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  1. #1

    Default From Kittery ME to Niagara Falls to Cleveland!

    I leave Glasgow (Scotland) for NYC Oct 16th and I have an internary from NYC to Maine - via a bunch of family members's houses!

    I anticipate getting to Kittery in Maine the week 23rd and I want to get across from ME to Niagara and I have no idea which way to go or what to see along the way so could some New Englanders help this Cal gal out?

    I also need some budget accommodation along the way until I get to Cleveland and have a place to stay.

    Flexible on time and route.

    Thanks for your input!


    PS: Am I likely to see Fall Foliage or will I miss it by a matter of weeks (or is too hard to tell at this time?)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Choices

    First of all, you are practically guaranteed to see Fall Foliage somewhere along that drive. The only questions are exactly where and exactly how brilliant it will be. You might want to check this thread from time to time for updates from our resident New Englander. As a former one myself (lived in York, worked in Portsmouth), I'm going to suggest a couple of two-lane routes west out of Kittery that will be scenic in their own right and the color will then be an added benefit. The first is across southern New Hampshire and Vermont by way of US-4 to Concord where you can use I-393, I-93 and I-89 as a bypass around the city before continuing west on US-202, NH-9, VT-9 and NY-7 into Albany. The second possibility from Kittery is to come down I-95 and I-495 into Massachusetts and then take MA-2 and NY-2, the Mohawk Trail, into Albany.

    From Albany, you again have two choices, The New York State Thruway (I-90) is the quick way, but it is a toll road and not particularly relaxing. If you have the time and the inclination, you might try US-20 instead. It's an interesting and scenic road that manages to miss all the large cities in upstate New York while generally following the route of the old Erie Canal. For the final run into Cleveland, the choices are not so good, and you're probably better off to just stick with I-90 all the way in. Nowhere along this trip are you going to be that far from 'civilization; and wherever you feel like bedding down for the night you should be within say 50 miles of a city large enough to have a Motel 6, Red Roof Inn, Super 8 or similar lodgings.


  3. #3


    Thanks AZ - I'll take a look at the map for those suggestions.

    So there isn't too much worth checking out in the main Upstate NYC cities?

    I'll check out your two suggested threads.

    Thanks much.

    Cali x

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Choices II

    So there isn't too much worth checking out in the main Upstate NYC cities?
    Well, of course, that depends on what you consider worth checking out. You had indicated a preference for the scenic route, but if you can let me know what your interests are, maybe I can point you to a few venues of interest.


  5. #5


    Fair point of course - I realise that was rather vague of me to write that.

    I love photography of scenery - so pretty buildings, nature, bridges, oceans, rivers, lighthouses, etc.

    Music and movie related stops also welcome.

    For instance, on my (coast to coast) trip, I plan to go to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland and Elizabethtown for the film :)

    Thanks for the feedback. I am reading that Mohawk book now and will possibly send away for the hard copy of it to be delivered to my cousins.

    Cali x

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Scenic Photography

    You have a sure bet for scenery along MA-2, especially West of Greenfield, where you can see into NY,VT,MA,CT, & NH on a clear day from some vantage points.

    If you have some time to meander whilst East of Cleveland, there are a fair amount of Amish as well as covered bridges in the countryside. Just taking a quick glance at my resources, I spot 9 covered bridges within approximately 10 mile radius from the Plymouth-OH-11 exit off of I-90.

    The roads in Ashtabula and Geauga counties, off of the Interstate, are for the most part sparsely traveled and in good repair - there are, of course, exceptions, but the two-lanes out there have been kind to me.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Choices III

    OK - for sure while you're in Kittery, be sure to ask your cousin for directions to the Nubble. In general, I think you'd be better served to take the Mohawk Trail for scenic vista photography, and be sure to check out this suggestion by Mass Tim. In western New York it is just a short side trip off US-20 to one of the most beautiful locations in the northeast, Letchworth State Park. Quite a bit farther off the short route are two of my favorite quietly beautiful spots in central New York. Taughannock Falls is the tallest water fall in the northeastern US and Watkins Glen is just a great place to hike with great views around every other bend. But, as I said, these last two are a bit of your path and may be better saved for another trip. I'm not aware of any movie locations or music venues in the areas you'll be travelling through, but the NY State Barge Canal (the old Erie Canal) will offer plenty of opportunities to view bridges, nature, etc.

    Ooops - just remembered. If you recall the Jack Nicholson film, "The Last Detail", parts of it were filmed in Kittery at the prison at the Naval Yard.

    Ooops, again! Another great location for lighthouse and ocean photography is a set of offshore islands, the Isles of Shoals. There is a daily boat out to them from Portsmouth harbor that would be well worth looking into.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 09-23-2006 at 01:36 PM. Reason: Added Isles of Shoals suggestion

  8. #8


    Aww that's great. Thanks so much for your time.

    Just wait until i get the Cleveland to Houston via Elizabethtown, Memphis and Nashville and Little Rock thread up here :)

    Honestly the part of the trip I am dreading the most is Dallas to El Paso. Eight or so hours on my tod (alone). Bleuch. Hoping a friend from Cleveland will fly down to Texas and accompany me.

    Anyway I'll look at the links you sent. Midnight now and my flat looks like a Tornado hit it.

    Thanks again you guys.

    Happy to help you guys if you road trip it to Scotland ;)

    Cali x

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default You might be surprised....

    Quote Originally Posted by RoadTripper 912 View Post
    Honestly the part of the trip I am dreading the most is Dallas to El Paso. Eight or so hours on my tod (alone). Bleuch. Hoping a friend from Cleveland will fly down to Texas and accompany me.
    I have always enjoyed that stretch of road -- there is much to recommend it. You do need to shift your perception a little bit -- much like the dwarfs who failed to see the banquet that awaited them in C.S. Lewis' classic novel....

    Here is a great web resource for discovering those little known roadside gems in western Texas.


  10. #10


    You're right of course Mark. I am not meaning to slight that part of the journey merely that I will be along time on the road, alone, no doubt very tired by the time I reach that part of the world and I don't really know anyone from there to LA. that was more that I was meaning - a lot of continuous driving etc.

    I did the trip in 87 or so - from Dallas to Cali and it was with a young student like myself and that was cool as far as I remember anyway!

    But yeah, my whole documentary is about "perceptions" (people bouncing back from pain and finding silver linings in life) and I am someone that can be very happy wherever I am due to my mind's perceptions.

    I just meant that I have a hunch that will be the most-challening stretch for me from Dallas to Vegas. Though I am very much looking forward to El Paso, Flagstaff, Route 66 and the Grand Canyon...'Just wish I had some friends between Dallas to Grand Canyon to break up the journey. That's what I meant. I am sure it will be wonderful scenery even in its sparseness.

    I'll check out the link. Thanks for calling me in my lingo.

    I certainly don't want to create a self-fulfilling prophecy!

    Consider the "pereceptions" changed.



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