Travel Stories

Cadillac Ranch | The Beauty of a Pit Stop

After a short stay in Albuquerque, it was time to drive to Texas. We were only stopping in Amarillo, Texas for night before we headed off to Louisiana.

As we drove into Amarillo, we came across a row of colorful cars off in the distance when my mother said “Oh my god! That’s Cadillac Ranch!” She told us she had read about it on a road trip guide book a while back and she couldn’t believe we had accidentally stumbled upon it.

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Rather than just drive by and take pictures from the car, we took a moment to stop and check out Cadillac Ranch.

According to Wikipedia, Cadillac Ranch is an art installation that was done by part of an art group called Ant Farm, whose members consisted of Chip Lord, Hudson Marquez, and Doug Michaels. In 1974, they used ten old, used and junk Cadillac models from 1948 to 1963, to be displayed in a creative way for all to see. (“Cadillac Ranch” theroute-66.com)

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Although not in the original spot, they are now two miles west from the original site.

Walking up to the collection of cars in the middle of the wheat field was really cool. The cars stood tall, covered in graffiti and laying around the cars were dozens of spray paint bottles for people all over the world to make their temporary mark on the cars.

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As we looked at the cars, there was quite a few people there sightseeing, spray painting and there was even a group of long bearded men playing some folk music.

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Seeing the antique cars standing felt like I was looking into a time machine. These cars used to be the type of models you would see driving around and now they were ancient contraptions on display.

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Because the cars were covered in graffiti, it felt almost illegal to be there admiring the art. It felt very much like being on the road as a hitchhiking during the Beat Generation like Jack Kerouac’s On The Road.

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I felt as he would say “a mad one”, to be on this journey with my mad family, where we were always willing to take a chance and have a pit stop wherever felt exciting and new.

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Taking time in Amarillo to have that pit stop gave me a chance, like all the places I had been to, for me to simply be there in the moment and marvel and the creativity of the people before us in order to inspire the creativity in ourselves.

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“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars…” – On The Road by Jack Kerouac

Thank you for reading and be sure to leave a comment about your favorite pit stops you’ve had! 

I'm a twenty-one year old wandering soul. I've been traveling the world and having adventures of all types since I was young. Welcome to my traveling journal, from swimming in the crystal blue Caribbean to hiking and yodeling on an Austrian mountain. Here we go!

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