A couple of Eagleman-related driving questions here:
1) How long does it take to drive from Arlington/D.C. to Cambridge, Md. on the weekend, particularly in mid-June?
2) How long does it take to drive from Easton, Md., to Cambridge?
All the hotels in Cambridge were booked for the weekend of Eagleman so I have to stay in Easton. According to Google Maps, it's about 12 miles from Easton to Cambridge. I don't know what traffic there is like. I'll give myself plenty of time but I'd like to know what a reasonable time would be for the drive. Thanks.
1. 2 hours-ish Of course it depends on how fast you drive but 2 hours +- a few minutes is a good estimate. Traffic is pretty empty in the morning. In the afternoon while you are driving back, you will be driving counter traffic to the Ocean City, MD beach and Sandy Point crowds. I've never had a problem with traffic and we did a group ride there last Memorial day weekend. The biggest problem that you may have is that you spend 10 minutes waiting to pay the toll at the Bay Bridge on the way back.
2. 15-20 minutes. Traffic flows nicely in that neck of the woods. There are many long roads without traffic light.
Thanks. Good to hear about the drive time from Easton. I was more concerned about that since that's the drive I'll have to do on the morning of the race.
How much is the toll on the bridge and is it charged only for going toward D.C.?
The toll is both way ... somewhere between $2-5 but don't remember.
Most triathletes park on the side streets next to the race venue on race day. The newbies or late arrivals usually park at the designated parking lot ... which is a bit further away.
Thanks for the tip about the parking.
I heard in the past traffic from Easton on race morning could back up some and you should plan accordingly. There are a couple thousand participants all heading to the site at approximately the same time.
I typically park in the school lot and it is a 10 minute walk to transition. They used to let you park right next to transition but this was stopped a few years ago because the field was saturated due to all the rain. Perhaps they will open the field up to parking again.
The drive home is the worse with the potential for long back ups. A few years ago there was an accident on Route 50 heading east that made the drive home a disaster. Last year it was not too bad but it was probably 30+ minute delay crossing the Bay Bridge.
Toll on the Bay Bridge is only charged for east-bound traffic. It is "free" heading home. The EZ Pass lanes move much better and will speed your drive to the race site.
Depending on when you're driving, you could hit lots of traffic. Typical summer traffic is heavy outbound away from DC on Fridays and heavy inbound toward DC on Sunday. So coming home after the race on Sunday post race, you'll definitely be hitting heavy traffic. I remember last year sitting in traffic for 3+ hours and being at a standstill for a good portion of it until I crossed the Bay Bridge. You have not only the Eagleman people but the beach crowd trying to get back across the bay. And there isn't even a toll going back toward DC. It's just that much traffic.
A lot of people park on the side streets, but last year I pulled right up into the field at the school (where they directing traffic) and walked the two blocks to the race site in no time.
Definitely plan for extra time for the morning coming from Easton. Lots of people stay up there because the Cambridge hotels require 2 night minimums. And thousands of people are descending on that town for the race, so there will definitely be heavy traffic that morning heading to the exact same place you're going.
Thanks for the info everyone. I'll give myself at least an hour to drive from Easton to Cambridge on the morning of the race then, and still be there early enough to relax and do a short warm-up.
After the race, I may just hang out for an extra hour or two in Cambridge. Better to stay there at a restaurant than to sit in traffic for 3 hours. Hopefully the traffic will thin out by early evening.
Reminder: The Bay Bridge Swim is the same day as Eagleman, Depending on the tides/Bay Swim start, you'll have additional traffic trying to get on and cross the bridge . . .