The 'Loan Ranger', and 2019 Ranger Adventure


Jim Oaks

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Day #17 - Saturday June 18th, 2019 (Continued) - Route 66:

Not really sure which way to go next, I decided that I would follow the old Route 66 back to Texas. I had plans to visit other places on my way back, but I had become concerned about how much money I had spent on gas, as well as a few nights I ended up spending in a hotel.

I headed from Mojave to Barstow, and picked up the 'National Trails Highway' which is the old Route 66. Today, Route 66 has been replaces from here to Texas by Interstate 40.

Route 66 actually dates back to 1926. The beginning of the decline came in 1956 with the signing of the Interstate Highway Act by President Dwight D. Eisenhower. As years followed, sections of Route 66 found themselves decommissioned as they were replaced by sections of interstate. In 1984, Arizona saw its final stretch of highway decommissioned with the completion of Interstate 40 just north of Williams, Arizona. Finally, with decertification of the highway by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials the following year, US 66 (Route 66) officially ceased to exist after 1985.

Today, so sections of the road are completely gone. Buried under dirt and brush in remote areas. Other sections have become state or county roads.

It would not be possible for me to drive the entire length of Route 66 back to Texas, but there's a lot of it there if you know where to look.

The good thing is that some areas and businesses have really embraced the history of Route 66, and are trying to preserve it's history.

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Leaving Bartow, Route 66 runs right through Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow. This base rebuilds and repairs ground-combat and combat-support equipment. Oddly enough, the base was built over Route 66 in the 40's. Needless to say, I had to bypass around it.
From California to Tucumcari New Mexico, Route 66 follows closely to the Sante Fe Railroad (Now BNSF) (BNSF was created Sept. 22, 1995, from the merger of Burlington Northern, Inc. (parent company of Burlington Northern Railroad) and Santa Fe Pacific Corporation).

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The train was hauling military vehicles, and I wondered if they were on their way to the Marine Corp base in Barstow.

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A lot of areas embrace the historical significance of Route 66, and you can find the roads marked with these historical signs. Some even have the Route 66 sign painted right on the road, like shown in the first photo above.

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The day ended with me getting a burger from Denny's, and sleeping in the parking lot of the Loves Travel Stop in Kingman, Arizona.
 
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that looked like an awesome trip. thanks for the pics and videos... Now to get enough money to retire and do this.

I would love to do a partial continental divide trip in a few years, keep us posted on that as details work out.

AJ
 

Jim Oaks

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Today is a sad birthday. It marks the exact date in 1985 when Historic 66 was formally decommissioned.

Here's an interesting page:

 

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Day #18 - Sunday June 19th, 2019 - Route 66:

When I woke up this morning, I took a drive through Kingman Arizona looking for some photo opportunities. This city is very passionate about it's Route 66 history. I saw several murals, as well a lot of vintage signs. Lot's of neon as well. The Trovatore Motel has the entire front of the building painted as a map of Route 66, and claims to be the largest Route 66 map in the world. I didn't get a photo. :confused:

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This was a great spot to take a few photos of the 2019 Ford Ranger

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I enjoy finding the original alignments of Route 66. In the photo below, you can see that I'm on the 'original' section of Route 66. It was later realigned just to the right. Likely widened when it was cut though the hill. The BNSF (Sante Fe) rilroad is to the left.

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Here's another visible section of the original alignment of Route 66 next to it's last alignment.

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This are was interesting. The bridge was replaced with a wider bridge right next to it (left). The bridge crosses the BNSF (Sante Fe) railroad tracks.

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Standing several yards before the old bridge, and looking at the landscape, you can see the various alignments Route 66 had here.

The 1st alignment crossed the tracks. The later alignment was graded up to cross the tracks on the narrow bridge. The last alignment is actually the second to last. The road was moved, but crossed the original bridge. The original bridge was replaced by the wider bridge next to it. Which means Route 66 was aligned (4) different times in this spot!

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Williams Arizona was the last section of Route 66 to get decommissioned back in 1984. Someone took this old gas station, and turned it in to a really nice gift shop.

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Williams Arizona calls itself the gateway to the Grand Canyon, which may seem weird considering they're an hour from the Grand Canyon, and it's a 4-hour drive from here to the north rim. But this is where the Grand Canyon Railroad is, so I see their logic.

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Jim Oaks

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Day #17 - Sunday June 19th, 2019 - Route 66 (Continued):

I could see this fire a long way before I ever got to Williams Arizona. It's a huge forest fire in the Coconino National Forest.

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I continued east and made a stop in Two Gun's Arizona. This area is also known for an Indian death cave that the town was later built around.

