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The 7 - Random - Driving Cross-Country
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Bullitt
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#1 Posted on 17.6.05 2020.02
Reposted on: 17.6.12 2023.20
I know some of you cats have done this...and it looks like I'll be driving from Calgary east to Halifax next month. I'd prefer to drop down to the States to do the drive instead of the ultra-boring Trans Canada Highway.

I've checked Mapquest and have some AAA Trip Tiks ready to go, but can anyone offer some advice on a route?

From what I can find, it looks like the I-94, I-90 and I-80 combination. Anything cool I should specifically look out for on my way?
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Sec19Row53
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#2 Posted on 17.6.05 2132.48
Reposted on: 17.6.12 2134.03
When's the trip? Miller Park is right on I-94. We could do a W get-together and have a few in the bleachers!
PeterStork
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#3 Posted on 17.6.05 2231.36
Reposted on: 17.6.12 2236.55
Skip the Interstates when you hit Chicago. Take Lake Shore Drive (US-41.) You'll lose time but the trip through downtown Chicago (still at decent speeds...well, depending on the time of day) is immaculate. Navy Pier! Soldier Field! Almost eighty museums (including MSI~!) Walk where Clark Grizwold walked. Drive where Wayne and Garth, for no reason since they were going from Aurora to Milwaukee, drove.

Note: if you travel 80/90 through northern Indiana and Ohio, it will be the boringist. trip. ever. [sic] And this comes from a roadgeek, who can find the most uniform highway fascinating. The highway is made to get you across the state, and there are few exits or relevant scenery. If time is not of the essence, take I-94 from Chicago to Detroit and either cut (back) through Canada if possible, or to stay in the States shoot down I-75 and rejoin the Ohio Turnpike (80/90.) The I-94 trip is a tad more interesting (trees as opposed to flat nothing,) and you can skip through Ann Arbor and Detroit briefly and see the sights.

(edited by PeterStork on 17.6.05 2234)
thecubsfan
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#4 Posted on 17.6.05 2356.37
Reposted on: 17.6.12 2359.01

    You'll lose time but the trip through downtown Chicago (still at decent speeds...well, depending on the time of day)


Uh, yea.

Lake Shore Drive looks great during warm summer days, and there are few things which are more beautiful to me than driving towards the Drake at night under the street lights, but please don't try this trick from 4-6pm, unless you want to see how slowly you can drive past Oprah's apartment complex.

I second the MSI recommendation.
Oliver
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#5 Posted on 18.6.05 0648.15
Reposted on: 18.6.12 0648.28
I'd say...stick to taking the Trans Canada.

For a good map site, check out http://showcase.maptuit.com.
Brian P. Dermody
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#6 Posted on 18.6.05 1100.10
Reposted on: 18.6.12 1101.12
Out of your way? Sure. But come to Brooklyn for a harsh night of liquor and Jen-U-Wine Ney Work hospitality.
spf
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#7 Posted on 18.6.05 1212.01
Reposted on: 18.6.12 1212.54
    Originally posted by thecubsfan

      You'll lose time but the trip through downtown Chicago (still at decent speeds...well, depending on the time of day)


    Uh, yea.

    Lake Shore Drive looks great during warm summer days, and there are few things which are more beautiful to me than driving towards the Drake at night under the street lights, but please don't try this trick from 4-6pm, unless you want to see how slowly you can drive past Oprah's apartment complex.

    I second the MSI recommendation.

As opposed to 90/94 at 4-6PM, where you move so slowly that time-space bends and you actually go backwards in time?

How long do you have to complete this trip? If you have time, definitely try to spend a day in Chicago. Best place in on earth in the summertime, IMO.
tarnish
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#8 Posted on 18.6.05 1242.05
Reposted on: 18.6.12 1243.47
I recently did the drive from Detroit to Halifax.

Going south around Lake Michigan is apparently quite a long trip, so we crossed into Canada at Sarnia (usually quicker than crossing at Windsor). According to all the mapping sites, crossing back into the States at Niagara is quicker, but we apparently would have had to seal the Uhaul to cross back in, which would have been a colossal pain.

Having done it both ways, though, I can say that the drive through New England is much more interesting than the drive through eastern Ontario and Quebec. from Toronto to Riviere-de-Loup is a very, very dry drive. There's some nice scenery, but it's not like the mountains in New England. As well, the highways are all so straight and flat that it really feels like you're not making any real progress and I found it easier to lose awareness.

The other great benefit to going stateside is not having to go through Montreal. Oy Vey, they've got some crazy-ass drivers there; and I say this after driving in Michigan for a few days before the trip. Then again, in Michigan you get random crazies that take you by surprise, whereas in Montreal you can safely assume everyone's nuts and drive accordingly. Maybe I'm just bitter than we didn't have time to stop in Montreal for shopping at IKEA or a smoked meat sandwich at Schwartz's.
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#9 Posted on 18.6.05 1248.12
Reposted on: 18.6.12 1249.41
    Originally posted by tarnish
    Having done it both ways, though, I can say that the drive through New England is much more interesting than the drive through eastern Ontario and Quebec.


