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Driving Oregon's I-5 Corridor


As you enter Oregon from California along Interstate 5, you find yourself deep in the Siskiyou Mountains, one of Oregon's xxx beautiful mountain ranges.  In winter, the roads can be treacherous as you pass Siskiyou Pass, the highest point of Interstate 5, as it runs from Mexico to Canada.  These dangerous driving conditions are offset by the beauty of the snow covered mountains as far as the eye can see.  This is the most beautiful part of the I-5 corridor, with douglas fir-covered mountain slopes creating incredible vistas.

The truck traffic is heavy, as it is all up and down the corridor - get used to it.  Only xx miles after crossing the Oregon-California border, you arrive in the town of Ashland, the home of the annual Oregon Shakespeare Festival, which draws crowds of thousands in the summer months.  Ashland is also home to the only ski area in Southern Oregon, Mt. Ashland, and xxx.  Although the area is rich in outdoor activities, there isn't a lot here for the tourist to see.  Just up the road you arrive in Medford, the largest city in Southern Oregon, and the home of it's regional airport.

As you pass Medford, there start to be a few short side trips that you can take to see a few local attractions.  First up is the Oregon Vortex, located near the small town of Gold Hill.  The Vortex is worth a stop - it's an interesting phenomenon where you can stand in one place and actually be taller than in another, plumb bobs hang at angles, brooms stand by themselves, and golf balls seemingly roll uphill.

Just a short trip off the other side of the highway are the Oregon Caves, which feature interesting marble formations, and the Big Cats Park.  The next town up the road is Grants Pass, famous for it's location on the Rogue River, one of the 12 wild and scenic rivers in the United States.  On the Rogue, you can take a little time and take a jetboat excursion, or a white water rafting trip, or hit five wineries on the Rogue River Loop.  In Grants Pass, you'll also find the Wild Animal Nursing Home.  A fairly long, but beautiful sidetrip along US 126 Scenic Byway will lead you to Crater Lake, the deepest and clearest lake in the United States.

The freeway launches upward again after Grants Pass, heading into a series of vistas overlooking the forest covered Siskiyous, where it stays until reaching xx summit, where it starts to drop down and eventually flattens out at about Glendale.  The Interstate runs straight and flat for a while before heading back upward to Canyon Creek Summit, elevation xx feet, and descending again.  This up and down mountainous setting continues for about another xx miles until the mountains fade out into lower rolling hills surrounding the industrial town of Roseburg.  Just west of Roseburg lies the town of Winston, best known as the home of Oregon's only drive-through Wildlife Safari. 

The scenery picks back up for the stretch between Roseburg and the twin cities of Eugene and Springfield, with fir-covered hillsides and enough twists and turns to keep it interesting.  Eugene, Oregon's second largest city and home to the University of Oregon, is also the south end of the fertile Willamette Valley, the heart of Oregon's agricultural area and home of nearly all of it's major population centers.  You can stop here and have access to all the nicities you need. 

The next xx miles or so are pretty flat, lined with farmland, passing by Corvallis (home of Oregon State University), Albany, and a few other small towns.  As you approach Salem, the capital of Oregon, you'll see Enchanted Village on the right side of the freeway which offers a mother-goose themed amusement park for kids.  Next door is the beautiful Willamette Valley Vineyards, our favorite winery.  You'll also see exits near by for the Oregon Gardens and Silver Falls where you can walk a trail past ten separate waterfalls.  This is the south end of Oregon's Wine Country.

Passing through Salem, the views remain mundane as you approach Woodburn, home to a large outlet mall.  It is another xx miles before you reach the south end of the Portland Metropolitan Area.  Make sure you don't travel this stretch anywhere near rush hour - you'll be sorry. 

   

 

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This site has been visited  times since August, 2001.
To properly view this site, click
here to download the necessary fonts.
If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions for this site,  or would like to suggest a link, please
Contact Us.
2001-2018 JS Web Design - All Rights Reserved.