|Clickable Map. A small segment of Route
66 stretches east from Bellemont. Across Interstate 40 a
longer piece of the old road heads to Parks.
|Directions: From Interstate 40, take exit #185 to Bellemont.
Turn south to Bellemont Road, which is one alignment of old Route
66. Go East on Bellemont Road to the Harley-Davidson
dealership and Roadhouse Bar & Grill. Further east, on the
north side of the road are the remains a Whiting Bros. service
station and motel, the Pine Breeze Inn, and finally, the end of the
A railroad community. Bellemont was a sawmill and
lumbering center along the Santa Fe Railroad. The railroad arrived
in 1882 where natural springs supplied two large tanks to provide water to
the thirsty steam engines. Its post office was established in 1887.
Today the Bellemont water company provides water for area residents to
truck back to lots which lack city water supply and wells.
Route 66 had a number of different routes in the Bellemont area.
During the half century life span of the Mother Road, it had at least
three different alignments in the area. As a result, the Route 66
enthusiast can visit more than one segment of the road.
|The "No Vacancy" sign from the Pine Breeze
Inn is proudly displayed above the pool tables at the Roadhouse Inn
Easy riding on Route 66. In the massively successful
motorcycle/hippie/druggie cult film Easy Rider (1969), long haired
bikers Captain America (Peter Fonda) and Billy (Dennis Hopper) ride up to
the Pine Breeze Inn in search of a room for the night. As a man is
seen cracking the motel office door, the "NO" on the neon
"VACANCY" sign begins to flash.
Today that "NO VACANCY" sign is proudly displayed at the
Roadhouse Bar and Grill, just a stone's throw west of the Pine Breeze Inn.
Unlike the motel's management in the movie, the Roadhouse doesn't just
welcome bikers, it thrives on them. It is filled with
Harley-Davidson and Route 66 memorabilia, and is a frequent stop for huge
groups of riders as they pass through the tiny Bellemont community.
For example, in August 2003, Bellemont was host to around 20,000 bikers on
their way across the country for the Harley-Davidson 100th Anniversary
|The remains of the Pine Breeze Inn's gas station and
office are at the East end of the Bellemont segment of old Route 66.
Bellemont has ample resources for bikers. On the other side of
the parking lot from the Roadhouse Bar and Grill, a Harley-Davidson
dealership offers bikes, parts and service for the cycles--with a
recreation of Route 66 right through the showroom. Bikers and
wannabes alike can even pick up leather Harley jackets or select from a
cornucopia of other clothing and HD related trinkets.
Meanwhile, the Richfield gas station that adjoined the Pine Breeze Inn
no longer offers gas to any motorist. It stands abandoned at the
eastern end of the Bellemont segment of the old road. The cabins
remain, and they would happy to let Captain America and Billy put up camp
in the 2.5 acres where the Pine Breeze Inn was situated.