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Best Driving Route from PA to Toronto in Winter?

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Dec 27th, 2017, 06:41 AM
  #1
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Best Driving Route from PA to Toronto in Winter?

Hello:

My family and I are driving up to Toronto on New Years Eve day from outside of Philadelphia. We see there are a few routes to take:

Option #1: I-81 N and I-90 W across Lewiston-Queenston Bridge
Option #2: I-81 to 86 to 390 to 190 across Peace Bridge

We were wondering which would be the safest/cleanest (meaning they plow/salt the roads well) in winter weather? Or any other suggestions for a better route?

Plus, which bridge is the best one to take over into Canada in winter around Buffalo?

Thanks for any advice in advance.

Happy Holidays!
Wallyworld71 is offline  
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Dec 27th, 2017, 03:57 PM
  #2
 
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Google Maps estimates at lease eight hours driving. That sounds optimistic to me, especially in winter.
Whichever bridge you use, you will end up on the Queen Elizabeth Way going around the end of Lake Ontario and heading east to Toronto. The QEW was Canada's first expressway (named for our current queen's mother) and is very heavily travelled. Particularly from Hamilton eastward it can become clogged almost any hour of the day. The provincial authorities have plenty of experience with blizzards but they can't stop the snow, only clear it away, which takes time anywhere.
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Dec 27th, 2017, 05:16 PM
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My experience is going east and west on I-90. At that time of year beware of white-outs as it can get very snowy. I have not done Option #2.
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Dec 27th, 2017, 08:52 PM
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I think your best option is to break the trip into two days...

with the possibility of snow, both routes you have chosen are directly through our "Snow Belt"... my guess is with the winter weather, you might make it in 10 to 12 hours total...

If it looks like snow, choose to head more north to I-90 as direct as you can, perhaps Syracuse... and then take 90 west to Buffalo and the Peace Bridge...

If it is totally clear of weather, option 2 is is more direct, but riskier if it starts snowing...

I hope you are staying in TO long enough to justify the long drive and weather risk... both ways
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Dec 27th, 2017, 08:55 PM
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PS... either bridge works... customs may be 5 to 40 minutes depending on time of day...
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Dec 29th, 2017, 06:00 AM
  #6
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Thank you soo much for all the advice. Happy New Year!
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Dec 29th, 2017, 06:13 AM
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Weather update... the western area of I86 is expecting 16 to 24 inches of snow from Friday at 3pm to Sunday at 7pm....

You have a better chance of missing it if you head for Syracuse then west on I-90 to Buffalo... good luck
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Dec 30th, 2017, 08:48 AM
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The Amtrak Maple Leaf leaves New York Penn station at 7:15AM tomorrow. It gets to Toronto before 8PM.
You might end up in a big traffic jam or freezing to death in below zero wind chills.
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