The matchup is set, the travel plans are booked, the next opponent is circled, and the objective is now delectably simple for the 49ers.

Two trips, two games -- a direct line to the franchise's potential sixth Super Bowl title.

An entire season, and the hopes of a huge and hungry fan base, has boiled down to two and only two things:

Travel to Atlanta to beat the Falcons in the NFC Championship game on Sunday.

Then go to New Orleans and win Super Bowl XLVII, against whichever AFC team emerges.

That does not seem like an overwhelming task for the 49ers any more, not after Saturday's 45-31 squishing of Green Bay at Candlestick Park.

And certainly not after coach Jim Harbaugh unveiled quarterback Colin Kaepernick as an all-purpose postseason colossus.

In fact, this feels like Harbaugh has coordinated and arranged the entire scenario, placing his leading man into the perfect spot at the perfect time for maximum impact.

Which would be now, with a straight line to the 49ers' first Super Bowl title in 18 years.

The 49ers defense has been ready for this for a couple of years, just waiting for an offense to match.

And now Kaepernick has electrified the 49ers and shown he can score from any spot, with his legs or his arm, just in time for this two-game sprint.

This week, the challenge is directly on Atlanta, which barely scraped by against Seattle in the Georgia Dome on Sunday, and now faces the Kaepernick Crucible.

Interestingly, the Falcons' defense is run by Mike Nolan, who built much of the 49ers' foundation when he was hired as 49ers coach in 2005.

But Atlanta might be missing defensive lineman John Abraham, a premium pass rusher who left Sunday's game with an injured ankle.

Without Abraham at full speed, can Atlanta slow down Kaepernick? It will have to, or he could easily repeat what he did Saturday -- 444 total yards, including 181 rushing yards, the most by a quarterback in any game in NFL history.

As 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman put it Saturday, Kaepernick is the 49ers' ace in the hole.

If you can't counter him, you'll get busted out of the game.

It still could, of course, all go up in flames for the 49ers, who have lost their last five road playoff games dating back to the early 1990s.

The 49ers' last road playoff game: The 31-6 loss in Tampa in January 2003 to the eventual Super Bowl champion Buccaneers.

The 49ers' last road playoff victory: January 1989 in the NFC Championship game, 28-3 in Chicago before they beat Cincinnati in Super Bowl XXIII.

That was with Joe Montana at quarterback, that was Bill Walsh's final season as 49ers coach, and that is a precious piece of franchise lore.

This week is about making new history with new characters, if the final two tests can be passed.

Atlanta's Georgia Dome is a tricky place and was the site of a 49ers' playoff loss in January 1999, which came, interestingly, right after the 49ers beat Green Bay at Candlestick.

The 49ers were 1-2 in domes this season, losing in Minnesota (with Alex Smith at quarterback) and St. Louis (with Kaepernick) and winning in New Orleans (with Kaepernick).

But Atlanta is not a physical team, and the 49ers have been at their best in the Harbaugh Era when they're imposing their will on finesse squads.

They can impose their will on Atlanta, and they have the physical advantage -- that's what usually wins playoff games.

Beyond Sunday, there are intriguing Super Bowl possibilities looming ...

The AFC champion could be Baltimore, which is coached by John Harbaugh, Jim's brother, who beat the 49ers in a roaring tilt on Thanksgiving night in 2011.

Are you ready for Harbaugh Bowl II?

Or it will be New England and Bay Area native Tom Brady, who has won three Super Bowls of his own and lost two others, including last season.

That's all that stands in front of the 49ers now: the game in Atlanta and, if the 49ers win, an AFC team in New Orleans.

This is when the mad rush of a season seems to slow down, every moment is heightened, and the Super Bowl is so close that an entire franchise -- and fan base -- has to calm itself.

The 49ers are only two trips and two victories away, and that is always the most nerve-racking part of all. But it's fun, too.

Contact Tim Kawakami at tkawakami@mercurynews.com. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/TimKawakami.