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Ghost Towns in Indian Country

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From the Laguna Pueblo, Route 66 continues through Indian Lands for a spell, passing  through a number of ghost towns before reaching Grants, New Mexico. Along this stretch you will see numerous stone ruins and foundations dotting the landscape. Made of native stone, these rustic old buildings easily blend into the surrounding countryside, so you will have to keep your eyes wide open and your camera ready.


Just a few miles beyond the pueblo you reach the small village of Paraje. A virtual ghost town, several old stone buildings can be seen here; however, people do live in the area. Paraje means "place” or "residence” and many villages were first called names like Paraje de Belen or Paraje de Bernalillo, because they served as a stopping point for travelers.




Route 66 ruins west of the Laguna Pueblo

You have to keep your eyes open wide to spot the

crumbling ruins along Route 66 as they blend so well with

 the natural landscape. December, 2004, Kathy Weiser.




Just three more miles down the road finds you at the tiny community of Budville. Named for H.N. "Bud” Rice, the town began when Bud and his wife Flossie opened an automobile service, trading post, and tour operation in 1928. Doing a great business to the many travelers of Route 66 for many decades, the store was held up by desperados in 1967 and unfortunately Bud was murdered. Flossie continued to run the family business for another 12 years before the business closed for good. Across the street the old King’s Café and Bar still stands with it vintage signage. Today, the cafe's name has been changed to the Midway and you can still get a hot meal and a cold beverage on this lonely stretch of the highway.


Budville Trading Company, New Mexico

Budville Trading Company, December, 2004, Kathy Weiser.



Budville, New Mexico Cafe

This old cafe and bar, once called the King's Cafe still

operates as the Midway along this stretch of the road.

December, 2004, Kathy Weiser.












Just another couple of miles brings you to the Villa de Cubero. Getting its beginning in 1937, it was named for the Spanish governor. This old place first occupied by Indians from San Felipe was once a famous stopover which included a tourist court, café, and trading post, and local population of over 1,000 souls. The tourist courts were so popular that Ernest Hemingway stayed here when he was writing Old Man and the Sea, and Luci stayed here after leaving Desi Arnez. Alas, all is boarded up today with the exception of the trading post that continues to hang on somehow.


Villa de Cubero Trading Post

The Villa de Cubero Trading Post is the only business

 that hangs on in this quiet little ghost town,

December, 2004, Kathy Weiser.


Old cafe in Cubero, New Mexico

Old cafe in Cubero, New Mexico,

December, 2004, Kathy Weiser.


Route 66 continues from Cubero through stretches of desert surrounded by beautiful multi-colored formations as you continue the short three miles to yet another ghostly town – San Fidel. Mt. Taylor, one of the highest peaks in the area, is visible along this section.



Continued Next Page


Ruins of old building at Parage, New Mexico

Ruins of old building at Parage, New Mexico,

December, 2004, Kathy Weiser.


Cubero, New Mexico Motor Court on Route 66

This old motor court in Cubero was not as lucky as the trading post, December, 2004, Kathy Weiser.


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