FORGOTTEN COUSIN OF ROUTE 66
The Route 66 trivia note for the day is a brief one. Route 66 was not fully paved until late 1936. The final section to be updated from graded gravel to all weather asphalt was east of Hackberry in Truxton Canyon.
Now, a little something to pique the interest of those in search of the Route 66 experience but on a less famous, less traveled highway. I presnt to you U.S. 6, the forgotten cousin to U.S. 66.
You are in good company if you are not aware of this highway, its history, or its many charms. Its obscurity is a large part of the allure.
Until the 1960s this was the longest U.S. highway stretching from Cape Cod to Long Beach in California. This also resulted in it being the only highway to run north and south as well as east and west.
Today the western terminus is in Bishop, California, still a very long and very scenic drive from Cape Cod. Amazingly the highway is about 95% intact and driveable.
This is the highest U.S. highway topping Loveland Pass in Colorado at 11,990 feet. To the west in Utah, it rolls across dry lake beds in some of the most empty deserts in America. This section was not paved until the early 1950s making six the last U.S. highway to be completely paved.
The highway crossing on the Hudson River is breathtaking as is the stunning scenery in Pennsylvania. There is the shore of the Great Lakes and Great Basin National Park, ghost towns, and attractions such as Cedar Point in Ohio and Pioneer Village in Nebraska.
Motels and diners, service stations and garages suspended in a time warp circa 1960 abound. Likewise with odd sites and roadside attractions.
Most everyone is a fan of the double six. Still, on occasion its nice to take to the road less traveled and that is the charm of U.S. 6, it is the best of both worlds. Road Trip: A Journey Along Route 6