Woody UltimaDork
May 7, 2012 7:57 a.m.

I'm planning a trip to Florida soon and I think I'm going to take I-81 South to 77. It's been about five years since I last took this route. Any specific things that I need to look out for?

iceracer UltraDork
May 7, 2012 9:54 a.m.

I took that route several years ago. No adventures. watch for deer in PA.

Lots of trucks on 81.

Hocrest HalfDork
May 7, 2012 10:42 a.m.

I do that drive every year going to the dragon. It seems that in VA on 81, you will either see no cops or a dozen.

JoeyM SuperDork
May 7, 2012 10:52 a.m.

Stop by and say hello while you're down here?

hobiercr HalfDork
May 7, 2012 10:53 a.m.

Where are you heading in FL? Do you plan to stop along the way overnight?

The 81/77 drive is pretty easy. I went to college just north of Charlotte and could probably do the Davidson to Clearwater run in my sleep. I used to hop off 77 in Columbia, take 26 to I-95, jump to I-10 in Jacksonville and then take 301 to I-75. With minimal stops and traffic that leg takes about 10 hours.

It has been a while but cops could be in SC. The speed limit then was 55 so imagine me getting popped for speeding once or thrice. With a 70 limit it should be much more pleasurable.

Unless you are really heading West in FL I would not take 75 through Atlanta unless you have to. The Atlanta to FL border run sucks.

integraguy UltraDork
May 7, 2012 11:10 a.m.

Just got back from Pa. (live in Jacksonville). Driving on a weekday, I saw state police in Maryland, West Virginia, and Virginia. There may have been more, just didn't see them. I drive 81 to 64 to 95, but mostly because I'm in a hurry. I have tried 81 to 77 twice, but as others here say, there are too many trucks on 81.

Construction on 81 begins in W.Virginia, at the northern border, and traffic is always heavy from the northern side of Carlisle, Pa. to...?

Woody UltimaDork
May 7, 2012 12:30 p.m.

There can't possibly be more trucks on 81 than there are on 95. I've done that drive too many times.

Woody UltimaDork
May 7, 2012 12:35 p.m.
integraguy wrote: I drive 81 to 64 to 95, but mostly because I'm in a hurry.

I'll have to look into that. We're going into Orlando first, then St. Pete the next day. Maybe I should just deal with 95. DC is a PITA, though.

MG Bryan SuperDork
May 7, 2012 1:02 p.m.
Woody wrote:
integraguy wrote: I drive 81 to 64 to 95, but mostly because I'm in a hurry.

I'll have to look into that. We're going into Orlando first, then St. Pete the next day. Maybe I should just deal with 95. DC is a PITA, though.

Time it so that you hit DC at night, it's infinitely better that way.

JoeyM SuperDork
May 7, 2012 1:26 p.m.
Woody wrote: I'm planning a trip to Florida soon

Here are some car-related things to do soon in central FL

EVENT #3 What: May Competition Event Date: Sunday, May 13, 2012 Time: 8:00am - On-site registration Opens 8:30am - On-site Registration Closes - $10 late fee begins*** 9:00am - Tech Inspection Closes 9:15am - Novice Walk-Thru w/Novice Instructor (required for all novices) 9:45am - Drivers Meeting 10:00am - First Car Out Where: Lake Technical Center
13000 Frankies Road Tavares, FL 32778 More: http://www.martinsportscarclub.net/

EVENT #4 What: Cars & Coffee Date: Saturday, May 19 (Always the 3rd Saturday morning of each month) Time: 8-10am Where: House Blend Cafe 10730 W. Colonial Dr. Ocoee, FL 34761 (407) 656-7676 More: http://carsandcoffeeorlando.snappages.com/

EVENT #5 What: SCCA Solo II
Date: Sunday, May 20, 2012 Time: The usual times
Where: Geneva, FL - Gun Range Rd More: http://www.cfrsolo2.com/

Woody UltimaDork
May 7, 2012 1:30 p.m.

