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By GJRonK (2267 McR Points) on Apr 18, 2013

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Written Directions

Start at Gila Bend, east end of town, just before the overpass. Turn north on Old Hwy. 80, bear right. Follow for at least 34 miles (of described route) or continue on to Buckeye, AZ.

Scenery

This is a fun route with some interesting stops. Gila Bend has gas and food-little else. As you travel north, you will briefly pass some desert (the whole countryside around here is desert climate), but with many farm operations thanks mostly to groundwater and some from the (now) dry Gila River. At about mile marker 6 (mm 6) there is a large orchard across from the Paloma Solar Plant, one of several solar collector plants along the way. At mm 22 is the interesting stop at the Gillespie Dam interpretive site. It has a good parking area, information on the history of the picturesque bridge and washed out dam just upstream. It's a good place for some photos. This is a refreshing and interesting place to stop for a break. You can view some marshland here along with large tamarisks (feathery, bushy trees which suck a lot of water from the ground near streams). As you proceed north, you will pass a number of sections of greenery (which is not all that common in this part of the country), black basaltic rock from old volcanic lava flows, and more farm country. The route ends near mm 34, by Salome Hwy (which is access to the Wickenburg Road), or you can continue straight on back towards Phoenix.

Drive Enjoyment

Mostly just straight on with turns only by the big bridge. Don't hurry. There is usually little traffic.

Tourism Opportunities

There is gas and food only at Gila Bend or the Phoenix suburbs.

Top Images

Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
Old Arizona Highway 80
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