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JAN-FEB 2017

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J A N U A R Y / F E B R U A R Y 2 0 1 7 Jackson Hole, Wyoming, is the perfect jumping-off point for a visit to Grand Tetons. 45 C ruising into California, Route 66 covers approximately 325 miles across the southern portion of the state from Needles to Santa Monica. According to Scott Piotrowski, secretary of the California Route 66 Association, more than 90 percent of the highway is still drivable but paral- lels several interstates. Needles, which owes its name to the needlelike mountains surround- ing it, and the Mojave Desert greet travelers with extreme temperatures in summer that warrant the town's designation as the hottest in the nation. From Needles, the route follows approximately 150 miles of desert. e Route 66 Mother Road Museum in Barstow describes the road through California. One of the quirkiest stops is Elmer's Bottle Tree Ranch, a forest of bottle trees made from bottles of all shapes, colors and sizes that were abandoned near Route 66. In Victorville, Emma Jean's Holland Burger Café has been serving hearty breakfasts and lunch since 1947. e noteworthy California Route 66 Museum showcases vignettes of family life from that era and gives a unique perspective of the jour- ney. On the edge of the desert, the Cajon Pass is the route's last and high- est peak before it descends toward Los Angeles. San Bernardino serves as the gateway into Los Angeles. e town's landmark Wigwam Motel off ers individual rooms shaped like tepees, with modern features like cable TV and free Wi-Fi. Formerly part of a chain of seven similar estab- lishments, two on Route 66, they served travelers from the 1930s to the 1950s. In Ontario, the fi fth annual Route 66 Cruisin' Reunion will celebrate America's love aff air with the automobile. Held in September, the event invites afi cionados to immerse themselves in three days of cruising, contests, live entertainment and food. On historic, tree-shaded Euclid Avenue, classic cruisers, convertibles, hot rods and woodies come out in full force at this jam-packed Mother Road party. Heading into Pasadena, the iconic Colorado Street Bridge makes a great photo op. Highland Park, northeast of downtown Los Angeles, off ers several attractions, including the Soda Pop Stop, with more than 600 handcrafted sodas; the Chicken Boy statue; Highland eatre; and the Southwest Museum of the American Indian, which opened in 1913 as the city's fi rst museum. Finally, the Pacifi c Ocean stretches out before travelers at the Santa Monica Pier, the "spiritual" end of the road. e road originally ended in downtown Los Angeles at Broadway and Seventh Street, which, at the time, was the busiest intersection in the world. At the pier, travelers can ride the Ferris wheel, stroll the beach or dine at sunset to celebrate their all-American journey. W W W . V I S I T C A L I F O R N I A . C O M Photos courtesy California Historic Route 66 Assoc. Route 66 in Devore, California Bagdad Cafe Elmer's Bottle Tree Ranch 66 R O U T E CALIFORNIA

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