California 2021:
Day 9 - Route 66: California [Main] [Contact Us] [Events] [Family] [Fun] [Garden] [Misc.] [Photos] [Search] [Site Index] [Travel]

California 2021: [Day 1 - Chicago] [Day 2 - Route 66: IL] [Day 3 - Route 66: MO] [Day 4 - Route 66: OK] [Day 5 - Route 66: TX] [Day 6 - Route 66: NM] [Day 7 - Route 66: AZ] [Day 8 - Route 66: CA] [Day 9 - Route 66: CA] [Day 10 - Los Angeles] [Day 11 - Los Angeles] [Day 12 - Palm Springs] [Day 13 - Joshua Tree NP] [Day 14 - Death Valley NP] [Day 15 - Las Vegas] [Day 16 - Zion NP] [Day 17 - Grand Canyon North Rim] [Day 18 - Toroweap, Grand Canyon] [Day 19 - Page, AZ] [Day 20 - Durango, CO] [Day 21 - Great Bend, KS] [Day 22 - St. Louis, MO] [Day 23 - Heading Home]

Monday, November 8, 2021: We were heading into Los Angeles today, and slept in a little so that we didn't add any pressure to the rush hour traffic flow. There was much discussion about whether to try to drive Route 66 surface streets all the way to Santa Monica, or to just hop on the interstate and dash to the finish.
In the end, we decided that we would try to drive surface streets following as much of the old road as we could stand, and if traffic got too bad, then we would get on the interstate. We set out just before 9 AM.
We stopped as soon as we saw Chris's Burgers. They were open for breakfast, and we had never heard of them before.
We ordered a combo breakfast burrito for Tom, which had steak and bacon and ham and was amazingly delicious, ...
... and Debbie had the Denver omlet and hashbrowns, which was also very good.
The Historic Route 66 signs sometimes had the name of the suburb on them, which in this case was Rialto.
We were on Foothill Boulevard, and Debbie noticed that each town had its own logo right on the street sign. Here was Rialto, ...
... and here is Foothill Boulevard in Fontana.
Moana, make way, make way.
How about these lovely pillars for the Route 66 sign, huh?
Foothill Boulevard in Rancho Cucamonga.
Why wasn't the entire route from Chicago lined with these? How much fun would that have been?
Here's the Historic California Route 66 shield in Rancho Cucamonga.
We were surprised and pleased to see a restored Richfield service station in Rancho Cucamonga. We didn't think we would be seeing prime California real estate devoted to nostalgic defunct businesses.
In Rancho Cucamonga, there were sections of the road paved with bricks, and those sections had the Route 66 shield painted on them.
Check out this sculpture on this bridge.
The Magic Lamp Inn had a really cool tile roof. The lamp, which is by the street and is hard to see, burns a live flame after sundown. The restaurant has been here since 1955 and is a featured with a Route 66 Roadside Attraction sign.
In Upland, we passed this Madonna of the Trail sculpture on an island. We had last seen this statue in March in Arizona. We later learned that there were 12 of them, so we made plans to see more on this trip. Unfortunately, we had already missed the one in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Upland's McDonald's had old style arches on the building.
Upland had their logo on the Foothill Boulevard street sign.
Neighboring Claremont had a small version of their logo, but added their name to the bottom of the sign.
We left Claremont and entered Pomona, still on Route 66 surface streets.
This building used to be home to Magic Towers, a short-lived restaurant serving coffee, ice cream, and hamburgers from 1968 to 1978. After that, it was the Stein Haus bar until 2015. Its former medieval theme is still evident.
We were really excited every time we saw a new business use a retro sign because it was on Route 66.
Foothill Boulevard in La Verne.
This McDonald's in La Verne also had arches on the side of the building, but they were subtlely different from the previous one we saw. The arches were completely flat on the sides, whereas the previous ones were kind of rounded.
We entered San Dimas, home of Bill and Ted and the start of their excellent adventure. No sign of the Circle K gas station or their phone booth time machine.
Foothill Boulevard in San Dimas.
The town of Glendora wants you to know you are on Route 66.
 Glendora also wants you to know it is the Pride of the Foothills.
Check out the spur on the Golden Spur Restaurant.
There was this Route 66 street sign, ...
... and this one, within a few blocks of each other. Was there a disagreement on the Route 66 sub-committee and they decided to go with both signs?
Three types of trees AND a Wienerschnitzel in one photo!
