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Old 10-17-2013, 08:15 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Riley09swb View Post
I just drove from South Bend and back to the Charlotte area. If you're going to be in Cincy then I would take 70E to 77S which will take you across OH into WV and down through Charleston,WV into VA and then NC. There's some curves and two mountain tunnels and a few tolls but the max toll in WV is $6 (and it's cash only).I drove it by myself granted I wasn't in a U-haul but my BIL has driven the route from Charleston to Charlotte in one.
This is probably the most prudent route for safety. As stated the TN/NC stretch of 20+ miles on I-40 is rough...done it plenty of times but would avoid if possible. Great sight seeing this time of year but would not recommend otherwise.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:19 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, N.C. area
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Riley09swb View Post
I just drove from South Bend and back to the Charlotte area. If you're going to be in Cincy then I would take 70E to 77S which will take you across OH into WV and down through Charleston,WV into VA and then NC. There's some curves and two mountain tunnels and a few tolls but the max toll in WV is $6 (and it's cash only).I drove it by myself granted I wasn't in a U-haul but my BIL has driven the route from Charleston to Charlotte in one.
Going from Cincy up to I-70 in Columbus and then following the route you suggested is about 100 extra miles. I'm sure the OP doesn't want to put any more extra time or mileage into this trip.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:39 PM
 
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Originally Posted by RoadTraveler View Post
There are various routes from Cincy to Charleston. AA highway is one but I don't like that route. Two many lights and cops looking for speeders. I prefer the Appalachian Highway (Ohio 32) out of Cincy, then pick up US 23 south to Portsmouth, cross into Ky and take US 23 south to I-64 south of Ashland, Ky.
That's not a bad route, but it involves crossing the Ashland bridge into downtown Ashland. The speed limit through there is 25 mph (35 mph if you circle the block and take Greenup Ave.). After downtown Ashland, you'd then have to deal with the speed trap zone of Catlettsburg, KY before reaching I-64.

From Portsmouth, I'd avoid Ashland/Catlettsburg and just stay on US 52 into I-64 in Huntington. There are a few traffic lights on US 52, but it's nothing like what the OP would find on the KY side of the river. Another possible route would be to stay on Ohio 32 into US 35. US 35 links up with I-64 near Teays Valley, WV. For what it's worth, Ashland isn't a bad choice if the OP is looking for a food stop though. The Chinese buffet across the street from Ashland Town Center mall isn't too bad.
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Old 10-18-2013, 05:39 AM
 
Location: Charlotte, N.C. area
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Originally Posted by urbancharlotte View Post
That's not a bad route, but it involves crossing the Ashland bridge into downtown Ashland. The speed limit through there is 25 mph (35 mph if you circle the block and take Greenup Ave.). After downtown Ashland, you'd then have to deal with the speed trap zone of Catlettsburg, KY before reaching I-64.

From Portsmouth, I'd avoid Ashland/Catlettsburg and just stay on US 52 into I-64 in Huntington. There are a few traffic lights on US 52, but it's nothing like what the OP would find on the KY side of the river. Another possible route would be to stay on Ohio 32 into US 35. US 35 links up with I-64 near Teays Valley, WV. For what it's worth, Ashland isn't a bad choice if the OP is looking for a food stop though. The Chinese buffet across the street from Ashland Town Center mall isn't too bad.

I cross the river in Portsmouth and drive along US 23 South to Ashland. I don't do US 52 through Hanging Rock because of the reputation of law enforcement in that town. Google it if you care to.
I have friends in that area and I am very aware of what roads to travel.

US-35 along the river is undergoing road construction with occasional lane closures on a two land road. Went that way back in the summer and was at a standstill for 30 minutes. When they finally get that road finished, it will probably be one of my choices for crossing southern Ohio.
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Old 10-18-2013, 07:44 AM
 
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Originally Posted by RoadTraveler View Post
I cross the river in Portsmouth and drive along US 23 South to Ashland. I don't do US 52 through Hanging Rock because of the reputation of law enforcement in that town. Google it if you care to.
I don't have to google it; I hauled fuel around that area out of the Marathon refinery in Catlettsburg for nearly 3 years. If you've ever been to the Krogers in Russell KY, you've been to one of my stops in that area. My wife used to work at Kings Daughters Medical Center (KDMC) as a nurse. My mom (before she died) was a regular COPD patient at KDMC. I seriously doubt you know more about that area than I do (unless you've lived there too).

