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Old 04-06-2013, 04:02 PM
 
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I'm driving to Sacramento next week taking 101. Is it better to take highway 37 at Novato or stay on highway 101 until San Rafael and take 580 into Richmond before heading NE to Sac?
-Which one's safer, takes longer, has more traffic?
Thanks!
Andrea
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:07 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
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take 37

580 is WAYYYYY out of the way, and if there's lots of traffic on 37, there probably will be too on 580.
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Old 04-06-2013, 08:49 PM
 
Location: US
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If you have a smart phone, simply check your Google Maps or Apple Maps APP. It will give you live traffic, that's what I always do.
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Old 04-06-2013, 09:40 PM
 
Location: A bit further north than before
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Where are you starting from?
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Old 04-06-2013, 09:49 PM
 
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I'm starting in Humboldt County (near the Oregon border), and I'm going to stay on 101 until either Novato or San Rafael, depending on whether I take 580 or 37.
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Old 04-06-2013, 10:01 PM
 
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Andrea, It sounds like you are starting somewhere north of Santa Rosa, If so then DO NOT take 580; that is way way out of the way, and requires you to pay two bridge tolls: the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge on 580 and on I-80 in Vallejo, the Carquinez Bridge.

From 101, Take 37 east in Novato; it's safe now as it is a divided highway, rarely gets backed up and it puts you just north of Vallejo onto I-80, no bridge tolls.

Scenic Route:
If starting north of Santa Rosa or in Santa Rosa, then go east from 101, on Highway 12, through Santa Rosa, through the Valley of the Moon, wine country, down to the town of Sonoma. You'll bypass just south of the city of Napa, onto I-80. Very Scenic, but longer in time, less safe because of UNdivided highways. No bridge tolls.
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Old 04-06-2013, 10:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chimérique View Post
Andrea, It sounds like you are starting somewhere north of Santa Rosa, If so then DO NOT take 580; that is way way out of the way, and requires you to pay two bridge tolls: the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge on 580 and on I-80 in Vallejo, the Carquinez Bridge.

From 101, Take 37 east in Novato; it's safe now as it is a divided highway, rarely gets backed up and it puts you just north of Vallejo onto I-80, no bridge tolls.

Scenic Route:
If starting north of Santa Rosa or in Santa Rosa, then go east from 101, on Highway 12, through Santa Rosa, through the Valley of the Moon, wine country, down to the town of Sonoma. You'll bypass just south of the city of Napa, onto I-80. Very Scenic, but longer in time, less safe because of UNdivided highways. No bridge tolls.
I was concerned about taking 37 because I read it had a lot of crashes, but it seems like that may be a little outdated and it may be better now. It seems like taking 580 would be inconvinent; so I'll probably go with 37.
Thank you for answering!
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Old 04-06-2013, 10:27 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndeaMarie View Post
I was concerned about taking 37 because I read it had a lot of crashes, but it seems like that may be a little outdated and it may be better now. It seems like taking 580 would be inconvinent; so I'll probably go with 37.
Thank you for answering!
Highway 37 is divided with a concrete median 5-6 feet tall; it's way way safer than years past. There are more lanes as well.

Note: There are 2 or 3 cross traffic intersections on the 25 mile route from Novato to Vallejo, but well marked plenty of flashing warning lights, etc.
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Old 04-06-2013, 10:53 PM
 
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Well, that sounds like what I'm going to do, then.
Thank you very much for the help, I really appreciate it!
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Old 04-07-2013, 11:30 AM
 
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I have done this drive many times (family in Humboldt) - we always go down 101 to about Ukiah, cross over on 20, and then 5 will drop you down into Sac. You avoid the Santa Rosa and Bay Area traffic (both can be awful depending on timing). Driving along 20 by Clear Lake is surprisingly beautiful.

I drive a small car and I feel like this route is as safe as any and probably the fastest.
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