Who doesn't love a good road trip?

Heck, you don't even need to leave Maine to experience a fun few hours in the car. The state is loaded with scenic drives, coastal roads, city streets, and village cut-throughs. It's pretty impressive for a relatively quiet state.

Maine also includes the most famous road in the entire country, U.S. Route 1. The North-South highway is over 2,300 miles long and stretches from Fort Kent all the way down to Key West. In fact, it's quite a tourist attraction on the little island. I probably have a picture or two from it somewhere on my phone when I was down there a few years ago.

Parts of Maine's Route 1 are simply stunning, mainly because it's relatively close to the coast. It also sneaks through numerous beach towns and attractions. However, only someone with WAY too much time on their hands would actually utilize Route 1 for a long road trip here. It's simply not efficient. That's why God created interstates. But interstates are no fun.

You know what's fun? Trying to determine how long it would actually take to drive Route 1 from Kittery all the way to Fort Kent.

Sadly, I don't have the free time to just make the drive and see how long it would take, so we will be determining this by Google Maps estimations. Let's start with the quickest way between Kittery and Fort Kent. This will give us an idea of how long it should take if you go the most direct route.

Google Maps
Google Maps

Time: 5 hours 48 minutes
Miles: 362

That's not too bad. I mean, it's quite a stretch, but certainly doable. It's like driving from Portland to New York City. Though, I think Fort Kent might be a little smaller than NYC.

Now, let's take a look at how long the drive would be if we eliminated the use of interstates.

Google Maps
Google Maps

Time: 8 hours 25 minutes
Miles: 382

Now we're talking. This would be a solid workday's length of driving, just so you can avoid paying a few tolls. I'm sure some Mainers have done this over the years. I mean, we are a frugal bunch.

On to the fun part. How long would it take if you drove from Kittery to Fort Kent only using Route 1?

Google Maps
Google Maps

Time: 12 hours 20 minutes
Miles: 526

That is quite the long haul. It's roughly the same estimated time as it would take you to drive from Portland to Columbus, Ohio. Go look at a map. Portland and Columbus are not close.

More than likely the drive would be even longer, considering lights, traffic, road conditions, construction, roadside attractions, and other factors. I bet the actual number is closer to 15 hours, which is absolutely wild.

So, who is ready to try it out? I'm sure this hasn't scared you away from this challenge. I have to be honest, I might have to try this later in the year. I kind of want to do it during prime tourist season so I can experience true pain.

Happy travels.

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