I am hosting a tour of a portion of the Cajon Pass on August 12, 2017. It will cover the highway from the San Bernardino train station to Cajon Summit. The tour will be in a caravan with designated stops. If anyone is interested in this, please let me know. More details will follow soon.
Cajon Pass Tour - August 12, 2017
Posted 25 July 2017 - 01:00 PM
Great plan!! I would be there but 1100 miles from Olympia is a long drive for a day trip!!
In 1916 the Old National Trails Road route over the pass was described in the TIB Automobile Route Book west bound, starting at Cajon Pass as:
From this point on extreme care should be used in rounding turns and fording streams. Beware of burning out brake linings. Low speed should be used in ascending and descending these grades.
You probably have a period map handy, but for others Archive.org has the 1916 strip map set at:
And I can photograph my 1916 TIB strip map on request. I no doubt have other maps of the route, but the above are quite useful as contemporary descriptions (pre US66).
Posted 25 July 2017 - 04:28 PM
My 1913-14 Automobile Tour Book – California by the Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company shows the route on one of its strip maps. The particular map covers San Bernadeno to Ludlow so it isn’t very detailed. But the comments are interesting.
Between San Bernadeno and Ludlow there is gas and oil available only at Victorville. And the grades between Verdemont and Hesperia, in other words, Cajon Pass, reach 18%!!
I wondered when the Automobile Blue Book folks recognized the National Old Trails Road as an important transcontinental route. It was not until the 1915 Mississippi River to Pacific Coast edition. Prior editions 1911-1914 did not note the route.
I photographed the route turn by turns from the 1915 edition, probably a bit “esoteric” for most, but it might add a touch of history nonetheless.
Note how sharp the curves must have been (see second scanned page below). Long wheel based automobiles had to back up to make the turns!!
Given the 1915 description, will you be sounding the horn frequently?
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