Journal: What’s Your Favorite Type Of Road?

What’s Your Favorite Type Of Road?

Michael Banovsky By Michael Banovsky
August 5, 2016
14 comments

Now that the earth has been covered in a webbed blanket of tarmac, its contours followed and re-shaped to aid vehicles, there’s definitely a certain type of road that makes enthusiasts happy. Or is there? I have a feeling that my idea of a fun road isn’t the same as yours.

I’ve been lucky enough to experience many spectacular and enjoyable driving roads, but sadly, none of them were located where I grew up. With much of Southwestern Ontario, Canada countertop-level and its roads shaped by Tetris blocks, my version of the Stelvio Pass involves two highway interchanges and is over in roughly 3 minutes.

Instead, much of my motoring nirvana has occurred on longer road trips between points A and B, alert and present enough in the experience to appreciate both the scenery and curves. There are so many beautiful B-roads in Canada, the U.S., and Europe that I’ve driven, enough at least to wonder if I’ll ever find them again…or why there aren’t more people around. Not that I’m complaining…

What’s your favorite type of road?

Photography by: Michael Bolli, Federico Bajetti, Yoav Gilad

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Iain HolmesBad Kitty No Milk TonightMartin HniličkaEllias KarwashanMatt Tiene Recent comment authors
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Iain Holmes
Iain Holmes

I have a few roads I love , they are all B roads with a mix of open sweeping corners, and in places it gets tighter and steeper. They are both fairly close to Sydney here in Australia.

The roads in question are “The Putty Road” which heads from Windsor up to the Upper Hunter Valley via the Yengo National Park, another is “Thundebolts Way” which heads from Gloucester across the New England tablelands to Uralla and Armidale.

Victor Smith
Victor Smith

All the really good roads here in SoCal are already full of idiots every weekend, Mulholland drive, Angelus Crest, cars and bikes everywhere, you have to get outside the city way outside, to find something that you can enjoy without a crowd.

Ellias Karwashan
Ellias Karwashan

Mountain twisties seem to be a popular response but I’m going to stray a bit. I have two favorite roads because I have two favorite cars. There are few roads more comfortable and pretty in the Northeast USA than I-93 North heading through the White Mountains in an S-Class. Rolling along at 75mph on any mountain highway is a great feeling. The other favorite road is where I can maintain 45-55mph. Minimal shifting, mid to high RPMs, with gradual sweeping turns. A 1997 SL500 feels like it was made for those roads. TL;DR – my favorite road is the one… Read more »

Matt Tiene
Matt Tiene

Twisting mountain roads are the best. Repeatedly coming in and out of tight forested bends that open up to sweepers with mountains on either side really makes me focus more on the driving. Route 4 in Killington, Vermont turned out to be an especially pleasant experience. I had to leave early that day to make it back to Massachusetts and couldn’t have been more pleasantly surprised.

Pedro Valente Silva
Pedro Valente Silva

Here in Portugal, the EN110 near Coimbra, is one of my favorites roads. Is along Mondego river. This photo was taken in June, in my 308 sw auto, testing manual mode!

Abu Bakr Cheema
Abu Bakr Cheema

There’s a road for every season. And by season I don’t just mean the weather but moods, vibes and restrictions of time and place. And those should translate into a depth and range of automotive experience that you can tell stories about and celebrate as having truly Done it All. Be it “rip[ping] a hole through time” at an overcast Spa in a P1 (Jeremy Clarkson you lucky b*****d), navigating the stunning Transfagarasan at first light in the Disco Volante Spyder, arriving at China via the formidable Karakoram Highway in an S1,4.2 E-Type or making your own roads answering the… Read more »

HitTheApex
HitTheApex

Tight, twisting roads broken up by the occasional straight are my favorite, preferably with a view. The numerous famous touge and skyline roads of Japan, a number of passes in Europe, and many of the canyons of California come to mind as good examples.

Derelict
Derelict

“Roads” are overrated. Poor MPG and 4wd get you to the best places in the world

Matt Khoun
Matt Khoun

B roads of course!

Here in New Zealand, we have an abundance of these good driving roads. One I particular I used to drive very often in my Toyota Chaser most days of the week after my study.

It was theraputic for me; heading out after a stressful day to just drive and clear my head. While my mates would party or drink with their student allowances… I used mine for gas and cheap second hand luxury tyres.

Chazwozza
Chazwozza

As someone who has always preferred less powerful, lighter machinery, something fairly twisty and varied is my preference. Famous roads like the Stelvio or Transvagarasan are great for powerful road-racers, but for most cars the gap between the hairpins is too long to be exciting. I generally find rural British roads to have a great mixture of corners, never being straight for very long and are rarely policed much at all. The trick is finding one that is wide enough to go past people at full speed, has a good surface and isn’t too busy. There’s a few like it… Read more »

João Gonçalo Moreira Pires
João Gonçalo Moreira Pires

The Stelvio Pass was a disappointment, not because of the road but because of the crowd – and a varied one: cyclists, bikers, drivers and even buses (imagine going up through a hairpin and having to reverse so a bus can come down…). The views were breathtaking and it was snowing on the top, in August!
Wish I could go full Top Gear and have it closed for me and some mates…

Abu Bakr Cheema
Abu Bakr Cheema

Sara Nase of Get Palm and Colcorsa has been talking about this for quite some time, she says the key really is timing. This should come in handy for future trips: http://www.getpalmd.com/2016/08/best-driving-roads-europe/

Martin Hnilička
Martin Hnilička

Agreed! Through the years, we have driven on most of Austrian and Italian passes and Hochalpenstrassen, but Stelvio was the worst – exactly like you said – crowds of cyclists and trailers everywhere, very poor road surface quality… Passo Gavia, Nockalmstrasse, Passo di Giau, Silvretta… way better!

moosesport
moosesport

The special stage roads of the Maine Forest Rallye in northwestern Maine.