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Author Topic: Two weeks on the road: a review  (Read 228 times)

CapeCodder

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Two weeks on the road: a review
« on: September 09, 2020, 07:15:12 PM »

I just got back from a large road trip. Left on the 26th of August and returned this past Sunday.

Part one: Outbound

I did no driving on this trip, as I don't have a valid license at the moment.

From Cape Cod we took MA 25 until it turned into I-495. We followed 495 to 95 at Mansfield and took that to I-295. From there it was on to RI 146 to the MA Pike in Worcester. We then took I-84 from Sturbridge to Scranton (Clinched.) From Scranton it was down I-81 to I-83 to PA 581 and onto US 15, which we followed from Harrisburg all the way to south of Leesburg, VA. We took 66 to VA 234 and on to 95, exiting at Centerpoint Pkwy (I forget the route #.) We stayed in Falmouth, VA for three days.

From Falmouth we took VA 3 to VA 20, turning onto US 15 in Orange. We took 15 to VA 231 at Gordonsville and onto VA 22 at Cismont thence to US 250, getting onto I-64 near Charlottesville. From there it was interstate all the way to Knoxville. We stayed in Knoxville for two nights before heading down to Cedartown, GA. We were picking stuff up from a storage facility there.

Observations from the trip down:

-I-84 is well under repair in PA. The WB lanes have been shifted over onto the EB carriageway.
-I-81, despite its "boring" reputation is quite scenic.
-US 15 is four laned from where we got on all the way to the Potomac and it moves pretty fast.
-VA must have a very intricate secondary highway system. If anyone would like to elaborate on it, please do so.
-"When Fog on Mountain" signs on I-64 east of Staunton seem mildly terrifying.
-I-275 in Knoxville seems almost pointless as it's so short.
-GA loves four-laning things, don't they?
-GA also likes putting SR's onto US routes

Part two: Back to New England

From Cedartown, we followed US 278 to GA 113 and then followed some local roads back to I-75. We sling-shot north of Atlanta on I-285, taking that to I-85. We took 85 all the way to Petersburg. We ran into a rough thunderstorm near Spartansburg that produced a lovely wall cloud, followed by another thunderstorm to the north with a lovely shelf cloud. Once in NC, we took 85 to Business Loop 85, which led to I-40. I've seen many a business loop, but not one that's just an expressway with no businesses on it. The rain returned once we entered VA and just outside of Falmouth the rain became blinding. If it weren't for the cat-eyes on the road, we would've gone off the road. We then stayed at the same place we had stayed at on the way down. I got to swim in the Potomac at Aquia Landing (I'm good on doing that again. Water was like a bathtub.) We left early to beat the rush-hour traffic in DC. Our route took us up 95 to 495 to I-270 (Don't know if it was the "spur" or not.) We followed US 15 back to Harrisburg to 83 and on to 81. We then took 84 to I-91 and followed that up to I-93. From 93 we exited onto US 302, following it to US 3 and on to NH 115, which we took to US 2 and followed that all the way to Mexico, ME.

Observations:
-Why does BL 85 exist? It's no business route. That's a solid freeway.
-So. Much. Jesus. on the radio.
-Are they widening 85 in SC? Seemed to be solid lane shifts and open trenches from near Spartansburg to the NC line.
-NC has wide interstates (most of the time they were a solid six lane highway.)

Part three: Rumford/Mexico and return

I got to see where some of my ancestors lived. The dirt roads are nicer than the ones we have here on the Cape and surrounding areas.

Observations:
-Was ME 4 truncated from Haines Landing? It seems to end at ME 17.
-The Height of Land is awesome. Seems like an excellent spot to do some FM Dxing.
-Bridge replacement in Madrid.
-ME 113 is closed in Winter.
-Was the Laconia Bypass supposed to be something bigger?
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Re: Two weeks on the road: a review
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2020, 07:16:11 PM »

-Was the Laconia Bypass supposed to be something bigger?

