Bagdad Cafe

With just three full days left the plan was going to be Ludlow > Barstow > Pasadena > Santa Monica, but we figured if we barrelled on through to Pasadena we could spend two nights in Santa Monica and have a rest before we fly back.  That was the plan.

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We drove through Newberry Springs home of the Bagdad Café.  Wikipedia: "The film was shot at what was then the Sidewinder Cafe in Newberry Springs, California, 50 miles west of the original site of Bagdad on old U.S. 66. Since then, the café has become something of a tourist destination and to capitalize on the movie it changed its name to the Bagdad Café. A small notice board on the café wall features snapshots of the film's cast and crew.

Through Daggett to Yermo, home of Peggy Sue's 50's diner where we'd had lunch a few years back.  The place was chocker so we walked round the gift shop then drove a few miles towards Calico to get some photos of Ghost Road.

Into Barstow and out again, then Helendale to see a giant parrot (not actually that big) and into Owo Grande with it's HUGE Portland Cement factory and on to Victorville where Emma Jean's is home to the 'Brian Burger'.  Well, I had to and it was a moderately nice burger (pepper - not hot, sourdough bread, etc.) and a portion far too big for me.

We decided we'd driven enough for the day at checked in to at an Econolodge give us about ninety minutes to drive to the end of Route 66 in the morning.

 

Pushing West

The push to get into the eighth and final state and our third timezone.

Our "bible" the EZ66 Guide said we could take the '66 through the mountains.  There were enough switchbacks that lorries were banned, but steep drops and no barriers - what could go wrong?

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On the other side of the drive is Oatman.  A fun (though very touristy town).  Donkeys roamed the one street.  There was a gunfight at midday (never wolf down a burger to go to a gunfight - awful stomach ache).

On through a town called Golden Shores with its small squat buildings.  Seemed liked a poor area, but quite a few people seemed to have boats.  As we drove out we came across a nice big lake and the boats made more sense.

On to Topock which was on the border between Arizona and California.  A cold drink and a sit down and watch the trains going back and forwards across the big iron bridge.

Then - into our last state and checked into the River Valley Motel (the cheapest motel of the trip, but nice).

We couldn't find any motels for tomorrow's stretch so we'll have to wing it.  We'll hit the 3,000 mile mark at some point in the morning.  So, 500+ extra miles so far.