Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 24
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default St Paul MN to central FL coast.

    Sitting here with the US map in front of me, I just can't see the way. No sightseeing or detours. I need to get to FL in an efficient manner, and figure that driving about 400 - 450 miles a day, it will take me four or five days. That's fine by me, but there seem to be so many roads crisscrossing every which way, I keep getting lost.... and that's just on the map.

    So I need a bit of guidance.

    Out of St Paul I will take 94 to 39 and then ??????

    Was thinking at the other end to go through Birmingham, Montgomery to I-10, I-95, mainly because I have driven that bit several times now and 'know' it.

    It's that in between bit that I am struggling with, especially trying to avoid, as much as possible, the major urban centres.

    Someone, please point me in the right direction. Leaving tomorrow morning - Thursday 1st May. I will get on the internet along the way to check. Thanks in anticipation.

    Lifey

  2. Default

    I can't see any way to avoid some cities, but how about this:
    Madison
    Bloomington
    Effingham (so you avoid St Louis)
    Nashville
    Chattanooga
    Atlanta (ugh, sorry!)
    Valdosta
    Gainesville
    Your destination

    About 1600 miles.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default

    Out of St Paul I will take 94 to 39 and then ??????

    Was thinking at the other end to go through Birmingham, Montgomery to I-10, I-95, mainly because I have driven that bit several times now and 'know' it.
    The way I've gone down to Tampa in the past is very much in line with what you were already thinking.

    From I-39 at Bloomington, use I-74 to jog over to I-57 at Champaign and take that down to southern Illinois. Pick up I-24 and take it to Nashville, then head down I-65 into Alabama. From Montgomery, get on US-231 and take that down to Florida, and onto your final destination.

    Nashville is the only real large city on the route, and even there, I've never had any traffic problems driving through.

    You could look at stopping around Lasalle/Peru (Starved Rock State Park) or Bloomington. Clarksville (Land Between the Lakes and Fort Donaldson) or Nashville, and then Dothan, AL.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Thanks Michael.

    Somehow I figured you had mentioned this before, but I could not locate it at the time. When I look at it now, that is exactly what I did in reverse last year.

    I knew someone would jog my memory.

    Stayed at Starved Rock last year, but this time, it will be truckstops along the way, most of which I have stayed at before.

    Lifey

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default All those memories when all I was after was to get to FL.

    This turned out to be a great leg of my trip. Even a trip'just to get there', can have wonderful surprises along the way. Much more than just a straight run down to FL.

    I did of course strike all the construction in WI.... well, three sections. But this time I was more forgiving than that trip, half a decade ago. Having spent almost 10 days on the roads in MN, it was a sheer pleasure once I crossed the border. No more having to avoid the potholes, I could relax and enjoy the drive.

    My first night spent in Peru IL - 395 miles. Having left St Paul quite late I did not feel like preparing something to eat for dinner. The sun had just disappeared over the horizon, and all I wanted was something to eat, and go to sleep. Chose the chain diner at the truck stop.

    First surprise was the 'specials' board - Thursday, seniors 25% off anything on the menu. The fish looked nice, complete with sides and soup. I did so enjoy it. Brought some of my paper work up to date and went to the cashier to pay my bill. While she was still busy with another diner she looked at me and said "You're good to go". When I queried what she meant, she said my bill had been paid and I was 'good to go'. She was not at liberty to tell me who paid it, so I asked her to thank, whoever did. In my wildest imagination I can not see who it could be. I had not spoken to or interacted with a single person since I had stopped.

    It was here also, when I asked if there were any restrictions on overnight parking, that I was told of the gent who works locally but lives a long way away. He sleeps there every weeknight in a campervan - "Even has a generator he runs all night".

    Slept well that night.

    The first (and last) place I stopped on day two was the rest area at Rend Lake IL - roughly mile post 88 on I-57 south bound. This is a large rest area with a staffed information booth, playground and ever so many picnic tables... lots of which were well used. The road goes a little ways along the lake, with ample parking to have a picnic by the lake. There were several travellers who had brought their fishing rods. I did not see anyone produce that night's dinner.

    It was a great place to take a walk - even if it took me 10 mins for the short walk down to the lake. A rest area which is much more than a bathroom stop.

    That night was in Oak Grove KY - 430 miles.

    The next day it was down to Dothan AL - 440 miles. As is Michael's experience, there was no hassle at all going through Nashville, even though I was there at 8.30am.

    The outstanding experience on day three was a procession of cars I encounted in Quincy. It was led by three police cars, one behind the other, all with their lights flashing as well as sirens from the front car. Then followed a long line of cars, two were black with dark windows (but they were not the front cars), and all had their headlights on. Another police car with lights flashing came up the rear. The vehicles in front of me pulled off the road, even though it was a divided road, and the procession was on the other side. I pulled off as well, not really knowing why.

    None of the vehicles was a hearse, as I know it. At home funeral processions are the only ones where every car has its headlines on. Never before have I known traffic on the other side of the road to stop for such a procession. I'm still puzzled as to what it was. Maybe a funeral? Maybe a funeral of a law enforcement officer? Maybe those in front of me were locals and knew.

    Maybe someone who reads this can tell me.

    On the last day it was 231 to US90, and that to Tallahassee where I hopped onto I-10. I-75, route 40 and 17 then took me to De Leon Springs.

    As I said, much more than a straight run, with lots of great memories.

    Lifey

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    Ah....LaSalle/Peru/Ladd....those three Illinois towns spell "family" to me. Unfortunately, the vast majority of them there are now under the ground, sad to say. Starved Rock was the place of several family reunions, way back when.

    Sounds to me that the two black, non-front cars, might have been the "hearse". But I could be wrong on this.


    Donna

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Me thinks not.

    Quote Originally Posted by DonnaR57 View Post
    Sounds to me that the two black, non-front cars, might have been the "hearse". But I could be wrong on this.
    They were ordinary sedans... albeit, luxury sedans.

    Lifey

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default

    That is an odd one.

    The only two things that I could think of would be Funeral Procession or Motorcade.

    Typically a funeral procession doesn't get a police escort unless its an active duty military death, especially not with multiple police cars and lights/sirens. But "long line of cars" seems like it would be too big to be some kind of motorcade.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Mystery

    Michael, the only other thing I could think of was some dignitary arriving in town.... but it was a heck of a long line of cars for even that, and they were ordinary cars, not the sort you see when security accompanies anyone. And then, why the lights on? why did the cars in front, and behind me, all pull over, even though we were on the other side of the road.

    It shall remain a mystery!

    Wish I could find a town of Quincy in either AL or TN (which is where I am sure I would have had to be). None of my maps show it. Can't even think of why I was not on an interstate.

    Lifey

  10. Default

    FWIW Google Maps lists a "Quincy Cemetery" in Crockett County, Tennessee but it's in the middle of nowhere and not the name of a town, so I'd be amazed if that was it.

Similar Threads

  1. From Saint Paul to Saint Paul: 3 months on the road
    By Corbin in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-01-2010, 12:21 PM
  2. East Coast VA to central IN
    By takemeaway in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 11-27-2007, 06:03 PM
  3. Some Pictures From Central Coast & San Francisco 5/22/07
    By bmwg84 in forum RoadTrip Field Reports
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 05-24-2007, 07:24 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name

    Loading...



  • MORE STORIES