Posted by: TomA | 11 May 2007

Day 11 – Route 66 through Nevada, Arizona & California

The drive from Vegas to Twentynine Palms (in Joshua Tree National Park) took us through three states and two time zones, as well as a significant change in scenery from the glittery lights to the barren desert and strange Wild West towns…

Avoiding the far more direct interstate route (which would have missed Arizona altogether), the back roads and Route 66 beckoned. The road itself was a touch scary in places. It’s described as historic, which essentially means the road surface is a bit crumbly, with two lanes of tarmac and then hard shoulders of dirt tracks, which dive off into the desert every now and then.

Some of it was real 10mph stuff, through tight and twisty mountain passes, with rather large drops and nothing between the edge of the road and a significant plummet.

What is really nice about driving here is the quietness. Two hours spent driving at 70 through the desert and you may only see half a dozen cars coming the other way and a highway patrol car stopped at a lonely cafe for a snack. I’ve still not got totally used to American cars. They’re fine for the 30 miles of dead straight road, but roll quite a bit through any sort of corner…

We came across a strange old town, Oatman in the Arizona desert. Very much a Wild West town, with wooden saloons and burros roaming the streets, somewhat offset by the snotty American tourists wandering the streets.


  1. So glad you posted this town. I forgot what the name of it was.
    But, I must ask…are all american tourists snotty? Was that necessary really? Oh well. The world hates us and I guess that is a fact that I will have to embrace. Too bad. It makes the world so much sadder. We will be returning to Oatman snot and all. Thanks for taking the time to post the pictures it made it easy to recognize. Happy traveling to you!

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