip. Check out this book
It helped me a lot with planning campgrounds.

u/carmenoh11 · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

Ya, I may have messed up the names. But we were planning on using the route that is in "Bicycling the Pacific Coast" by Vicky Spring and Tom Kirkendall

u/down2businesssocks · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

Enjoy, I rode this section early April 2015. Should be even more beautiful in June, too! Consider getting this book before you go:

Note that some specific details are beginning to be outdated. Still, it is basically the bible of the west coast bike route!

P.S. If you can ride like that in training you're good to go. I find a pace of 50 miles a day while touring to be my personal favorite amount. Everyone is different though, so you'll find your balance after a few days. Consider a day off halfway through your first week to let your body catch up to the new lifestyle.

u/mountainslayer · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

I know some people who did Vancouver - San Diego and they swore by this book.

u/bloudermilk · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

Bicycling The Pacific Coast has a route for you if want to spend a little time going around BC rather than direct.

u/Hugs42 · 1 pointr/bicycling

Well this book has the route planned out. We stopped at most of the places it recommended

And these maps were invaluable probably used them more than we used the book. If you want more detail I can dig out my journal and tell you exactly what we did.

u/llcooljessie · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

I've done the exact ride before. I recommend you camp at the state parks! This book has great maps and details for the trip:

u/timmeh_green · 1 pointr/bicycletouring

I biked that. I rented this book from my local library to use as a reference. It made things easy as far as what type of daily goals to set, tourist options, camping options, etc. But, my biggest piece of advice is to plan around the weather conditions. This is the single most important thing I have to pass on. I will let other people offer advice on getting your bike there and back and just go into more detail about my experience with the weather.

So, I biked from Canada to Mexico in mid-March/mid-April 2012 and this particular section was the most challenging because of the
weather. Although the Oregon coast is beautiful, it rains 350 days out of the year according to a local in Port Orford. So make sure to go at the right time. Not in March/April. The wind was aggressively pointed north. So much so that I had to peddle down hills just to keep moving. It was crazy! From what I remember the wind changes directions later in the year (I think somewhere in the summer months) and the wind pushes you south. That would have been a big game changer. It sucks being wet constantly and moving less than a third a day of what I was doing later in California (up to 90 miles a day in April).

All in all, this particular section of my trip that you are referring to was, for me, the least memorable and least enjoyable of the entire coast. Things got better for me after Crescent City when I took a route in land (and off the guide book) from the Coast to San Fransisco (good choice on my part). The wind was significantly reduced and the weather was much better in general. The highlights of the trip for me were the Redwoods just north of San Fransisco and the coast between San Fransisco and LA. Also, another thing I noticed is that because this area is so popular, you get treated a lot worse than most places. Lots of hippies, and druggies, and bums, and such hitchhike or travel south along this route. The bad seeds stick out in people's minds. Whereas when I went in land (and off the book) people were much nicer to -even impressed by- a vegabond like me.

I'm trying to look up what the wind and weather is like for labour day weekend. I'm not trying hard enough though. Look into it. I'm sure it will be better for you than it was for me and you will have a blast, but double check.

TL;DR: Plan around weather/wind/season.