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Old 09-21-2010, 06:38 PM   #616
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[QUOTE=2princesses2princes;38308692][COLOR="DarkSlateBlue"]This thread is awesome. I just finished reading through all 42 pages of posts! I am so excited but yet nervous for our first ever drive from SouthWest Michigan down to POR. Our trip isn't til Feb 2011, but we are getting super excited and I am planning my heart out.QUOTE]

Now you have to read the original "For 2,000+ Mile Round-Trip Drivers Only!" thread. This is part II !

All the best.
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Old 09-22-2010, 12:02 PM   #617
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Just bringing it back to the top.

For the people from Northern Illinois and Wisconsin or higher.

Which way do you go? Do you take 57 to 24 or do you head over to 65?

We have taken both ways and I prefer the 65 route. I think its just to get out of Illinois the sooner the better, also submentally the fear of a speeding ticket while in IL scares me as they take your license or the $75 while for one out of state I can deal with it when we get home.


Also for all drivers:
Do you use a CB when you drive? Growing up my folks did, and I thought it was amusing and amazing at the same time. I still use my dads old Cobra CB on my drives, it has to be about 30 years old, it kinda looks like the one from Smokey and the bandit. But it works awesome and while we do not talk on it, its great to listen as to where the police are sitting, accidents or road hazards ahead.
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Old 09-22-2010, 01:35 PM   #618
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Originally Posted by cemeb4dk View Post
Just bringing it back to the top.

For the people from Northern Illinois and Wisconsin or higher.

Which way do you go? Do you take 57 to 24 or do you head over to 65?

We have taken both ways and I prefer the 65 route. I think its just to get out of Illinois the sooner the better, also submentally the fear of a speeding ticket while in IL scares me as they take your license or the $75 while for one out of state I can deal with it when we get home.


Also for all drivers:
Do you use a CB when you drive? Growing up my folks did, and I thought it was amusing and amazing at the same time. I still use my dads old Cobra CB on my drives, it has to be about 30 years old, it kinda looks like the one from Smokey and the bandit. But it works awesome and while we do not talk on it, its great to listen as to where the police are sitting, accidents or road hazards ahead.
We live in the western Chicago burbs and drive down to FL at least 4 times a year. We have taken various routes and much prefer the 57 to 24 route over the 65 route through IN. Even though I65 is the shorter route, we find that I57 takes the same amount of time (barring construction on either route) or even is quicker than I65. The I65 route through IN has many more trucks than I57 which can cause much more stress when driving.
We don't use a CB, but do have our radar detector and our Garmin Nuvi which has traffic alerts. It is actually quite useful when there is a back up to be able to hit detour on the Nuvi and even if it adds time, we are rerouted so at least we keep moving.
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Old 09-22-2010, 02:49 PM   #619
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There are two problems with driving......(at least for us):

1. With the money you can save, you will start going more often.
2. With the money you can save, your trips will become longer, and longer, LOL. Ours went from an average of 6 nights, to 10-12!

Isn't that the truth.
Well we are heading back down from the Toronto area (4400klm round trip) for our third drive coming up, in around four weeks.

The first two trips were adventurous to say the least. The first one I ran something over in a blinding rainstorm at night in the mountains of Virginia, on the way home. The tire was flat in seconds. To top it off the spare tire wouldn't drop from it's holder. Did I mention it was frigging cold and wet! After an hour of fighting it a nice lady from their version of our Ministry of Transportation stops, crawls under with me with a huge bottle of WD40 and after 10 minutes we manage to jar it loose. We were all soaked to the bone but she stuck around with those big flashing yellow lights until I got it changed. I tried to offer her a tip but she insisted she was doing her job. I hope they pay her enough for catching pneumonia. Her words were `Consider it an early Christmas present from the State of Virginia.`

-First new rule for a long road trip, Check The Spare!
-Second rule bring a real jack. The ones they provide with the truck could get you killed, it has to be the most flimsy piece of tin I have ever seen.

The second Dec trip a year later, again on the trip home. We were coming through those mountains again. This time in a snow storm, no big deal, I`m Canadian and I have my 4x4 truck. No big deal do it every winter for the last 20, old hat for me. Well as we are traveling rather fast compared to the locals, I notice no traffic coming the other way. Huh, after a few corners, across the Interstate there was a little pile up. Two or three semi`s decided to get together and blocked the whole thing. It was backed up for about twenty miles. Needless to say I whoa`d her up and figured better safe than sorry and stopped somewhere in Pennsylvania later that night.
The next morning we get on the Interstate for the last 8 hours and there is a little squeal coming from the front end. By the time we got to the Canadian border it had gotten a bit louder. By a bit, I mean every one was spinning there heads for the old WTH look. Thank god for tinted windows. We had gone over the amount we could bring home but the border guard tells me to keep on going it sounds like you have bigger problems. . So we milk it the last 2hrs or should I say 3.5hrs because I had to go a wee bit slower than normal. The next day I take it to the mechanic. We put her on the hoist and the left front tire almost was at a 45 degree angle when the weight came off. . I had melted the front bearing and couldn`t figure out how it didn`t come off in the last 800klm`s.

