Quintessential Route 66


Sometimes I need to remind myself that this is what I was doing just a year ago, recovering from coronary artery bypass surgery. Quite a change, and a lot to be thankful for. The ol’ ticker is doing exactly what it’s supposed to be doing, and there aren’t any other physical problems impacting my riding. That’s all good!!


This is part of today’s map segment for the route from Kingman, AZ to Seligman, AZ. Easy to see there was a lot of UP in the day’s ride. There has never been this much elevation change in a single day on any of the dozens of Ragbrai’s that I’ve ridden over the years! That’s OK when most of the other riding variables are favorable, as they were today: weather; quite cool, high low 50s, fairly strong and consistent winds mostly from rear quarter, while riding east anyway. Any veering off to the south was met with some fierce resistance from the wind gods. Road surface; very good and with a nice shoulder for riding. Traffic: light to moderate with very little heavy truck traffic.  In other words, as the sage Dave Dickey would say “It doesn’t get any better than this”.


This section of the route was inundated with snow in the storms of a week ago. The remnants of that event are still very evident on the north facing slopes at these higher elevations. Seligman also has still melting piles where they were piled up after street removal.


I somehow missed getting this gem in on the day we spotted it in the desert east of Amboy, CA. This solid marble, finely crafted, incredibly heavy statuary Foo Dog (Guardian Lion) was a mate to another just like it a thousand yards away. No explanation, no notation no Google search query answered, it’s going to go down as a “major mystery” on this journey. They were both 50 yards from the highway, and several curious souls had left tokens of (?) on the pedestal; postcards, notes, two full beer cans, flowers. At least no one has yet to deface them with paint or chiseled graffiti. And now, you can all wonder about them as well. 😉 My guess is that they weighed at least 2000 lbs.





The above four pix illustrate pretty well the “quintessential” aspect of this route. Every type of hokey advertisement to lure riders off the road is put to use along this stretch, including the nearly full-sized dinosaur replicas and teepees for rent! So many have tried and failed, and their sad remains are interspersed with the stalwart survivors. The infinitely tiny burg of Truxton had, at one time or another in the past, four fairly large restaurants on the road’s edge vying for the travelers food dollars. One remains. The others silently continue to advertise their Biggest Burgers, and Clean Rest Rooms. And the road goes on.

Colin and Izzy added to their Route 66 adventures today by touring the Grand Canyon Caverns while Grandpa was pedaling his way east. I hope to get some pictures and stories from them to post as well.

Staying warm and well fed along the Mother Road.

Your company is most appreciated!








9 thoughts on “Quintessential Route 66”

  1. What a treat that you checked in early! I love the pictures from today. There is no shortage of interesting tidbits and points of interest along the way. Thank the Lord that you recovered from that scare last winter and the resulting heart surgery! So much to be grateful for!

    We’re in Snyder, TX tonight as there are motorcycle races up here in Fluvanna tomorrow! Fluvanna is definitely in the boonies! We’re 5 hrs from San Antonio and it’s another 3 hrs up to Amarillo where you’ll be along Route 66! My golly, Texas is HUGE! Haha

    You’re moving right along on the Mother Road!. Hoping you’ll have good riding conditions tomorrow, as well. There’s a danged cold front headed for us. It was 71 today and they’re saying much cooler tomorrow.

    Love you Cousin!
    Prayers and hugs!
    Cindy Sue

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kinda scared me with that opening pic! Thought you’d had a spill. Glad you are staying healthy and WELL FED!! 🤪
    Rest of AZ, all of NMEX, TX panhandle and much of OK yet before we see your smiley face here in Tulsa. Does March 19 still look good? Keep on pedalin’🤓

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Now I understand why they give you those pillows after heart bypass surgery. I fell REALLY hard in my parking lot in Des Moines yesterday. I fell on my back, but I had instant pain in my chest (upper ribs). Nevrr felt any pain like that. I didn’t want to be stranded in
    Des Moines so I got in my truck and drove to the ER. X-rayed spine and ribs–Nothing broken. They also did an EKG. The only comfortable position was with my arms or pillows over my chest. Diagnosis was that the way I fell caused everything to bounce off my chest. Injuries were muscles and deep tissue bruising. Yesterday was bad. Surprisingly, today is better. I c an now imagine some of the pain that heart bypass patients experience.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh my lord – a year ago and now look at you! You are incredible and we all love your stories! I am still thinking off meeting you and your team somewhere around shamrock tx if schedule & weather permits🤪. I might just be a swag wagon?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Dear PFJ,

    Not sure why none of my previous comments were posted… I will give with this a third try and if not, email you. Some days, technology doesn’t want to play with me.
    My first comment was on day -1 and I thought to share a blessing for the traveler, written by John O’Donohue (you know, he is a favorite of mine). That day, I was thinking how courageous you were, for going out on such an adventure with all that snow and ice around…
    My second comment was the day you ended visiting your neighbor, that you knew as a girl and is now a mother. The same blessing was applicable -you will know why-, and I thought that your grandchildren would think and feel the same you were thinking and feeling when visiting that girl, years down the road, maybe, when visiting the same places with their own families and who knows, own grandchildren… That day, I must say, I felt a bit jealous too! I wanted to join you!!!
    And this will be my third comment, and again, the blessing continues to apply… you also will know why… And this post of yours made me reflect on my own life, and what it is possible for us, what is in store for us, but it is unknown to us. And it also made me reflect that some of these moments are very scary, and demands from us a decision that we would rather never need to take, but once taken, a new path opens and in a blink of an eye, you are riding the Mother Route (in all senses!). So, Thank You for the reminder, and thank you for sharing your “journey”. It does seem I do have a lot of friends who are on magnificent journeys!

    Moving loves to you and all,

    Every time you leave home,
    Another road takes you
    Into a world you were never in.

    New strangers on other paths await.
    New places that have never seen you
    Will startle a little at your entry.
    Old places that know you well
    Will pretend nothing
    Changed since your last visit.

    When you travel, you find yourself
    Alone in a different way,
    More attentive now
    To the self you bring along,
    Your more subtle eye watching
    You abroad; and how what meets you
    Touches that part of the heart
    That lies low at home:

    How you unexpectedly attune
    To the timbre in some voice,
    Opening in conversation
    You want to take in
    To where your longing
    Has pressed hard enough
    Inward, on some unsaid dark,
    To create a crystal of insight
    You could not have known
    You needed
    To illuminate
    Your way.

    When you travel,
    A new silence
    Goes with you,
    And if you listen,
    You will hear
    What your heart would
    Love to say.

    A journey can become a sacred thing:
    Make sure, before you go,
    To take the time
    To bless your going forth,
    To free your heart of ballast
    So that the compass of your soul
    Might direct you toward
    The territories of spirit
    Where you will discover
    More of your hidden life,
    And the urgencies
    That deserve to claim you.

    May you travel in an awakened way,
    Gathered wisely into your inner ground;
    That you may not waste the invitations
    Which wait along the way to transform you.

    May you travel safely, arrive refreshed,
    And live your time away to its fullest;
    Return home more enriched, and free
    To balance the gift of days which call you.

    ~ John O’Donohue ~


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