50 Route 66 Photos to Inspire You to Road Trip the USA
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My Route 66 road trip was an epic solo journey into many parts of my home country that I never would have otherwise considered visiting. I took my camera along for the journey and below I’m sharing 50 of my favorite Route 66 photos.
It was actually difficult to choose only 50 photos from the hundreds I took along the “Mother Road.” And that’s not because they’re all gorgeous, stunning photos of America’s most beautiful places.
In fact, it’s quite the opposite. I found Route 66 to be both astoundingly beautiful in some places, while also gritty, desolate, depressing, and dilapidated in others. But sometimes, it’s those places that make for the most interesting photos.
In some ways, the desolation you see in some of the photos below is actually part of the appeal of Route 66. If you’re planning a Route 66 road trip, you know that the original Route 66 has been largely passed over by the faster, more efficient I-40 freeway. So in many ways, the very essence of Route 66 is peeking into sections of America that have been passed by and forgotten.
You really see both the best and the worst in America, and how these two polar-opposite realities coexist not only in the same country, but along the same road. Route 66 forces upon the road tripper the vastness of our country, both its many faults and its beauty.
Along Route 66, I drove through snow in Illinois and Missouri, ate fried chicken and waffles in a gluten free brewery in Oklahoma, wandered in the mud of outdoor art installations in Texas, visited ghost towns and mountains in New Mexico, ogled at the Grand Canyon and white knuckled hairpin turns in Arizona, and slept in motels and ate In-N-Out burger in California.
In the 50 Route 66 photos below, you can take that visual journey with me!
Photographing Route 66 – The Great American Road Trip
In this post, you can see that I went to plenty of the most popular Route 66 sights. However, some of my favorite photos are from other places I simply discovered along the journey, or even the sights that might be considered “ugly” – but that I think show the true, raw, and gritty atmosphere of Route 66.
If you decide to take a Route 66 road trip, I encourage you to go into it with neutral expectations. And a camera. Definitely take a camera!