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Route 66 nostalgia

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by narducci, Feb 6, 2008.

  1. narducci
    Joined: Jan 3, 2008
    Posts: 194

    narducci
    Member

    I wonder how many old timers remember traveling 66 back in the mid 60's. I made the round trip from NJ to California 3 times between 1966 and 1969. We picked up 66 in St Louis and it went all the way into CA. Made the trip once in an Austin Healy, a 59 Olds and the last time in my 57 chevy ( wish I had that one back)
    Interstates were just getting started with about 10 miles built around the big cities. Towns 50-100 miles apart and God help you if you broke down.
    Gas was 21 cents a gallon and you got to stop and see the meteor crater, I think it was near Gallup, NM.
    I've got hundreds of great memories about those trips, and a few not so great, but Im glad I got to do it.
     
  2. BoneHeadcustomZ
    Joined: Oct 3, 2006
    Posts: 56

    BoneHeadcustomZ
    Member

    Traveled it when I was much younger. Car overheated, but it was a good trip.
     
  3. I'm hoping this thread takes off.
    I have only happend across 66 on other trips.
    I'm looking to take the family on an East end 66 trip this summer.
    Just to go on 66, you know, wander a bit. I will probably bend north to Lincoln, NE just this side of Oklahoma.
    Who has some experiences and advice?
     
  4. It would be great if our old cars were time machines and we could go back and experience the 30's, 40's, 50's and 60's. Just remembering what it was like before the interstate highways is a trip for me. Two lane highways clogged with traffic with lots of slow trucks and very few safe places to pass is what I probably remember the most. I'd still love to see it again.
     

  5. narducci
    Joined: Jan 3, 2008
    Posts: 194

    narducci
    Member

    And when a White Freightliner went by the other way it damn near blew you off the road, windows open, 110 in the shade, who had A/C back then!
    Its amazing I can still hear after driving that many miles at 60 with the windows down
     
  6. Lots of good sections left with a lot to see. Especially from the Missouri border west through Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. Try for late Spring, early summer if you don't have A/C. It can get pretty hot out there. We did the old section of 66 in the Roadster coming back from the LA Roadster Show a few years ago from Needles, CA (112 degrees in the shade), through Oatman, AZ to Ashfork, AZ. Neat trip but hotter than HELL!
     

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  7. Magnus
    Joined: Apr 30, 2006
    Posts: 904

    Magnus
    Member
    from Sweden

    Check out this thread. Loved the trip.
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=167995&highlight=Klaus
     
  8. dbradley
    Joined: Jan 6, 2007
    Posts: 1,036

    dbradley
    Member

    Drive it every day into town for lunch :D Live 2 miles off of the "mother road".
     
  9. Mazooma1
    Joined: Jun 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,598

    Mazooma1
    Member

    I still drive the portion of it in Monrovia and Arcadia, Cali everyday.

    I had a Model A panel with a SBC/4-speed in June of 1967 and worked at a gas station in Arcadia and this guy came in in a steel '27 T Bucket, small chopped bed, Olds with six Stromberg, Hydro, no top, no hood, sheet metal floor, no nothing (as God intended it). We'd talk cars every time he came in and one day said, "Hey, I have to go visit my uncle in St. Louis, wanna go with me?" I was 16 and he was 19. My parents gave me a gas credit card and $100 and said..."Have a good time".
    A week later we dragged into St. Louis. Broke, tired, sunburned and having a blast. I'll post the photos of the trip when my scanner arrives.
    We took Route 66 all the way. Man, I've got some stories. Flat tires, overheated in the Mojave Desert, coil went out, carbs gave us fits, rained all through Texas, cops hassled us, one cop in New Mexico pulled us over and invited us to come over that night to have dinner with him and the wifey and to see his '40 Ford he was working on. We did. Great evening.
    Through Arizona and New Mexico we drove mostly at night because of the heat. We drove with the headers open to try to save gas (?). I'll never forget everytime we'd slow down the headers would shoot flames out of the collectors.
    I could go on and on about the trip, but won't bore you.
    Every 16 year old should have an experiance like that.:D

    4 months later, the Early Times and I drove our cars to a car show in Eugene, Oregon, some 1700 miles round trip.
    Been using and abusing my cars ever since...
     
