Your Thanksgiving traffic report...

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Steven K, Nov 26, 2001.

  1. Steven K

    Steven K Supporting Actor

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    How was traffic for everyone who travelled this Thanksgiving?
    I'll start it off... my fiance and I travelled to NYCNJ. It's roughly 230 miles, give or take. We debated about which route to take. Ultimately, we decided on I-90 (Mass Pike) to I-84 to I-87 (Garden State Pkwy). We left on Wednesday night at around 4:00 PM. The trip on the Mass Pike is around 60 miles. It took us all of three hours to go those 60 miles. It then took another 3 to finish the trip. Keep in mind, this normally takes around 4 hours.
    The ride home was an even worse story... We left Jersey at 2:00 PM and didn't make it back to Boston until 9:30 PM. It took us 2 hours to get from Montclair, NJ, to across the Tappan Zee brigde. Once we finally got onto I-84, it took 3 hours to get through Connecticutt (should take about an hour and 15 mins). It then took about an hour and a half on the Mass Pike. [​IMG]
    Trip there (230 miles)- I-90 to I-84 to I-87- 6 hours
    Trip back (200 miles)- I-87287 to Tappan Zee Bridge, to 684 to 84 to 90- 7 and a half hours
    Was everyone else's trip as long as this?
     
  2. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    I travel from Houston to my parents house in Bossier City, LA (across the river from Shreveport) every Thanksgiving. I've completely given up on the Wednesday afternoon thing, as it's a guaranteed 2-3 hour crawl just getting out of the Houston area.

    I go to bed early Wednesday night, get up at 5 Thanksgiving AM, and am on the road by 6. I've basically got the highways to myself. I get in to my parents about 10:30, which gives plenty of time to relax & visit before dinner around 1-2 PM. I always return to Houston late Friday morning, which is also fairly light traffic (I used to come back Sunday afternoon - yikes!!! Horrible). My trip is 275 miles each way.

    If you're doing a short drive (5 hours or less) I highly recommend going Thanksgiving AM and avoiding the Wednesday afternoon madness.
     
  3. Yoshi Sugawara

    Yoshi Sugawara Stunt Coordinator

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    My Thanksgiving weekend was fun, but A LOT of traffic - sheesh! I haven't seen it this bad...here's the summary:

    Thursday (6 AM):

    Oakland, CA to Los Angeles, CA: 6 hours (370 miles)

    Friday (1 PM):

    Los Angeles, CA to Las Vegas, NV: 6.5 hours (300 miles)

    Saturday (1:30 PM):

    Las Vegas, NV to Los Angeles, CA: 7 hours (300 miles)

    Sunday (6 PM):

    Los Angeles, CA to Oakland, CA: 7 hours (370 miles)

    That's more than a full day in the car! ouch...
     
  4. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Hmmm, I-87 is not the Garden State Parkway, it's the NY State Throughway. The GSP has no number, it's just the Garden State Parkway. The NJ Turnpike is also known as I-95 except perhaps for the eastern spur which might just be known as the "Eastern Spur". If you're going home to mass

    and want to avoid the Tappen Zee Bridge which is murdur sometimes, you can try to take I-87 north to I-84 in Newburgh. You cross the hudson on the Beacon Bridge and get into Connecticut up to the Mass Turnpike. You kind of avoid the tappen zee and Westchester cty which has alot of people avoiding going through NYC.

    If you ever need any traffic avoidance tips for the northern NJ/upstate NY, just send me email or PM. I'm pretty good at avoiding most of the hot spots. I can go all the way from New Paltz to Delaware by smaller highways and county roads and avoid about $15 of tolls. The NY state thruway is not worth it to avoid unless it's really stop and go traffic but in NJ, there are typically tons of ways to go around traffic.

    Anyway, traffic for me was worse on Wednesday afternoon after making the mistake of going through Rt 18 in Piscataway/New Brunswick towards Monmouth Beach where my sister lives. We should of stuck to I-287 South to Rt 1 to Route 18 east, rather we sat in merging traffic and rush hour traffic on a 1.5 hour trip that took 2.5 hours.. On the way home was great though cause we left on Saturday afternoon and it took 1.5 hours normal time. Sunday, I went up to the Catskills to go hiking and on the way home it took us about 2.5 hours to go home versus the normal 2 hours but traffic was moving it was just a lot of volume. It was crappy all day sunday so perhaps some people left early. We left Hunter Mountain area around 4pm...

    Jay
     
  5. Steven K

    Steven K Supporting Actor

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    Jay,

    Yeah you are right about the GSP... sorry if I sounded confusing. Of course, what we did was take I-87 TO the Garden State Parkway. On the way there, we did exactly what you suggested: took I-84 to I-87 and then to the GSP... it just seemed like we were going far out of the way to go to Montclair.

    I normally avoid the Mass Pike completely and just take I-95 straight to the Cross Bronx Expressway, cross the GW, and then Im right there... however I heard horror stories about how crowded the GW was.

    Once we decided to take the "scenic route" through the city, that is, 95 to 695 to 295 to 495 (L.I. X-way), then through the Queens tunnel and the Lincoln Tunnel. It was nice to do once, but traffic was hell and the bridges are wicked expensive.
     