-Rule three, take truck to the shop for a once over just before the trip. Doesn`t matter how new it is. I heard a funny little noise the week before we left but thought nothing of it. The sound came and went. It would have been noticed before leaving.

We do seem to go for longer periods driving down and my wife loves it because having the truck she can spend to her hearts content not worrying about how to get it on the plane.

Sorry for the novel but those are some of the new rules for me before we go.

Chris.
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Old 09-22-2010, 05:59 PM   #620
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cemeb4dk View Post
Just bringing it back to the top.

For the people from Northern Illinois and Wisconsin or higher.

Which way do you go? Do you take 57 to 24 or do you head over to 65?

We have taken both ways and I prefer the 65 route. I think its just to get out of Illinois the sooner the better, also submentally the fear of a speeding ticket while in IL scares me as they take your license or the $75 while for one out of state I can deal with it when we get home.


Also for all drivers:
Do you use a CB when you drive? Growing up my folks did, and I thought it was amusing and amazing at the same time. I still use my dads old Cobra CB on my drives, it has to be about 30 years old, it kinda looks like the one from Smokey and the bandit. But it works awesome and while we do not talk on it, its great to listen as to where the police are sitting, accidents or road hazards ahead.
I prefer 57 over 65 and have taken both. 65 just seems to take longer. I have only ever seen 1 police officer on 57.

My Dh has a CB and I would never want my son to hear some of the garbage the truckers talk about on it so we skip it on drives to FL. We do bring our Garmin Nuvi though. DH won't use a radar detector because he claims they are useless nowadays.

PS. I wanted to add that I learned not to stop at rest areas after dark. We stopped at the first rest area in GA to have a man come up begging money from my teenage son. His back was to me and it said State Prisoner on it and I freaked and yelled for my son to get to the car. I scared the crap out of the guy with the tone of my voice so he took off right away. He is lucky he did because I was about to mace him.
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Old 09-22-2010, 07:09 PM   #621
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Originally Posted by 2princesses2princes View Post
This thread is awesome. I just finished reading through all 42 pages of posts! I am so excited but yet nervous for our first ever drive from SouthWest Michigan down to POR. Our trip isn't til Feb 2011, but we are getting super excited and I am planning my heart out. I have no idea what to expect on a 1300 mile one way road trip with 4 kiddos. Not to mention February around the great lakes can be AWEFUL. Any tips or suggestions are oh so welcome. Oh yeah and might I add our 2 yr old gets cars sick, fun stuff.

The plan is to leave on Thursday sometime and drive straight through to POR and arrive early afternoon on Friday. So what time would you all suggest we leave? The route we plan to take is I94 to I-69 to I465 to I-65 to I-24 to I75. We are hoping to arrive at POR with enough time to wind down, take a short swim, a nap and be to the Contemporary by 4:30 or so for our 5:00 ressies at Chef Mickeys.
We are driving from northern Indiana (South Bend area) in two days to POR! Similar route as you too, though not 94 to 69...not sure where in southwest MI you are coming from, but for us going to 69 and then back to 465 is actually doubling back too far. We aren't able to drive straight through though, as DH gets carsick if not driving and DS couldn't handle that long in a car without significant stops! We're just heading a few hours to south of Indy, then on Sat. going to south of Atlanta, and will be at POR by around 1:00 on Sun. I will post when we get back though in terms of how long the route took in total driving time and such; obviously you have weather to contend with more in February as well!

