Friday, May 27, 2016

Travel Tales: A New Option

English: Aerial view of Barstow, California, USA.
English: Aerial view of Barstow, California, USA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
After I left the Grand Canyon, I was traveling west on Interstate 40 on my way to Los Angeles. As always the trip through the Mojave Desert was beautiful and thankfully uneventful. This part of my trip is the calm before the storm. Once I reach Interstate 15, I am involved in the hectic and intense Los Angeles area traffic. This year I decided to do something different. I reached Barstow and Interstate 15 and went south on the 15 for a couple exits. Then I turned west on California State Route 58.

I had researched SR58 and thought I would never really know how good the road was until I tried it. Some sections of the road were two-lane, but the traffic was going the speed limit. I noticed a lot of trucks and RVs were traveling on this road. By going this way they would avoid the Cajon Pass, so that made sense. I continued west and drove past Edwards Air Force Base. Here I found the map confusing since SR58 curved to the north, but another 58 went straight ahead. I went straight keeping the airstrip to my left. The road joined 14 at Mojave and I continued south through Lancaster and Palmdale. I had no traffic problems.

When I reached the Golden Valley exit, I took the opportunity to stop at Sam's Club and get supplies. I got back on 14 and four miles later it merged with Interstate 5. I found it difficult to determine if I saved time by taking this route. The traffic was so much better and I did not have to deal with the Cajon Pass. When I reached the 5, I was driving reverse to rush hour traffic.

California State Route 58
California State Route 58 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I decided I will return that way if I can travel the road in the daylight. I would be concerned about having a problem in that isolated area in the dark. I have to get up so early when I drive east just so I can miss the traffic backup for the 5 on the 134. However, if am traveling at night, I would feel safer on the 134/210 in case I needed help. I have included a map which shows SR58 in red. On the right end of the red line are the blue lines for I-15 and I-40. They meet at Barstow. Following the line to the west, one sees the next blue line runs to the south only. That is 14 which curves to the west to meet I-5. The jumble of blue lines at the bottom are the highways of the Los Angeles area.

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