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Discussion Starter #1
I asked for advice a few weeks about our trip in a few weeks. We will be leaving Sylvania, OH (just outside Toledo) and crossing into Canada and staying in Niagara Falls. I have been reading about different parts of the trip and I noticed that the Ambassador Bridge is one of the busiest border crossings in North America. It only adds 16 miles to my route to ride on up to Sarnia and cross there. Do any of you have any thoughts on this?

thanks
 

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Yes add the miles it will save you in time and tickets going through Chatham area. The speed limit and tolerance for going over it is greater via Sarnia

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Port Huron/Sarnia crossing is not too bad. As in any border crossing avoid holidays, Friday afternoons and Sunday afternoons tend to have higher traffic flow. I cross through Sarnia at least 5 or 6 times a year with no issues. There is some construction near the 94/69 interchange about 3 miles from the border on the Michigan side. But Michigan has only two seasons, winter and construction........ This link provides toll information: http://www.ezbordercrossing.com/travel-resources/international-bridge-tolls/blue-water-bridge-tolls/#.U2RcKYFdWqk
Additional Bluewater bridge information: http://www.ezbordercrossing.com/list-of-border-crossings/michigan/blue-water-bridge/#.U2RdKIFdWqk


Since I do travel from Rochester, New York to the central Michigan area several times a year we did acquire the NEXUS pass about a year and a half ago for the two of us. The NEXUS pass can be useful if you travel between the US and Canada on a regular basis.
 

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Port Huron / Sarnia is a better choice. Make sure you have the proper documents to get back into U.S. before going to Canada.
 

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I agree with zaT111 and CJS that Port Huron/Sarnia is a better crossing point. You can make better time from Sarnia to Niagara Falls going this way IMHO. If memory serves me you should take better than an hour less going that way as opposed to the Detroit/Windsor crossing. As CJS said, make sure you have the proper documentation to get back into the US. Enjoy your trip.

Ride Safely

Crabby Bob
 

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Ricky,
Have to agree with everyone else, Port Huron/Sarnia is a far better crossing. It will also take directly to Hwy 402/403 going across Canada into Niagra Falls.

Let me know when your coming and I could meet you south of Detroit and guide you on the fastest way through Detroit or even a scenic tour if you'd like. If your coming in June, the 14th is my sons graduation party so I'm unavailable that weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I really appreciate all of your responses. HiYoCheeto I would like to know the quickest way through Detroit. I really don't like to spend much time in big cities on the Wing. If you could just give me directions, I think I could make it on my own. Right now, I am looking at taking U.S. 23 up to Ann Arbor and hitting MI 14 over to I 275 up to I 696 staying mostly outside of Detroit. If you have suggestions, I'm all ears!

thanks again!
Ricky
 

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Ricky - Smart not trusting Cheeto, he gets people lost!! Just kidding one of my riding buds. Your route is the way to go actually. Traffic is pretty intense on I 696 (called the AutoBahn around here), will be more time and miles, but going through Detroit is not my idea of fun either. Hope this helps. Take care.

Crabby Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks Crabby Bob! Do you recommend avoiding 696 too?
 

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Well, I'm going to disagree somewhat with my esteemed friends and colleagues the CheesePuff ;) and Crab. As I've ridden between Tennessee and Michigan several times, including just coming back two days ago, I've got a slightly different outlook concerning the riding path to take.

IF you hit Detroit during the rush hour, traffic is a bear (but in my recent experiences I like it better than trying to get through Cincinnatti). But the via Ann Arbor and 696 is even more miserable. Since I have to travel the metro area quite a bit in my job, I get to experience the 275, 14, 23, 75, 696 etc routes quite a bit. And as my office is located just off of 696 between 94 and 75, I get a lot of it.

In my most humble opinion - just come up 75 and cross over to 94E. Now be aware most GPSs will try to route you off of 75 near the Ambassador Bridge to then just get back on 75 after some side detours. That's because a straight through was built and opened a couple of years ago that the GPSs don't know about. Stay on 75 North past the bridge, you'll go through the lower (southern) part of the city and then take a right hand off-ramp that continues 75 N. That will have a turnoff for 94 E about 2-3 miles later that will take you straight to Port Huron/Sarnia Blue Water Bridge. The overall distance is shorter, and the route much faster than trying to take 275-14-23-696 route. Traffic on the west side 275-14-23 is terrible, people are doing mach-4 and 14 & 23 is famous for accidents blocking traffic for miles.

