Utah


at long last, I am back, with some photos for everyone … highway signs which showed up at Roy Reed’s gas and oil collectible swap meet, and then some scenery from the subsequent days, when I found I had some time on my hands and did a quick trip up to the Bay Area and Sacramento. enjoy!


This poor guide sign has been cut into three pieces – and one is missing. But still, this is the only ACSC diamond I have ever seen which mentions “Arizona State Highway” and, even more spectacularly, the Grand Canyon! Certainly unique.


After Roy’s, we explore many roads – not all of which go to any particular place.


Well, what do we have here? Oh, just the only known surviving cateyed sign in California! This stop sign dates to between 1934 and 1942, and is the first cateyed sign anyone’s seen since the mid-1990s. A miracle that it would survive… and it does!

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Over the holiday weekend, I took a trip that concentrated heavily on US-50 from I-15 in Utah to Carson City. This batch barely gets us there, as we head up the US-91 corridor (approximately) from San Diego to Utah, and then turn west, stopping in Ely, Nevada for the night.

those that click on the large versions of the photos may notice… new camera! Larger pictures for your enjoyment. When my D50 died at 99872 exposures, I upgraded to the D5000. This trip served to field-test it in a variety of conditions.


Pointy rocks and high clouds, by the side of the Kelso-Cima Road, which is a very old US-91 alignment. Before they built the road in the 30s that would be upgraded to I-15 in 1962, a somewhat more indirect highway followed the railroad between Cima and Kelso, and that was US-91.


US-50 in western Utah. 1am on a foggy night. As there was no place to pull over, I stopped the car in the middle of the road and set up the tripod next to it. No cars came in the six or seven minutes I was stopped. Indeed, no other vehicles between Hinckley, Utah and Majors Junction, Nevada – over 100 miles!

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The last of the trip from December ’07. Utah, Nevada, and California.


Nope, this is not the Great Salt Lake – this is the Bonneville Salt Flats in winter, when there is a thin layer of collected rain and melted snow… and people drive in it.


Tiny houses, colossal mountains. Somewhere in Nevada at sunset.


Well past dusk, near Battle Mountain, Nevada.


Donner Lake, the next morning.


Clouds over the east bay. The view from I-680; and yes, that part of California is greenest in … January.

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the eighth day of my trip across the Rockies. Here, having survived Million Dollar Highway, we head west across Utah on I-70, to get to I-15 and scour Salt Lake City for old signs.


The very, very first rays of sunrise. An old, abandoned alignment of US-6 and US-50 near Thompson, Utah. A two-minute exposure at earliest dawn, with Venus tracking steadily across the skies on the left.


Sunrise over the red rocks.


I-70 in Utah across the San Rafael Swell. One of the last major sections of road to be built – this segment of highway was untraversable by car until 1986. There still remains a section between Green River and Salina that is 110 miles long without services: the longest stretch on the entire interstate highway system.


Mountains beyond the Great Salt Lake, as seen at sunset.

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these photos go very far back – to a trip I took in December, 2007 … crossing the Rocky Mountains and the Continental Divide several times, including a dead-of-night blizzard trip across the treacherous Million Dollar Highway in western Colorado!

here is the first day of that trip – the Bay Area to Arco, Idaho.


The Sierras, in southeast Oregon. Just about the northernmost extent of this mountain range.

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And, finally, we have the third part of the trip – from Antelope Canyon to New Mexico. Daniel Brim and I, driving a cargo van… always fun exploring narrow old roads in a big old vehicle like that!

Navajo Highway 5056
Here’s a 1950s Indian road sign! Complete with peeling numbers on some of the oldest engineer grade (does not fade to green) scotchlite I have ever seen. They invented the stuff in 1950 and this is not much newer than that. 18×12 inches; somewhere in southeast Utah near the Four Corners area.

Utah U. S. highway 191
This might very well be a meteor in daytime! I just noticed this when I was processing these photos – note the smoke trail in the middle. I have the photo from 1 second before, and 4 seconds after, and they show nothing – but this one definitely has that black streak, which I believe to be a smoke trail from a very bright meteor.