The Hat restaurant proclaims its world famous pastrami. We think signs should have to cite their sources when they make claims like this.
The Azusa Foothill Drive-In Theatre is just a sign now. The field behind it holds soccer fields and a baseball field. The red swirl on the sign matches the Azusa city logo.
This was the first of many restaurants in the LA area with Tom's name in it. This one was Super Tom's Burgers.
Azusa had two different styles for the Foothill Boulevard sign. This one, ...
... and this one. You can decide which one you like best.
In Duarte, the road changed from Foothill Boulevard to Huntington Drive as Route 66 veered a little to the north.
The Oak Park Motel offers telephone, color TV, and satellite as amenities, all of which every traveler nowadays has conveniently packaged in their own cell phone.
We were still on Huntington Drive in Monrovia, ...
... where the utility boxes were painted with a Route 66 shield emblem.
Monrovia's McDonald's had an unusual sign with a crossbar in it, ...
... and they had a neon Speedee Chef on their building, an original McDonald's icon dating back to 1952.
Huntington Drive in Arcadia.
Arcadia had a pretty bridge crossing the road, ...
... and a vintage Route 66 California sign.
The Denny's in Arcadia had a Danish-style windmill on it. The windmill was left over from when this building was a Van der Kamp bakery in 1967, and the blades reportedly turned until 1989.
Original Tommy's World Famous Hamburgers also has chili cheese fries. Again, please cite your sources.
At Rosemead, the entire avenue was lined with palm trees.
We were on the outskirts of Pasadena traveling down Colorado Boulevard, which is the route of the Rose Parade held here annually on New Years Day. Naturally, there would be an inn named the Parade Motel on the parade route.
The sign for the Hi-way Host Motel looked to be in really good shape.
A little before 11 AM, our leisurely drive on the surface streets of Route 66 came to an abrupt end when we received a text message from our friends Gena and Richard containing a selfie of them at the Santa Monica Pier, which is the end of Route 66. They were there, waiting for us.
We deleted all of the intermediate waypoints from our navigation system and got on the nearest highway, the Foothill Freeway, as fast as we could.
A few minutes later we were speeding down US 101, ...
... past tall buildings, ...
... still making really good time ...
... not turning aside even for Bundy Drive, ...
... or the ocean. Hey, that's the Pacific!
We parked the van ...
... and met up with Gena and Richard less than an hour after they texted. We violated a rule of our road trip during the pandemic to not see people we know while we are traveling, but we couldn't resist a quick meet-up when we discovered we would both be in the same town at the same time. With one couple in Washington and the other in Indiana, we rarely get to see each other.
We sat on the pier and talked for about 45 minutes before heading down the pier toward the Route 66 sign. We passed two Zoltar machines, ...
... at either end of the same building. That is three Zoltars on this trip! Spooky.
Gena took our picture under the Route 66 End of the Trail sign, and then we parted ways, both continuing our separate vacations that just happened to intersect at the Santa Monica Pier.
We looked out at the beach from the pier, marveling at the fact that we were at the Pacific Ocean. We had been in the Atlantic Ocean just five weeks earlier when we were driving US 1.
There were people out on the pier, but it wasn't overwhelmingly crowded. That may have been because it was a Monday in November, or because we were still in a pandemic, but either way, it was a pleasant place to be.
We walked to near the end of the pier, ...
... and watched the waves breaking on the part of the pier that housed the rides.
The pier had numerous Route 66 signs, capitalizing on the people who travel the route, like we just did, who come here just to take their picture with the End of the Trail sign.
They even had signs on the walls for you to take your picture with. How convenient!
The Pier Burger restaurant's sign was trimmed in neon and included a Route 66 shield.
We made a quick stop at the restrooms on the pier, which were very lovely and seemed to be the right ratio of women-to-men, about 70-30.
After spending about 90 minutes here, we made our way back to the van, ...
... and headed toward Oxnard, our next destination, ...
... but not before getting one last Route 66 sign, the one marking the beginning of the route from West to East. Check out the silver dots on the sixes! We hadn't seen that before!
