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 > St. Louis to Ocala Fl best route?

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Kanders

Hillsboro Mo

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Posted: 02/12/18 08:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Recommendations for best route from St Louis to Ocala Florida pulling a 5th wheel.
Do Not want to go through Nashville or Atlanta. Traffic is always terrible driving through
Atlanta. Don’t like to drive at night if at all possible.
Thanks, Kevin

Ivylog

Blairsville, GA and WPB, FL.

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Posted: 02/12/18 08:53pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You are going to add miles and hours to your trip trying to avoid Nash and Atl. I agree N and A can be interesting, but mid day is usually OK. You should be able to hit Nashville a little after lunch and go straight through on 24 stopping after Chattanooga. This will let you get to ATl midday and straight through on 75 is what I do...staying in the third lane (there are several double lane exits) or using the HOV.


This post is my opinion (free advice). It is not intended to influence anyone's judgment nor do I advocate anyone do what I propose.

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LadyRVer

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Posted: 02/13/18 07:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Down to Branson, 65 down to No Little Rock, on down to Lake Village, then cross over MS river...several options or keep going south to Birmingham...use 231 down to I-10 either go east to I-75 or down US27 to 44, 48 or 50, to I-75.

ken56

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Posted: 02/13/18 07:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You don't have a good choice from where you are at. Nashville is not all that bad depending on time of day. How many miles and added hours are you able to absorb by taking secondary roads and is that worth it to you? I personally don't mind taking secondary roads but I have the luxury of not having any time constraints. Keep Google maps handy on your phone if you do go secondary roads. It can be done.

angler

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Posted: 02/13/18 08:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'm heading to the Tampa area and trying figure out that same thing. I leave Sunday. After a lot of planning IMHO their isn't a good way without going through Nashville. And maybe 24 going into Nashville may be worse. You can do the Brinley parkway to bypass, but I'm going to try to go through at around 10 am. Then to skip Atlanta and take 65 south out of Nashville to 231 to 10. From what I read Montgomery and Birmingham can be bad as well. It does add some time, but heard 231 is a pretty good road. I'm retired and in a Class A gasser so I couldn't be in a hurry if I wanted to. I'm subscribing to this post to hear others as well.


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Wadcutter

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Posted: 02/13/18 11:29am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

LadyRVer wrote:

Down to Branson, 65 down to No Little Rock, on down to Lake Village, then cross over MS river...several options or keep going south to Birmingham...use 231 down to I-10 either go east to I-75 or down US27 to 44, 48 or 50, to I-75.

I hope you don't make a living as a tour guide. The OP is in St Louis and wants to go to Ocala FL. Branson is about 250 miles (one way) in the opposite direction. Your directions turned a 900 mile trip into a 1500 mile trip.
We live a few miles north of the OP and make the trip fairly regularly.
Getting thru Nashville can be easy or a nightmare. All it takes is a pretty good crash or stalled car at the wrong time of day and moving traffic becomes a parking lot. We avoid work traffic times. If going thru Nashville we sometime take the Briley Parkway either around the north if we're going to continue on I-24 or the south if catching I-65. But again, all it takes is a crash at the wrong time of day and it's sitting time.
Another way we've gone around Nashville going south is to take Alt 41 Exit in KY just north of Ft Campbell. Take Alt 41 to 48 and 48 to Dickson, TN. It's about a 50 mile drive, not a lot of traffic but it is slower than the interstate. At Dickson take I-40 east to 840 Bypass. 840 runs well away from Nashville. You won't even see the town. Mostly just country. Nice drive, very little traffic. You can take it over to I-65 or I-24.
From Nashville south we find it a toss up for aggravation. I-65 thru Birmingham and Montgomery or I-24 thru Chattanooga and Atlanta. We've taken 280 from Birmingham thru Columbus GA to Tifton. Not too bad but some small towns. We've also taken 231 out of Montgomery to Dothan and I-10. Not too bad either but it meant going thru Birmingham and Montgomery.
We've pretty much settled on sucking it up, picking the time of day, and doing I-24 to I-75 thru Atlanta. Chattanooga can be a real pain at times. No easy way to get around it particularly pulling a 5er.
With Atlanta we've found that picking mid-day, getting in the middle lane of I-75 and going thru town is about the same degree of aggravation as trying to go around it. If everyone behaves themselves then it's in one end and out the other moving along pretty well.
Tires me out just thinking about it now.
But just don't route thru Branson - unless you just want to go to Branson.


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Bipeflier

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Posted: 02/13/18 02:39pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

St.Lou to Memphis, on to Jackson, MS, then straight to Mobile through Hattiesburg. I-10 east from there until time to turn south. Mostly 4 lane. Only sticky place is through Mobile.


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fanrgs

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Posted: 02/14/18 12:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Bipeflier wrote:

St.Lou to Memphis, on to Jackson, MS, then straight to Mobile through Hattiesburg. I-10 east from there until time to turn south. Mostly 4 lane. Only sticky place is through Mobile.
It really depends on what time of year you are going to Ocala. We just returned yesterday from a trip through most of that area to visit relatives in The Villages, which is immediately south of Ocala. We used US 67 in Arkansas and crossed the river at Greenville, MS. BTW, US 67 is a 4-lane divided highway (but not controlled access) in much of Arkansas. That made for easy towing of our 5th wheel.

We then took excellent US 82 to Indianola to visit the new BB King Museum, where we stayed at Willy's Last Resort, an "interesting" campground if there ever was one. We were the only RV there and Will(y) came during halftime of an AFC playoff game to collect the money. I even had to turn the water for the entire cg on at the meter near the street because he had turned it off due to the unusually cold weather there in January.

From Tuscaloosa, we took I-20 to I-459 in Birmingham, where you can get on I-65 for the trip south to Montgomery and US 231. Take US 231 to I-10, which avoids both Mobile and Pensacola. That route also avoids many other large cities, including Atlanta, Chattanooga, and Macon that you would have along I-75 from Nashville.

Have a great trip!


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Parrothead Mike

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Posted: 02/15/18 07:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I-55 south to Memphis. US78 southeasterly to I-22/to Birmingham, AL. South on I-65 to Montgomery, AL. Then catch I-85 for a few miles east to exit #6 in Montgomery and south to catch US231 down through Dothan, AL to I-10. Head east on I-10 to exit #225 and head south on US19/US27 to where US27 splits off toward Ocala in Chiefland, FL.

Looks like a pretty easy route with minimal large cities. Plus you stay off I-75. US231 and US19 are four-lane highways with limited traffic. We take the above route from Birmingham to Crystal River, FL every year to & from MI. Plus there's a nice campground north of Troy, AL along US231 called Deer Run RV Park. FHUs, cable, paved pads and under $35 with Good Sam card.


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