Route 1

Mar 30th, 2006, 04:45 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 13
Route 1

I was wondering has anyone driven route 1 from Ellsworth, ME to Boston, MA? How much longer does it take than using I-95? Is the scenery worth it?
punkin is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 05:13 PM
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According to MSStreets, it's only about 15 minutes longer, probably because getting on the interstate from Ellsworth is quite out of the way.

Most of Route 1, especially where the road has views of the ocean, is quite scenic. And, there are any number of wonderful town to stop - for lunch, shopping. A really fabulous stop is Owl's Head Light House near Rockland.

You can pick up I-95 when you get to Brunswick.

All turns, however, on when you are going, and whether there will be traffic on Route 1 (due to time of year) or delays due to construction.
djkbooks is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 05:22 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I have always had this silly notion to drive Route 1 from Maine to Florida - true Americana.

The part of Route 1 in Massachusetts - northern part is fairly rural - sometimes one lane in each direction. Once you hit Danvers, MA area (about 25 miles out of Boston), it becomes strip mall paradise. Every chain store, big box merchandiser, gas station, fast food joint, etc. you ever or never want to see. Widens to 2 lanes, but traffic at rush hour is not pleasant. You can pick up I95 around Maine/NH border with a small detour.

Good outlet stores on Route 1 in Kittery Maine, if that is your thing.
gail is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 05:39 PM
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You could always drive Route 1A where it's along the ocean...
djkbooks is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 09:19 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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US1 from Elsworth to Brunswick is quite pretty. The scenery is worth it. But it'll take much more than 15 minutes, compared to US Alt 1 and I-95.

From Brunswick on, just stick with the freeway, unless there are towns or beaches you want to visit. Really no point of driving US1 the whole way down to Boston.
rkkwan is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 09:26 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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Let me give you some distance between Ellsworth and Brunswick.

If you do the freeway route, it's about 30 miles from Ellsworth to Bangor; then 100 miles of freeway. You can do this in just over 2 hours.

US1 is about 118 miles. With many towns to pass through, I think average of 45MPH is realistic; so it's close to 3 hours. Faster in winter weekdays, slower during summer weekends. It'll help if you are comfortable with passing on 2-lane roads and willing to drive a bit over speed limit.
rkkwan is offline  
Mar 31st, 2006, 08:52 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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When we vacation in Maine it is generally the mid-coast area so we stay on Rt 95 until we get to Brunswick. I drove Rt 1 between Portsmouth NH and Danvers MA in January. The drive was pleasant but it was very slow getting through some town centers. Closer to Boston it is very commercial. If you are looking for scenery I think there are some very nice alternatives. One example would be leaving Rt 95 in Portsmouth and heading west thru the town of Durham (you can bypass or drive thru). I love the bridges over Great Bay. It's pretty rural except for the antique stores in Northwood NH. Once you get to Concord you can take Rt 93 to Boston. It's out of the way but I like it. Also like the drive on Rt 293 along the Merrimack River with Manchester's beautiful brick mills on the other side. In Portsmouth I would also detour via Rt 1B just to go thru the town of Newcastle and past Wentworth-by-the-Sea.
Keep in mind that Rt 1 thru Kittery's outlet mall section is to be avoided because of congestion. And if you take Rt 95 you get to go over the high bridge between Kittery and Portsmouth.
dfrostnh is offline  

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