Have a great trip!
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Old 09-22-2010, 07:09 PM   #622
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I just booked my hotel for my drive back - booked the Howard Johnson in Rocky Mount/Battleboro NC for 45 for the night - has anyone ever stayed here - i am not looking for anything fancy just a place to crash for the night...thanks
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Old 09-22-2010, 07:44 PM   #623
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I just booked my hotel for my drive back - booked the Howard Johnson in Rocky Mount/Battleboro NC for 45 for the night - has anyone ever stayed here - i am not looking for anything fancy just a place to crash for the night...thanks
We swear by Tripadvisor.com for hotel reviews. Sometimes I do find you need to look at a number of them to get a clear picture of a place and I always check out the photos. Have a great trip!
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Old 09-22-2010, 07:50 PM   #624
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Originally Posted by nytimez View Post
If you're on LI, the best thing to do is convince a relative to move to North Carolina. You'll always have a place to stay at the midpoint!
You're too funny! We do have relatives who are in NC for 6 months of the year...but they had the nerve to buy in Asheville - the western end That said, we do enjoy visiting them there, just a bit inconvenient for the beeline we're hoping to make to Florida.
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Old 09-22-2010, 08:13 PM   #625
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Originally Posted by Hankshouse View Post
We swear by Tripadvisor.com for hotel reviews. Sometimes I do find you need to look at a number of them to get a clear picture of a place and I always check out the photos. Have a great trip!
Thanks i checked tripadvisor and its a toss up there - some say good others say horrible - oh well i will see what it is once we get there - like i said it was only 45 for the night so as long as it is clean it will serve its purpose.
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Old 09-22-2010, 08:41 PM   #626
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Too funny but husband and I are trying to plan a trip down during February break and with the high cost of flying, I'm trying to convince him to drive. We're also at Exit 63 off the LIE...LOL!! We've driven to FL once before when kids were tiny and this past summer did a road trip to NC. Although there were a few moments when I doubted my sanity, I think I'm actually starting to look forward to a drive down. Saw your comments on departure times and overnights to FL (Kingsland, GA?) but was wondering what you guys recommend for the trip home? I'm pretty sure that straight through won't work for us and considering the hotel has an 11am checkout, I was wondering what time you usually hit the road and where you recommend staying? Thanks for the help
We leave early, it stinks but we go around 3:00am. I like to get as much driving in as possible when the kids will sleep. One trip we drove straight home, I think on a weekend. Traffic wasn't bad and we got home around 8:30pm. If it's a weekday you will hit traffic around the east and north side of DC. Up until that point you should be clear. If your going to stop overnight I would suggest getting as much driving done on the first day as possible. Consider stopping in Northern VA. Get about 12 hours in the first day, that would leave you about 5 hours the second if you time it right.
Our other 3 trips we stopped to visit my sister in northern VA. Leaving at 3:00 gets us there between 2:00 and 3:00. She is about 20 miles south of DC.
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Old 09-22-2010, 08:45 PM   #627
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Watch out for traffic on the DE/MD border on 95. They are doing some extensive work around a toll both there. Coming back from VA this past Sunday afternoon we hit some crazy traffic there. I know Sunday afternoon is a bad time to travel but we didn't have much of a choice this time.
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Old 09-22-2010, 08:52 PM   #628
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We leave early, it stinks but we go around 3:00am. I like to get as much driving in as possible when the kids will sleep. One trip we drove straight home, I think on a weekend. Traffic wasn't bad and we got home around 8:30pm. If it's a weekday you will hit traffic around the west and north side of DC. Up until that point you should be clear. If your going to stop overnight I would suggest getting as much driving done on the first day as possible. Consider stopping in Northern VA. Get about 12 hours in the first day, that would leave you about 5 hours the second if you time it right.
Our other 3 trips we stopped to visit my sister in northern VA. Leaving at 3:00 gets us there between 2:00 and 3:00. She is about 20 miles south of DC.
Thanks again for all of your great advice. What time do you suggest we leave WDW if we are not in a hurry to get home and plan to stop one night on the way.
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Old 09-23-2010, 08:08 AM   #629
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Thanks again for all of your great advice. What time do you suggest we leave WDW if we are not in a hurry to get home and plan to stop one night on the way.
I'll give you the average times that I have for each state. You can kind of gauge how long it will take you to get to where you want to stop give or take. I have a trip log and I averaged out all the times that I have written down for each state. These are based on pretty much no traffic.

FL- 2hr 30min
GA- 1hr 40min
SC- 3hr
NC- 3hr
VA- 2hr 40min
MD- 1hr 50min
DE- 16min
NJ- 1hr 20min (Exit 13 NJTP)
NY- 1hr 15min (Exit 63 LIE)
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Old 09-23-2010, 10:12 AM   #630
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Originally Posted by crzy4dsny View Post
I'll give you the average times that I have for each state. You can kind of gauge how long it will take you to get to where you want to stop give or take. I made a little trip log and I averaged out all the times that I have. These are based on pretty much no traffic.

FL- 2hr 30min
GA- 1hr 40min
SC- 3hr
NC- 3hr
VA- 2hr 40min
MD- 1hr 50min
DE- 16min
NJ- 1hr 20min (Exit 13 NJTP)
NY- 1hr 15min (Exit 63 LIE)
This is great info! Thanks!
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