Road tripping through Victorville, Barstow and the Lucerne Valley.
The Harvey House Railroad Depot, originally known as the Casa del Desierto, is a former Fred Harvey Harvey House located in Barstow, CA.
The Casa del Desierto station and hotel was built by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway and replaced an earlier one built in 1885 that burned in 1908. It now functions as an unstaffed Amtrak passenger station as well as housing Barstow city offices and two museums.
It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975 and designated as a California Historical Landmark in 1976.
Designed by talented architect Mary Colter and constructed from 1910 to 1913, the present Harvey House portrays a regional sensibility in its design, a hybridization of Santa Fe 16th century Spanish and Southwest American Indian architecture.
Reflections of the past.
The historic structure is an elegant presence in the Mojave Desert beside the intermittent Mojave River. Santa Fe closed the station in 1973.
Other public institutions located in The Harvey House are the Western America Railroad Museum on the east side and the Barstow Route 66 “Mother Road” Museum on the north side. Both museums are open Friday-Sunday from 11:00am to 4:00pm and admission is free.
Skyline Drive-In, Barstow, CA.
The historic El Rancho Motel is located at 100 E. Main Street in Barstow, CA.
Built in 1943 with wooden railroad ties from the Tonepah & Tidewater railroad line, the old motel along Hwy 66 is said to have once been frequented by the likes of Marilyn Monroe.
George Air Force Base in Victorville, CA was decommissioned in 1992 and has been left to fall into disrepair ever since. Go ahead and go in, there’s no guard on duty to stop you but be warned, NO TRESPASSING ALLOWED.
There have been plans to demolish the existing structures at George AFB, but demolition and clean-up has been “in progress” for over a decade.
Complicating the clean-up process is the contamination of the base’s soil and groundwater by jet fuel, pesticides, and other hazardous materials.
The city of Victorville has plans to use part of the site as a future rail yard, but these plans have been delayed due to the environmental and economic issues.
Among the abandoned structures are hundreds of homes, a hotel, hospital, barracks, photo lab, and a couple of schools.
The sprawl of abandoned (and occasionally dilapidated) buildings, dead landscape, and years of collected tumbleweeds creates a very eerie site. George AFB consisted of a large number of buildings based on standardized plans and architectural drawings, with the buildings designed to be the “cheapest, temporary character with structural stability only sufficient to meet the needs of the service which the structure is intended to fulfill during the period of its contemplated war use” was underway. To conserve critical materials, most facilities were constructed of wood, concrete, brick, gypsum board and concrete asbestos.
The AFB was designed to be nearly self-sufficient, with not only hangars, but barracks, warehouses, hospitals, dental clinics, dining halls, and maintenance shops. There were libraries, social clubs for officers, and enlisted men, and stores to buy living necessities. Over 250 buildings, together with complete water, sewer, electric and gas utilities, the airfield served over 4,000 military personnel. In 1993, President Bill Clinton announced a “Five Part Plan” to speed economic recovery in communities where military bases were to be closed. One part of this plan called for improving public participation in the base’s environmental cleanup program. George AFB was among a number of installations where environmental cleanup was placed on a “fast track” so base property could be quickly transferred to the community for reuse. Many of the old base homes and buildings are currently used by the Army and Marine Corps for urban warfare training.
Cement factory silos outside of Victorville, CA
Welcome to Jack O’Landia, a strangely vacant Western amusement in the heart of Lucerne Valley.
Jack O’Landia is a monument to eccentricity located along Highway 18.
Abandoned theme park, folk art piece or both? You decide.
Many locals say they have never actually seen it open, but claim it has been standing for over 30 years. RIP Vic!
Welcome to JOL, NOT!
First Vic and now Freddy? Who’s next?
Painted rocks between Lucerne Valley and Joshua Tree.
“The Peace And Fucking Love Roadtrip”
What, no Mork?
I love art and my [sh]Arts but I generally despise seeing shit like this out in nature. FU Hawley!