headed n, s, or w from CT? Can't decide
I'm celebrating my 60th birthday by taking a road trip by myself. Problem is I can't decide which way to go! Will be leaving Nov.2 for 1 1/2 weeks.
Could go to Canada, but maybe too much snow by now? Thought I'd head to Chicago, and then back through Nashville, Asheville, and Charleston. I'd also like to go to Gettysburg.
I'd like to drive at a leisurely pace and stop whenever I see something interesting.
The question actually is how much ground can I reasonably expect to cover driving no more than maybe 5 hours a day, and how much of it can be off the interstates? Is this itinerary too ambitious?
Thanks in advance.
Miles per hour
Judy, as a professional driver, I used to be very concerned about how much distance I could reasonably expect to cover. I learned (over time) that a good rule-of-thumb was about 51 or 52 mph on average, all things considered (normal breaks, fuel stops, meals, etc). That number goes up a little if driving all interstates, and down a bit if there is NO interstate driving involved -- but not much in either case. Driving faster never seemed to make much difference, believe it or not (one of the reasons I don't speed). If you accept that premise, 5 hours of driving each day will net you about 250 miles. All you need do is figure your total mileage, add in your major stops, and you'll be able to see if the number of days you have available matches the goal. Bob
Good advice by Bob. If you go to Asheville, NC make sure you stop in to see the Vanderbilt Mansion, awesome.
I've found that Bob's estimates reasonably match my own, regardless of speed traveled. Consider that the faster you drive, the more aware of you surroundings you will need to be (disregarding traffic jams, which have the same net effect on an individual's stress level, even though driving at slow speeds), and this adds to fatigue, requiring more frequent and/or longer rest periods. Generally, traffic flow will dictate the appropriate speed/rest relationship. Driving alone, five hours seems right to balance the relaxation with the desire to see different places.
If I were you, I'd head South at this time of year, and it plays into a more relaxing itinerary. Gettysburg would be nice...if the temperature is right for early morning fog, the effect is quite startling and eerie. If you're away from I-95, you can reasonably expect to cover a fair amount of ground in a given day (i.e. US 11, 33, I-81, I-77, etc)
And we ALL forgot to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY! This is the same way I celebrate my own birthday every year -- I take a long weekend and I do a combo road and camping trip (usually)! It is my reward to myself for having made it through another year! So happy birthday & I hope you enjoy the drive! Bob
Thanks for your good wishes. With the help of this great resource I've gotten some good tips which have helped me hone my plan. (actually you all helped me form a plan).
First stop Gettysburg, to Charlottesville to Nashville to Gatlinburg to Asheville to Charleston.
Not written in stone; I'm open to any diversion along the way.
Once more thanks so much.
Also a great place. Start off with one of the tours from the Visitors Center it will give you a great overview of the place then go from there. Take the boatride out to Fort Sumter. Some great B&B's in Charleston.