Decommissioning

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Decommissioning

Decommissioning

Route 66 is a decommissioned U.S. Highway.  Decommissioning a highway means it will no longer receive Federal funds for its maintenance.  This is exactly what happened to Route 66 piece by piece.

It was known as the Will Rogers Highway.  Kingman, Arizona, (a city on Route 66) was home to actor Andy Devine.  This was a very popular stretch of highway.

When they decommissioned it, some sections became “business loops” along Interstates.  Some were abandoned and left to decay.  Others were adopted by local states and counties.  For example, one section is California became State Route (SR) 66.  All of this makes it literally impossible to drive Route 66 from Chicago to L.A. as one contiguous section of road.

It is common to find abandoned equipment, buildings and automobiles along Route 66.  It is the Ghost Town of roads.

copyright 2016 db walton

Abandoned Truck

Used To Be

It is what used to be.  Along Route 66 are abandoned buildings too.   You can’t tell what some are, while others may be obvious.  Because of this,  be respectful and do not remove anything.  If you do, there will be nothing left for others to enjoy.

As we drive Route 66 we hope to identify what those buildings were.  If we find old pictures of before they were abandoned, we’ll see if we can use them.

Ukulele


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Get Your Kicks

Get Your Kicks

When someone mentions Route 66, do you immediately think, “Get your kicks on Route 66”?

If you do, you’re not alone.  A lot of people think that.

What’s on Route 66 that justifies the lyrics, “Get your kicks on Route 66”?

Today it is mostly iconic diners and businesses, many of which have been restored.  Then, in big cities, like Pasadena, California, there are modern businesses that didn’t exist when Route 66 was in its prime.

Back in the pre-Interstate highway days, Route 66 hosted many gas stations, motels and restaurants.   It wasn’t unusual for your car to overheat on Route 66 in California, Arizona or other southwestern states.  For that reason, there were service stations and garages along the way.

copyright 2016 db walton

Abandoned Gas Station

More Than Just Ghost Towns

Route 66 is more than just ghost towns.  There are small communities that have survived the I-40 devastation. (When Interstate 40 was opened, many businesses and communities died.)  These communities benefit from the tourist traffic.  They host gift shops, restaurants, and other delights for the Route 66 travelers today.

copyright 2016 db walton

Diner in San Bernadino

Once you hit the L.A. basin, those portions of Route 66 are thriving as they are surface streets in cities like Pasadena and Santa Monica, for example.  It is when you get out of town that Route 66 becomes a piece of Americana from the past.

copyright 2016 db walton

Oatman, Arizona

Here’s Bobby Troup…

For your entertainment, here’s Bobby Troup’s version of the Route 66 theme song.  Bobby Troup WROTE the song, and then Nat King Cole brought it to the top of the Billboard hits that same year. (click here for the Wikipedia story)  Since then at least 50 artists have covered the Route 66 Song.

THANK YOU BOBBY TROUP!