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This town once had a gas station, motel, camp ground, and even a zoo. It was apparently a hot spot for people to stop when they were traveling Route 66 many years ago.

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Winslow was just another town along the route, until I passed this building. I'm an Eagles fan, but the lyrics "Standing on a corner in Winslow Arizona, such a fine sight to see.." never even entered my mind until I saw this building. I didn't see any girls in a flatbed Ford slowing down to take a look at me.

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Just another old abandoned gas station.

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I've always wanted one of these 1970's style gas pumps. I guess because that's what I grew up with when I was younger. Someday. :unsure:

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I checked out the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook Arizona. This was actually a chain of seven motels from the 1930's & 40's. Only three still exist, this one, and two in California. All three are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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There wasn't much to see in New Mexico.I did end up crossing the Continental Divide for the 4th time this spring. :oops:

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My day would end sleeping in another Loves Travel Stop in Santa Rosa, NM. I had already explored the Route 66 spots between here and Amarillo TX, So I decided to follow US 84 from here back to Texas in the morning.

This would conclude this part of the 2019 Ranger Adventure.

Travelling Route 66 has me wanting to explore the rest of it between Texas and Chicago, Illinois. I'm just not sure if I'll be doing it in the Expedition, or this Ranger.

I still have to do the Trans America Trail from Oklahoma to Tennessee. It should be a walk in the park after the sections I did out west.

I also need to make a trip back east to get TRS-2 ready for the 20th Anniversary Trail Ride.

Maybe I can finish the Trans America Trail on my way east, and hit the rest of Route 66 on my way back to Texas. :D(y)
 

ericbphoto

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Winslow isn’t the first place you visited that I recognized from songs. I believe Tucumcary is another. Your thread here is making me want to do a lot of traveling. Once things settle down after my separation from my wife is official, I plan on becoming more mobile again. Thank you for documenting your adventures so Well. Please keep it up.
 

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Your thread here is making me want to do a lot of traveling. Once things settle down after my separation from my wife is official, I plan on becoming more mobile again.
My ex and I were divorced in November 2016, and within a day or two after that, I moved to Texas. In July of 2017, I took an epic 22 day roadtrip. Just me an the dog. It was the first time I had ever taken a trip by myself. Great therapy.
 

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After 3,880 miles exploring the Trans America Trail, 1,861 miles which were spent off pavement in everything from rocks, sand, mud, and snow, these Cooper Discoverer STT PRO's have earned their right to shine :D(y)

CLICK HERE to learn more about these tires.


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This was an awesome trip report Jim. It's nice to see the ol' '19 Ranger up to the task.
I thought maybe you might hit me up while approaching Mojave when you had asked me where I was relative to there... Good to see you had a great time though, and thanks for sharing all those great photos.

This and Continental Divide are ones I've wanted to do for awhile. Getting the time (and friends together) to do it always seems to be my issue for trips like this. I'll be keeping an eye on your other thread as time gets nearer.
 

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This was an awesome trip report Jim. It's nice to see the ol' '19 Ranger up to the task.
I thought maybe you might hit me up while approaching Mojave when you had asked me where I was relative to there... Good to see you had a great time though, and thanks for sharing all those great photos.

This and Continental Divide are ones I've wanted to do for awhile. Getting the time (and friends together) to do it always seems to be my issue for trips like this. I'll be keeping an eye on your other thread as time gets nearer.
Poor planning on my part. The day I headed to Mojave I looked and realized we didn't exchange numbers in the Mojave PM I sent you, and your contact info wasn't in the staff forum.

Hopefully you'll be able to make it for the Continental Divide. :)(y)
 

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I have gone through and posted in cab videos for each days trip on the matching post.

NOTE: I've screwed up the "days" in the videos. The days and dates are correct, but I added a 'correction' message in some of the videos when I said what day number it was on the trip. Sometimes I was wrong, sometimes I was right. It's best to just go by the actual date. I started on June 3rd, and got to the west coast on June 15th.

Here they are all together:













 
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Oops, I guess that was part my fault also then.

No sweat Jim, I'll be looking forward to the CD trip. :cool:
 

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Glad to see they got you into a new Ranger Jim...I believe TRS is the largest reason the Ranger is back in the US, and probably why the Bronco is coming back too. Too bad that Ranger isn't permanently yours though, I'd love to see what you could do with it if it were your truck.

So, you've taken it offroad obviously so how's the 4WD system in it? It is a multi-terrain select type system if I am not mistaken, how's it working, does it work? Any overrides to just put it in 4WD part time like the old 4WD systems?
 


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