My name is Howard; my wife (Carla) and I are planning a road trip on part of Route 66 this summer. We live in Portland, Oregon. We’ll start by driving to Santa Monica, California for the start and then head over to Gallup, New Mexico, then head home. . We figure it will take 2 days to get to Los Angeles; we’ll take a little more than a week on the Route 66, then head home from Gallup; stopping in Boise to visit friends.
The purpose of the blog is three-fold.
- Share our planning and solicit feedback
- Gather suggestions to improve our experience
- Share the results and pictures of our trip so we can provide help to others who plan to do the same.
I grew up in Palmdale, California (Mojave desert) in the 50’s and 60s. My mom came from Arizona (Holbrook, Winslow, Flagstaff). In the summers we would drive from Palmdale to Winslow, Arizona to visit my grandparents, uncle and aunts. We’d head to Victorville to hook up with the Mother Road and head through Barstow, Daggett, Needles, Kingman, Seligman, Flagstaff, and into Winslow. My grandparents lived just 2 blocks off the highway on West Aspinwall.
My grandpa, H.H. Baker, would take me over to the La Posada hotel and the train station in Winslow. At that time Winslow was a major stop on the Santa Fe Railroad. We’d watch the Chief, the Super Chief, and the El Capitan passenger trains come in for a crew change, top off the diesel, an inspection and service. It was FANTASTIC. Certainly the highlight of the vacation for me, and a beautiful memory.
This past Thanksgiving we had a family reunion in Sedona and Cottonwood, where my aunt, uncle and his wife live. We took a day trip to Winslow and looked around. It was then that I knew what our summer vacation plan would be: a road trip. We’ll go to California and re-trace our steps from back in the day.
That will teach my wife. When she plans a vacation we go to Hawaii or Europe; when I plan a vacation we drive out through the desert to take pictures of trains!
I remember the drive as exciting (but LONG). Of course so much of Route 66 lives on in our culture and zeitgeist. Along the way, we’ll stop at the museums, the burger joints, motels, and what-not. I’ll take some pictures and post them.
The blog will evolve, I’m sure. At the outset, I plan on having a page publishing our current plan and solicit feedback. We’ll also have some pages with notes and pictures of our trip. If possible we’ll post some entries along the way.