by Michael Satterfield

Route 66 is one of the most iconic roads in the world, as it makes it's way from Chicago to Los Angeles it crosses 8 States, including Texas. While the section of Route 66 in Texas is the second shortest (after Kansas) there are some great things to see along the original alignment, here are three must-visit roadside attraction in Texas.

Cadillac Ranch

Created in 1974 by Chip Lord, Hudson Marquez, and Doug Michels, all members of an artist collective called Ant Farm. The installation is made up of cars ranging from 1949 to 1963 each with their noses buried in the ground. It is said that the Cadillacs are buried at the same angle of the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. Cadillac Ranch is located just outside of Amarillo, Texas.


The Big Texan Steak Ranch

Located in Amarillo, Texas the Big Texan Steak Ranch is home to the 72 oz. steak challenge. The original was located on Route 66 but a fire in 1976 gutted the original restaurant. The current restaurant was opened in 1977, just a few blocks south of Route 66 off Interstate 40. Today the compound includes a large gift shop, arcade, hotel, and more. "The Texas King" is the 72 oz. steak that is free to anyone who, in one hour or less, can eat the entire meal, which includes the steak itself, a bread roll with butter, a baked potato, shrimp cocktail, and a salad. If you don't finish you have to pay $72 for the meal. If you do finish the entire meal in the one-hour time limit your name is recorded and posted at the restaurant. As of February 2018, over 9,500 people out of about 62,000 have been able to finish.


U-Drop Inn

The U-Drop Inn, also known as Tower Station and U-Drop Inn and Tower Café, was built in 1936 in Shamrock, Texas along the historic Route 66 highway and was designed by J. C. Berry. An unusual example of art deco architecture applied to a gas station and restaurant, the building features two flared towers with geometric detailing, curvilinear massing, glazed ceramic tile walls, and neon light accents. It has traditionally held two separate business: "Tower Station", a gas station on the western side, and the "U-Drop Inn", a café on the eastern side. Most people today recognize it as the automotive body shop owned by Ramone in the town of Radiator Springs from the Pixar movie Cars. Today the building is owned by the city of Shamrock and operates as a visitor and community center.


I wanted to thank Honda for loaning me the new Honda Civic for this road trip.