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  1. Default San Diego to Tucson

    Hi everyone,
    We are headed to Tucson next week for the Gem and Mineral show. Interstate 8 can be a little boring if you don't know the history behind the area. I would like to be able to give my passengers little bits of trivia and history about points of interest alon the way. Do you have any suggestions on how I can find these types of things?
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default A Case in Point

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    While I applaud your desire to keep your passengers entertained on this trip, I don't think just doling out bits of trivia will do it. It's a short enough drive between San Diego and Tucson that you can actually make a few stops that will be both enjoyable and enlightening. Places to consider include the Desert View Tower in Jacumba for an initial bit of wackiness; the old Yuma Prison which is a surprisingly good spot for a lunch break with picnic tables overlooking the Colorado River; the store in Dateland, AZ that has great shakes including a date flavored one for which it is famous; Casa Grande National Monument near the junction of I-8 and I-10; and two attractions near Picacho Peak north of Tucson: Arizona's Civil War Battlefield and an Ostrich Farm. You can split those up and see some on the way to Tucson and some on the way home, but as we say around here, There are no boring roads.

    AZBuck
    Last edited by AZBuck; 01-30-2009 at 07:06 PM. Reason: Added Links

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default "The Most Boring Road in America...."

    One of our columnists tried to find this place, see what you think....... There's plenty to discover along I-8....

    Mark

  4. Default

    Thanks for the tips! I think we will stop at a couple of the places.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default That's a great show

    Enjoy the show.... It's been too long since I attended it. Speaking of the Yuma prison -- check this out.... (Scroll down the page!)

    Mark

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Three Other Unique Things About I-8

    There are 3 things worth knowing about I-8 which are not stops but, as in your original idea, talking points.

    1) I-8 is the only Interstate that descends significantly below sea level. It gets down to -52' as it crosses the Imperial Valley south of El Centro.

    2) If you pay attention as you traverse Telegraph Pass east of Yuma, you will note another oddity. I-8 crosses itself, with the eastbound and westbound lanes swapping sides. For about a mile you will be driving on the left.

    3) Excluding the H-# highways in Hawaii (which clearly aren't INTER-state), I-8 is the Interstate that crosses the newest part of the United States. When you enter Arizona you will, as Bob notes in his article, be following the railroad. The land south of the Gila River was not part of the original land ceded after the Mexican-American war, but was rather bought later specifically for the right-of-way for the railroad.

    AZBuck
    Last edited by AZBuck; 01-31-2009 at 08:53 AM. Reason: Qualifier Added

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    I-8 also gives you a view of the Mexican border fence in 2 areas - east of Jacumba going up/down the mountain, and also between El Centro and Yuma (going through the Imperial Dunes) where the highway is less than 1/2 mile from Mexico.

    Between Casa Grande and Tucson, you can see the Pinal Airpark on the southwest side of the highway - this is a commercial aircraft "boneyard" - there are a bunch of old airliners stored there in various stages of disassembly and/or preservation.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Scotts Valley, California, United States
    Posts
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AZBuck View Post
    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    While I applaud your desire to keep your passengers entertained on this trip, I don't think just doling out bits of trivia will do it. It's a short enough drive between San Diego and Tucson that you can actually make a few stops that will be both enjoyable and enlightening. Places to consider include the Desert View Tower in Jacumba for an initial bit of wackiness; the old Yuma Prison which is a surprisingly good spot for a lunch break with picnic tables overlooking the Colorado River; the store in Dateland, AZ that has great shakes including a date flavored one for which it is famous; Casa Grande National Monument near the junction of I-8 and I-10; and two attractions near Picacho Peak north of Tucson: Arizona's Civil War Battlefield and an Ostrich Farm. You can split those up and see some on the way to Tucson and some on the way home, but as we say around here, There are no boring roads.

    AZBuck
    I think, IIRC, you are also going in and out of reservation territory. The one thing I noticed along this route that no one has commented on is the amazing geology along the road for quite a distance, East of Yuma, you are surrounded by rocks, enormous piles of them, and I'm unclear of what created these megalithic mounds. Anyone know anything about that?

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