Sixty-Six - The Hard Way Locator map

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Day 1
Out of Ohio

Day 2
One Way Nest

Day 3
Ferryland Castle

Day 4
Survivor Boston

Day 5
End of Six

Day 6
Sea Mammals Seen

Day 7
Overstated

Day 8
Two Bridges, Two Termini

Day 9
Sweet & Colorful History

Day 10
Allentown's Got Wheels

Day 11
Giant Guitar to Miniature Village

Day 12
Brews, Boxes, and a Bridge

Day 13
Back in Ohio

Day 14
Twenty-Two Skidone

May 3, 2012 (day 14)
The last day of the trip started with a couple small cemeteries then went from the Last Honky Tonk in Circleville to the oldest bar in Cincinnati. I reached the west end of US-22 eight days after starting at the east end of US-44. However, I paused for two days near Allentown which means just six days of motion to do "66 the Hard Way". Bet I could do it in twelve if I tried.

May 2, 2012 (day 13)
After checking out some brick road in Pennsylvania, I zipped through West Virginia, then paused at a lake in Ohio. The day ended at a delightful inn near the center of the state.

May 1, 2012 (day 12)
I got a really cool magnet at a brewery I'd been to before then found an awesome bridge and another guitar museum.

April 30, 2012 (day 11)
After learning how to make a guitar (I'm not taking orders just yet.), I was surprised by a stash of Hudsons and a wonderful old soda fountain. Roadside America was not a surprise. It was just as cool as I expected.

April 29, 2012 (day 10)
I'm sure the America On Wheels museum in Allentown is a nice place to visit on your own but it's even better with Dave Reese as a personal guide.

April 28, 2012 (day 9)
This should have been an off day with little to do but it didn't work out that way. I knew about Peeps & Crayolas and I knew about Moravian missionaries in Ohio but I knew nothing about the Moravian Bethlehem story. Now I know a little.

April 27, 2012 (day 8)
I drove across the Hudson, walked across the Hudson, finished Forty-Four, and started Twenty-Two. Whew!

April 26, 2012 (day 7)
I started west on US-44 about noon and, despite my best intentions, drove the bulk of it before stopping for the night. Sixty-Six the hard way is now in progress.

April 25, 2012 (day 6)
It was a great day for watching whales and I did.

April 24, 2012 (day 5)
My day was filled with a numbered rock, a few lighthouses, and the town at the end of the road.

April 23, 2012 (day 4)
The day was kind of wet but it was a whole better than a hurricane and even better than the weather guys were predicting. I got in and out of Boston alive, had a good time while I was there, and am not nearly as afraid of returning as I was going the first time.

April 22, 2012 (day 3)
Today was mostly about getting into position but I did head off course once to visit a castle.

April 21, 2012 (day 2)
I made an impromptu visit to a tree house, stood in three states at once, and drove across one of John Roebling's warm-ups. After which I drove the one open lane through Hawks Nest.

April 20, 2012 (day 1)
I got an early start and made it to my first planned overnight with time to spare.

Prelude 4 - April 9, 2012
Irene reached Boston on schedule but had weakened to a tropical storm. She still managed to shut down the airport and most other public transportation for a day. State wide, more than half a million customers lost power and one man lost his life. Nation wide the death toll was over 40 and damage estimates ranged from 2.5 to 7 billion. I was spared even a hint of danger by modern meteorology and caution but it is still a bit sobering.

I thought of attempting the trip later in 2011 but soon gave that up as a bad idea. I played with dates both earlier and later than what I've now settled only to bump into other commitments and desires. Today I stopped wavering and solidified the trip's front end. First I rebooked that Boston tour for the 23rd. Then I booked motels on both sides of the tour. I've actually booked lodging for the first six nights of the trip. Some are the same motels I'd planned on using last year while others are places that I've become aware of during the delay. The six nights will get me through much of the east coast congestion and leave me poised at the east end of US-44. I hit the road Friday, April 20.

