Grand Canyon to Las Vegas

OK, so it’s not strictly a Route 66 journey but we did spend quite a bit of time on the old mother road today.

The drive out of the canyon and back down to I-40 was pretty uneventful and there wasn’t much to see along the way. No more sightings of deer or elk, just us and a few other cars. We drove on through Williams and Ash Fork, and then stopped in Seligman, but only because there were about a dozen coaches pulled up on the side of the road so we got out to see what the fuss was about.

The small town is a tacky tourist town full of fake roadside attractions. The type of place that makes Blackpool look classy! We didn’t hang around.

Out of Seligman, Route 66 veers a long way away from I-40 and becomes a really picturesque 150-mile stretch of easy driving. We made it to Valentine and then pulled over at Keepers of the Wild, a sanctuary for rescued exotic animals such as tigers from magicians acts.

We had a walk round the park (in ninety-something degree heat) looking at the animals which included 18 tigers and a 6-month old lion cub called Anthony. They weren’t up to much, just laying around in the shade. Well it was hot!

We then had a guided tour with one of the rangers who explained where each animal had come from. A few of the tigers were photo opportunity cats who, once they got too big to be cute enough for pictures, were in danger of being sold on and poorly treated or being put down.

As we were shown around, our guide was feeding the cats so we got to see them being more active than when we went around on our own. Watching five tigers fight and scramble for food is quite something.

Back on the road we continued west to Kingman and after a quick stop to fill the tank we came off 66 and turned right towards Las Vegas. We were making good time along the highway but then it all went a bit pear shaped.

As we got to the Hoover Dam the traffic came to a standstill. It took us an hour to go just  one mile as two lanes eventually merged into one and then roadworks all the way through Boulder City with the amount of traffic on the road meant we couldn’t go much faster than 10mph. We both wished we were back on the empty 66 roads!

Past Boulder City the traffic didn’t ease much and it seems as though every driver in Nevada is a maniac! It wasn’t long before traffic slowed again so we took an early exit and made our way to Las Vegas Boulevard. Which was also jammed!

We checked into Treasure Island and laughed ourselves silly when we saw the size of our suite. Quite a difference from the motel rooms we’d been in previously.

It had taken us a lot longer to get here than we’d planned but with 2 days of no driving we’ve got a chance to relax!

Miles travelled today: 294
Total miles travelled: 2247

Number of times cut up on highway by maniacs: 5

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1 Response

  1. Phil Harris says:

    Mate am i envious!! I have read everything now and what an incredible journey.. I keep telling the Americans on my tours that your’re both doing Route 66 and even my work colleagues are jealous.. absolutely superb read mate.. cant wait to see the pictures… Hi to Julia.. and will keep reading..