ROUTE 66: From Oatman to Williams, Arizona

May 11 ~ Oatman, AZ and Route 66

Cool Springs, Arizona

Staying in Mohave Valley last night meant we were just a few miles from our first stop of the day, Oatman, AZ.

Black Mountains

Located in the Black Mountains, its history is primarily linked to gold mining.

“The boom of 1915-17 gave Oatman all the characters and characteristics of any gold rush boomtown. For about a decade, the mines of Oatman were among the largest gold producers in the American West.” ~ Wikipedia

Jagged rocks rich with minerals

There is also a backstory to where the name came from.

About Olive Oatman

“After a few other names were passed over, “Oatman” was chosen for the name of the town in honor of Olive Oatman, a young Illinois girl who had been taken captive by Indians during her pioneer family’s journey westward in 1851 and forced into slavery. She was later traded to Mohave Indians, who adopted her as a daughter and had her face tattooed in the custom of the tribe. She was released in 1856 at Fort Yuma, Arizona.” ~ Wikipedia

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But probably the main draw today are the burros. Left over from the miners, these wild burros have thrived and become an integral part of the town. Venders sell pellets to feed them, children have a ball petting them and tourists snap pictures left and right.

The Oatman Burro

This was my favorite picture of the day. Perhaps a little cheeky, but the setting could not be staged if you tried. I overheard a father stating to his young son that he was getting a piggy back ride, LOL.

The not-so-classy ass in front of the Classy Ass

Not sure how I feel about this one…

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We stopped in a jewelry/gift shop and I found a necklace and two sandstone coasters that I decided to leave with. The owner of the shop cautioned us that one does have to keep in mind that the burros are wild animals and occasionally someone gets in the middle of a couple of them fighting and injuries have happened.

Sandstone coasters and hand painted necklace

After spending an hour or so walking the street, we ventured on down Route 66. This section is also named Oatman Highway.

The road was narrow and winding, and nothing over 40 feet is allowed

This is desert country and a variety of cactus can be seen. Quite impressive actually.

Love the blooms

I have never seen this many different kinds of cactus grouped except in gardens

Chevrolet emblem

Overnight spot ~ BLM land on Welch Road Dispersed off of highway 40 exit 151 near Williams (north side of the freeway). It is free, no hookups, not crowded and beautiful sunset.

Just FYI, there is a KOA just down the road if this is too remote for some. It runs $55 a night. Me, I like FREE better.

Our overnight spot with rainbow

Have the place almost to ourselves. We are in heaven!

GRATITUDE MOMENT: Today I am grateful that we got to visit Oatman, laugh at the burros and explore more of Route 66. Arizona can be hot, harsh and unforgiving in the heat of summer, but in the springtime, her beauty is in full bloom.

We are just at the start of our seven week road trip. Hope you will tag along as we explore more of this big, beautiful country.

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About Tim and Joanne Joseph

Hi and welcome! We are Tim and Joanne Joseph and we have just embarked on our latest adventure. We hope you will join us!
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17 Responses to ROUTE 66: From Oatman to Williams, Arizona

  1. kcbernick says:

    There’s a large meteor crater between Williams and Winslow if you’re heading in that direction. In the 60’s adn 70’s, it was used for astronaut training. It also featured in the 1984 movie “Starman” with Jeff Bridges. Enjoy your travels.


  2. You even caught a bit of a rainbow in that one shot. Those “wild” burros remind me of those in Custer State Park, but as you mention, they are still animals and you have to be careful. Lovely cactus blooms. I read there was a super bloom in the desert as well as in California and saw some stunning photos of it. Perhaps you reaped a bit of benefit as well. P.S. “Free” sounds good to me as well. 🙂


  3. Bringing back some fine memories. We stayed one winter in the Mohave Valley. We loved Oatman too.


  4. Laughing about the amorous burros. I have a very similar shot that I also featured on a post. Great photos. Fun to be reminded of our trips in the area. 🙂 –Curt


  5. Beautiful pictures! I’ll definately​ be adding this area to our must-see list!


  6. roadtrippingagain says:

    I just love your blog! I would have read sooner, but we were on a month long trip of our own. In fact, I am still needing to complete our blog. I love the “Classy Act” picture. How perfect was that. That is a Late Night w Jimmy Fallon picture for sure. We are planning on doing the Route 66 drive in Sept-Oct this year. So excited. Thanks for blogging.


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