Route 66 "The Mother Road"

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by 10Cup, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    I had planned to head up to Chicago and visit my Son and his family when it dawned on me that a little history ride at the same time might be fun. Boy was it ever. I liked it so much when I returned home I took a second ride out West and made it as far as Santa Rosa, NM before running out of time.

    Here are a few of the pictures from my ride hope those from my generation at least will enjoy it.

    Jumped on the route in Joplin, Mo and headed North East.
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    First real land mark was in Carthage, Mo.
    An old drive in still in business.
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    As I rode along the old two lane each little town I came to was promoting the route for any tourist business. I was glad to stop and look at them all.
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    How many of you remember when gas was 15 cents a gallon!! The old gas stations along the route were one of my goals. I used to work in them as my part time job and so I loved seeing them again like a page out of my past.
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    Halltown, Mo was pretty cool, this is an old Mercantile store.
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    Some great old bridges on the route north as well.
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    Some of the old places had been fixed up nicely.
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    Stopped at this old bar for a look see. Didn't stay long, it was filled with cigarette smoke...yuck..I'm outta here.
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    Hit St. Louis and rode down on the river front under the arch.
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    Statue of Louis & Clark and their dog.
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    Another interesting landmark leaving St. Louis was the The Chain of Rocks Bridge Though no driving is allowed it's used by pedestrians and bicycle riders.
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    I headed on NE and saw this hack on the road amongst the corn fields.
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    The state of Illinois has done a great job preserving the old road.
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    Not long after that another old service station appeared.
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    In rural country for sure, saw several farm tractors and corn pickers on the road.
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    Here another old gas station
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    An old Standard Oil station that is on the National Historic Register.
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    It was open and manned, very interesting with all the old tools of the time still on display.
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    Complete with metal ceiling.
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    Even had an old camper from back in the day parked next to it.
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    Nice light bulbs...
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    Next up is Dwight, Ill. with it's neat 50's diner and old service station.
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    Right across the street was another old service station complete with a neat old guy that was eager to explain all the history. I love it.
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    Inside was an old steam powered fire truck.
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    Saw these as I was rummaging around in the station too.
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    From there I headed on into North Chicago and pulled into my Son's place in light rain. Fun couple of days. More later.

    After riding Route 66 from Joplin, Mo to Chicago and enjoying it so much I decided I am going to have to finish the trek out west. Today however I just had a few hours so headed up to Galena to start the trip West off.
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    Here are a few details and pictures.

    Coming into Galena
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    Where I was planning on visiting the Four Women On the Route which was once an old Kan O TX gas station.
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    There I found several very interesting people and things. I ended up spending over an hour there.

    This is Melba Rigg one of the owners and quite the character. Loved her passion for the Route and she was loaded with info. She proudly refers to herself as "Melba the mouth". I promise you she can talk faster than you can listen or comprehend. Funny as heck.

    Here she is giv'n the pitch.....hang on it comes fast and hard:lol3
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    A few more shots of the inside
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    While there a couple on a BMW "K" bike rode on through, boy did they miss out.

    I remember my Dad had one of these old TV's, put off so much radiation he lost all his hair:huh Fortunately I didn't lose mine (yet)
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    I'm sure most on this thread have taken their kids to see the movie "Cars", remember this guy?
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    Ol Melba tells us that the old tow truck that inspired this character was sitting right outside!
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    So I had to get in for the photo op. They say it still runs but she doesn't let anyone drive it but herself!
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    While there we all got to cutting up with Melba, the two guys on the left are from the UK, the two on the right from Quebec, Canada.
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    She insisted I get in on the action too. I'm the young good look'n one:D
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    Wasn't long and in comes a guy by the name of Joe Bouffet. He's 82 years young and has several old Model T Fords and a ton of information about the area. Very interesting guy.
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    He brought an old magazine with him too, said is has quite the collection.
    Proceeded to show me how to fix the fuel starvation on an old Model T or Model A not sure which. The gas was gravity fed.
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    He can restore radiators too.
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    Both Melba and Joe told me to stop by an old Railroad dept museum before I got out of town and the new diner across the street was about the only place to eat in town to stop there too.
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    Sure enough here it is.
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    It was closed today though so I had to get a few pictures looking in the windows. I walked around back.........seems like a pretty safe area....
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    ADV qualified too......
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    After that I headed on over to Norma's.
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    Food was just ok, but hey they were just having their Grand Opening today.

