What's the fastest way from San Diego North County to LA during rush hour?
July 4, 2012 7:17 PM   Subscribe

I need to be in Beverly Hills by 9AM tomorrow morning. I'm in San Diego North County. I have two basic options: Either take the I-5 N all the way or take the I-15 N and then go west towards Beverly Hills. I am assuming that taking the I-15, even though it's the longer route, will get me there faster during rush hour, because I'll avoid Orange County, South LA and all that mess. Am I right?
posted by gertzedek to Travel & Transportation around Los Angeles, CA (9 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I think your best bet is to do the 5 to the 73 to the 405 all the way up till you get to your destination. If you leave at like 6:15 am, you'll likely get there in ample time and avoid some of the post-holiday traffic.

FWIW, I used to take this route to help me bypass traffic on the 5 when I was driving to Toluca Lake/Universal City a lot last year. It saved my sanity.
posted by Hello Darling at 8:05 PM on July 4, 2012

Probably true as far as missing north-south traffic, but then you have to go clear across almost all of LA on the 10, which may not be easy.

Also, you'd probably want to take the 405 at some point rather than the 5 since that'll get you right into Beverly. If you're travelling with someone, there will be carpool lanes almost all the way up. You may also want to take the toll road that goes from about Mission Viejo up to Costa Mesa.
posted by LionIndex at 8:06 PM on July 4, 2012

Yes, definitely take advantage of the 73 toll road. It will be much faster.
posted by primethyme at 8:06 PM on July 4, 2012

Whatever route you pick, check sigalert before you go. Knowing which route is marginally better under normal conditions does you no good when there is an accident.
posted by eddydamascene at 8:11 PM on July 4, 2012 [2 favorites]

One thing that might be helpful (especially in LA) is using Google Map's traffic feature. It defaults to live traffic, but you can change the time and day to show what traffic has looked like historically at particular times and days. I've found it very helpful to know what major roads to avoid during rush hour or on particular days.

Using this data, all the major roads going in look pretty equally busy, although if you can plan on getting there earlier, it will be less congested. Also, in terms of taking I-15 up, you'd still have to take I-10 east, which can be pretty bad. I agree that taking 405 is the best way to go, and based on Google's data, it doesn't get too bad in the morning until about six miles from your destination.
posted by SpacemanStix at 8:19 PM on July 4, 2012

Yep: 5-73-405. And hey, half the world will have taken tomorrow and Friday off work, so it won't be quite so bad as normal.
posted by Lyn Never at 8:23 PM on July 4, 2012

Taking the 15 would be a bad idea. Not only is there extra mileage you're overlooking the huge westbound traffic coming in from the IE/Riverside areas into Los Angeles. The only way the 15 would make sense if you wake up and hear on the traffic report that a wreck has the 5 completely closed in far North County like Camp Pendleton area. That's unlikely though.

The 5-73-405 route will be the best. Taking the toll road gets you away from a lot of that OC congestion between where the 73 is and where the 5 an 405 meet.
posted by birdherder at 9:40 PM on July 4, 2012

Oh, I think the 5 will be better than normal, as it is the day after the 4th.

I've done this commute a million times, I'd have zero fear about the 6 tomorrow. Leave at 6am.

Unless you are going towards Brentwood, avoid the 405. That way leads to madness. Roadwork at the Sunset Blvd exit assures this.
posted by jbenben at 11:11 PM on July 4, 2012

Response by poster: Update: Took the 5-73-405 and it was awesome. SD to Beverly Hills in way under two hours, not counting a stop for gas. You guys are the best. Thanks!
posted by gertzedek at 9:57 PM on July 5, 2012

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