  6. Bill Balcziak

    Bill Balcziak Supporting Actor

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    We host Thanksgiving. It really cuts down on the drive time. [​IMG]
     
  7. Chuck C

    Chuck C Cinematographer

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    My report: crappy
    It normally takes 4.5 hrs to get home or back to shcool with the usually mid-arby's stop in columbus.
    On the Sunday drive back to school...5.5hrs! boooo [​IMG]
     
  8. Steve Tannehill

    Steve Tannehill Ambassador

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    I had no traffic problems, and usual drive times. I traveled Wednesday morning/afternoon and Friday afternoon/evening, just barely missing rush hour.

    Of course, had I left during prime travel times (Wednesday night/Thursday morning/Sunday afternoon) I fully expect it would have taken longer.

    - Steve
     
  9. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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    I flew to chicago from austin. I got to the austin airport 2 hours early and ended up sitting at the gate for an hour and 45 minutes. No problems at all (except the rude security people). On the way back home I got to Ohare 2.5 hours early and ended up spending 2 hours at the gate. I used the computers at ohare to checkin. The security people at ohare were much nicer.

    Oh and for anyone that works in an airport...here's a clue. You can tell people to do things without yelling or snapping at them. I don't give a damn if you are having a bad day. Please and thank you still go a long way.
     
  10. Shayne Judge

    Shayne Judge Stunt Coordinator

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    Tampa to TN 650 miles took us 9 hours on Wednesday night
    The return trip took us 11.5 hours on Sunday night[​IMG]
    Yoshi: Count yourself lucky. My wife and I made that exact same trip/time Sunday night two years ago, and it took us nine hours.
     
  11. Steve Enemark

    Steve Enemark Second Unit

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    Bah, you're all a bunch of amateurs. [​IMG]
    Seattle to Ukiah, CA (800 miles) on Wednesday: 13 hours
    Ukiah, CA to Seattle (800 miles) on Saturday: 16 hours.
    I thought I'd avoid the traffic by going back home on Saturday, but I didn't count on snow in the mountains around the CA-OR border. It took 6 hours to get from Redding, CA to Ashland, OR, a trip that should take maybe two. (groan)
     
  12. Sam C

    Sam C Stunt Coordinator

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    I drove Indiana to Minneapolis ... 460 miles ... 6 hours 5 mins ... Left my driveway at exactly 11:30PM on T-day ... One very brief stop near Wisconsin Dells for gas ... Got to my "home away from home" at 5:35AM ...
     
  13. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Hey Steven K, if you're going to Montclair from I-84 to I-87 South, you might be better off getting off at Exit 15(It might be 15A, I don't recall but it's a huge sign that says "New Jersey" and I-287) to get onto I-287 South (That whole area is confusing cause the NY State Thruway to the Tappen Zee is also known as I-287 East but I-287 also goes north/south through NJ all the way to Woodbridge. and there is a NY Route 17 and a NJ Route 17 all in the same 5 mile radius so traffic there is confusing as you got to specify which road you're talking about!!)
    Anyway, if you're going to Montclair, me thinks it would be better trafficwise(and cheaper) to exit in Suffern for NJ and get onto I-287 Southbound, never any traffic from there til Route 80 at any times I have ever been on that and I do use that road alot to go to the Catskills or the Adirondacks or any place north of me. Now, once you're on I-287 you can go about 13 miles til you see Rt 23 South which is a state highway. The exit is by a rock quarry in Riverdale. Then once on Rt 23South, go about 10 miles (a bunch of lights which is the only problem with Rt 23) to you get to Rt 46 which you can take east for about 3 miles til you get to Grove St or Valley Road which brings you by Montclair State University and downtown Montclair. By doing this, you avoid going down all the way to the GSP and then most likely you either took I-80 West or got right onto Rt 46 West to Montclair. So you're kind of going past Montclair and doing an end around.
    Anyway, speaking of Montclair, there's a real nice orchid park on Valley Road, of course it's not the season but in the spring and summer, the volunteers there do a great job in keeping up and naming the various orchids there.
    Jay
     
  14. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    My trip was not as long as some in this thread, but we always travel to my parents' home in northern Michigan for Thanksgiving. We leave about 7am Thursday morning to beat the migration of southeastern Michiganders to the north that happens every weekend and holiday on I-75. Traffic was light as the trip took its normal 2.75 hours. The return trip on Saturday night was the same (I always try to avoid driving south on Sundays -- the traffic will turn a 3 hour trip into a 5 hour one at times).

    We also spent the day in Traverse City on the day after the holiday. The traffic from/to Roscommon to/from TC was heavier than usual (we go every year). It appears that more people in this area chose to drive somewhere for the holiday instead of flying to another destination.
     
  15. Craig Chatterton

    Craig Chatterton Stunt Coordinator

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    We would have had a great drive if it wasn't for the weather. I drove down I-5 Thursday morning at around 7am. Traffic was great! But we had such a nasty stormy headwind that I had my Blazer floored but couldn't go faster than 60mph.

    The Sunday drive back was a little better - no wind - but some nasty rainstorms would come up and suddenly you couldn't see anything. And it was rush hour traffic all the way from Eugene to Portland. Still it didn't take us too long to get home, about 3 hrs which is normal.

    I read the next day that 8 people died during their Thanksgiving treks in Oregon. It was a nasty weekend.
     

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