Wednesday 9 October 2013

The Loneliest Road in America

Life Magazine dubbed it "The Loneliest Road in America" in 1986.  Paralleling a section of the old Pony Express, Interstate 50 stretches 287 miles across Nevada.   Interstate 50 is an ashphalt belt that runs along the white desert floor, under deep blue skies pierced by jagged rocks.  While it has empty stretches that could put a driver to sleep, it also has picturesque sections with mountains that peak at 11,000 feet. An endless row of telephone poles line the route.

The Loneliest Road in America first opened in 1926.  While Life magazine proclaimed in 1986 that it had "no points of interest" other writers beg to differ:  hiking, skiing, snowmobiling and elk viewing are just some of the pastimes it offers.  If you are a history buff, the highway is home to ghost towns, many of which boomed during the Gold Rush of 1849.  Historic cemeteries also line the route.  Great Basin National Park is another attraction.

The Nevada Commission on Tourism has seized the label "Loneliest Road in America" to create an Official Highway 50 Survival Guide, helping to promote the forgotten road.  It has been travelled by not only tourists, but also photojournalists.  And yet it remains "The Loneliest Road in America".

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