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RoadDog

Illinois Hwy 47-Alternative to the Chicago Hassle

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If you're trying to get around Chicago and want to avoid the hassle of congested freeways and suburbia, I recommend Il-47. It runs from the Wisconsin border at Herbron and eventually ends up just west of Champagne.

 

We take it from Woodstock to Dwight, where we get off onto US 66. There is great scenery and interesting places to stop including the patriotic hotdog. However, suburbia is lapping at its shoulders so I don't know how much longer it will be a good alternative.

 

Morris and Yorkville are worth stops as well.

 

Keep on Down that Two Lane Highway. --RoadDog

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Excellent suggestion! My dad did that very thing a few years ago. He took one of his Model A Fords to a convention in St. Charles, IL. He picked up IL-47 off US 136 and took it up to just west of St. Charles. Good route too...usually have the whole road to yourself, as I recall.

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Unfortunately, there is a little more traffic on the road these days, but it is still preferrable to me as a way to avoid the Chicago hassle.

 

Great place to stop is Morris, Illinois. I partucularly like the Fool's Pub located right by the I&M Canal and Illinois River. Great food and prices.

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On the east/west axis I've taken U S 30 south of the city. Yes, it is congested, yes there are lights, but, as I recall, most of it was 4-lane most of the way - tho, at the time (2001) it turned into a short streatch of 2-lane at the western end somewhere.

It was a lot easier than using the interstates. Safe traveling everybody.

 

Hudsonly,

Alex Burr :D

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Hi, Road Dog, my friend! I do not disagree about IL Rt 47, but wow, the way the Yorkville and Morris areas are building up, Rt 47 is not nearly as good a bypass route as it used to be.

 

As you know, I live in DeKalb (IL) - along I-88 - the E-W (Reagan) Tollway. We often travel to the Louisville, KY area to visit one of our daughters who lives there. I have found that, for me, the most pleasant way to get there is to go back west on I-88 to I-39 near Rochelle, then south to Champaign / Urbana, get on I-74 and go east to pick up I-65 at Indianapolis. It is a few miles (perhaps 25) miles farther, but it is actually less time, and I am thus able to TOTALLY avoid the Chicago metro area :D and all the hassles of Chicago's traffic, especially on I-80 across the south side into Indiana, which is always way too crowded and is almost always under construction!

 

I recommend this routing frequently to any of my friends traveling from the north or west who are enroute to points south and / or east of Indianapolis. Unless one wishes to stop or visit in Chicago, one is, IMHO, well-advised to avoid the Chicago metro!

 

Unfortunately if one is truly headed to points mostly due east of Chicago, there is NO GOOD WAY to avoid the Chicago metro area. Expects hassles and delays! I think it would be nice if the proposed "Prairie Parkway" became a loop that would run from I-90 all the way around the Chicago area to I-65 in Indiana, but I don't think it will ever really happen.

 

Admittedly, this is all Interstate driving, but we are usually short of time, and for that purpose Interstates are great. When I have time, I do take secondary roads, including taking 2-lane state and federal highways through southern and southwestern Indiana - a trip I highly recommend! Great scenery down there, mostly all south and west of Indianapolis!

 

If you're trying to get around Chicago and want to avoid the hassle of congested freeways and suburbia, I recommend Il-47. It runs from the Wisconsin border at Herbron and eventually ends up just west of Champagne.

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For our next trip to Wisconsin, we have discussed going all the way to Bloomington-Normal and taking I-39 north to Rockford (spending the night at Starved Rock State Park Lodge) to avoid Chicago. Maybe, if we have a little extra time, we can take the Illinois 47 route instead.

 

Last trip from Wisconsin through Chicago: two hours idling through the city.

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True, and anymore, it is not pleasant slogging your way through Woodstock and Huntley.

 

However, in between those towns, there is some great country driving plus those interesting oval barns. In Morris, I've heard there is a truckstop that serves up two pound cheeseburgers with all the fixins' and some people actually attempt to eat it all.

 

I normally take Il-47 all the way to Champaign and then catch the interstate over to Indiana and then US-41 to Nashville.

 

Trying to Avoid the Chicago Hassle. --RoadDog

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