  10. kenny g
    Joined: Oct 29, 2007
    Posts: 172

    kenny g
    Member

    Drove from cleveland to L A. in 1962.
    Almost got drowned in ST Louis.
    It rains heavy there.In a58 pontiac.
    I had a great trip, I think ..? it was
    a long time ago.
     
  11. John B
    Joined: Mar 9, 2001
    Posts: 1,360

    John B
    Member

    I hope that you do post those pictures soon. I'd almost buy you a scanner, just to get to see them.



     
  12. atomickustom
    Joined: Aug 30, 2005
    Posts: 3,402

    atomickustom
    Member

    I drove from Joplin to Oklahoma City on 66 last year in my '53 Chevy, but I know as well as you guys do that it just isn't the same. Saw a lot of cows, though.
     
  13. narducci
    Joined: Jan 3, 2008
    Posts: 194

    narducci
    Member

    On one trip from NJ heading West, we heard a thump . Thought it was just something I drove over, everthing seemed OK, so I never stopped. About 50 miles down the road, Time for a leak, I pulled over and took care of buisness. We get back in the car, turn the key..nothing, gauges work, radio works. So we start looking. Its a long story , anyway, 15-20 minutes go by and I finally look at the starter connections.. No starter, it fell out, that was the thump.
    Push start the car and when I get to CA, I check on a starter, seems they want about 1/4 th of what I paid for the car to begin with.
    Anyway I drive the car for another year and a half without a starter. Works fine when you are 18, I wouldnt want to do it now!
     
  14. Mr T body
    Joined: Nov 2, 2005
    Posts: 2,189

    Mr T body
    Alliance Vendor
    from SoCal

    We drive a section between Barstow and Needles, CA regularly. Stopped in Amboy last weekend, and slowly but surely the new owner is making good on his promise of renovating the town. Picked up some cool t-shirts to help the cause.... it's going to cost the new owner of Amboy, Albert Okura (owns Juan Pollo) a pretty penny to do it. The caretaker said they were to begin normal gas sales at the gas station on Monday 2/4 after who knows HOW many years. Looked around inside Roy's and there's progress being made there, too. It'd make a great destination for a rod run in the Spring..... TONS of room, in a place with TONS of history.
     
  15. narducci
    Joined: Jan 3, 2008
    Posts: 194

    narducci
    Member

    I remember pulling into Needles in 1966 that first time. I had been dreaming of California (sounds like a good name for a song, doesn't it)most of my teen life and wanted to go. I grew up in Jersey and lusted after everything about CA.
    I thought it was a goofy name for a town but we were finally in California
    "more to come"
     
  16. Mr T body
    Joined: Nov 2, 2005
    Posts: 2,189

    Mr T body
    Alliance Vendor
    from SoCal

    I took this a couple years ago on Route 66 outside of Amboy. One of my favorites.
     

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  17. Bore us??????? How can we possible get bored with stories like that. Have a few myself from our "66" tour last year :) Best trip of my life!

    Klaus
     
  18. ZomBrian
    Joined: Jan 24, 2008
    Posts: 1,143

    ZomBrian
    Member
    from in IN

    Went to Las Vegas a couple years ago with my dad and brother. Stopped to spend the night at The Big Texan, and in the morning it was the Caddilac Ranch! While we were admiring, a tour bus of people had showed up. Everyone got off, walked all the way to the cars, and said, "This is it?" Did they expect the Grand Canyon? Could they not tell it was "just" cars in the ground from the road? They all took off real quick saying, "It only cars, there isn't anything else!" to everyone that hadn't approached and turned them around. I LOVED IT! Hope everyone travels this stretch of road that we are soo lucky to have today.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    :D:D:D
     
  19. rstanberry
    Joined: Dec 22, 2007
    Posts: 202

    rstanberry
    Member
    from terrell tx

    Remember getting on rt 66 in Oklahoma (I think)driving a 63 vette. This must have been about 1965-66. The road was so rough it was beating the hell out of me and the car. Passed a sign that said "travel rt-66 coast to coast". No thanks. I love the nostalgia of the mother road but thank God for Dwight Eisenhower and the interstate system.
     
  20. 41woodie
    Joined: Mar 3, 2004
    Posts: 1,095

    41woodie
    Member

    My first trip across 66 was from eastern Oklahoma to southern Cal. Did it in a '54 Hudson Hornet Twin-H. Those old things had huge radiators and never overheated, but boy we sure did.
     