    After lunch I saddled up and headed on down Route 66 toward Baxter Springs.
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    Came up on the Rainbow Bridge

    It is the only remaining Marsh Arch Bridge still on route 66. Very interesting story too.

    Little while later and I'm on main street Baxter Springs (which I'm told with much pride by the locals was the 1ST Cowtown in KS)...BoooHisss Dodge City.
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    Stopped to check out this little cafe.
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    Some Corvette club was there in force..
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    Then I headed on over the the local Phillips 66 Station and Route 66 official information center.
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    Had a great visit with the lovely old couple running the place. He said he worked in this station when he was 14. I didn't ask but he has to be in his 80's now. Really nice folks.
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    Yeah my names on there...can you find it:lol3
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    Look real close at this guys boots, he can turn his foot around backwards.....for real. He's from Baxter Springs apparently and they said was in the place earlier that morning.
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    He was instrumental in the movie Cars too and they call him Crazy leg Walker. Because of this guys connection to the area and the old Dump truck "Tow Mater" he is the reason you only see Tow Mater backing up in the movie....amazing what goes on behind the scenes!!

    The Baxter and Galena area is a huge Zinc/Lead mining area and they have a 20,000 SF museum there in Baxter Springs. I stopped in for a look see. Amazing place.

    They said an old mine was set up on the lower level so I headed on down stairs to look at it. First thing I see is the old "Miners Jail":huh
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    Sure nuff, back in the corner is a mine mock up.
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    It's behind glass so has a reflection in the Picher. (Pun intended..)
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    After that I headed on back to the wonderful state of Arkansas where our new slogan is "GO HOGS.......BEAT SOMEBODY"

    You all have a good one and till next time, ride safe.
    #1
  2. VietHorse

    VietHorse Long timer

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    Very impressive with the way you took photos and give comments.
    Heard and saw a lot about US66 but I never been there. Thanks for bringing us along.
    Ride safe.
    #2
  3. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    Enjoyed your trip down memory lane... great pics!! thanks for sharing them. :thumb
    #3
  4. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    Thank you Gentlemen, have Oklahoma, Texas, NM left to go. Lots more. Oklahoma was treasure trove.
    #4
  5. rockinrog

    rockinrog Long timer

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    Great pics, thank you for sharing.
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  6. ciedema

    ciedema мотоциклист

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    On the road! Finally!
    Looking forward to this - I travelling it at the very moment.
    #6
  7. RicH2

    RicH2 Ric H2

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    Great stuff....thX for sharing.

    I remember gas wars. Spent a lot of time in gas station garage bays.
    Blues brothers seem out of place...time period way way off....
    #7
  8. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    Hey will do, I have the waypoint on my GPS already. Not sure when I'll get out that way but I do want to finish the route all the way to the Pier in Santa Monica.
    #8
  9. TRZ Charlie

    TRZ Charlie That's MR. Asshole

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    Good stuff Mike. That bike sure is nice. Maybe I will get to see it soon.
    #9
  10. 65bmwr50

