The Ferry in Port Townsend Washington - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 01-11-2016, 10:45 PM   #1
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The Ferry in Port Townsend Washington

We will be picking up our 21 at the end of March and are looking at routes. Has anyone driven down Highway 20 and taken the ferry to Port Townsend? Is it expensive? Is it a nightmare getting on and off the ferry? Looks like it might be a way to avoid the horrendous Seattle traffic.

We plan to drive down 101 to our home in Mill Valley CA so we would also be interested in any stellar places to camp or things to see along Highway 101 on the way down.

Thanks!
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:23 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Maury&Julie View Post
We will be picking up our 21 at the end of March and are looking at routes. Has anyone driven down Highway 20 and taken the ferry to Port Townsend? Is it expensive? Is it a nightmare getting on and off the ferry? Looks like it might be a way to avoid the horrendous Seattle traffic.

We plan to drive down 101 to our home in Mill Valley CA so we would also be interested in any stellar places to camp or things to see along Highway 101 on the way down.

Thanks!
Getting on and off the Port Townsend ferry would be far more nerve wracking to me than going through Seattle. Go through Seattle early Saturday or Sunday. Have made that trip at least 6 times with the trailer. Seattle is busy but short. Try the Salt Lake corridor on 15! It's 124 miles of tough traffic from Brigham City to Provo. We also take 205 going through Portland even though it adds some time but it avoids the downtown and the notorious Terwilliger curves!! Unless you want to cross the Columbia at Our town, Longview, and go out to Astoria to catch 101.
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:32 PM   #3
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I took this route after I picked up my trailer in April 2014. At the time it cost $42.80. But beware-- they measure the combined length of your tow vehicle + trailer and will charge more if the combination is over 40 feet long. My Tacoma + Escape 21 came in at 39 feet, one inch. Whew!
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:35 PM   #4
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From my experiences and reading others, it seems that the best time to go through Seattle would be about 4:00 AM on a Sunday morning. Loren
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:39 PM   #5
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Also, I didn't find getting on and off the ferry to be a big deal. It's pretty straightforward. I've taken vehicles onto the Washington State Ferries several times, though this was the only time pulling a trailer. It wasn't any different, really.
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:41 PM   #6
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Getting on and off the Port Townsend ferry would be far more nerve wracking to me than going through Seattle. Go through Seattle early Saturday or Sunday. Have made that trip at least 6 times with the trailer. Seattle is busy but short. Try the Salt Lake corridor on 15! It's 124 miles of tough traffic from Brigham City to Provo. We also take 205 going through Portland even though it adds some time but it avoids the downtown and the notorious Terwilliger curves!! Unless you want to cross the Columbia at Our town, Longview, and go out to Astoria to catch 101.
We took the Port Townsend Ferry Last Fall, and I didn't think it was hard at all. We simply drove on, stayed in our lane, and stopped where the nice man told us to stop. Getting off was simply a matter of driving straight off the ferry. Then we took 101 around the Olympic Peninsula,

I have driven through Seattle a couple of times, including once just after we picked up our 17b, in a driving rain storm. Going through Seattle is definitely quicker than going through Port Townsend. But the Olympic Peninsula is definitely more scenic, and if time isn't an issue, it is the way I would go. We stayed at the Hoh Valley Rain Forest Campground. which we enjoyed a lot. Campgrounds along the Oregon Coast are plentiful and very nice.

As Donna would say, "YMMV". But if you have the time, I think it would be worth it to go through Port Townsend.
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:53 PM   #7
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Great info! We have over a week to get back to California so we will probably go through Port Townsend. Thanks for the information. We can't wait to get our trailer!
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:54 PM   #8
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I live near Anacortes and use the Port Townsend-Coupeville ferry a few times every year. It's simple and stress free. Make reservations online, adjust if necessary, there are several sailings each day and the crossing time is about 35 minutes. A really nice option to Seattle traffic, where even a fender bender can cause huge delays. Port Townsend is a nice place to visit, also.
Hint: When traveling northbound, when you disembark the ferry at the Keystone terminal, turn left toward Coupeville, ignore the directional signs sending you the other way for purely political reasons. Likewise, if you are southbound, from Hwy 20, turn right at the Coupeville traffic light (at the overhead pedestrian bridge). This is a nice rural route, unsigned, again for reasons not associated with common sense, I think. PM if you need more info.
Congratulations on the new Escape!
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:56 PM   #9
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One other nervous question. Do the ferris ever fill up? Do you need to make a reservation?
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:58 PM   #10
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Thanks for anticipating my question avddave!
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