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  1. Default Vancouver to Boston

    In late august/early september, I'll be renting a car to get me from Vancouver to Boston. The plan is to cross over from Canada into the US about halfway across (around Regina). The obvious question that comes to me is how to deal with lodging. I don't have a lot of money to spend on it, but I would like to avoid camping.

    Do I need to worry about this in advance, or can I rely on their being enough decent motels etc along the roads so that I can plan as I go, or should I take some care in advance to check out exactly where to stay and make my reservations?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default Schools of thought

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    There are two schools of thought on the issue of pre-booking. This is the article which discusses the pros and cons of each option.

    I will say in regards to the cost issue, it is often easier to find good deals if you pre-book. Of course, you always have the option of negotiating if you don't have a reservation.

    Personally, I avoid prebooking unless I know exactly where I'm going to be, which is usually only on one day type trip. Longer Cross Country style trips I avoid it. However, when I prebook, I do usually pay less because I will already know which motels are going to offer the best deals, and don't have to worry about the whims of a hotel clerk.

  3. Default

    Thanks Michael! I was looking around for a thread or page with that kind of information, so thanks for pointing me at it. :-)

    I'm not quite sure where my trip will take me; I don't like too rigid a schedule either, and how far I get each day will depend on what there's to see along the way. I don't want to cross the continent too soon!

    My current plan is to head from Vancouver up through Calgary to Saskatoon, then down to Winnipeg, cross over into the US and go to Minneapolis and Milwaukee and take the ferry over to Muskegon, then into Detroit and Toronto before going on to Boston.

    Has anyone taken the ferry there? I'm wondering how much sense it makes. The road around through Chicago doesn't seem to be that long, and might have more interesting things along the way.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default Milwaukee Ferry

    I haven't used the Ferry because it simply costs too much for my taste. Its fairly expensive, and there are separate fees for both the car and each passenger.

    The trip does save some time, and if the thought of driving through Chicago's traffic isn't a pleasant on, then its certainly an option worth looking at. I just haven't found that its the right option for my travels.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default A Third Option

    If Minneapolis and Milwaukee are not destinations, but merely convenient way points on your trip, there is a third alternative in addition to either going through Chicago (could be a nightmare with the Dan Ryan Expressway torn up) or taking one of the ferries across the lake (as Michael pointed out, these are relatively expensive - $147 for car and driver from Milwaukee, $121 from Manitowoc). The other way is to take US-2 from Grand Forks, head for Duluth and follow the southern shore of Lake Superior, then take I-75 down to Detroit. This is actually shorter than going around the southern tip of Lake Michigan (by about 40 miles) and is quite scenic with some interesting places to stop including Apostle Islands National Lakeshore and the historic Mackinac Parks.


  6. Default

    Thanks! All good tips. Since I have some friends to visit in Minneapolis, my route now takes me from Vancouver to Winnipeg, down through Duluth, to Minneapolis and then around Chicago to Boston, ending up in Montreal where I'll be flying out from.

    According to the Rand McNally road atlas, this adds up to about 70 hours driving, or about 3 hours 40 minutes on average per day. Does this seem okay? I figure it will probably even itself out: I'll drive more some days (especially up until Winnipeg) and might not drive at all some day. So hopefully it's enough time without having to rush things too much.

    Oh yeah, I might end up staying a bit longer in Boston, but if I do, I'll extent my trip a couple of days more. Are there any good places around the Boston area to go on day hikes in?

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