and heading west on
you will soon come to Meteor City, an abandoned tourist attraction that enticed
travelers to stop for many years. Despite the name, Meteor City was
never the name of a town, but, rather, it was a
trading post. In addition to the many
items that it sold, it was, and still is,
a great photo opportunity with its geodesic dome and the world’s largest
The first business established at the site was a gas station in 1938.
Three years later, in 1941, a store was also built on the site. Somewhere
along the line the gas station closed. In 1979, a dome replaced the
rectangular building that housed the store. Unfortunately, the dome burned
in 1990 and was replaced by the current structure. After operating for
years, the owners tried to sell the business. However, when they had no
buyers, the property was left to nature, animals, and unfortunately
Today, though the building and its iconic dream catcher remain, it sits
abandoned and deteriorating each day in the desert sun.
With no one watching the "store" the Meteor City
Trading Post has been badly vandalized, Kathy Weiser, 2015.
Image available for photo prints & editorial downloads
Meteor City's famous dream catcher still stands,
David Alexander, 2015.
Image available for photo prints &
west of Meteor City,
is the road to the Meteor Crater, some six miles south of I-40. The crater was formed approximately
50,000 years ago when an iron mass, weighing over 60,000 tons entered the
Earth's atmosphere, resulting in the formation which is about 4,000 feet
wide and 570 feet deep.
During the hey days of
Route 66 a man named D.M.
Barringer built an observatory just off of the
so that the many travelers passing by the area could see the crater
without having to travel the additional six or so miles to the site. For
just 25 cents, travelers could stand from the observation tower and see
the crater through a telescope.
Today the observatory is nothing but
stone ruins; however, a visitor’s center and guided tours are available at
the crater itself.
Continuing west upon your journey you will soon see the
exit of Two
Guns. Here, there are actually two ghost
towns – Two Guns and Canyon
Diablo, one almost on top of the other. Located on the far side of the canyon, Canyon
Diablo was described, during its heyday, like this: "Tombstone,
Virginia City and Abilene could not hold a candle to this end-of-the-rail
depravity.” Two Guns,
built after Canyon
Diablo was already long dead, thrived during the peak years of Route 66
both towns sit silently looking upon the canyon below. Located on private
property, the site is sometimes inaccessible, with gates closed and photo
opportunities available only from the frontage road. At other times, the
gate is open, seemingly inviting a visit.
of America, updated August, 2015.