That was going to be one of my next questions, but I need a non-competitive event for this weekend in Orlando or St Pete.

integraguy UltraDork
May 7, 2012 1:54 p.m.

Depending on where on I-81 you are starting from (I get on at Harrisburg, Pa.) you take 81 to 64 to 95 and NEVER hit D.C. or Richmond, for that matter.

There may be trucks on 95, but there aren't hills, and for me nothing is worse than trucks on hills...especially if you get "stuck" behind them. Wait, I take that back...trucks and road construction are worse.

95 is mostly flat from Richmond southward, and is also 3 laned as it passes many of the cities on this route.

Downside to taking 95 through South Carolina? Few cities on 95 so you wind up stopping in smaller towns for rest/fuel/food stops.

IF, if you take this route, it's best to time the 64 "leg" so that you DON'T hit it after 4 pm. That is, change from 81 to 64 BEFORE 4...unless you are driving on a weekend.

FWIW, I took the 81 to 77 route about 5-6 months ago, it's hilly (very hilly, no fun in a tiny low-cal Civic) but otherwise not bad. Don't remember much construction, tho I do remember getting lost/off track around Columbia.

JoeyM SuperDork
May 7, 2012 2:04 p.m.
Woody wrote: That was going to be one of my next questions, but I need a non-competitive event for this weekend in Orlando or St Pete.

Enter the non-compete class at the Martin event in Tavares.

(Nobody uses that class, but that's OK since you are not competing. ;-) )

I've never gone, but this is automobile museum is local

Our car club had our christmas banquet here one year

I like the Saturday night cruise in at kissimmee old town http://myoldtownusa.com/car-cruises/
google images from the cruise

karting at 'lil 500

Woody UltimaDork
May 7, 2012 2:22 p.m.

I'd love to catch Cars and Coffee, but I'm a week early. I've been to the Old Town Cruise Night and that's probably the best that I can do this time. Unless there's some kind of GRM Homecoming that I haven't heard about.

JoeyM SuperDork
May 7, 2012 2:55 p.m.

Old town does different types of cars on different nights, so be sure to pick a night that suits your interests.


Rev up your engines and join the excitement every Friday for our all new, All American Muscle Car Cruise featuring show-quality American-made muscle cars from 1964 to Current. New and old Mustangs, Camaros, Challengers and more!


Old Town captures this feeling every Saturday night and we invite all pre-1975 hot rods, street rods, and antiques to join us as we cruise down memory lane.

There's something on Wednesday's, too, but I don't know the years of the cars....the website says that night's music is 1950s-1960s, though, so I doubt that there are many HIN/JDM-Yo! cars there.

iceracer UltraDork
May 7, 2012 6:12 p.m.

Best way I found around Washinton is to pick up I-83 south at Harrisburg. In Baltimore get on I -295 south. Goes around the out skirts of Washington, traffic not tobad. Pick up I -95 after you cross the Deleware. I still prefer I -81 to either cross routes. 77 is better since you are going south all of the time. 64 is just east and west.

Derick Freese SuperDork
May 7, 2012 9:50 p.m.

Be careful on I-4 between I-95 and Lake Mary. Last couple of times I've been out there troopers and locals were out in force.

tr8todd Reader
May 8, 2012 6:24 a.m.

If your looking for something to do along the way with the kids, I highly recommend this place. It's about 200 feet from the 81. http://www.virginiasafaripark.com/

ncjay Reader
May 8, 2012 8:00 a.m.

If you plan on travelling through Charlotte, in order to blend in you should get in the left lane, drive at about 50 mph or so, and have your high beams on if travelling at night. I'll also throw in some free plugs for the North Carolina Auto Racing Hall of Fame and Michael Waltrip Racing. Among many other racing places, these are both a short hop from I-77. http://www.ncarhof.com/ http://www.michaelwaltrip.com/

Woody UltimaDork
May 8, 2012 8:04 a.m.

Thanks for the tip, but I can't really see myself stopping at Michael Waltrip Racing, although I might slow down and turn my head slightly if I were driving past and the place was on fire.

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