Driving Tips for the Veterans Memorial Highway
The Whiteface Veterans Memorial Highway is perhaps the easiest mountain toll road to drive in America. That said, it does require a special level of care and awareness for all drivers in all vehicles. Please read and follow the tips below as you enjoy your scenic drive.
Please note: If a major problem occurs, pull off the road and notify a passing vehicle that you need assistance. Be as concise as possible about your location and problem. A staff member will render assistance.
- Follow the signs and obey the speed limit. Excessive speed going up or down the mountain can cause safety problems and will disturb the experience for others.
- Watch your vehicle's warning lights and gauges. If problems like overheating are indicated, take action to avoid damage or accidents. Overheating can be addressed by pulling off the road at the next indicated parking area and allowing the engine to run until the light or gauge indicates that it is safe to move on. It helps to turn off the air conditioning and to turn on the heater. Do not open the radiator cap unless the engine has cooled considerably. Add fluid only if significant coolant has been lost.
- Never stop in the travel lanes. Whether it is for sight-seeing, picture-taking, or to address a mechanical problem, pull all the way off of the road.
- Be aware of other vehicles on the road. If you are holding up a line of vehicles, pull over at the next indicated area and let them by. Do not tailgate or pass unless the vehicle in front of you pulls over and waves you on.
- Watch the road. The scenery is indeed awesome and distracting. If curiosity gets the best of the driver, pull over to view or switch drivers.
- Do not ride the brakes while descending. Use a lower-than-normal gear and let the engine do much of the braking. Pump the brakes if necessary, and consider pulling off at a designated parking area to let brakes cool down. The distinct aroma of overheated brakes is a cue to pull over and wait. Never throw water on your wheels or brakes, even if they are smoking or smell.
- Remember that after passing through the Toll House, there are still another couple of miles of downgrade to negotiate.