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  1. Default asheville,nc to Lexington,KY road conditions

    OK so I don't do well on mountain roads especially with heavy truck traffic therefore I avoid I-40W from Aville to Kville.

    Anyone know how mountainous on a scale from 1-10 (10 being most/worst) 25 from Johnson City to Corbin KY is?
    Or would it be best for my chicken self to take 26-81/40-75?


  2. #2

    Default I ran it last summer

    Hello houndrunner,

    In late July 2010, I became frustrated with the heavy Sunday afternoon traffic on I-75 south of Lexington while headed for Knoxville, Asheville, and ultimately Raleigh. I cut through from Corbin to Johnson City on 25 and 11.

    Well, it was a lousy idea. It's 4 lanes all the way, with some brand new sections, but it's choked with stoplights in the several towns, curvy, and steep most all the way from Cumberland Gap to Corbin. It also crosses several high ridges between Johnson City and Cumberland Gap.

    Not to add to your apprehensiveness, but I-75 from K-ville to Lexington makes I-40 from A-ville to K-ville look like a drive through a park. While it is not mountainous to a great extent, it features heavy traffic, long grades, and fast tractor-trailers. It's nerve-wracking in a pickup maintaining a self-imposed limit of 70 mph. I'd pass the tractor-trailers on the uphills and they'd come a-storming down the other side blowing by me like I was chained to a fencepost. I stopped for diesel near Corbin, had a cup of coffee and a piece of pie, and decided "I don't need this", and bushwhacked down 25. It was OK, but not a route to drive if mountains make you nervous.

    Good luck,


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    To avoid I-40 in western NC and I-75, you would have to drive about twice as far and turn this into a 2 day trip. That would be I-26/I-40 to Nashville, then I-65 to the Bluegrass Parkway. If I-40 west of Asheville bothers you, there aren't any non-Interstates in that area that won't bother you worse.

  4. Default

    Thanks y'all just what I suspected. I don't mind 75 N to Lex but I do mind it going S.
    I may make myself crazy & go 26/81/40/75 on the way up & then on the way home come down thru Columbia, KY into Chattanooga via back roads to 75.

    I am leaving on a Friday & that always seems to be the worst day for trucks on 40W

    I have taken 75N thru GA thru Chattanooga to Kville but it does add many hrs to the drive. O the price of getting old. In my salad days I zipped up & down those interstates & those back mountain roads on a motorcycle.


  5. #5

    Default Wow!


    Only you can determine what you're comfortable or uncomfortable with, but boy-o-boy you're working awfully hard and driving through lots of mountains to go all the way up 26 to 81, then back down 81 to 40.

    The crummy stretch of I-40 west of Asheville is only about 25 miles in length. We expose ourselves to some level of risk with each mile we drive, so adding lots and lots of miles to avoid a section we're uncomfortable with adds risk in and of itself.

    Safe travels and good luck!


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