Leaving Las Vegas

……..with a sense of relief. It’s not really my kind of town. We were on the road fairly early and were on I-15 down as far as Barstow as it has replaced R66. We had two more iconic American road experiences: a dust storm (which made me think of all those folks in the 30s who drove along this road to escape the dust bowl) and tumbleweed blowing across the road. I used to do a clinic in Lochgelly, Fife in the late 1980s and it was so deserted on a midweek afternoon, I could imagine the tumbleweed blowing across the street. We were now in the Mojave Desert and Joshua Trees have replaced the sunflowers. South of Barstow (no obvious coffee stops), the old highway loops away from the interstate and passed the work of another R66 eccentric: The Bottle Tree Ranch (see photos). There were some French bikers there at the same time as us but otherwise, the road was very quiet. Shortly afterwards we found a mini market that sold coffee and had a pit stop. We passed the huge cement works at Oro Grande but then had to rejoin I-15 to go over Cajon Summit (4190 feet) . Just past the summit we spotted a park that would do for our picnic lunch before we hit the Greater LA freeways. It was a lovely quiet spot away from traffic. I had worked out a route through LA that would be fairly easy to follow and allow us to drive down Santa Monica Boulevard which is the last few miles of R66. We have finally made it!

Bottle Tree Ranch 1Bottle Tree Ranch 3Bottle Tree Ranch 6Bottle Tree Ranch 4Image

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