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  1. Default ISO advice: DC to Portland, ME

    I generally consider anything over 30 mins a long drive, but because I want to take my dog on vacation (and he's too big to fly in the cabin) I'm going to bite the bullet and drive. I'm looking for a relatively quick but still enjoyable route. It it possible to drive back roads that are still pretty direct? I can break the drive up over two days and need to arrive this Friday 7/17 or early on Saturday 7/18.

    I'm leaving from DC and hope to avoid the dreaded NY brides and NJ turnpike. I did this route last summer and it was stressful and not very scenic.

    I also would appreciate advice on what time of day or night to leave to avoid the worst traffic. Is it easier to drive at night, since traffic is thinner?

    I hope to avoid large truck filled freeways and find some great or unique places to stop along the way for quick visits.

    Any suggestions on good roads or places to stop? Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Not difficult at all - it's all on good maps.

    Hi and Welcome to the Great American Roadtrip Forum.

    What you are planning to do is really quite easy. Get out your map, or a road atlas and see what routes and roads there are. Like you I prefer the scenic routes to the highways, and they are all marked on good maps, such as those produced by AAA (free to members) and Rand McNally. You will not see that detail on an electronic gadget. There is an endless choice of routes, and from what I have seen driving through that region, there are few roads/routes which are not enjoyable/scenic. With two days you have a nice amount of time to take the back/scenic roads.

    Maps also have the toll roads clearly marked. There are always ways to avoid them and take a more scenic route without adding a lot of miles. I have always found some interesting places to stop when I take the scenic routes. You should find lots of places to take your dog for a walk and enjoy the locals.

    Unless you are normally up at night, it is not wise to travel at night. Leave before or after peak hour to avoid that and enjoy your trip.


  3. Default

    Thanks for your advice! I've been studying maps but I guess I don't know how to tell which roads are more scenic/less crowded. I'll see if I can pick up some maps from AAA. Thanks again!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia


    All maps have keys, which explain how to read the map and what all the lines and symbols mean. If you have old maps, these may not be up to date, as one sees on today's maps. The AAA maps of each State are excellent in the detail they show.

    If you have any further queries, feel free to ask.


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