The Path Less Traveled
Today we were up with the sun! I got to witness a beautiful sunrise this morning, I could lie and tell you I was “just coming in” ….
We got an early start this morning as we backtracked to Kingman AZ to pick up Route 66 from there and start our push into California. We are doing our best to stay true to the song!
We followed as much of 66 as possible through the Mojave Desert, running parallel to the BNSF rail line until you hit the Black Mountains, and you begin a tight twisting climb over the mountains. Trains can’t climb steep grades, so they run next to I-40. The road we took, is the “path less followed”. This was a very narrow two-lane road with no guardrails, hairpin turns and lots of deserted trailers and houses. One interesting stop is the old gold mining town of Oatmont. A town that is trying it’s best to capitalize on Route 66, but when the biggest attraction in town are the wild burros, you get the picture. Speaking of pictures, we’ve included one of the burros walking on the street, getting fed by the tourist. As the old saying goes, “you sell what you got”!
The rest of the trip through the desert is just plain rough, not a lot of sights to stop and see, more rocks, cactus, and blowing dirt to keep you company as we make our way to Victorville for the evening.
Santa Antia Race Track
I promise this is the last installment of this trip! I can imagine you sitting there saying, “enough already, the Oakies didn’t take this long in the Grapes of Wrath to get to California”! (Bet they didn’t have as much fun as we did)! The thought of people making this trip back in the 20’s-30’s-40’s to seek out a better life, is intimidating to say the least. The terrain is harsh, the people were not hospitable, after all this was depression era, survival was at stake, not tourist just seeing the sights. They had to be a hardy group to say the least. We did the last part of the trip from Barstow to the Santa Monica Pier. Once you got past San Bernadino, Route 66 goes right through “suburbia”. In Pasadena we traveled down Colorado Blvd, home to the Rose Parade, and a “little old lady from Pasadena” (Jan & Dean). We then passed the Santa Anita race track, made famous by the race horse Sea Biscuit!
The End of the Trail
Once we got to LA proper we went straight down Santa Monica Blvd, which took us through Beverly Hills, past Rodeo Drive, Holmby Hills, etc. We saw the TMZ tour buses, but sadly no movie stars. You should see the number of people at the Pier taking pictures of the “End of Route 66” sign (just as we did). People from all over the world, too many different languages to count. We ran into similar situations at the Hoover Dam as well. I guess this is equivalent to us traveling to Europe to see their sights and attractions. That evening we had dinner down on the water front in Manhattan Beach, another great CA beach town south of LA, just a beautiful night.
In the morning we turned back into tourist for one last set of sights, we walked the Hollywood Walk of Fame, we did the Griffith Observatory to take pictures of the Hollywood sign.
Hope You Enjoyed the Ride as Much as We Did!
So that closes this chapter of our travel, thanks for coming along with us, here’s to the next chapter. Come on my fellow Americans, get out there and explore our great country, and remember the welcome mat is always out here in San Antonio…