"Historic Railroad and Route 66 Town" Top 5 Page for this destination Kingman by atufft

Kingman Travel Guide: 77 reviews and 268 photos

Our Walk Through Historic Downtown

During this X-mas holiday, I drove with Belinda and Dali to near St. Louis for a gathering with cousins. I managed to mix business and pleasure, using my truck and trailer to deliver loads to Illinois and Michigan, as well as deliver my family from Stockton, CA to the larger family gathering in Illinois. Consequently, we passed through Kingman twice, since I took the less icy I-40 route back east and then returned the same way. I have driven this route countless number of times, but on the return during this holiday venture, my truck's clutch abruptly failed near the Petro truckstop on the eastern edge of town. This required a stop for repairs during two days in Kingman, so we decided to take advantage of the time to visit the historic downtown so often passed by in the past. This was time well spent, not only taking my mind off expensive truck repairs but directing my awareness toward a fascinating desert town.

Route 66 and Railroad History

Besides the relative wealth of historic buildings concentrated mostly on the western corner of Andy Devine Blvd, Kingman is one of the more distinctive towns along famous Route 66. Plus, Kingman is also a rather infamous railroad stop, having been a "water stop" for a coal fired steam locomotive passenger railroad service between Kansas City and Los Angeles. There is plenty to appreciate in this town, which is often overlooked by "snow birds" heading to nearby Las Vegas, Lake Havasu, and other places near the Colorado River.

Spendid Desert Mountain Setting

I didn't get too many great shots of the fantastic rock cut I-40 makes through a butte that divides the city into two parts, but watch for this as you arrive. From the west, there's a rather steep grade on I-40 before a descent into the older part of town. The historic center is off to the right, or south side of the freeway, while the TA truckstop is easily found on the other side of I-40. Then, there's the newer rock cut and grade of I-40 over another a butte that leads into the newer edge of town, where all the hotels and corporate restaurants are located. Route 66 and the railroad curve around this latter butte, connecting on a flat road, the two sides of town. The treeless volcanic butte serves as a spectacular backdrop to the historic downtown.

  • Last visit to Kingman: Jan 2010
  • Intro Updated Jan 6, 2010
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Reviews (8)

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  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Feb 7, 2010 at 10:07 AM

    Howdy Alan, looks like you found some wonderful things to see. Gosh, I cannot telll you how many we past thru this goldmine of a town growing up. Wonderful page!

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