Route 66 in California: Barstow to Victorville
The quick route southwest from Barstow is on I-15. Exit at CA Hwy 18 east, then turn right onto D Street.
If you take National Old Trails Hwy (W Main) instead through Lenwood and Oro Grande, you'll cross a 1930 steel truss bridge over the Mojave River just before reaching Victorville, where the road becomes D Street.
Route 66 in California: Victorville and the Cajon Pass
In Victorville, you'll find the Route 66 Museum at 16849 D Street. Turn onto 7th Street, which passes through downtown and past the New Corral Motel at 14643 7th Street. This original main street retains some of the old small town character it must have had at the Mother Road's zenith. Keep following 7th Street and signs for I-15 to get back on it.
West of Victorville, the road runs over Cajon Pass, the last mountain climb before dropping into the Los Angeles basin. Midway up is the Summit Inn, a nicely-kept roadside stop that's been around since the early days. Take the the Oak Hill exit to reach it.
The old route went through the town of Devore, but staying on I-15 is easier and you won't miss much.
Route 66 in California: Victorville to Pasadena
In San Bernardino County, Route 66 travels west toward the ocean, running along the base of the mountains to Pasadena. Along much of its length to Pasadena, old Route 66 is now named Foothill Boulevard. To join it in San Bernardino, take I-215 south, exit at Mt Vernon and Follow it south.
To reach the original McDonald's location at 1398 North E St., turn left off Mt. Vernon at Base Line St, then left again on North E Street. Built before the burger chain was bought by Ray Kroc, it's now owned by Juan Pollo Restaurants and operated as a museum. Reverse your route to return to Mt Vernon and continue south. At West 5th Street, turn right. After making a small jog, the road will become Foothill Blvd.
The Wigwam Motel, which could be the best-preserved Route 66-era lodging in California is at 2728 W. Foothill.
San Bernardinans like Route 66 so much that they celebrate it every September with the Route 66 Rendezvous
Urban redevelopment has taken a particularly harsh toll on Route 66 sights in the Los Angeles basin and sadly, only few bits of roadside architecture remain. Here and there, an observant eye may pick out bedraggled motor courts nearly elbowed out by strip malls, but these are among the most interesting things you'll see along Foothill:
- Fontana: Bono's Big Orange, one of only a few surviving roadside stands that once sold juice to thirsty travelers
- Rancho Cucamonga: An old 1920s gas station sits abandoned at the northwest corner of Foothill and Archibald
- Monrovia: The old gas station at the intersection of Shamrock Ave. and Walnut is better-preserved and still has its pumps. The Aztec Hotel at 311 W. Foothill, its oddly Incan-themed facade mismatched with its name
From Monrovia, you can continue on Foothill Blvd or take I-210 to Pasadena.