    65bmwr50 Been here awhile

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    Those pictures brought back memories. I did the environmental cleanup on that gas station probably 11 years ago. Started with drilling borings and wells to figure out where the contamination was, then we pulled out a several hundred yards of contaminated soil. I ran the skid steer that pushed all of the clean fill back in. The pumps you found in the garage were on the island when I was there, not operating, but there. It actually was an active repair shop. The old guy that ran the place was a hoot, IIRC. It's nice to see that they fixed the place up. Thanks for a great ride report.
    #10
  11. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    I had carved out about a week to be able to get as far West on the Route as I could. Headed back to Baxter Springs, KS where I had left off and headed for Oklahoma.
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    One of my stops was in Miami at Walan's Ku Ku Burgers joint. On the route it is famous for the giant Ku Ku Bird sticking it's head out of the building.
    Had a burger and a malt. Awesome.
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    While still in Miami I wanted to stop at the vintage motorcycle museum too.
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    This Yamaha really caught my eye. I had one like it and used to race flat track up in Nebraska many moons ago.
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    Remember Indian Larry?
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    Lots of very cool old bikes here and it's free.
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    As I left Miami I was on the hunt for the "Ribbon Road" or "Sidewalk Highway" , a 9' wide stretch of route 66 laid down in the 1920's. Someone came up with the idea of saving some money, after all there would never be more than two cars on the road at the same time!! Sure enough there it was.
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    Oklahoma turned out to be a fantastic trip back in time for the old road.
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    I pulled into Afton, Ok and the "Afton Station"
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    Was now the "Packard Museum" What a treat!
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    Ridding on down the highway the weather was cool but sunny skies and I was really enjoying the sites in Oklahoma. Here is Catoosa's Blue Whale
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    Leaving Tulsa now and a friend of mine had told me to be sure to stop by and look at what the city was doing to commemorate the old road. It was first class!
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    When I hit Sapulpa I had to find the historic Waite Phillips gas station. It was in great shape and very cool.
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    Oh Oh, looks like gas has gone up!! 22 cents!!
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    OK, we put a few more miles under the Beemer and had to stop in Stroud, OK at the "Rock Cafe" Home to "Sally Carrera" of the movie "Cars" Seems the owner of this little cafe was the inspiration for this car in the movies. Awesome place.
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    On down the road I stopped in Chandler, OK and wanted to see the Route 66 interpretive center but it was closed on Mondays...bummer.
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    So hit the road West and the next stop was going to be great. The vintage motorcycle museum called "Seba Station" in Warwick, Ok.
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    It proved to be one of the trips highlights!! Wow what a collection. I even saw the very first bike I ever purchased myself! A 1968 Yamaha DT-1 250cc two stroke! RESTORED......
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    I spent over two hours in this place. It was just the best.
    Flat Trackers all lined up!! I was starting to drool...
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    Hey Guzzi fans...this place is for you.
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    Any Speedway fans??!!
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    How about BSA Twin fans.
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    What a place. I have so many more pictures but if it is close enough it's worth a trip over there.
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    Next up the round barn and Pops. Ever seen 600 different flavors of pop? Well your about to!

    When you pass through Arcadia, Ok on route 66 you can't miss the Round Barn Built in 1898 it is very unique.
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    Saw this cool 57' while I was there too.
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    Also in Arcadia is Pop's Soda Ranch

    They have fuel and a nice restaurant inside too. I didn't stop but did get some good pictures. Just wish I could have seen it lit up after dark.
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    Want to give a big shout out to fellow ADV'r KLAY who sent me a picture of the Pop's bottle lit up! He said a tornado had just passed through that area so the sky
    still looks menacing. Thanks agin KLAY.
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    Well by now it was getting late in the day but I wanted to check out Lucille's Road House in Mulhall, Ok. and then find a room. Which I did and it was just great! First the historic original location.
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    A little farther down the road the new one and the restaurant was very good. Lucille's Road House

    Later gents I'm pooped.
    #11
  12. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    Awesome! You gotta deal my friend!:thumb
    #12
  13. OLEARY

    OLEARY Enlightened Voyager

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    Lots of good photos! Like you said, it was a trip down memory lane. Not that I am that old or would ever admit to it anyway. Kind of reminds me of the M&H and the station that you worked at although I can't remember what it was called. I too worked at a couple of gas stations back in the day. Pumping gas, fixing tires, changing oil. Great memories as a young lad making my way in the world. :norton
    #13
  14. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    Fantastic! Thanks for the history, you did good my man! Thank you.
    #14
  15. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    Count on it! After next week maybe we'll both feel good enough to make a pie run miss you too Charlie.:deal
    #15
  16. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    Haaa, yeah for sure Tim! I worked at a DX station and lived across from M&H. I love history rides this one is turning out to be a real blast.
    #16
  17. mdawg12

    mdawg12 Old and Slow

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    We are planning a Rt 66 trip next summer all the way to the west coast. I've got the Mad Map's route loaded in my GPS already. Would be great to get any notes or stops you find to add to our route. Getting me pumped with these pics. :clap
    #17
  18. ozarkrider

    ozarkrider Discombobulated Sociopath

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    I found the Seba Station by accident on Thanksgiving weekend. Spent over an hour in there taking pics and visiting with the fella behind the counter. So many great memory bikes in there. We'll have to compare pics sometime.

    Thanks for the RR. It's great.
    #18
  19. 10Cup

    10Cup Long timer

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    Absolutely! Would be glad to share any information. I did a lot of research before I left too. Glad to help.

    Thanks O'Jay! Hope you're feeling bright eyed and bushy tailed:D
    Seba Station was a highlight for me too. Nice guy that was behind the counter like you say. Amazing that it is free as well. I had to buy some stickers and left a donation to help them out a little.
    #19
  20. oldtrucks

    oldtrucks Been here awhile

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    Great pictures!

    With so much to see and experience how many miles are you covering each day?
    #20