Route 66 Roadtrip: Site Map > Maps
For paper maps and atlases of Route 66, see my Recommended Route 66 Resources page.
Official state highway maps by county. Also known by the name General Highway Map.
The US Geological Survey includes historical topographic maps in their map downloaders now. The digital versions of the maps are free, and are in the public domain. The USGS Store has "improved" their various map downloaders, of which they have several. They are not equally user friendly, nor do they all seem to carry the same set of historical map products. Keep in mind that there is often a huge gap between circa 1900 maps and the surge in maps produced starting in the 1950s and 60s. This makes it hard to trace the paths of early auto trails and highways before the Interstate building era.
This seems to be the most user friendly of the online download apps. Basic directions are plainly placed on the right. You can set date range and scale. You can also search for the topo name if known.
USGS Historical Topographic Map Explorer
This seems to be pretty useful and easy to use. Historic maps appear on a timeline when you click a location. Selecting one will place the historic map over the basemap as a layer. The opacity of this layer can be changed using a slider. A "download map" link is located right above this slider.
The National Map, Map View V1.0
This downloader is a bit less user friendly and less intuitive. I've set this link to include historical topographic maps.
The USGS Store Map Locator
This downloader seems to have replaced the old store downloader that was more user friendly IMO. It looks like the map frame within Map View above. You have to double click to set a search location pin. I don't see any 30-minute (1:100,000) maps in this downloader.
The USGS Store
It may be easier just to use this search form. Make use of the filter to set scale, etc. Don't filter for "US Topo", as those are only the very recent multi-layer PDF files.
Topographic Map Indexes — Early map indexes, old 30-minute and 15-minute map indexes, and later indexes for 1:250 000, 1:100 000, and large scale 7½-minute maps.
Digital Raster Graphics (DRGs) are simply digital images of scanned topographic maps. They are often PDF files or TIFF images. DRGs can be viewed using image editors, and graphics programs, but are often too large for these programs. Instead, they work best when opened by map reading programs specially designed to handle large DRG images.
One excellent program for the Macintosh is MacGPS Pro. MacGPS Pro not only opens the DRG file, but lets you connect to a GPS receiver and track your position on the map in real time. The program can also automatically calibrate the DRG for correct coordinates.
Below you will find links for state GIS web sites where you can download DRGs for free. They come in common topographic scales of 1:250 000, 1:100 000, and 1:24 000. The first two are very good for driving along 66, especially since they often show 66 and not the interstates! The smaller scales also mean you don't have to change maps as often.
Kansas: all of Route 66 is on one 7½-minute quad (Baxter Springs Quad, 1978 revision).
Download the whole GeoPDF file: Baxter Springs Quadrangle, 1978.
Oklahoma: Oklahoma Datawarehouse Image Downloader
This is not the most user friendly downloader. It only features 7½-minute maps also. It may be easier to use one of the national USGS downloaders. Method: Set Basemap to "Street." Click on the desired county. Choose UTM DRG (or Albers if your reader can open them also). Click on the quadrangle. A TIF download should open. A new tab or window will also open with TIFF World file data (.tfw) that can also be downloaded to accompany the TIF file if needed by the software.