One major reason to road trip Route 1 is because you can. In July and August, when non-retirees take to the road, Route 1 through Maine can be a parking lot. But if you bookend the busy times with a spring or fall trip, Route 1 winds through the craggy coasts of Maine at a clip that makes you feel like you're making good time -- that is, between frequent stops for lobster, lighthouses and antiques. Even the few times the route bends inland are a treat, for example, when rolling through the farmlands of Aroostook County.
Another advantage of traveling Route 1 outside the summer months is the ability to go without reservations. Frequent small towns offer a plethora of dining and lodging options for the footloose spring and fall traveler. Fall offers the added bonus of being the height of lobster season. While you can find fresh lobster along Maine's Route 1 at any time of year, fall's warmer waters mean increased catches and thus lower prices for the Northeast's best "bugs."