Prelude 3 - August 26, 2011
There's a class 3 hurricane named Irene headed for the east coast of the United States. It will likely hit North Caroline and might hit New York. It might hit Cape Cod's Provincetown where I have a room booked for Tuesday night. It probably won't be a 3 if and when it gets there but even a near miss by a demoted hurricane doesn't sound inviting. I'm quite certain that leaving home with plans to reach Boston at about the same time as Irene would be considered foolish. I may act foolish sometimes but I don't mean it.

I took some slight notice of the hurricane talk on Tuesday. On Wednesday I started paying a bit more attention to talk of it "raking the coast". Yesterday I really listened up as several of my planned destinations were mentioned as possibly being on Irene's itinerary, too. Today I've been cancelling reservations. I had three motels and one tour reserved. Two of the motel rooms were with a chain and were simply and cleanly canceled. The third was with an independent who, despite my being within their clearly stated "no refund" window, promised a refund of all but $10 to cover the credit card handling. A classy move for a small business getting ready to board up windows. The published policy for the tour says I should get al least half of my 38 bucks back and maybe all of it. Right now, paying $29 NOT to go to Boston seems like the deal of the century.

But I'm all ready to go somewhere. I don't mean packed-and-loaded ready. I mean antsy-I-want-to-be-on-the-road ready. Of course, coming up with other trip ideas isn't tough and I think I've picked a good one. I'll still hit the road tomorrow morning but it will be the Dixie Highway instead of a pair of twin digit US routes. That journal will appear here.

Prelude 2 - August 22, 2011
Even though I'm missing answers to a couple of queries, a start date for this outing has been selected. Actually, a date for a dash through Boston was selected and that more or less dictated the start date. I've never been to Boston and this seemed like the time to do it since Boston is separated from US-44's eastern end by just thirty some miles. But I've heard enough about Boston to know that I don't want to drive there. My plan is to dash into town, take a day long hop-on hop-off trolley tour, then dash out the other side. I've reserved my tour along with motels about twenty and ten miles on either side of the target parking lot. The tour is set for Monday, August 29. Which puts departure on Saturday.

Plans on the other side of the Boston blitz are much looser. I hope to spend a night on Cape Cod and I'll stop by Plymouth Rock before heading west on US-44 just a half mile away. There will probably be an overnight stop in the middle of Forty-Four and another before picking up US-22 and starting toward Cincinnati.

Prelude 1 - August 9, 2011
Some readers may be familiar with why US 22 is a special road for me and some may be familiar with why I've combined it with another US route for this journey. Sorry, but you're going to hear it all again (or you can just skip this section).

US 22 is special because I've lived near it for the better part of four decades. In 1974 I moved to a trailer park about a hundred yards off of the route. In '76 I moved directly under it. That was on the banks of the Little Miami River in an apartment whose front yard was covered by a 1937 US 22 bridge. I'm fairly confident it is the only place I've lived that can be glimpsed in photos on Bridgehunter.com. The address was on the Old 3C Highway which was pretty cool, too. From there I moved far far away (relatively speaking) and spent about fifteen years nearly two miles away from US 22. I'm now back within a couple furlongs (less than 1/4 mile) of my old friend and have been since 1997. The route also has some personal appeal because it is one of only a half dozen US routes with an end point in Ohio. The others are 322, 422, 36, 42, and 68.

I've driven most if not all of US 22 but I've not done it conscientiously. It has long been on my "Just Seeds" list. The entry, which will be dropped from the list at the end of this trip, is here. The reasons it was originally placed on the list were the primarily personal ones in the preceding paragraph. It was probably while I was preparing that "...Seeds" entry some years ago that I was struck by the connection, noted in the entry, between US 22 and US 66.

US 66 is a celebrity. Some claim it is the most famous road in the world and many have attributed a small part of its fame to the appeal of its twin digits. A tad may have also come from it being even and therefore an east-west route. Although it should be obvious, I was surprised that this was a group with a total of four members: US 22, 44, 66, and 88. One never got on the ground: The number 88 was never assigned. One is a retired star: US 66 was decommissioned in 1985. The remaining two come within 75 crow miles (about a hundred car miles) of connecting in the east. That's clearly close enough to drive them back to back. As Ernie Banks would have said had he been a roadie, "Let's drive two!"

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