Fastest Route

What is the fastest route between Rochester, New York and Hickory, North Carolina? I don’t mean computer’s route from the internet. I mean a route that someone has actually taken.

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Yours truly,

The airlines won’t have me.

I need a road route.

The airlines won’t have me.

I need a road route.


Flat, Find the quickest route to I-81 South. The road runs right along the crest of the Appalachians thru PA and into VA. Then it dips down into the beautiful Shenandoah Valley until you hit I-77 South in southwestern VA, just past Pulaski. Take I-77 on in to NC until you hit I-40. Go West, and Hickory is about 30 mi. It’s a gorgeous drive the whole way, and if you take more than 12 hrs, your taking too many comfort stops.


P.S. I wasn’t out there yesterday, so don’t blame me for construction crews.

I think you can save about an hour over the I-81 route given above. I personally know the route given below, except the last 200 miles from Beckley to Hickory.

Take I-90 to Erie, Penna… Then I-79 south, past Pittsburgh and into W.Va. Follow I-79 to exit 57 in West Virginia. Take US Route 19 south. This is not an interstate, but don’t let that scare you off. It’s is a four-lane highway with no no traffic lights or stop signs. (there is cross-traffic; they have stop signs, but you don’t.) Speed limit on Rt. 19 was only 55 when I was last on it (about 7 years ago), but the cops in W.Va. are not too trigger happy with their radar guns. (I lived there for 4 years and never got stopped). Get on I-77 south (toll road, W.Va. Turnpike) near Beckley. Follow I-77 through Va. and into N.C. Then take I-40 west to Hickory.

Speed limit, I think, is 65 all the way except city areas and the 60 miles of US19. On the other route, the stretch of I-81 between Syracuse and the Pennsylvania line was 55 the last time I was on it. Pennsylvania is mostly 65 now I think, on both routes. On the eastern route there’s a slowdown to 55 between Scranton and Wilkes-Barre and a few miles on either side. Another slowdown around Harrisburg. Western route has a slowdown around Pittsburgh.

One added benefit of my route, if you’re not afraid of heights, is that it will take you over The New River Gorge Bridge.

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