  21. oktr6r
    Joined: Feb 14, 2006
    Posts: 724

    oktr6r
    Member
    from Tulsa

    I'm about 3 blocks from it myself, in west Tulsa. Drive part of it on the way to work every day.
     
  22. It was a very different world we lived in when I traveled 66 -'59 through '63 - from MO to CA. I think it was a 34 hour drive in a '54 Chevy.
    So many unique towns to visit along the way, but I always thought the best cars were in LA.
     
  23. ray
    Joined: Jun 25, 2001
    Posts: 3,766

    ray
    Member
    from colorado

    there's lots of nothing now! we covered the stretch from OK city to the cadillac ranch on our way back from salina this summer. a few pics, we're terrible at taking pics, none of the SEVERAL times i drove through a foot or more of standing water on some of the whoopdedoo stretches while it was raining. it was a rough trip at times, i had just chopped the car literally the week before the trip, so i just had lexan windows, no wipers, no defroster, no proper side windows.

    yup, hard to see, this was the light rain!:D
    [​IMG]

    lucilles:
    [​IMG]

    abandoned stretch of road. along here we chatted with a guy in a honda civic who was driving the whole road, he does it every few years or so.
    [​IMG]

    announcing my presence in texas via a low-altitude throttle check. coming from the high country, we find a lot of lost power when you hit the low altitudes. at least that's my official excuse.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    slummin it, texas' low rent version of the cadillac ranch.
    [​IMG]

    made for some photo ops though:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    of course:
    [​IMG]

    original paint, low miles! oddly, the paint is soft and pliable in the texas sun, we couldn't resist taking a chunk for a shadowbox display, after the 1/2" thick paint chip sat indoors for a few weeks it dried up and broke apart.
    [​IMG]
     
  24. Trucked Up
    Joined: Nov 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,580

    Trucked Up
    Member

    Hey Narducci not trying to hi-jack your post but I've seen these type of threads for the last few years and I keep saying someday I'm gonna.

    Well someday is now. Just need some advice from the educated 66ers for the non-educated 66 want a be.

    Where can I get the most current info/maps? Dos/don'ts and must see places.............etc.:confused:
     
  25. metalman
    Joined: Dec 30, 2006
    Posts: 3,280

    metalman
    Member

    Funny, I remember getting to Needles in 1964. I was 8, the family was taking a California vacation. After a long, hot days drive from Albuquerque I was thrilled to finally cross the Colorodo river and get to Cali. We spent the night in Needles, I remember being dissapointed, California wasn't quite what I pictured it would be like. Got better the next day when we got to LA and the beaches thou. Made the drive myself the first time in 77 for my honeymoon, still 66 most the way, lot more fun on that trip.
     
  26. narducci
    Joined: Jan 3, 2008
    Posts: 194

    narducci
    Member

    To Truckedup - The last time I was on 66 was almost 40 years ago, I doubt anything I could tell you is still valid !

    To Metalman - Needles could have been a grease spot on the road, it was just an emotional thing, finally being on California soil I guess. I still remember the day, dont remember much about Needles though .
     
  27. Mazooma1
    Joined: Jun 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,598

    Mazooma1
    Member

    www.historic66.com

    many, many more on Google...
    Good Luck....the time IS now.
     
  28. truckdog62563
    Joined: Dec 18, 2007
    Posts: 65

    truckdog62563
    Member

    New Mexico has 66 marked really well. One of my favorite spots is Moriarty. I recommend the El Commador restaurant.

    One of the facts of Historic 66 is the commercialism that's springing up. I drove Illinois to Tuscan and back a year or so ago on US 54, US 56, and US 60. Great road without the hype.
     
  29. osf.666
    Joined: Oct 25, 2007
    Posts: 16

    osf.666
    Member
    from H806 Texas

    Hell I live two blocks off 66,in town(amarillo tx) Im on it daily,lots of cool stuff to do.
     
  30. Wild Turkey
    Joined: Oct 17, 2005
    Posts: 902

    Wild Turkey
    Member

    Grew up just east of Amarillo just as the Interstates were coming to town.

    Big Texan made the move to I-40 and is well worth a visit (free 72oz steak dinner if you can it ALL in 1 hour!):eek: but the prarie dog town didn't survive.:rolleyes:

    Couple of neat vintage parts collections were around there but I understand they've been "cleaned up".:mad:
     

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