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Old 01-08-09, 09:22 PM   #1
phantomcow2
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I-90

So I'll be driving on route 90 this weekend for nearly 400 miles; I'm taking it through New York State. It'll bring me through Albany, Syracuse, Rochester, and Buffalo. Does anyone know what the traffic scene is like on this stretch? Prone to traffic jams? I'll be there around midday this Sunday.
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Old 01-08-09, 09:26 PM   #2
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The one time I drove on I-90, there was almost no traffic at all. Of course, this particular portion of I-90 was located in Montana...
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Old 01-08-09, 09:28 PM   #3
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My uncle lives out near Rochester. Don't think its too bad when its clear -- but what out for lake effect snow!
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Old 01-08-09, 09:29 PM   #4
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PC2, not too bad out in the sticks. It can get heavy in Rochester and Buffalo, though, as well as Syracuse. Watch for lake effect snow, too, since they ran I90 right in the middle of the worst belt of lake affect snow zone there is.....
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Old 01-08-09, 09:41 PM   #5
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Ugh, I go to college in Meadville, Pennsylvania. I know about lake effect snow, but I don't think I get quite the taste that those of you in the Rochester, BUffalo and Syracuse belt do. Does it just sporadically snow for a while? I'll modify my route and take 86 if need be.
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Old 01-08-09, 09:59 PM   #6
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NY's best equipment is on the Thruway, though, so bear that in mind. Since it's a toll road, they take the best care of it.
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Old 01-08-09, 10:12 PM   #7
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In my experience on that stretch of road, it's not hard to average 85+ in good weather. In snow (once drove from Ithaca, NY back to Boston in a major snowstorm), the speeds drop a bit, but within NY state, the road is pretty well plowed. (The same can't be said of the MA side.)
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Old 01-08-09, 10:14 PM   #8
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it's not hard to average 85+ in good weather.
That'll get you run right the hell over on I-80 in Nevada.
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Old 01-08-09, 11:30 PM   #9
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The serious lake effect belt is a good ways north of I-90. It's confined to about 5 miles of the lake. On a Sunday, at this time of year, weather or an accident will be the only things that could slow you down.
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Old 01-08-09, 11:36 PM   #10
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Mechanicsburgh, PA. I broke down there once.
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Old 01-08-09, 11:37 PM   #11
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Lots of mechanics there, I hear. Of all the places to break down, that ain't a bad one.
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Old 01-08-09, 11:38 PM   #12
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Thanks for the replies, all. I'll finish up my vehicle's inspection/major tuneup Saturday and set sail on I-90 Sunday!
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Old 01-09-09, 02:38 AM   #13
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The serious lake effect belt is a good ways north of I-90. It's confined to about 5 miles of the lake. On a Sunday, at this time of year, weather or an accident will be the only things that could slow you down.
Wrong
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Old 01-09-09, 02:39 AM   #14
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PC2, not too bad out in the sticks. It can get heavy in Rochester and Buffalo, though, as well as Syracuse. Watch for lake effect snow, too, since they ran I90 right in the middle of the worst belt of lake affect snow zone there is.....
Correct
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Old 01-09-09, 04:50 AM   #15
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There is a lake effect area to the north, on I-81 called the Tug Hill Plateau. It snows there when the wind is from the west, across the lake. Lake effect snow bands also set up regularly across the thruway, from Buffalo to Syracuse when the wind blows from the north and north west.

So, I guess you are both right.
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Old 01-09-09, 05:32 AM   #16
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I90 is clear.
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Old 01-09-09, 07:50 AM   #17
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The lake effect hits I-90 hard around Cazenovia, which is between Syracuse and Utica. I have been through whiteouts there more times than I would like to remember. If you are traveling by day, it is better. At night, sometimes you actually have to turn your headlights OFF to see.

I doubt you will hit much in the way of traffic on a sunday.
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Old 01-09-09, 09:12 AM   #18
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I am a regular I-90 traveler from Albany to Buffalo and back. With two Great Lakes bordering a large chunk of the state, it can and does snow anywhere.

Sunday will be fine though, the route really doesn't go directly through any cities besides Albany, so stop and go traffic doesn't happen much. Drive safe.
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Old 01-09-09, 09:42 AM   #19
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Wrong
I grew up in Rochester, NY pal, so don't bother correcting a person who is right. Yes, there is more snow within 15 miles of the lake than there is farther out, but if you want to see the real heavy stuff, try driving around the east end of Lake Ontario (through places like Adams Center) after a storm. There might be 12" of snow where the Thruway is, but it could be 3 or more feet right by the lake.
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Old 01-09-09, 09:50 AM   #20
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Some other options would be to drive I-45 for 800 miles or I-10 for 3600 miles. Your options here are limited only by your imagiantion. Well that, and our national highway system.
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Old 01-09-09, 09:54 AM   #21
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Some other options would be to drive I-45 for 800 miles or I-10 for 3600 miles. Your options here are limited only by your imagiantion. Well that, and our national highway system.
Personally, I'm not certain why he wouldn't take I-86. That's a free drive, and I-90 is tolled.
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Old 01-09-09, 10:36 AM   #22
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Id say leave on sat morning. The storm looks southernly and probably will f up roads well into Sunday
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Old 01-09-09, 10:49 AM   #23
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Tis a boring stretch of roadway. And they just raised the tolls on thruway.

Weather wise we shouldn't be getting any great amount of snow, just cold - in the 20's.

Oh and be sure to wave when you buzz thru Rochester!
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Old 01-09-09, 11:06 AM   #24
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could take NY 20...
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Old 01-09-09, 11:13 AM   #25
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could take NY 20...
I think that's actually US 20, but I-86 wins if you want fast/cheap.
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