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  1. Default Route 66 Roadtrip

    I'm wanting to take a roadtrip from the St. Louis area where I live all the way down the remains of Route 66 to Los Angeles. I'm going to be getting a book with tons of directions and suggested sights to see along the way so I can have a good *physical* reference for that (The EZ guide. Looks like it has the *best* reviews and everything on amazon) Internet references are wonderful, but there's just something about having a solid book to make it feel more real, and of course, physical stuff is easier to use on the road ;) )

    Anyways, first off, does anyone have suggestions for that leg of the trip? I'm definitely going to see Meremac Caverns (I saw them on a family trip years ago, but I'm older now and would appreciate it more, and when I'm on my own, I can go at my own pace and really absorb it), a lot of the old abandoned things along the route, Cadillac Ranch, the Texas Steakhouse, and other symbols of Route 66. (More research as well as the book will give me a lot more specific stops). Does anyone have any suggestions of *MUST SEE* places along the old Mother Road? I'm for sure diverting to see the Grand Canyon as well!

    I'm going to hang in LA for a day or two (I don't know if I want to stay too long. The crime's pretty bad through a lot, isn't it? (There I go with preconceived notions and stereotypes of areas :P)) After LA, I plan to head to Death Valley. The deserts have always been something that *fascinates* me and they almost have a calling to me, like a second home I've never been to. I plan to trek around there for a day or so, maybe a second day if I can find nearby lodging. What are *the best* areas of Death Valley to hit, for those who have been there?

    Finally, I'm planning to hit Vegas for a day or so (I'm not 21 so there's not a whole lot I can do there), then return through Colorado and see the Rockies and such. Any good stops along the general I-15 / I-70 route? (That's the route I plan to take. I'm hoping to kind of truck along a bit faster on this leg since I want as much time as I can allot for the Route 66, LA, and Death Valley time).

    Side note: I'm planning to allot about 3 weeks, maybe a bit less for this trip, since I've got a summer job (I can get off that much, but any more would be pushing it)

    "PS": I'm hoping to camp a lot of this trip to save on cash. If you have any suggestions for the best and safest grounds along the way, that'd be swell if you could share those too!

    Thanks for reading and thanks in advance for all replies and information! :)

  2. Default

    My favorite part of Route 66 is from Kingman, AZ to Oatman, AZ. Oatman is a tourist trap, but a cute one with burros and gunfights in the street if you just happen there at the right time! When I was young we traveled route 66 and driving this section reminds me of those days, curves and all!

    Many towns in New Mexico have the old Route 66 signs. Make sure you look for Elvis' pink cadillac in Seligman, AZ.

    Any good stops along the general I-15 / I-70 route?
    To bad you didn't have time to travel some of the back roads like Hwy 9 though Zion National Park, to Hwy 89 and then scenic Hwy 12 past Bryce Canyon National Park up to Torrey, Utah where you would pick up Hwy 24 to I-70.

    If that's to much out of the way, you can stop at the Kolob section of Zion National Park just off I-15 between St. George and Cedar City.

    On I-70 between Fremont Jct and Green River, Utah is the San Rafael Swell which is a beautiful drive.

    About 20 miles east of Green River on I-70 watch for golden eagles on the interstate. There will be a sign warning you about them.

    Another 6 miles down I-70 is Thompson Jct and if you want a break, you can drive north 3 miles to Sego Canyon Petroglyphs.

    I-70 thought Colorado is some of the most beautiful Interstate I've seen.


  3. Default

    Thanks for the suggestions Utahtea! Oddly enough, I also posted this on a forum I frequent. A guy on there from arizona suggested the exact same thing you did with the Burro's, around the exact same time!

    All of those things you listed look awesome! I definitely love Elvis, so will be sure to check out that cadillac. The Zion National Park looks breathtaking, as does the San Rafael Swell and Sego Canyon! I will be sure to add those to my list, as well as keeping an eye open for golden eagles!

  4. Default

    I forgot to mention about Death Valley. It's very dangerous to go hiking in the summer because it is so HOT! You will more than likely just be driving though because once you step out of your car, you will want to get right back in and turn up the air conditioner! Make sure you carry plenty of water for you and your vehicle especially in Death Valley!


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default No regrets.

    Hello and welcome to RTA !

    You will find a lot of info on this RTA resource page on route 66.

    If you have time [or it just might fall into an overnight stop] get off I70 and head to Arches and /or Canyonlands NP near Moab. Return to I 70 through Castle valley on 128 for a scenic riverside drive through the canyon. With a few hours you could drive the rim road around Colorado National monument near to Fruita/Grand junction. Another detour at Dillon to US6 would take you up and over the continental divide on Loveland pass, spectacular ! Not to mention the highest continous paved road in the US, the spectacular 'Trail ridge road' through Rocky mountain NP.