There was a plan to connect it to I-93.
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Traveled, plus
US ⒔50
MA ⒐2⒉40.9⒐10⒎10⒐1⒒1⒘1⒚14⒈159
NH 27,38,111A(E); CA133; NY366; GA 42,140; FL A1A; CT32; VT 5A; QC 16⒉16⒌263

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Mapmikey

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Re: Two weeks on the road: a review
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2020, 09:17:56 PM »

Yes they are 6-laning I-85 from Spartanburg area to NC

Only I-85 in North Carolina is a wide interstate nearly throughout...

I can elaborate on the Virginia secondary system.  What do you want to know?

When Afton Mountain east of Staunton is shrouded in fog, it is DENSE.  They have a lighting system so you can see lanes and the side of the road.  Doing much over 15 mph is a way to get wrecked.

GA never removed the state highways from the US routes when they came along in 1926.  Trivia question:  What is the only posted US route in Georgia with NO accompanying state highway on some of it?

I-85 Business is going away in North Carolina soon.  The Greensboro segment was mainline I-85 prior, while the High Point Segment was TEMP I-85 for 25 years until the mid 1980s.
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CapeCodder

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Re: Two weeks on the road: a review
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2020, 09:39:28 PM »

Yes they are 6-laning I-85 from Spartanburg area to NC

Only I-85 in North Carolina is a wide interstate nearly throughout...

I can elaborate on the Virginia secondary system.  What do you want to know?

When Afton Mountain east of Staunton is shrouded in fog, it is DENSE.  They have a lighting system so you can see lanes and the side of the road.  Doing much over 15 mph is a way to get wrecked.

GA never removed the state highways from the US routes when they came along in 1926.  Trivia question:  What is the only posted US route in Georgia with NO accompanying state highway on some of it?

I-85 Business is going away in North Carolina soon.  The Greensboro segment was mainline I-85 prior, while the High Point Segment was TEMP I-85 for 25 years until the mid 1980s.

How extensive is the VA secondary system? Seems like a lot of the routes are dead ends. We were staying near SSR 669, which is Little Whim Road in Stafford Co. Brooke Road is SSR 608.
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Mapmikey

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Re: Two weeks on the road: a review
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2020, 06:19:58 AM »

How extensive is the VA secondary system? Seems like a lot of the routes are dead ends. We were staying near SSR 669, which is Little Whim Road in Stafford Co. Brooke Road is SSR 608.

VDOT maintains most roads in Virginia.  Those roads not in the primary system are secondary routes.  Virginia posts their secondary routes extensively.

When the system was created in 1932, counties had the choice to opt out.  4 counties did - Nottoway (opted in a few years later), Henrico, Arlington and Denbigh (now City of Newport News).  Independent Cities were excluded (except Suffolk which had some sort of arrangement where at least the routes were still posted until relatively recently).  Incorporated towns can choose to be in or out.

The numbering system in 1932 was completely changed to the 600+ numbering system in place now in July 1933.

Secondary numbers keep their number over county lines with exceedingly few exceptions (I am aware of a handful currently; the Nottoway County opting in late created a couple back then that were eventually resolved).  There is no significance to secondary numbers, as in SR 600 is not the most important route, but the lower the number the more likely the older it is (numbers do get reused).  The initial 1933 numbering did have a system which I have partially deciphered.  Numbers go as high as 10659 (Fairfax County).  The 9000s are skipped as they are used for school bus routes.   Frontage routes have their own numbering system starting at F001 and technically are in the primary system.

Buchanan County has a system of county maintained roads too minor or deficient to be accepted into the VDOT Secondary system and these have their own numbering system which is not posted on traditional signs but some are posted in the field.
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hbelkins

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Re: Two weeks on the road: a review
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2020, 05:14:13 PM »

I-275 in Knoxville was the original route of I-75, until I-75 was routed onto the western leg of I-640. When traffic backs up on the single-lane ramp that carries southbound I-75 onto westbound 640, sometimes it's faster and easier to stay on I-75 into downtown Knoxville and then hit I-40 west.
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