My girlfriend and I are planning to travel from October to March. We'll be hitchhiking our way from Vancouver to somewhere in South-America. We're from the Netherlands and we have never been on the American continent yet, although we have travelled quite a lot (last travel was in Iran!). So America is a whole new place for us. Therefore, we were wondering if there are other people here who have also hitchhiked in America and could share some experienes en tips with us. Also, is the weather in October in Oregon still suitable for camping/hitchhiking? Or are freezing temperatures lurking around these times?
October in Oregon is still pretty nice, but rain is possible (we're getting warmer here all the time!) People in North America will be very wary of picking up hitchhikers (it's also illegal in many places), and you will be spending many many hours just trying to get a ride.
October in the PNW (Pacific Northwest) is often nice, but sometimes cold.
Background: I've hitched lots in all kinds of coutries (including U.S.) where people have told me you never get picked up. I've picked up lots of hitchhikers (mostly in America).
Hitching in the U.S.: Some people will stare at you as they drive by, some will pick you up! I like hitchwiki to get info about specific areas. It's helped me find gas stations, etc. that I'd otherwise know nothing about.
Here's the American hitchwiki page.
Hope that helps!
The most important you thing you will need to know about trying to hitchhike from Canada to South America is that there are no roads in the southern part of Panama through the northern part of Columbia. This area, known as the Darien Gap, is impassable except by going around it by taking a boat or plane to do so. It's also probably one of the most dangerous spots in the world.
Here's some info on the Darien Gap:
So, if you plan to go, get yourself a plane ride from Panama City, Panama to a city in South America (I suggest you go at least as far as Quito (Ecuador) or Medallin (Columbia)--with my own preference being to go all the way to Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) or Lima (Peru) or Santiago (Chile) or Buenos Aires (Argentina).
P.S. I also wouldn't suggest hitchhiking through a large part of Mexico since there are drug problems in various areas--and you should check out which areas these are before attempting to hitchhike your way through.
Heck, I think hitchhiking is dangerous no matter where you go--even in the US--but it's up to you to decide how much danger you are willing to accept.