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  1. Default The Great Smoky Mountains road trip from NJ

    Hi there! First timer here and so glad to have found this forum. My husband and I along with two kids (5 and 2) are planning to drive from north NJ to The Great Smoky Mountains in December around Christmas. My initial thought is to stay on the NC side and enjoy the national park for 2days. At the end of the trip stay at Asheville, NC for few days to enjoy Christmas. We have plan to drive not more than 5-6 hours a day so will be stopping for a night on both legs of the journey. I need help figuring out:

    1. How are road conditions during mid December?
    2. Is it doable with 2 kids? We recently drove from LV to Grand Canyon and then to Zion NP. Kids are used to 5-6hr drive.
    3. What would be the best places to do night stops on both legs of the journey.
    4. 95 vs 81 route

    Thanks for the help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default What We Know

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    Unfortunately we're not weather forecasters, and even if we were, we certainly couldn't predict the weather this far in advance of your drive. Also, at that time of year, you should plan on sticking to the major highways (the Interstates) and leaving yourselves lots of time, which you seem to be doing. Otherwise, to keep the kids happy, get them some exercise, and give yourselves a sanity break, plan on taking a few R&R breaks along the way.

    A great halfway stopping point would be the scenic and charming town of Lexington VA

    Oh, and no question whatsoever, I-81!

    Last edited by AZBuck; 10-20-2017 at 10:18 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    You have to be a masochist to drive I-95 anywhere between Boston and Richmond!

    Depending exactly where in northern NJ, do what you need to get to I-78, take that to I-81 to I-40 to TN-66. From some areas, I-287 would be best, other areas I-80 to PA-33.

  4. Default

    Thanks for the suggestion! Any recommendation on other towns to stop by on the route? Would preferably like to have different overnight stops on the trip.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Two Other Possibilities

    Besides Lexington, two other nice 'towns' in that general area that you might want to look at are Roanoke and Charlottesville. These are both a bit larger than Lexington, but still small enough to be pleasant to walk through if that's what you'd like. Roanoke is a gateway to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Charlottesville is home to the University of Virginia and Tomas Jefferson's home, Monticello. As both glc and I have noted, you really, really don't want to use I-95, for either direction of travel, so another stop on I-81 is the way to go.


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