But like Cheeto said, let us know when you are thinking about coming through and we might be able to meet up and ride with you part of the way.
 

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Have to agree with the Crabby one (darn), the route you have chosen will get you around all the trouble spots and will move quickly.

I-75 to I-275 to I-696 to I-94 would also be a very fast and direct alternative. US-23 and M-14 are 2 lane divided and have been known to back up if there's an accident or event in Ann Arbor (home of U of M).

The most direct route is I-75 to I-94, but, takes you through the heart of Detroit which is not conducive to sight seeing or gas stops. On the others I wouldn't hesitate to stop anywhere along either route.

Would love to buy lunch on your way through, my wife and in-laws still talk fondly of our Vegas trip.

(Was typing this when SSNCOB was posting, sorry Jerry, but, any trip through Detroit is not for the unfamiliar. JMHO gained from working there for my last 15 years in the Postal Service)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
This is why I love this board so much! I always get great advice. I appreciate all of your offers for help. I may have to take you up on it. If I follow the the signs for I75 all the way to I94 and ignore the GPS for a while, will I be fine?
 

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Ricky - After having the best advice from everyone (even though we disagree) Jerry is correct (I really hate to admit that!!) 75 to 94 is the fastest and most direct route. Having said that - if it were me and don't like to go through big cities (I have to agree again with Jerry about CinCi) I would still take the 23/14/696/94 route, but that's just me. I hauled gasoline in the Detroit area for about 25 years and have seen about everything, and when I can go around a big city I take the opportunity. I'll join in the the rest of the MI Mob and would also be happy to get a convoy going to help a Southern gentleman through our area. Take care. By the way 696 is a real race track as Jerry said but the bears hide from there most of the time so hammer down!!!

Crabby Bob
 

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This is why I love this board so much! I always get great advice. I appreciate all of your offers for help. I may have to take you up on it. If I follow the the signs for I75 all the way to I94 and ignore the GPS for a while, will I be fine?
Ricky
In most cases you would be fine as long as your able to stay on I-75 to I-94. The problem, like in most large cities, is that the expressway snakes it's way through and things come up quickly (less than a mile or 2) so you need to be in the proper lane when it does.

I-275 to I-696 to I-94 is 12 mile longer, but, only takes 10 minutes more because they do move so fast. Very direct and no confusing intersections.

Jerry is used to traveling in submarines where he never saw where he was going.:joke:
 

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Discussion Starter #15
If everything works out, I will be in the Detroit area either May 25th (Sunday) or Memorial Day. It will be mid-morning (10:00). I was hoping that traffic would be slightly better in the middle of the day. I will be pulling my trailer. I'm starting to think I will avoid the middle of Detroit and take 275 and 696. Sylvania is on US 23. That is one reason I was thinking of taking it up to Ann Arbor. I don't usually drive really fast on the Interstates. I usually drive around 70. Will I be mowed under on 696?

HiYoCheeto, I didn't realize that you were the one that I rented the Vegas room to. I have rented so many rooms over the years that I lose track.
 

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Ricky - If you run 70 on 696 you'll be fine. The one nice thing is everyone is going fast so if you stay in the middle lanes you be good to go. The left lane is for Kamikaze pilots and the right lane is for us old fogeys. Good choice of time of day too, if it is Sunday should be fairly tranquil about that time.

Crabby Bob
 

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Ricky,
Since your already on 23 it does make more sense to use that to go north to 14. Sundays and holidays should have far less traffic so that shouldn't be a problem.

Don't have anything planned for either day so let me know what day and I'll find a place to meet up with you.

BTW, I never go anywhere without my Escapade trailer hooked up. Pulls like it's not there no matter the speed.
 

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Mid-morning on a Sunday there will likely be minimum delay on either bridge.

As said before, if you use the Ambassador bridge, follow the signs, not your gps.

If you go up 75/94 (rather than detouring 'around' Detroit) you will drive right past the base of the ambassador bridge on your way to the Bluewater crossing.

The Detroit/Windsor tunnel is no longer available to motorcycles.
 

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