October 23-24, 2013
MORE THAN 50 SENIORS BOARDED A BUS AND HEADED EAST ON ROUTE 66. AFTER TRAVELING THROUGH THE CAJON PASS, THE FOG DISAPPEARED AND WE EMERGED INTO THE WARM DESERT UNDER BLUE SKIES. OUR FIRST STOP: THE MOJAVE RIVER VALLEY MUSEUM IN BARSTOW
TIME FOR LUNCH, WE HEADED FOR THE MOVIE-FAMOUS BAGDAD CAFE, GREETED BY OWNER ANDREE PRUETT. WE WERE PRETTY COZY IN THAT ROOM BUT REVELED IN THE AMBIENCE OF THE OLD MOTHER ROAD
HARD TO SEE, BUT MOST EVERYONE WAS ABLE TO PICK OUT HUELL HOWSER’S HOUSE OUTSIDE NEWBERRY SPRINGS WHERE IT SITS LIKE A WHITEHEAD ON A BLACK CINDER CONE. WE MADE A STOP IN AMBOY AT ROYS WHERE EVERYONE TOOK SHOTS OF PROBABLY ONE OF THE MOST PHOTOGRAPHED SIGNS ALONG THE ROAD.
THE ROUTE 66 TOWN OF GOFFS IS NOW HOME TO THE MOJAVE DESERT HERITAGE AND CULTURAL ASSOCIATION. THE GOFFS POPULATION IS NOW ELEVEN. THERE WAS MUCH TO SEE! WE WERE GREETED BY HUGH BROWN WHO TALKED ABOUT THE AREA’S HISTORY.
The 1914 Goffs School House (above) was almost a goner when Dennis Casebier and his group, then known as Friends of the Old Mojave Road, restored it to its former glory. It now serves as the Goffs Museum. The seniors pose with an old cannon that was brought in to Goffs from a desert mine. .Above, Alan tells John West about the working two-stamp mill.
After a night’s stay at the Avi Hotel in Laughlin, we crossed the Colorado River and took the dusty road to the Route 66 town of Oatman. Once a thriving gold mining town, it is now a block of shops, eateries, wandering burros, and scheduled “shoot outs.”
WELL, TIME TO HEAD HOME. WE TOOK A RIDE THROUGH NEEDLES TO SEE THE EL GARCES DEPOT AND MADE IT TO LUDLOW FOR LUNCH AT THE CAFE. HOMEWARD BOUND, OUR LAST STOP WAS THE VICTORVILLE ROUTE 66 MUSEUM. THE VOLUNTEER STAFF THERE WAS KIND ENOUGH TO STAY AFTER HOURS TO ALLOW US TO VISIT. IT WAS ONE FUN STOP!
BACK ON THE BUS, WE RELUCTANTLY RETURNED TO DUARTE’S LITTLE STRETCH OF THE MOTHER ROAD AFTER A FUN, EDUCATIONAL DAY OF GETTING OUR KICKS. WITH BAGS OF PURCHASED SOUVENIRS, GREAT PHOTOS AND A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF THE PRESENT STATE OF AMERICA’S HIGHWAY, WE BID FAREWELL TO EACH OTHER.
THANKS TO PEGGY AND KELLY FOR MAKING THE ARRANGEMENTS, AND TO FRED OUR BUS DRIVER FOR DELIVERING US SAFELY HOME, AND TO ALL THOSE VOLUNTEERS ALONG THE ROAD WHO WERE QUICK TO GIVE US A SMILE, A WELCOME AND SHARE THEIR KNOWLEDGE OF THE ROAD’S HISTORY.
IT WAS OUR PLEASURE TO BE THE TRIP LEADERS TO A BUS LOAD OF FUN LOVING SENIORS! ALAN & CLAUDIA