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American Road Magazine
Celebrating our two-lane highways of yesteryear…And the joys of driving them today!

Old Spanish Trail -- Happy 91

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At a busy intersection in St. Augustine, Fla., across the road from the Ripley's Believe It or Not! Museum, sits a large boulder of coquina stone six feet in diameter.


Few notice it today, but this rock marks the beginning of the Old Spanish Trail -- an early transcontinental highway that laid the groundwork for Interstates 8 and 10.


This is our favorite time of year, but not because of the holidays. Right around now -- in fact tomorrow -- is another anniversary of the Old Spanish Trail.


Traces of the trail still exist today, including the coquina monument in St. Augustine and a marker in San Diego at the trail's end.


In between lie hundreds of miles of bypassed two-lane sections of U.S. 80, 90 and 290, each with small towns, mom-and-pop restaurants, and many of the same historical attractions advertised in the OST travel guides.


The San Antonio-based OST 100 is planning a large cross-country motorcade in 2019 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Texas regrouping. Co-chair Charlotte Kahl hopes that the motorcade will lead people to "revitalize and preserve sections of the Old Spanish Trail."


Just as decades ago, Kahl hopes the stories of the conquistadores and padres will inspire modern drivers to retrace the OST. We think she's right.


Happy 91!





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