Highway 66 (Route 66) – called “the mother of American roads.” His appearance seriously affected the development of the economic and social life of the United States. Asphalt tape length of 4 thousand kilometers connected Chicago and Los Angeles, in fact linking different ends of the country. The American people went to unification in various ways. This road became one of them.
History of appearance
The year of birth of the highway is 1926th. The country was developing production, cars could afford more people. Not least thanks to Henry Ford, who put the production of cars on stream.
Americans needed excellent roads, they wanted to just travel or look for a better share in other cities. Work on Highway 66 continued for more than 10 years before a more or less usable asphalt belt appeared.
The development of the highway was affected by the Great Depression. In search of work, the Americans were ready to travel all over the country. Many believed that happiness – in California. It was there that the poor sought to earn at least a couple of dollars. They rode along the 66th road in despair, but also with hope. For Americans, Highway 66 actually became the road of life.
After the Second World War, the 66th decided to abandon. President Eisenhower decided to improve American roads, bring them to the German model, make them high-speed, with several lanes. Route 66 destroyed the law on the construction of federal highways. The highway was gradually empty, and soon everything stopped here.
However, the highway survived due to the efforts of residents of cities located near the highway. Many of them considered the new law a betrayal of the 66th, which did so much for the Americans. The highway, not fitting into the modern life of the country, has become a historical route. In some places the 66th is an auxiliary road, according to which it is best to get to some town. Places – abandoned areas where everything is running and overgrown with weeds. But the main sections of Route 66 have been preserved, and cars and motorcycles are rushing through them every day with tourists who are exploring the history of the country in an exciting way.
Highway Cities 66
Highway 66 – is, above all, the fate of thousands of Americans who did not change their place of residence and stayed in small towns along this highway. Each such city has its own association and produces souvenirs with the symbols of Route 66. Residents like to organize various events, parties, dances, concerts.
These towns are living monuments of America of the 50-60s. Surely, many tourists are surprised to see such settlements on Highway 66. Like, how can people live in such a wilderness? Here the atmosphere is preserved, which today can be seen only in the cinema. One- and two-story buildings, small cafes, shops. Dogs and donkeys roam the streets calmly.
Donkeys, by the way, sometimes go out onto the highway, which is why drivers are constantly nervous.
These cities live mainly at the expense of tourists. Highway 66 is a good bait for travelers from different countries. Here, every object of everyday life is tried to turn into a souvenir – from an ordinary can opener to a refrigerator. Something like this way of life reminds resort towns, which are getting richer in the high season.
Hotels on Highway 66
Perhaps, in his Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov described these hotels. Hotels built 50-60 years, continue to receive guests. They themselves are reminiscent of artifacts that were miraculously preserved in times of luxury five-star apartments.
And motels that have preserved the atmosphere of the 40-ies of the last century, get a good profit. Prices here are small – you can stay overnight for 30-50 USD. The prices on the page are indicated in June 2016.
In the morning guests receive a classic American breakfast, so high-calorie, that the forces will suffice to dominate right away to Los Angeles. During the trip, it is really worth staying in one of these motels, to further appreciate the spirit of old America.
Cafe Highway 66
Roadside cafes in the US – this is a separate song. Such institutions appear in almost every American film where a hero travels the country and on the way seduces beauties. Bar stand, jukebox, fresh coffee and pancakes with wedge syrup – classics of the genre.
Highway 66 can be called gastronomic, because in every small cafe you can discover for yourself some amazing dish. It can be chili potatoes, large pieces of pies with meat and fish, creamy treats, custard pastries, fried chicken. Finally, an ordinary hamburger can taste different in every institution. Not to mention steaks, recipes for cooking which dozens.
Highway 66 will not give the traveler any food. However, tourists sometimes tormented by the question: how to continue driving with a full belly?
Highway 66 Attractions
Enterprising residents of small towns that are located along the highway, try to make money on anything. Tourists themselves are happy to spread on the dollar for trinkets, just to bring home a reminder of the great journey. Therefore, almost every village you can find the Museum Route 66. Soda, books, photographs, car plates, icons, canisters and even jukeboxes – everything is sold. Do not be surprised if an elderly man tells you about a meeting with Paul McCartney and will try to sell you his autograph. Sir Paul traveled on Highway 66, it’s a fact. But not the fact that he signed on a scrap of paper of this venerable man.
One of the attractions of the highway is the old gas station in 1926. It became almost a Mecca for motorists. The Soulsby’s Shell petrol station is located in Mount Olive, Illinois. Of course, she saw a lot in her time and did not even guess that it would become a place of pilgrimage for tourists.
And this attraction does not require worship. True, not every traveler notices it. It’s about the local nature. The landscape on highway 66 is amazing. Mountains, forests, deserts constantly replace each other. Some sites remain untouched since the 30s of last century. Since the construction of the road began. Sometimes you want to take a closer look at each rock or wander through the forest, but in that case the journey through the 66th will take not a week, but will stretch for months.
But in the caves of the Grand Canyon, which are located near the road, you must certainly visit. These are the largest dry underground caves in the United States. They say that the government wanted to use them in case of a nuclear war. Therefore, food supplies can be found here. Here, archaeologists found the remains of ancient animals, very much like saber-toothed tigers.
And one more feature of caves – if you switch off the light under the ground, you can end up in perfect darkness. At these moments, absolutely nothing is visible, no outlines. One hundred percent black, which simply absorbs people.