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Best Travel Route to Ithaca?
April 1, 2014 12:10 PM

Long story short, I've been away a long time, but it's time to go home. I need to get from Troy to Ithaca ASAP, but don't trust my old map and my transportation is not always reliable either. Any tips for finding the best, most direct route and avoid annoying traffic snarls and other delays? Difficulty: No GPS.

I'd also be interested in recs for cheap overnight accommodation along the way, and best places to grab a quick bite. Thanks, fellow travelers!
posted by Ody to Travel & Transportation around (27 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
 
Listen for sirens- you don't want to get tied up... in traffic.
posted by beccaj at 9:09 PM on March 31, 2014 [9 favorites]


What an Odyssey ahead of you. What ever you do, don't travel by sea and for goodness sakes don't go around introducing yourself to strangers!
posted by saradarlin at 9:13 PM on March 31, 2014 [4 favorites]


Advice if you're pulled over in that stretch of NY: if you hear sirens when going through there, do NOT pull over, or you will be stuck there for a long-ass time. If you must pull over, do NOT step out of the car, no matter how much you feel you must cooperate. Carry a set of handcuffs on the trip, and handcuff yourself to the steering wheel. If you are travelling with friends, give them handcuffs to. Don't ask me why, but you will want to cooperate with these authorities. Again, I urge you: do NOT.
posted by not_on_display at 9:55 PM on March 31, 2014 [21 favorites]


88-206-11 looks like the shortest route. Without traffic it's about 3 hours.
posted by brujita at 9:57 PM on March 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


I assume you mean the Troy in Michigan and the Ithaca in New York. The shortest way takes you through southern Ontario, but if you want to avoid the hassle of crossing the border twice, you can always go around Lake Erie.

If you're traveling by water, you should probably launch into Lake St. Clair, take the Detroit River into Lake Erie, and then find a way to get to Lake Ontario and then probably a bit over land to the northern end of Lake Cayuga.

You can take the Niagara River to get from Erie to Ontario, but if you're traveling with anyone you care about, you might want to send them through the Welland Canal for their own safety.
posted by one more dead town's last parade at 10:10 PM on March 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


There's a place called Six-Head Inn partway up the stretch, definitely avoid. It's across the highway from the old water park, it's hard to miss but just keep going.
posted by cortex at 10:11 PM on March 31, 2014 [3 favorites]


I hear there's some good wine in the area that the locals really like, if you feel like passing some time in the region. Just remember that it's all fun and games until...
posted by LionIndex at 10:19 PM on March 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


I took this same passage in my black ship, and it took quite a while; I'd recommend traveling by foot, it will be faster.
posted by davejay at 10:32 PM on March 31, 2014


I'd also be interested in recs for cheap overnight accommodation along the way, and best places to grab a quick bite. Thanks, fellow travelers!

There are some excellent guidebooks that show the route; I would recommend Fagles, Pope or Chapman as the go-to books for this little jaunt.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:03 PM on March 31, 2014 [6 favorites]


Don't know about directions, but if you get hungry along the way, I recommend Poly's (first exit passed Lotusland. Can't miss it). I wasn't sure about the place at first, but it really is a charming little hole in the wall: family owned, and all the food locally grown and free-range. (Their goat menu, in particular, is to die for!)

If you stop in, be sure to tell them Nobody sent you :)
posted by exact_change at 11:24 PM on March 31, 2014 [12 favorites]


Oh hey, I live along that route! You should totally stop in. I'll keep an eye open for you.

-Cy

p.s. I hope you aren't allergic to wool.
posted by Tsuga at 12:50 AM on April 1, 2014 [7 favorites]


Cheap overnight accommodations? A quick bite to eat?

