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  1. #1

    Best driving route from Denver to Austin, TX

    Driving to Austin, TX in a few weekends and I'm looking for the better route.

    2 main options from Google Maps:

    Via I70/I35 (by way of Kansas, Oklahoma)

    Via Amarillo

    What's the better route for highway speed, food options along the way, and 1 night at a motel.

    Any tips/suggestions?
    2006 WK 5.7 Hemi

  2. #2
    Your What Hurts? Sound_Man's Avatar
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  3. #3
    JimhatTJ's Avatar
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    via amarillo

  4. #4
    Mark's Avatar
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    I'd go this way: via Boise City, Amarillo, Lubbock & Abilene

    Amarillo puts you at about 8hrs of drive time, Lubbock is about 10.

    Avoid the Petro on the north side of Amarillo...

    Be sure to stop in at the Big Texan for the 72oz'er.

  5. #5
    Never crossed into TX but It seems to me that driving in NM > KS.
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  6. #6
    JimhatTJ's Avatar
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    yep driving in KS sucks big time.

  7. #7

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    via Amarillo, but going 287 instead of I25 IMO.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by OlBlueCJ7 View Post
    Be sure to stop in at the Big Texan for the 72oz'er.
    I'm sure my vegetarian wife will love that place, and Texas as a whole

  9. #9
    I think the interstate will be just as fast or faster because of the higher speed limits.

    Having said that, I've done the I70/135/35 route as far as Oklahoma more times than I can count and it's powerful boring. So I'd definitely go via Amarillo.

    Also you will find it easier to skirt the DFW metroplex to the South if you go that way. In fact, the Amarillo route gives you the option of avoiding basically all the large metro areas until you get to Austin.

    Just remember that the metro areas in Texas are HUGE. I think if it were me I'd take I-25 to Raton, NM, then 87 all the way into Amarillo, then continuing Southeast as far as either Childress or Wichita Falls, then I'd take a direct South route, bypassing the DFW area far to the West, across I-20 and probably wouldn't hit I-35 until after Killeen.

    Most likely it would be longer, time wise, but more interesting. You can also visit the Cadillac Ranch "sculpture" West of Amarillo. Kind of cool but once you've seen it, there's not much else to see.
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  10. #10
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    I just went through this. For some reason I thought I was smart and decided the highway was faster....

    It wasnt and sucked big time. Go raton/amarillo ftw n Zapps ftw
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  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Ghettojeep View Post
    I just went through this. For some reason I thought I was smart and decided the highway was faster....

    It wasnt and sucked big time. Go raton/amarillo ftw n Zapps ftw
    Yeah, I think the whole "higher speeds/fewer stops on the interstate" rule has to be qualified. I-35 passes through several large metro areas (Wichita, OKC, DFW) and numerous smaller ones. If you're traveling during the weekday, hitting even one of those during rush hour can annihilate any speed advantage over the more rural routes. On weekends it's less likely but even then construction delays, accidents, etc, can really kill you time wise.

    I generally try to avoid the interstate unless I'm just trying to make time. Sometimes you're in a hurry and you just want to get someplace and for those kinds of trips the interstates are OK but I've had some great experiences taking "the road less traveled" even if it added a few hours (or a few days) to my trip.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by CSP View Post
    via Amarillo, but going 287 instead of I25 IMO.
    This is a good route.
    I'm just saying....
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  13. #13
    BTW just for fun I mapquested both routes. The I-70/I-35 route came up to about 1060 miles @ 16.5 hours.

    The Amarillo/Abilene route came up around 925 miles and 15.5 hours. Factor in at least an hour additional time stuck in traffic (especially in DFW) and the interstate route makes no sense even if you're in a hurry and don't care about scenery.

  14. #14
    I've done this trip plenty of times and like stated above, I try to avoid the big interstates.

    Here's the last route I took. Made it from Colorado Springs to Round Rock (15 miles north of Austin) in 11.5 hours.

    - I25 S to Las Vegas, CO and catch US84 to I40E/US84
    - Exit in Santa Rosa, NM and continue on US84 towards Fort Sumner
    - From Fort Sumner to Clovis ( This road has many names, US84 is one of em)
    - From Clovis continue on 84 to Lubbock.
    - Take the business route around Lubbock or you'll hit lots of lights.
    - Continue on 84 till you hit I20 at Roscoe and head East on I20 towards Abilene
    - Follow the southern route around Abilene and pick up 84 again
    - Stay on 84 till ya hit Goldthwaite where ya pick up 183.
    - Stay on 183 till ya hit 29 and head East. It's about 20 miles to I 35

    I lived down there for 5 years and this is the route I ended up taking the most. Sounds a bit confusing, but the roads are fine and it keeps ya outta the big cities for the most part (if you wanna call Lubbock or Abilene big)

  15. #15

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    I like I-70 then 287 through Boise City then south.
    Tom Houston Loveland, Colorado
    Former President NAXJA National

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by ZappBranigan View Post
    I think the interstate will be just as fast or faster because of the higher speed limits.

    Having said that, I've done the I70/135/35 route as far as Oklahoma more times than I can count and it's powerful boring. So I'd definitely go via Amarillo.

    Also you will find it easier to skirt the DFW metroplex to the South if you go that way. In fact, the Amarillo route gives you the option of avoiding basically all the large metro areas until you get to Austin.

    Just remember that the metro areas in Texas are HUGE. I think if it were me I'd take I-25 to Raton, NM, then 87 all the way into Amarillo, then continuing Southeast as far as either Childress or Wichita Falls, then I'd take a direct South route, bypassing the DFW area far to the West, across I-20 and probably wouldn't hit I-35 until after Killeen.

    Most likely it would be longer, time wise, but more interesting. You can also visit the Cadillac Ranch "sculpture" West of Amarillo. Kind of cool but once you've seen it, there's not much else to see.
    Just did this route this last week to visit family in OK... Power suckage of a drive.. Go through amarillo.. Done that route too..
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