    I would try and keep a little time to hand for the return leg, you will only regret it if you don't !

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Along the I-40/US 66 route, the Painted Desert/Petrified Forest National Park is worth 3 hours to visit. Bear in mind that the gas station and restaurant is on the NORTH end, near the freeway, and not so much on the south end of the park.

    Along I-70 in the Glenwood Canyon area, there are several places to stop and take in some views (and photos). It's an incredible drive - though often busy enough that the traffic isn't going more than 45 or 50 mph. Still, that's worthwhile. It's SO beautiful! If you have the time, there's a short hike that you can take off of one of the rest areas, too.


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Turn off the TV for starters....

    Quote Originally Posted by brandonman View Post
    (The EZ guide. Looks like it has the *best* reviews and everything on amazon)
    I'm not a fan of the EZ Guide, but traveling on Route 66 is like taking a road trip anywhere -- 100 travelers will have a totally different experience even if they all traveled on the same road. In fact, if you drove the same road 100 times, each trip would be different, because of changes in weather, changes in you, etc. That being said, the three references I recommend for tracing Route 66 are Sara Benson's Route 66 guidebook (very small book, but excellent content) and Drew Knowles' latest Route 66 Handbook. For online I recommend Guy Randall's web site, "Shadows of Old Route 66." I personally vouch for everything they recommend.

    Quote Originally Posted by brandonman View Post
    I'm going to hang in LA for a day or two (I don't know if I want to stay too long. The crime's pretty bad through a lot, isn't it?
    There is a crime in every city and town in America, along with art, beauty, interesting people, great food, and remarkable cultures. Here's one of our favorite posts about the "art of visiting LA."

    I plan to trek around there for a day or so, maybe a second day if I can find nearby lodging. What are *the best* areas of Death Valley to hit, for those who have been there?
    Death Valley is probably my favorite national park, but as Utahtea has mentioned, hiking in summertime is problematic. You can certainly hike in the park in the summer months, but you need to be plan to be on the trail no later than 4:00 am and off the trail (and into shade) by 11:00 am. Most days in the summer, it will be at least 112 degrees (F) by 11:00 am.

    Finally, I'm planning to hit Vegas for a day or so (I'm not 21 so there's not a whole lot I can do there),
    It's true that you can't hang in the casinos, but since you like to hike, Red Rock Canyon is very cool and I always recommend Grapevine Canyon -- here are a few more ideas around my home town.

    Any good stops along the general I-15 / I-70 route?
    I've documented some of my favorite view stops along I-70 in eastern Utah here.

    Happy Planning!


  8. Default

    Sounds like I should keep more time for the return leg! I'll keep that in mind! I'm definitely going to take a lot of water to Death Valley! Temperatures here in STL easily pass up 100 in the summer with extreme humidity, but I'm guessing the next 20 degrees are a *huge* difference, even without humidity (I've read that makes it more dangerous in that there is NO moisture in the air to help your body, along with the fact you feel less damp, meaning you feel you need to drink less?) I won't be hiking too much at a time in Death Valley, but definitely want to see places like Dante's Peak and such. Petrified forest looks beautiful, I'll try to check it out! I guess I can't talk too much about LA, St. Louis has taken *the* highest crime-rate in the nation, if I remember correctly. Thanks for the link to the post about visiting LA, made me realize the true size of the city! Grapevine Canyon and the petroglyphs look very cool! Those are some great pictures from I-70, I'll check those pictures out as well! Thanks for all the replies so far!

  9. Default

    So I've run into an issue: I'm 16 turning 17 next month, and it seems some hotels will not rent out to minors under the age of 18. Does anyone have any experience with how strict the hotels on Rt. 66 with this policy? (I'm pretty sure it's not a law, but rather a hotel to hotel policy).

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Sorry, but I don't know of ANY hotels that will rent rooms to people under 18. This IS actually a legal issue, minors cannot enter into a contract. You are going to have to camp and/or stay with friends if you go at all. Honestly, and not to try to aggravate you, you would be much better off waiting till you are 18 to take a road trip of this scope by yourself. There are just too many legal issues that I'm sure you haven't even thought of regarding minors. Example - if you have an accident, you can't authorize your own health care.

    Again - not to pile on - if I were your parents I wouldn't allow this trip at this time. If you were going with friends and at least ONE of them were 18, then I'd think about it. The 18 year old would have to be responsible enough in my opinion to be trusted with a power of attorney.

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