If you decide to take 69/75 to Dallas, you can avoid the turnpike toll in Oklahoma by exiting I-44 at 71 south (just before Joplin). Take 71S a few miles to Hwy 60. Take Hwy 60 to 69. take 69/75 into Dallas and have a ball with that traffic. Where you going in dallas and maybe we can give you a good route there?
I usually take this route when pulling the 5'er, but then I am not in any particular hurry... And I enjoy the backroads and scenery
rockportrocket: I have had the chance to look at the map and I see exactly where you mean. By doing this, will we avoid paying the toll altogether? It doesn't appear that we will be off of our originally intended route for very long in terms of time. Is that correct?
We are going to scoot over to Fort Worth first before we head into Dallas.
We are looking for an easy drive on good roads as it is our first time towing a 34' trailer this kind of distance. We don't have a lot of excess time to go too far out of our way, so we want to stay fairly close to our original Mapquest route, although it does look like your original suggestion is one we will likely take.
If I am following the Mapquest instructions correctly in my mind, the only section where you will have tolls is the Will Rogers Turnpike from the north entrance to Big Cabin.
The cash toll is $2.00 for two axles, $3.50 for three axles, $5.50 for four axles, $8.50 for five, $10.50 for six. Count your axles.
I haven't been on the Will Rogers for years (not because of the tolls but because of the heavy truck traffic trying to run 75-80 mph and the frequent tie-ups from big accidents that ensue), so I don't know how they collect the tolls. If it is a single collection point between the State Line and Tulsa entrances, they will collect the full toll for Tulsa and give you a refund at Big Cabin.
My usual Will Rogers avoidance route is US-166 through Kansas, west from the three-state corner. US-166 has a bit less congestion through Kansas than US-60 has in western Missouri and around Grand Lake in NE Oklahoma. I would take US-166 to Chetopa, US-59 to pick up US-60/69 at Vinita, because of the extra traffic and slow-down points on US-69 (or even Alt-69) as they come into Oklahoma from Kansas.
The big trucks are on the Will Rogers, paying those tolls, because the alternative (OK-10, US-60, and/or US-69)routes move a lot more slowly in and around Grand Lake, with lots of local traffic in the resort and nearby communities.
On US-69 south of I-44, there is a construction zone between Vinita and Pryor where you will be running on an uneven temporary pavement. Lots of construction on 69/75 further south, at several points south of I-40.
All that being said, US-69 is the wrong route to Dallas/Fort Worth if your destination is really Fort Worth. Approaching Fort Worth directly from the north on I-35W is a whole lot less trouble than coming into the suburbs east of Dallas, then trying to cross west through the heart of the Metroplex.
tatest: I understand your route as described. The only part I need clarification on is where you go once you are on 69 at Vinita? Do you continue south through the construction you have described or would you advise us to skirt around it? Secondly, I like your idea to approach Fort Worth from the north, but when do you advise we should head west from 69 to get to 35 and avoid the Dallas suburbs traffic at the same time?