Colorado U. S. highway 160
Behold the birds. Pagosa Springs, Colorado has this lake, fountain assembly… and swans!

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Photos from late August of this year, when Daniel Brim and I drove from California to New Mexico … in a moving van. Always fun doing three-point turns on narrow old alignments. We stopped at Antelope Canyon along the way – and this set will not include any pictures from there, as it ends just as we get there. The next batch will be the canyon itself.

California U. S. highway 466, California state route 58
Part of the collection of someone who wishes to remain anonymous. Well, the signs are visible to anyone from the public right-of-way, so you can go find them if you want! This style of directional sign, complete with glass reflectors, was used on high speed thoroughfares from 1933 to the early 50s.

Nevada U. S. highway 91, Nevada U. S. highway 93, Nevada interstate 15, Nevada state route 167
Nevada state route 167 branches off of old US-91. The road is lit from the side by a truck stop immediately behind us, that serves Interstate 15.

Nevada U. S. highway 91, Nevada U. S. highway 93, Nevada interstate 15, Nevada state route 167
The truck stop, now with actual truck.

Arizona U. S. highway 91, Arizona interstate 15
The Virgin River Gorge – Arizona interstate route 15. Whereas old US-91 went around it, I-15 was blasted straight through, saving about 30 miles.

Utah state route 59
Fires in Los Angeles result in skies like this in Utah.

Utah state route 59
One from Dan, from the same general vicinity. His pictures can be found here. Go look, as his are generally like mine, except more awesome.

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Time for some photos from my trip from San Diego to eastern New Mexico and back, in November 2008. This batch is from the first day of my trip, and is heavily centered around Utah. Specifically: highway 95 in southeast Utah, crossing the Colorado River in red rock country.

Nevada U. S. highway 91, Nevada U. S. highway 466
The only button copy sign in Nevada. This one is very, very old.

Utah U. S. highway 91
Ominous clouds over old US-91 in southern Utah.

Utah state route 24
Red rock country. Utah, everybody.

Utah state route 95
Highway 95 at sunset.

Utah state route 95
Highway 95 somewhat past sunset. This wide-angle shot (about 140 degrees field of view!) is made possible by a fisheye lens and a rectilinear conversion tool. Large version of image is 7000 pixels wide!

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Opened September 13, 2008, the Legacy Parkway (Utah 67) represents a new freeway-level roadway from Interstate 215 in North Salt Lake to Interstate 15 & U.S. 89 in Farmington. The road was a 12-year project in the making, and features aesethic aspects to enhance the experience of its drivers.

Interstate 15 enters the interchange with U.S. 89 south and Legacy Parkway south of their respective ramps with Park Lane.

Curves built into the roadway accent Legacy Parkway views of the Wasatch and other natural features. Stone-facades added to the overpasses and other roadway elements compliment the roads’ scenic byway designation. A 2,225-acre preserve was purchased and restored to its natural state along the western frontage of the parkway to go with the pedestrian/bike and horse trail.

Stone monuments line both sides of the Legacy Parkway at its southbound beginning.

Legacy Parkway cost $685-million to build and carries four lanes overall. Tractor trailers are prohibited, but speed limits are set at just 55 mph on the road meant to provide up to 30% traffic relief along parallel Interstate 15. Only two interchanges are available along the 14-mile route, the northern with Parrish Lane in Centerville and southern at 500 South in Bountiful.

Initially Legacy Parkway and Interstate 15 & U.S. 89 travel side by side through to the State Street overpass.

Sources

I-15 in Arizona has been completely resigned. The changes noted:

  • Exit 9 is now “Desert Springs” instead of Farm Road.
  • An increase in the number of distance signs. There are at least 3 distance signs each way pointing to St. George, Cedar City and Salt Lake northbound – southbound to Cedar Pocket, Mesquite, and Las Vegas.
  • The advance signs for Business Loop 15 in Mesquite on southbound I-15 are now all ADOT standard, and not placed by NvDOT.
  • Utah’s I-15 signs look just as bad as they ever did around St. George. The new exit, exit 13 (Washington Parkway) is now open.