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Old 06-26-2011, 11:19 AM
6 posts, read 9,464 times
Reputation: 15


On Saturday, September 24 I am driving down from EIU to Nashville to watch the Jets/Predators PreSeason game. I included C-U/UI in the thread title as that's a bigger college town, and would likely be the same route to Nashville.

As for driving to Nashville, I am a white collar driver who goes an average of 75 on the Interstates. Every time I type the destination into a mapping website, the best route listed does not take me through I 57 & I 24, rather IL-130, IL-1, I-64, US-41.

I would imagine 3 of these 4 roads, rather slightly shorter in miles, will feel slower since I am guessing the speed limit isn't above 45-50 most of the time. It's a 280-mile drive, but I see my driving taking it 4.5-5 hours.

On I-57/I-24, it appears to be 330 miles, but an average of 75 would get me there by 4.5 hours. Of course, I have no knowledge of the frequency of traffic stoppages on I-57 south of EIU (or on I-24 west of Nashville, for that matter).

I have never been further south than Charleston (attending there beginning in the fall) east of St. Louis, and I am also considering leaving early. I want to take I-57, go out of my way a bit to Cairo, IL, since I love History (good and bad, up and down) and have really wanted to take a "drive thru" of the town. And also considering my Nashville to Charleston drive to take the route all the mapping sites suggest (if I see that's the consensus best route to take here).

Has anyone ever driven EIU or UI to Nashville before? Is there a route you suggest, the Interstates, the suggested, or an alternative?

Thanks for the help.
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Old 06-26-2011, 01:37 PM
Location: Bucktown
130 posts, read 155,797 times
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I've driven from Champaign to Nashville before. I would absolutely take I-57 and I-24 instead of those state roads. I too noticed that Google maps decided to offer me the state road route first. When I went, we flew down I-57 and were able to make it under 5.5 hours, if I recall correctly. Maybe even under 5 hours (but we were speeding of course). Also, if you want to see Cairo, taking I-57 is a no-brainer. However, the state roads might be scenic, so you might want to figure that into your decision-making.
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Old 06-26-2011, 02:44 PM
Location: Not where you ever lived
11,543 posts, read 28,528,583 times
Reputation: 6399
First of all 15 of our southern counties were flooded; they are still recovering. Secondly if you exceed the posted speed limit and you ignore Scott's Law, texting laws and the smoking laws, you may deeply regret it.

I've traveled all over the country from coast to coast. The rule of thmb I use is 50 miles per hour. This allows for gas stops, food breaks, etc. I arrive well within my ETA and don't have to drive over the speed limit to save 20 minutes. To*really make appreciable time you have to grossly exceed the speed limit nearly all the way. 5 or 10 mph over the speed limite does not gain that much time.

I would call IDOT before you leave to learn if any of your proposed routes are closed or detoured.
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Old 06-29-2011, 07:27 AM
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Take I-57 & I - 24. From Charleston, it should take you approximately 5 1/2 hours. I live just off I-57 at Marion, IL. (just east of Carbondale). It takes me just under 3 hours to get to Nashville and about 2 1/2 to get to Charleston.
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Old 06-29-2011, 10:58 AM
Location: Metropolis IL
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I-57 and 24, were unaffected by the floods. The after affects of the floods are over, except for private property damage for those in specific areas. All transportation and public services are back to normal, and have been for about a month.

The 57/24 route is optimum. If you go down to Cairo, backtracking to I-24 eastbound is an arduous 40 mile/1 hr trip over winding US60 through many small KY towns.

I've never driven Charleston/Nashville specifically. I have driven the route from Metropolis both north and south individually many times. A reasonable average is 65 mph. It's 2:45 Charleston-Metropolis, and 2:15 Metropolis-Nashville. So about 5 hours. I-57 is heavily patrolled between Mt.Vernon and Marion, and also has several construction zones this summer. Averaging 75 mph is unlikely without chancing a ticket.

The US41 routing looks good distance wise, but the speed limit is lower, and the traffic through Evansville, Hopkinsville, and the Ft. Campbell areas, make this routing less than desirable.
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Old 07-03-2011, 04:03 AM
6 posts, read 9,464 times
Reputation: 15
Hi everyone,

Thanks for the helpful replies. Read through them all.

I figure a Charleston-Nashville drive anytime in the future is definitely most efficient through 57/24, and 5 hours definitely seems to be the normal length without stopping at a restaurant.

For the first time, I am visiting Cairo and eating at Shemwell's. I decided on these timeslots for the day:

930-1230: Charleston to Cairo
1230-3: Cairo
3-6: Cairo to Nashville
6-10: Jets/Predators

I might hit it up a place or two in Nashville afterward, undecided yet, but planning a 5 hour return straight to Charleston.
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