ROUTE 66 in 11 Days…
now this is a road trip.....
Flew in from Miami Beach B.O.A.C – no, actually flew Norse Atlantic to JFK, Delta to Cleveland, Ohio, and took delivery at Blue Line Classics of this beautiful 1992 C4 Corvette. This Vette had only done 10,825 miles from new! Nice people at Blue Line Classics. First drive to Chicago, and then used the brilliant Route 66 app for navigation along historic Route 66, on to St. Louis, stopping of course to visit so many interesting sites on the Mother Road. Thru Missouri and onto Baxter Springs Kansas, a sleepy run down mid-west town.
After 1000 miles I treated the Vette to a car wash, it is nice to drive a clean car, and the Vette is nice to drive clean. Route 66 thru Oklahoma provided some great country roads. Near Tulsa I spotted the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. They had a Route 66 Diner inside, of course they did. Nice breakfast. My next hotel was in Bricktown, Oklahoma City. Dinner was at the famous Cattlemen’s Grill, which was a little disappointing and I had dressed up for the occasion in my new boots and Stetson! But at least the steak was great.
Day 4 on the road with 1250 miles run. I headed west, with a planned detour to The Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, Las Vegas and Palm Springs. Texas came first, it is big, flat, hot and windy. A typical train hauling grain is like 2 miles long! Overnight in Amarillo and a visit to The Cadillac Ranch. With almost 1600 miles driven now, it will be a long 380 miles the next day to Albuquerque New Mexico.
It was. In Santa Rosa the Route 66 Car Museum was well worth the $5 entry fee. On the Santa Fe Trail the scenery was spectacular. The following day I headed out for Flagstaff Arizona, the scenery leaving Albuquerque was awesome – a long straight road, mountains to the left and to the right, Mr. Blue Sky up above and glorious sunshine. The Vette requested an oil change at 2050 miles and the Delta Tyre Complete Auto Service did it in just 30 minutes. Before Flagstaff I stopped at the famous ‘’Standin’ on a Corner Park’’ in Winslow Arizona and, just like the Eagles song, stopped right there was a flat-bed Ford!
Arriving at Flagstaff I had now covered 2306 miles, the car is good and had averaged 28 mpg. Not bad really for a 5.7 litre V8. Flagstaff is a Railway Town, and if you have not seen a train in the States, you have not seen a train….
It’s 60 miles from Flagstaff to The Grand Canyon, the clue is in the name – it is amazingly Grand, 277 miles long, 18 miles wide, 1 mile deep. How many millions of years did it take for the Colorado River to carve that out? Next onto Monument Valley, more awesome scenery and a Jeep Tour courtesy of a Navajo Indian Guide. Thru Utah and its amazing rock formations I picked up the I115 West to Vegas and finally cruised onto the strip. As I checked in at the Mandalay Bay Hotel I was offered VIP parking right outside the hotel for $80 for the night. I had just had the Vette washed again, so I took it.
Las Vegas is a sight to see. They say what goes on in Vegas, stays in Vegas. I didn’t. I left early in the morning for Palm Springs to meet up with a friend for lunch. At 7.15 am the next morning Palm Springs had blue skies, sunshine, and it was already 24c. It was going to be hot one.
The speedometer was now reading 14,200 miles, so with 3,400 miles done I was approaching Santa Monica and the finish of Route 66. I parked on the pier. Yes, ON the pier. (Only in the States). The shipping agent was located in Compton a 40 minute drive, handing the car over was a breeze.
I flew back to the UK. I had covered 3,500 miles in a great car, on a great road trip, in a great country.
P.S. The worst traffic I had was on the M25. Welcome back to the congested South. The Vette arrived after a few weeks in good shape. It has been washed, polished and looks great.
It is brim full of memories.