It was with a degree of sadness that we set out for our last day in the saddle leaving Barstow and heading for Santa Monica.
On one section of Route 66 which, as was often the case, rang alongside a railway, we came upon one of those massive freight trains with 2 or 3 tractor units pulling many, many containers. There was a wonderful childlike joy when things like this happened as we’d wave at the train driver who’d wave back and give a long pull on the train’s horn. Boy’s Own Paper stuff!
We came into Los Angeles and went via Beverley Hills and roads with names from folklore and popular culture like the Santa Monica Boulevard and Vine, etc. We stopped briefly at the junction of Olympic Boulevard and Lincoln Boulevard which was the endpoint of Route 66 to take photos before heading to the Harley dealership to drop the bikes off. They kindly drove us to our hotel in Marina Del Rey where we showered and changed before heading out for a lovely shrimp dinner and some final parting words on Santa Monica Pier and photos at the tourist marker for the end of Route 66.
Our plans changed again in the morning: we decided that as both the more direct roads to Barstow and the Route 66 route would be equally hot, especially in the Mojave Desert, we would go the ‘proper’ way.
First stop was at Las Vegas Harley Davidson for more shopping. They have a bunch of amusing dummies dressed in Harley gear in the showroom which was fun. Then it was a case of wrapping up in long sleeves and SWAT-style face covering before heading off.
Our next stop was at a roadside café in Fenner, California which thoughtfully provided a sprinkler hose outside the entrance which meant a cooling shower; very refreshing as it was baking hot.
Then on into the Mojave stopping at Roy’s Motel and Café in Amboy, California for more photos. There was a weather station monitor there showing the temperature as 115.5°F/46.4°C.
As the sun began to set, we approached Barstow, stopping for Dinner at the Bagdad Café in Newberry Springs. Having closed for the night shortly before we arrived, they reopened especially for us and we enjoyed Buffalo Burgers and beers before heading off to our hotel on the outskirts of Barstow.