You know, I think you should start working on your honesty. Based on your previous questions, it seems like you have difficulty being direct. So, if you are asking where you can pay for a quickee along the way, why not just say so?
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 4:02 AM on April 1, 2014 [1 favorite]


Cross at Charon's ferry.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 4:19 AM on April 1, 2014


Flagged. It's bad form to threadsit your sockpuppet's question.
posted by haltingproblemsolved at 5:13 AM on April 1, 2014 [5 favorites]


Don't get distracted by the farm and petting zoo - the shepherd is a big mean guy and nobody messes with him.
posted by moonmilk at 5:31 AM on April 1, 2014


I've done that RPI to Cornell drive a bunch of times, and it's usually only about 3 hours, but the important thing is to take off right away. Otherwise, it'll be road construction season, with unbelievable detours and delays, and then with the holiday spikes in gas prices around Easter and Memorial Day, the trip could end up costing you a pretty Penny.
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:47 AM on April 1, 2014 [3 favorites]


Make a sign that says Ithaca and stick out your thumb. Be prepared for whatever comes your way, whether it stops or not.
posted by mareli at 5:53 AM on April 1, 2014 [1 favorite]


I think the folks over at IRL are still trying to schedule a Troy meetup, so please let them know when you're leaving and I'm sure they'd be delighted to have you join them for some wings before you go--it's likely to be a long journey. If you're going to take any MeFites as travelling companions, however, choose wisely, and warn them of the risks involved. While we do have a tendency to overthink plates of beans, our stubborn independent-mindedness may not be an asset to you.

You may wish to consult with Athena; do not be distressed by her different name, as you will meet her in many guises on your trip. Do take care if you use the underground tunnels to visit her; contrary to their typography, they are not full of moving caution vehicles (via), and it wouldn't do to be trapped between Scylla and Charybdis before you even start out properly. The underworld, however, is a good place to meet with the spirit of Tiresias; try the performing arts center.

Lastly: it's probably too late for this, but you may want to ask the mods to anonymize this question.
posted by beryllium at 6:32 AM on April 1, 2014 [1 favorite]


There's a place called Six-Head Inn partway up the stretch, definitely avoid. It's across the highway from the old water park, it's hard to miss but just keep going.

No, you may as well go via the Inn. It's a a drive-through paleo joint with prices that might make you lose your head, but it's better than stopping at the water park, which totally sucks- I've heard of folks getting stuck there literally forever.
posted by zamboni at 6:35 AM on April 1, 2014 [5 favorites]


88 -> 206 -> 79 was always my preferred route once I'd hit the Albany area (coming from the Boston area).
posted by tckma at 7:17 AM on April 1, 2014


I'm taking a bus from Troy to Constantinople later today. Just watch me and get off the stop before I do.
posted by the webmistress at 7:58 AM on April 1, 2014 [1 favorite]


It might be good to get some archery practice in on the way. Just, you know, to keep your skills up.
posted by Zalzidrax at 8:11 AM on April 1, 2014


Ody, hate to tell you this, but I heard a bunch of moochers have been . . . shall we say, making themselves at home at your place while you've been away? You might want to speed up those travel plans.
posted by BlueJae at 1:44 PM on April 1, 2014


Forgive me if I'm making too many assumptions, but if you've been gone as long as it sounds, your wife may be pretty mad. You may have to move beyond extending an olive branch to extending the whole tree.
posted by spelunkingplato at 3:51 PM on April 1, 2014 [1 favorite]


Memail me.
posted by Pallas Athena at 5:22 PM on April 1, 2014 [10 favorites]


Look, what you need is an escort. No, not that kind; more like a native guide. Someone who knows the way and can give you a lift. Stop by a place called Scheria and head to the laundromat. There's a girl there whose daddy is the local business magnate. He runs a trucking firm that can get you where you need to go. He loves to party though, and will probably throw a big feast before you get started. Be a good guest and tell him all about your adventures, it's the least you can do when he's being so helpful.

And just remember, in the words of the immortal poet, "Ithaka gave you the marvelous journey. Without her you would not have set out."
posted by Athanassiel at 9:46 PM on April 1, 2014 [1 favorite]


Ody? A friend of mine was at this party in Troy and OP brought a gift to the host that destroyed his house (!) and then bolted. Should we be helping him run away from the consequences of his actions? Father of gods, I think not. MeTa.
posted by ersatz at 7:17 AM on April 2, 2014


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