Anyways, set the cruise control to no more than 5 mph over the posted speed and you'll be fine. The KY side of the river on US 23 has slower speed limits and multiple stop lights near Raceland, Russell, Flat Woods, Ashland, and Catlettsburg. As long as you're not speeding, the Ohio side is safer and faster. You'd have to average more than 10mph over the posted speed limit in KY in order to beat a person on the Ohio side. It's NOT worth it, because those KY cops will get you too.

When I took that route (US 52) in the fuel truck, I made GREAT time and I had to keep it at 55 mph (that was the max truck speed for Ohio at the time, but I've heard that has changed recently on some roads). The OP won't have to deal with Ohio's slower truck speed which is only for commercial vehicles. Either way it goes, the trip through southern Ohio and Northeastern KY is sooooo beautiful this time of year. The wife and I still make the trip up 4-5 times per year to see family and friends. It's so sad that poverty and prescription pills has taken over that area of the country.
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Old 10-18-2013, 07:55 AM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
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I drive that route frequently. I agree with urban...the WV route is much less terrifying than the I-40 route. You will pay $6.00 in tolls, (3 of them at $2.00 apiece), but, it is worth it. The roads are MUCH wider and not as curvy. Stay away from the TN, NC mountain roads if you want to have a little peace of mind!

Road Traveler, it may add a 100 miles to the trip, but, the safety & the peace of mind is worth it!
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:02 AM
 
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Originally Posted by chicagocubs View Post
I drive that route frequently. I agree with urban...the WV route is much less terrifying than the I-40 route. You will pay $6.00 in tolls, (3 of them at $2.00 apiece), but, it is worth it. The roads are MUCH wider and not as curvy. Stay away from the TN, NC mountain roads if you want to have a little peace of mind!

Road Traveler, it may add a 100 miles to the trip, but, the safety & the peace of mind is worth it!
Good tips, but the tolls will be higher due to that U-Haul I believe. I went through that area with a Penske moving truck and I honestly can't remember how much I paid in tolls. It's certainly something worth looking into if the OP is choosing that route. A NY EZ-Pass is the only non-cash payment WV Turnpike authority will accept.
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:09 AM
 
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Originally Posted by tread102 View Post
ive driven both stretches. you will be in the mountains longer on the ohio WV route, but there is a 20 mile stretch that is pretty rough on I 40 coming into NC. Its low though. Through a river valley, but its nonstop curves for 20 miles. I'd prolly opt for the I65- to 40 route
I understand your thoughts, but the section between Asheville and Sevierville scares the heck out of me. That's the Pigeon River Gorge section. The last time I went through there, I had big rigs sitting on my bumper down the mountain. I was running 65 mph (in a 55 zone) and once I got out of the passing lane, trucks and other vehicles were passing me through the curves.

I still think up I-77 through VA, through the tunnels to West VA and up is still the best way to go.

I would think about what day and time I make the trip. If it is the weekend, starting on Friday afternoon, I would opt to leave early on a Saturday morning or wait until mid week, Tue or Wed, to avoid some of the heavier traffic, especially if I have never driven the roads.
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:16 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoadTraveler View Post
Going from Cincy up to I-70 in Columbus and then following the route you suggested is about 100 extra miles. I'm sure the OP doesn't want to put any more extra time or mileage into this trip.
She could always take 75N to I70 E. It might put her a bit out of her way but if she doesn't like mountains and curves then I think my route is the less evil.
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Old 10-18-2013, 10:37 AM
 
Location: Charlotte, N.C. area
445 posts, read 681,123 times
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Originally Posted by urbancharlotte View Post
I seriously doubt you know more about that area than I do (unless you've lived there too).

Hey, I drive this area many times during the year pulling a trailer. Probably more so than you recently have with your know-it-all attitude. And I have stayed in the area with friends for many days during the year.
To bad you have to assert your superior knowledge in an effort to put me down.

I am looking from the perspective of someone inexperienced driving a rental truck maybe for the first time. Quite intimidating if you haven't done it before. Also difficult keeping tabs on speed limits and potential speed traps. So I picked the route that I feel is better for that person.

Just my opinion and you can go with your recommendations.

We will just let the OP decide on their route and hopefully they will have a safe, enjoyable and pleasant trip.
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