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Old 01-04-2018, 08:08 AM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
2 posts, read 813 times
Reputation: 10

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We'll be driving from outside of DC (Alexandria) to Tyler TX in April for a move. We'll have a 1 year old and a 3 year old with us, they're used to the trip between DC and Philly which has taken up to 6 hours in traffic. I'm thinking it might be good to drive a few hours in the morning, find somewhere to stop for a couple hours, and then drive a few hours late afternoon/evening. Hoping to get the trip done in 3 days, can't take more than 4.

Any advice on routes to take and stops along the way?

Thank you!
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Old 01-04-2018, 08:29 AM
 
14,261 posts, read 24,004,620 times
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Personally, I have driven small potions of the route. However, I drive 1800-2000 miles trips a couple of times a year. It is all in the strategy.

Since you have a limit of four days and you want to do it in three days, I would recommend that you minimize the number of stops. If you have to stop 5-6 times each day which is a possibility with two small children, you really need to limit the stops to comfort breaks and food stops. There is really no time for any sightseeing or any side trips on back roads since you have to drive at least 400 miles a day to make it there in four days.

Google maps basically directs you from I-81 to I-20 as the fastest route and that is the one that I would take.

Fatigue is your worst enemy. Make sure that you get enough sleep each night. as fatigue is cumulative. It would be beneficial to get as far as you can go the first day.
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Old 01-04-2018, 11:55 AM
 
Location: Wonderland
44,909 posts, read 36,220,301 times
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I've made that exact same drive - except it was from Tyler, to the Baltimore area - with four kids under age 8. I feel your pain!

What worked best for me was this:

First of all, I just took my time. I decided early on that I would get there when I got there and I wasn't going to kill myself or anyone else in the process.

I did it in three days doing this:

I took my time in the morning. Long leisurely breakfast. I let the kids run around in the hotel lobby, the hotel room, the outside area. I let them all go to the bathroom, brush their teeth, etc. Everyone was READY to go when we finally packed up if that makes sense.

Then I took a long break for lunch - in fact, I took plenty of time for all meals. My strategy was to take so long at meal time that they were actually sort of TIRED afterwards if that makes sense. They all took a nap after lunch - a nice long nap and I made some really good time then.

After they woke up, we had a decent potty break at a nice convenience store/truck stop along the way. A good long break. I even let them play outside a bit.

Then for supper, another long break, plenty of time to stretch their legs and wiggle around. I bumped supper time to as late as possible. THEN that's when I put in the longest stretch - from about 7 pm till about midnight. I mean I went at it, cranked up the tunes, etc while they eventually fell asleep. I didn't check into the hotel till midnight or later.

Then they slept late the next day because we got in so late. Rinse and repeat.

I did the trip in three days and it wasn't so bad. And hey, I did it as the solo adult - with four little kids. And a U Haul trailer. You got this!

GOOD LUCK. By the way, I live near Tyler, so welcome to the area. I hope you love it as much as I've grown to love it. Texas was a culture shock for me for a year or two and I can honestly say that I HATED it the first year, but now I've lived here about 25 years and I absolutely love it here. What I like about Texans is that they are friendly and helpful - as long as you are doing your part. I like that independent cussedness mixed with good manners. It's like southern hospitality but it's not sugary sweet. I love it. I married a native Texan and totally consider myself a Texan now and I guess I am one.

Spring in Texas is generally fabulous. Warmer perhaps than what you're used to, but it's nice. We do occasionally get some really humongous spring storms though. You know the saying about everything being bigger in Texas...well, the storms are definitely bigger!
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Old 01-07-2018, 03:02 PM
 
Location: In the Pearl of the Purchase, Ky
7,426 posts, read 12,954,771 times
Reputation: 31020
Just googled the routes. Have you considered going down to Knoxville and picking up I-40 towards Little Rock? Alexandria to Nashville is a little over 10 hours. With a couple rest stops along the way, Nashville could be a nice stop for the first night. If Hubby is an outdoorsman he might enjoy stretching his legs in the Bass Pro Shop at Opry Mills Mall next to the Grand Ole Opry. I googled Alexandria to Nashville and Nashville to Tyler. Looks like Nashville is just about the halfway point. Another 10 hour+ drive on the second day and you'll be there. You'll go through Memphis and Little Rock before hitting the Lone Star. Several places to stop and let the youngsters unleash a little energy before going on.
Have a safe trip.
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:29 AM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
2 posts, read 813 times
Reputation: 10
Thank you for the advice, I've spent a lot of time on google maps, but it helps so much to hear real experiences. I think it makes sense to power through a long first day and try to maybe get at least to Knoxville, especially since we've explored a lot of Virginia already, and then maybe be able to do some shorter stretches the next two days on the I-40 to Little Rock route. I think the idea of planning for longer comfort/food stops and doing some of the driving after the kids are asleep makes sense - and might help the kids sleep in a more unfamiliar place.

Hopefully we won't hate Texas for the first year since we'll only be there for a two or three years! We'll be down to house hunt in a few weeks, I'm anxious to get things in order!
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Old 01-18-2018, 02:29 PM
 
9,426 posts, read 7,098,054 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kygman View Post
Just googled the routes. Have you considered going down to Knoxville and picking up I-40 towards Little Rock? Alexandria to Nashville is a little over 10 hours. With a couple rest stops along the way, Nashville could be a nice stop for the first night. If Hubby is an outdoorsman he might enjoy stretching his legs in the Bass Pro Shop at Opry Mills Mall next to the Grand Ole Opry. I googled Alexandria to Nashville and Nashville to Tyler. Looks like Nashville is just about the halfway point. Another 10 hour+ drive on the second day and you'll be there. You'll go through Memphis and Little Rock before hitting the Lone Star. Several places to stop and let the youngsters unleash a little energy before going on.
Have a safe trip.
That's kinda what I'm looking at.. I'm looking more at the 66/81/75/59 to 20 route. I'd think something like Alexandria to Knoxville for day 1.. Knoxville to Jackson, MS for day 2 and then Jackson to Tyler for day 3.

That breaks the drive up into no more than 8 hours (in theory), so a good amount of time to stop and stretch your legs and not rush too much. And the final day of the trip is about 5 hours. And, you totally bypass Atlanta and each of your stops is in a large city.
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