Highway Trip Blog

A blog about roadworthy classics on America's old highways.

Jefferson Street North of I-10 Exit 139, April 2013

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Thursday, 09 May 2013
in Highway History

Will the new Exit 139 affect access to Sun City Shadow Hills in Indio CA?

Michael "Mike" Newlon Retired in 2005 after a dual career in private sector corporate management and as a Lieutenant Colonel in the US Army Reserve.

When he is not exploring current or former U.S. highways, like CA 99, in his Porsche 912 or Lincoln Town Car, Mike enjoys reading 20th Century history and popular action novels.

If you have questions about Michael "Mike" Newlon call him today: 760-360-3968 or visit his website http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/"

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Exit 139 Looking West in April of 2013.

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Wednesday, 08 May 2013
in Highway History

I-10 Exit 139 in April of 2013.

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Indio's Jefferson Street South of I-10 at Exit 139, April 2013

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Tuesday, 07 May 2013
in Highway History

An Interchange can be many things.  What will it be for I-10 in Indio CA?

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Empty Land Awaiting Start of New I-10 CA Exit 139

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Monday, 06 May 2013
in Highway History

 

Will all this be developed or involved with I-10 CA Exit 139, or Both?

 

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Abandoned Roadway With a Past and a Story To Tell.

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Thursday, 02 May 2013
in Highway History

Roads, like books, can be boring unless one knows how to read them. http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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Roadway Abandoned For New I-10 Exit 139 at Washington St., Indio CA

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Wednesday, 01 May 2013
in Highway History

Abandoned now, but does this segment of roadway have a future? http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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South Side of Jefferson St. - I-10 Bridge at Exit 139

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Tuesday, 30 April 2013
in Highway History

The way it looked in April of 2013 - with big changes maybe on the way. http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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Small Scale Exit 139 Roadway Changes - More To Come?

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Monday, 29 April 2013
in Highway History

Was this change all, or will it be changed again by the new I-10 Exit 139? http://highwaytripbooks.com/

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The Tehachapi Loop In Action

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Thursday, 25 April 2013
in Highway History

Watch a freight train actually using the Tehachapi Loop. Quite a sight! http://highwaytripbooks.com/

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The Tehachapi Loop, a railroad achievement very near former U.S. Route 466

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Wednesday, 24 April 2013
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How do you move a railroad up or down 77 feet in a very small area?  A Loop! http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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A Highway History View From the West Entrance to Banning, California

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Tuesday, 23 April 2013
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The final segment of our short highway history tour of Banning, California http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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San Gorgonio Pass Motel and U.S. Highways

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Monday, 22 April 2013
in Highway History

Here's Why Some U.S. Highways Are Co-Signed http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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Here's One Reason Why U.S. Highways Are Co-Signed

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Thursday, 18 April 2013
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Explains how San Gorgonio Pass topography affects highway construction. http://highwaytripbooks.com/

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Small Town Main Street Carries Three (3!) U.S. Highways!

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Wednesday, 17 April 2013
in Highway History

How a U.S. Highway, 3 in this case, can "outgrow" its original alignment. http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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How to Cheaply Widen A Concrete Highway

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Tuesday, 16 April 2013
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Concrete Highways - A Practical Solution to a Practical Problem highwaytripbooks.com

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Why Concrete Expansion Joints Important - Part 2

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Monday, 15 April 2013
in Highway History

An alternate view of why concrete expansion joints are important. http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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Intro To Single Slab Concrete Highway Construction

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
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on Thursday, 11 April 2013
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A close look at a very old concrete highway near Palm Springs CA http://www.highwaytripbooks.com/

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“Former U.S. Route 101 in Southern California”

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Thursday, 04 April 2013
in Highway History

U.S. Route 101 is an original 1926 U.S. Federal Highway connecting Olympia, Washington and, originally, our border with Mexico at San Ysidro, California. Interestingly, it never reached Canada, perhaps because nearby U.S. Route 99 did. The highway has a rich history in California which includes being “El Camino Real” (the King’s Highway) that linked the 18th Century Spanish Missions between San Francisco and San Diego.

Sadly, to some, the highway’s southern terminus has been moved from the U.S./Mexico border to downtown Los Angeles. This was precipitated by the Great California U.S. Highway Mass Extinction of July, 1964 and completion of the southern portion of Interstate 5 in the early 1970s.

But that’s “Progress”, which isn’t always even and can be very disruptive.

So let’s take the 1969 Porsche 912 for a ride to look at California’s highway progress, about 40 years later, northbound from San Ysidro to Los Angeles.

Above: This is the southernmost part of San Ysidro, very near the Mexican border. This was once the southern terminus of U.S. Route 101, with its 1940’s four lane divided highway alignment very much in evidence today.

Above: Today’s National Boulevard in National City once carried U.S. Route 101 between San Ysidro and San Diego. If you know what to look for, it’s clear that this was once a principal U.S. highway. This spacious former home gives a tantalizing hint of what it must have been like living so close to the ocean on a lightly (at the time) traveled U.S. highway.

