There are Route 66 guides that do an excellent job of conveying the history of Route 66 and its attractions and guiding the Route 66 traveler. But one drawback is that earlier guides can’t tell you that the Route 66 Cafe in Cuba is no longer in business or that the Wagon Wheel Motel is under new management and rooms are being renovated.
Now, with creator River Pilot’s $9.99 Route 66 Attraction Guide that uses GPS technology on Garmin devices, travelers of Route 66 can get more up-to-date information that will be updated quarterly. This is an idea whose time has come as many travelers, car rental companies, etc. now rely on GPS guides. Even smart phones use GPS technology.
When I first read of this new product on Ron Warnick’s Route 66 News site, I wondered if Cuba was included in the new guide. Later, I emailed tour guide, adventurer River Pilot and asked him about his new venture and Cuba’s role in it. In a reply, he stated, “I personally find Missouri a wonderful state for riding and exploring, and Cuba is an example of a great American town that is picturesque, friendly, charming, and embraces Route 66 travelers with authentic attractions and history.”
River Pilot came through Cuba in September, 2010 and stopped in and met Connie Echols, the owner of the Wagon Wheel Motel and other business owners. As of now, the Points of Interests (POIs) in Cuba that are on the new guide are the following:
1. The Carr Phillips 66 station and murals
2. Frisco’s Grill and Pub
3. Missouri Hick BBQ
4. The Wagon Wheel Motel
5. The Fanning Outpost, which includes the chair and the General Store.
River says that it is hard to list so many murals as he is limited to how many POIs he can include, so he prefers to get travelers to Cuba and then they can explore the murals on their own. He remarked that he has also kept museum info in all states to a minimum at this time for the same reason.
Pilot has ridden motorcycles for over 33 years and has extensive backcountry experience on both motorcycles and horses. He says, “If adventure, endurance riding, travel, or exploring is your taste then we’ll have much to talk about.” He goes on to state, “I have lived throughout most of the U.S. and traveled in 49 of the 50 states.”
He is the owner of an Oregon based tour company, and has traveled extensively both in the U.S. and internationally to find tour itineraries to make them one-of-kind and interesting to guests.
He will kick off the 2011 travel season with tours of Route 66 starting in April. He says,” Route 66 is one of our favorites tours, and we are experienced in catering to international and regional clients in groups of from 5-30.”
River and his team spent 2010 leading tours, studying the road, and exploring off the-beaten-path locations where they met characters of the road. To prepare his GPS guide, Pilot consulted with Federal and State Route 66 Resources, Route 66 Associations, Academia, Professional Researchers, Historians, and Route 66 experts, while spending months on the road personally researching and exploring every one of these waypoints to bring travelers an up-to-date product.
Now, Route 66 travelers, can use this experience and technology of the GPS Route 66 Attractions Guide, which can be updated periodically. It will be interesting to see how travelers respond to this new way of travel. They will be the real judges of this venture.
Just so that they remember, all Route 66 adventures include Cuba, MO “Route 66 Mural City.” And keep those earlier manuals. They contain history and anecdotes of the road that cannot be duplicated.
To read all of the features of the Route 66 Attractions, visit its website, read reviews, see the warranty, and decide if you think it is for you.