Plus you get to drive through Maine again!
bash91
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#10 Posted on 18.6.05 1305.38
Reposted on: 18.6.12 1306.00
If you've got the time and you enjoy good beer, I strongly recommend stopping at the Kalamazoo Brewing Company (bellsbeer.com) located in lovely and beautiful Kalamazoo and conveniently close to I-94. Despite what some crotchety old people who do really entertaining booze reviews might say, KBC produces some of the best stouts and porters available and their stout is on my short list as one of the best beers I've ever personally consumed.

On a different note, I-94 is under some pretty major construction around Albion,MI which has been causing some major backups recently. When I went through last week, traffic was backed up about 4 miles on both sides and it took about an hour to make the +/- 10 miles of construction zone.

Tim
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#11 Posted on 20.6.05 1455.03
Reposted on: 20.6.12 1457.54
    Originally posted by Sec19Row53
    When's the trip? Miller Park is right on I-94. We could do a W get-together and have a few in the bleachers!


If the schedule allows...count me in. The Titletown-to-Cream City trip is nothin' if there's beer, baseball, and fellow W's involved!
JoshMann
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#12 Posted on 20.6.05 1507.41
Reposted on: 20.6.12 1510.38
    Originally posted by cubs
    I second the MSI recommendation.


Do they still have the German WW2 sub on display? 'Cause when I was 7 I was really blown away by that thing.

I'm actually trying to dig through my cognizant thinking without cheating and looking at the site and I'm coming back with the baby chicks display, the replica of the airline jet cabin, the sub and the circus exhibit.

I need to get back to Chicago one of these years.

(edited by Blanket Jackson on 20.6.05 1608)
PizzaMan
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#13 Posted on 21.6.05 0751.43
Reposted on: 21.6.12 0752.03
And grab a bilbo's pizza. If memory serves me correctly, there brewed beverage was decent. Spent many a college night there, worked above the video store in the telemarkting company.
Parts Unknown
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#14 Posted on 23.6.05 0845.42
Reposted on: 23.6.12 0845.52
Get a GPS and grab geocaches all the way there. That's what I do on trips and it adds a whole new level of anticipation and excitement to boring roads.

www.geocaching.com

You can get a map here that will show all of them on your route:

www.brillig.com/geocaching/
GimmickMan
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#15 Posted on 23.6.05 1327.38
Reposted on: 23.6.12 1327.53
If you're coming from Calgary, hit Minneapolis on I-94 and go to the Mall of America. You can take some combination of 94/90/39 down from Minneapolis through Madison, Rockford and into Chicago. Or stay on 94 to go into Milwaukee.

If you want to go back into Canada from Michigan, the Blue Water Bridge (Port Huron to Sarnia) is the way to go. The Ambassador Bridge can be very tough during rush hour. You may not be able to go over the Detroit River and look into Downtown Detroit, but the 402 is a lot better than the 401 (not to mention, there is barely anyone on it, as opposed to the 401, where they seem to have a 100 car pileup every year).

It's only approx. 4 hours from the Blue Water Bridge to Buffalo/Niagara Falls through Canada, so you could do that, but the drive on I-90 through New York is very painful. I had to drive from East Lansing, MI to Worcester, Mass. earlier this year and it may have been the most boring and painful 12 hours of my life. Once you get out of New York, it was nice, but by that time, it was 7 pm and already dark.

As for Michigan, Ann Arbor, despite being home to the University of Michigan, is a nice place. But if you're planning this relatively soon, be warned that the MLB All Star Game is in Detroit July 12 (I believe) and that will probably make things worse than usual. Detroit is a pretty cool place, but if you decide to continue through the States and not go back into Canada, I'd also suggest a stop in Cleveland at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, if that's your thing. The 80/90 in Ohio is pretty boring, though. And watch out on the turnpikes in Ohio and Pennsylvania, because the cops are sniping people out there (way more so in Pennsylvania).

As for Chicago, I hit Lake Shore Drive in March at 3-4 pm and it took us three hours to go from East Lansing to Chicago, but an hour to get the 10 miles from Chicago to Evanston. Nonetheless, it was a very cool experience.

Have fun!!!
MoeGates
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#16 Posted on 25.6.05 0940.11
Reposted on: 25.6.12 0941.43
Get a Lonely Planet. And try to sleep through the Midwest.
PsychoticMidget
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#17 Posted on 25.6.05 1837.19
Reposted on: 25.6.12 1837.31
    Originally posted by bash91
    If you've got the time and you enjoy good beer, I strongly recommend stopping at the Kalamazoo Brewing Company (bellsbeer.com) located in lovely and beautiful Kalamazoo and conveniently close to I-94.


Absolutely. You're dead on with them, they produce some of the best beer around and their stouts/porters are second to none. I regularly make the trip from suburban Detroit to get my smark beer fix.
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