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Old 03-13-2019, 07:55 PM   #1
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VA to Albuquerque

I'm heading out to Albuquerque for the Balloon Fiesta from VA this summer. I don't really want to just travel on I40 to get there. Has anyone made this trip and have any suggestions for a route to take? Travel time is not a problem. We are just going to take our time. Thanks.
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Old 03-13-2019, 08:27 PM   #2
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We haven't made that exact trip. But taking I-40 may not be all bad. Make like "Cars" & just take some interesting side trips. In OK & the TX panhandle you can find portions of Route 66 not too far away. Shamrock, TX is just south of the interstate on Hwy 83. They have a 1936 Art Deco Conoco station which has been restored as a visitor's center. A few other buildings of interest there too. I like the National Geographic Adventure Edition road almanac. They keep it pretty current & you can find all kinds of interesting things visit along a route. Many campgrounds in it too.
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:34 AM   #3
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When we went to Fiesta from somewhere else in VA, we took a roundabout trip to Jackson Center, then west on several US highways. After several travel stops, we passed through the Flaming Gorge, then Dinosaur, Arches, Goblin Valley, Monument Valley, Canyon DeChelly, Gallup, Petrified Forest, El Morro, El Malpais, and met some others at Grants NM.

Leaving the Fiesta, we traveled to Las Cruces and White Sands, Big Bend and San Antonio.

We spent about six weeks. Great trip.

Pat
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Old 03-14-2019, 09:21 AM   #4
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Drop down to NC, connect with US 64, and follow it all the way to Clayton, NM, where you connect with the interstate and drop down to ABQ. Or, if you're into mountain driving, follow 64 all the way to Taos, NM and then drop down to ABQ.

For the way back, you might consider dropping down a little ways from ABQ and following US 60 all the way back to the east coast.

Original image from Wikipedia on US 64:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._Route_64


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Old 03-14-2019, 09:37 AM   #5
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Eastern I40 is truck laden. Use other until at least OKC.

Virginia - I64 is an interesting drive through West Virginia. You can pick up I69 over to Paducah for the National Quilt Museum or I65 down to Bowling Green for the Corvette Museum and Factory.

If you stay on I64, there is the Arch in St Louis. Going West out of Paducah gets you into the Ozarks (see the Arkansas thread) and the area around Rogers is interesting. Don't forget the COE parks that are available throughout the area.

If you roll across the OK turnpikes, some are toll roads. Not horribly expensive, but if you want to get off at mid-distance, you will need exact change.

OKC has the Cowboy Hall of Fame and the National Memorial for the 1995 Bombing.

The I40 is easy to pick up at several places as you head West. It is sometimes a good solution to take with a move up or down for other options. The route through the OK panhandle is less traveled. Woodward has an interesting RV Park on the East side of town. Concrete pads and nice grass. Self service and pay in the morning. Note on laundry door to call the manager. Nice storm shelter too.

Some time up around Taos and over to Eagle's Nest or Angle Fire is a nice visit to the Southern Rocky Mountains. The BF is not too far South from there.

Have a good trip. Pat
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Old 03-14-2019, 04:40 PM   #6
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We traveled Scenic Hwy 7 in Arkansas last summer. Our trip was from south to north from I-30. It was taken at the end of July, when a heat advisory was in place. While it did cool off some at night, was brutal during the day. There are several COE lakes along or near Hwy 7 & several national forests with campgrounds. Even though the Ozarks don't have the elevations of the Rockies, 7 can get a bit exciting with hills followed by hair-pin curves. Or vise-versa. We were in a bit of a time crunch due to a family wedding in IA. Otherwise, we definitely recommend taking your time.

Hwy 7 will bring you to Hot Springs. There is at least one COE lake on the south side. Reservations may need to made as early as possible there. Also lots of vacation condos in that area so very busy with traffic in the summer. Same with the historic downtown area. Cars parked on the streets & lots of pedestrians. We squeaked thru with our 20ft. van & 31ft. trailer. No choice except to be patient & enjoy looking at the old buildings.
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Old 03-22-2019, 06:02 PM   #7
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The US highway across southern Kansas is quite good. Wide soulders, good pavement, 65mph, stops and services every 30 miles. No brainer. Hutchinson to Dodge City to Pueblo or via Garden City and Dalhart to Tucumcari. I won't likely do 44/40 again if I can help it.
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Old 03-23-2019, 09:54 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedSHED View Post
-- snip -- Hutchinson to Dodge City to Pueblo or via Garden City and Dalhart to Tucumcari. -- snip --.
That is a mix of HW50, HW61 and HW54. Wichita SW is just HW54. Not too bad, except for the section through the corner of Texas. Slower speed on that section helps. That is a route, which saves quite a bit of time and distance over taking I35 and I40. We'll do it again.

Abeline KS has a Russel Stover chocolate factory on the West side of town just off I70 where we like to stop and provision. There is also a family style restaurant, the Brookville Hotel, that is worth a stop.

Just SE of Hutchinson is the Amish town of Yoder. The Carriage Crossing serves Amish home cooking and they have a selection of pies to sample.

Enjoy the drive. Pat
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