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Old April 10 2009, 10:21 PM   #1
Zulu Romeo
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Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

I've done a lot of travelling by car this year for various reasons (which I will not go into here) to the extent that I find driving for long distances to be an absolute pleasure and a great way to get away from it all. Indeed, in the process I've gained a unique appreciation for the humble Motorway as a result - the dodgy service stations, the traffic involved, the scenery, etc.

I've now come to the conclusion that my favourite motorway is now the M62 - specifically the stretch between Manchester and Leeds. The scenery is quite breathtaking for a humble motorway, often frightening and exciting during wet weather, and the traffic overall is not bad. A close second however is the small section of the M1 sliding right between Rotherham and Sheffield, from just north of the Meadowhall junction - where you can see the Sheffield city centre in all its glory - up to the M18 turn-off.

Any of you fellow drivers have a favourite stretch of road that intensifies the pleasures of the Art of Driving™?
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Old April 10 2009, 10:58 PM   #2
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

I remember there's big reservoir alongside the M62 between Sheffield and Manchester.

http://www.wikimapia.org/#lat=53.642...15&l=0&m=a&v=2

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Old April 10 2009, 11:05 PM   #3
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

The M62. A nice delightful cross country journey to Blackpool.
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Old April 10 2009, 11:07 PM   #4
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

Route 21 here in New Jersey. It stretches from Paterson to Newark Airport. Never much traffic on it and it's curved and angles properly, makes for great street racing at 2am.

It follows the Passaic River the entire length so it makes for a nice setting too.
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Old April 10 2009, 11:54 PM   #5
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

Jadzia wrote: View Post
I remember there's big reservoir alongside the M62 between Sheffield and Manchester.

http://www.wikimapia.org/#lat=53.642...15&l=0&m=a&v=2

Yeah, that's the one - quite an impressive view from the road. Add descending mountain mists and the scene could even be described as beautiful.
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Old April 11 2009, 12:00 AM   #6
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

U.S. Highway 395 in Eastern California. The stretch I know and love is the roughly 200 miles between Inyokern and the Mono Lake/Bridgeport area, where it goes along the base of the Eastern Sierras, through the Owens Valley, and passes Mammoth Lakes and the June Lake loop. Awesome scenery, but can be hellishly hot.

Also, Interstate 280 on the San Francisco Peninsula is a pretty nice drive if there isn't much traffic and you're away from the major cities.
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Old April 11 2009, 12:04 AM   #7
All Seeing Eye
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

Jadzia wrote: View Post
I remember there's big reservoir alongside the M62 between Sheffield and Manchester.

http://www.wikimapia.org/#lat=53.642...15&l=0&m=a&v=2

yes it's delightful there.
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Old April 11 2009, 12:56 AM   #8
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

Actually, Jadzia, the Peak District especially around the Sheffield-Huddersfield-Manchester area is full of great-looking reservoirs and lakes alongside single- and dual-carriageway roads. The most spectacular IMO is the Ladybower Reservoir, along the legendary Snake Pass (A57), a winding, picturesque, and (during tough weather conditions) dangerous road that links West Sheffield to Glossop and eventually Manchester:

http://www.wikimapia.org/#lat=53.382...14&l=0&m=a&v=2

But if you want real picturesque roads, while not strictly a motorway either, I have to include the mighty A9 from Perth, heading due north to Inverness. One of Britain's most dangerous roads in terms of accidents, it's also smack in the middle of beautiful historic Scotland, complete with Tayside valleys, some of the important tributaries of the River Tay itself, the Pitlochry dam, Killiecrankie, and more of the Grampian mountains. Once you reach Aviemore, you're rewarded with a view of Glenmore and the Cairngorms, including access to some of the highest peaks in Britain, including Ben Macdui and Cairn Gorm, Braeriach, Cairn Toul, and Bod an Deamhain ("The Devil's Penis").
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Old April 11 2009, 01:16 AM   #9
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

I don't drive, so I can only speak as a passenger, but yeah, the 62 has some nice scenery. I also loved the scenery on pretty much every road I travelled on in the highland areas of Scotland. Picturesque isn't even the word.
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Old April 11 2009, 01:23 AM   #10
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

I envy you passengers - I've still got to keep my eyes on the road and my hands on the wheel while all the scenery flies by.
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Old April 11 2009, 01:49 AM   #11
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

Zion Ravescene wrote: View Post
I envy you passengers - I've still got to keep my eyes on the road and my hands on the wheel while all the scenery flies by.
This is precisely why we need cars that drive themselves. Bloody crappy 2000's and their lack of futuristic stuff.
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Old April 11 2009, 02:54 AM   #12
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

US 66 from start to finish.
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Old April 11 2009, 08:44 AM   #13
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

US101 from Santa Barbara, CA to San Luis Obispo, CA. simply about the most beautiful stretch of highway.

California 1 from Santa Monica to Port Hueneme, CA for it's interesting views.

US89A from Flagstaff, AZ to Sedona, AZ for it's breathtaking views in Oak Creek Canyon and the redrock area of Arizona.
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Old April 11 2009, 10:57 AM   #14
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

Internationally, I really enjoyed driving down through the Florida Keys in an soft-top. Also, 17 Mile Drive in Monterey was pretty damn cool. There are some very cool twisty mountain roads around Monaco too, and in the Alps and in parts of Greece and Turkey. They're fun (if a bit scary) to drive.

Domestically, some of the driving around the Lake District is just gorgeous. Closer to home, driving through the Stokenchurch Gap on the M40 towards Oxford is always nice because the vista just opens up and it means I'm nearly home. Also, there's a section of the A4074, again driving towards Oxford, where again the vista just broadens out as you come over a hill and as you look down from the sky, Didcot Power Station and its big cooling towers loom into view... it's actually almost exactly the same as the opening of the Simpsons.
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Old April 11 2009, 12:02 PM   #15
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Re: Your favourite Motorways / Highways / Autobahnen etc.

I honestly thought this thread was going to be a very short-lived one. Very surprised at the responses so far.



Another nice place to drive is the A90 at certain points. The great view along the east coast of Scotland as you head down from Aberdeen to Stonehaven with very twisty corners is both unnerving and pretty fascinating.

A great view of the Tay Valley can be found on the A90 leaving Dundee, somewhere just past Longforgan - particularly magical when the sun is low or in the early morning with the mist still in the glen. There are also great views of the Tay Valley from the other end, on the M90 as you approach Perth heading north from Edinburgh - on a good day you can even see Dundee way out in the distance.

The M9 as you approach Stirling gives some impressive views of the Forth Valley, including Stirling Castle, Bridge of Allan, and the Wallace Monument. And of course the less attractive view of the Grangmouth refinery in the distance.

Finally, if you're a driver in Britain, it is mandatory to have made a pilgrimage to the Forth Road Bridge crossing (just at the point where the M90 ends near North Queensferry) - the rocky shoreline of Fife complements the impressive Forth Rail Bridge (to the east) perfectly. And if you ever tire of the view of the rail bridge, there's always Rosyth ferry port to the west. Even better, do the double and cross the Tay Bridge northbound, and be greeted by, um, Dundee.
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