Above: This is former U.S. Route 101 in northern San Diego. The roadway has been repaved with asphalt so many times that the asphalt now almost reaches the tops of the concrete curbs that once enclosed this former traffic island. I’m sure the original concrete highway is buried beneath all that asphalt.

Above: This elegant reinforced concrete highway bridge, built in 1933, carried U.S. Route 101 over a low point between two bluffs near Del Mar. This photo looks south. The Del Mar race track (for horses) is to the left and the Pacific Ocean is to the right. Note the railroad track below the bridge on the upper left. U.S. highways and railroad tracks are frequent companions.

Above: A short distance to the north, in Encinitas, the alignment was four-lane divided highway, parallel to railroad tracks as is so common with U.S. highways, and lined by graceful Eucalyptus trees. This view is to the north. The Pacific Ocean is just a few blocks to the left.

Above: This blue and white Oceanside house at the corner of Pacific and Seagaze was built by a local Medical Doctor back in the 1880s. It may look familiar. It’s known locally as the “Top Gun House” and was the Kelly McGillis character’s house. (She drove a Porsche Speedster in the movie.) The side porch near the large palm tree looked quite different after the Hollywood set decorators performed their magic, but it’s clearly in the movie.

Above: Former U.S. Route 101 is signed as “El Camino Real” in San Clemente and, typically, ran in front of the Arabesque 1926 City Hall. The city outgrew its 25 offices and “City Hall” moved to larger quarters in 1962. The building, and its nine basement parking spaces, is now used for commercial purposes.

Above: After passing through the urban sprawl of Orange and Los Angeles counties north from San Clemente, I reached the Hollywood Hills for this view of downtown L.A. in the distance. The concrete ribbon just in front of the 912 is still U.S. Route 101, also known locally as the Hollywood Freeway. Amidst the tall towers in the distance is the current southern terminus of this historic highway and the end of this armchair journey through some 20th Century highway history. I hope you enjoyed the ride and will come back for future installments.

1. U.S. Route 101 2. 1969 Porsche 912
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Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Tuesday, 02 April 2013
in Highway History

'1925 Concrete Highway Bridge http://www.highwaytripbooks.com

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Weed Finds, Part II

Posted by Michael Newlon
Michael Newlon
Travel with me and my 1969 Porsche, and the new Lincoln Town Car project, as I t
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on Tuesday, 02 April 2013
in Highway History

For the benefit of readers who missed Part I, also available on this Blog site, a “Weed Find” is very much like a “Barn Find”. But Weed Finds sit outside in plain sight rather than being at least semi-protected from the elements in a barn.

Weed Finds are fun. One never knows when or where one will be discovered, nor does one have any way of predicting what the discovery might be. For the time-conscious but acutely observant road warrior, Weed Finds can be a welcome and rewarding mental diversion on a long road trip.

That said…

Above: While preparing this Blog entry, I snooped around to learn what I could about the Corvair “300” model. I found nothing. But this late model Corvair in Shamrock, Texas has what looks very much like a factory “300” emblem on the right front fender between the wheel and door opening. If GM made a Corvair “300”, here’s an example – just off former U.S. Route 66 about 95 miles east of Amarillo.

Above: This 1952 Studebaker 2 door sedan (the 2 door with the futuristic wrap-around rear window was the “Starlight”) is also on the Shamrock, Texas lot. It looks reasonably complete but now stores pieces of lumber from, or for, some unknown purpose. In bad weather, the open window must be problematic for whatever might be left of the interior.

Above: This 1957 Plymouth Plaza 4 door sedan has some serious cosmetic problems, but seemed otherwise mostly complete. This was a popular low-priced “family sedan” in its day and, because the Plaza was the base model, it might be relatively (compared to one with all the goodies) easy to restore or at least put in roadworthy condition.

Above: My favorite among the cars readily visible in Shamrock’s lot was this 1957 Hudson Hornet Super 4 door sedan. This was the last year of the brand because Hudson just couldn’t keep up with developing automotive technology and the advertising power of the “Big 3” car makers. Hudson exited the car business in June of 1957.

Above: This view shows “Hudson” and “V-8” logos on the trunk lid of the car above. The “Super” graphic on the body panel above the bumper is significant. The only other Hudson trim package for 1957 was the upscale “Custom” model. This is one of only 3,108 Hudsons purchased in the brand’s 1957, and last, model year.

Above: Finally, just to show that many rusty clouds can have a shiny lining; this 1949 Ford 2 door sedan is an example of what can be done with some Weed Finds. It takes a lot of work, of course, to turn a rust bucket into something like this.

Or, if you don’t want to build it yourself, buying a finished example like this is possible, but it isn’t cheap.

Regardless of the method employed to own one of these four-wheel treasures, how else these days can we enjoy and really appreciate our automotive history on America’s current and former U.S. highways?

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