We headed north on California Highway 1, the Pacific Coast Highway, admiring the smaller houses built right along the beach, ...
... and the larger ones right across the road. At some point, we passed Gladstone's, a restaurant where Debbie went when she was here for a conference in 2004.
We entered Malibu, with more houses on the ocean, ...
... and some truly palatial homes on the inland side of the highway.
This Muffler Man is known as Salsa Man, or El Salsero, and he wears a sombrero and has a platter that used to contain tacos. Sadly, all of the tacos are missing from the platter, but the rest of the statue looked great.
This oddly shaped building that features a cross shape is not a church but instead was a Hertz Rent-a-Car. There were no cars in the lot and the building looks empty, so we're guessing that it's no longer a Hertz, either.
The Malibu Sport Fishing Pier looked like a little walled town.
We were grateful to be driving a vehicle that gets reasonably good gas mileage for this trip.
It was wonderful to be driving along the coastline. The ocean looked so inviting, and it was so awesome to watch the waves breaking on the rocks along the shore.
We made a quick decision to go out to Point Dume State Beach, the filming location for the final scene of the original "Planet of the Apes" movie. The site wasn't visible from the road, and we didn't feel like hiking on the sand to get to it, so we backtracked to the PCH and continued north.
There was plenty of scenery along the drive.
We stopped at Leo Carillo State Park, ...
... the filming location of one of our favorite movies, "That Thing You Do!" This is the location where they filmed the scenes of the Wonders playing Cap'n Geech and the Shrimp Shack Shooters on the set of "Weekend at Party Pier," a Rick and Anita movie.
We stood there for some time, ...
... enjoying the waves, ...
... and just enjoying being on the beach.
We were back on the Pacific Coast Highway headed north, ...
... watching the scenery, ...
... when we passed this sand dune, right up against the road. It stretches for nearly half-a-mile and is quite amazing to see.
Just before we got to Point Mugu Beach, the road cuts right through the point, ...
... and goes through the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.
Naval Air Station Point Mugu had playground equipment that included a rocket slide, ...
... and a rocket park featuring an F-14 Tomcat, a Regulus Missile, a Polaris missile, a Sidewinder missile, and an F-4 Phantom II.
We passed several fields of workers out harvesting strawberries. The tractor pulled a trailer with a rack of backpacks, two portable toilets, and a shaded area with coolers, tools, and other supplies.
Lots of fields.
We stopped at L&L Hawaiian BBQ for an early dinner, where we picked up four cans of Hawaiian Sun: Pass-o-guava Nectar, Lilikoi Passion, Strawberry Lilikoi, and Pineapple Orange.
We ordered the BBQ Mix Plate (rice, macaroni salad, short ribs, beef, and BBQ chicken), which we got, and a Lau Lau Pork, but what we got was a Loco Moco (hamburger patty over rice with brown gravy and a fried egg). The Loco Moco wasn't what we were expecting, but it was delicious. The BBQ Mix Plate was heavenly, as usual, and we vowed that we would always get that from now on.
Next stop was a much deserved car wash, removing all of the dirt and bugs from the 2,500 miles that we had driven so far.
We made our way to the Hampton Inn Channel Islands, our hotel for the evening.
We had a lovely room ...
... overlooking the marina.
We sat on the balcony and watched the sun slowly sink toward the horizon, ...
... slowly, ...
... until it was gone.
Debbie snuck back out just before we went to bed to get this great view of the lights of the marina.  

Day 10 >

California 2021: [Day 1 - Chicago] [Day 2 - Route 66: IL] [Day 3 - Route 66: MO] [Day 4 - Route 66: OK] [Day 5 - Route 66: TX] [Day 6 - Route 66: NM] [Day 7 - Route 66: AZ] [Day 8 - Route 66: CA] [Day 9 - Route 66: CA] [Day 10 - Los Angeles] [Day 11 - Los Angeles] [Day 12 - Palm Springs] [Day 13 - Joshua Tree NP] [Day 14 - Death Valley NP] [Day 15 - Las Vegas] [Day 16 - Zion NP] [Day 17 - Grand Canyon North Rim] [Day 18 - Toroweap, Grand Canyon] [Day 19 - Page, AZ] [Day 20 - Durango, CO] [Day 21 - Great Bend, KS] [Day 22 - St. Louis, MO] [Day 23 - Heading Home] [Main] [Contact Us] [Events] [Family] [Fun] [Garden] [Misc.] [Photos] [Search] [Site Index] [Travel]

Copyright © Deborah Schilling/Thomas Bundy