Depending on which way your going, Topock is the end of Historic Route 66 through Mohave County or the beginning starting at I-40. It is in the Mountain Standard time zone, elevation is 456 feet.

Topock has been an important crossing of the Colorado River for travelers for many years. Born in 1883, as a settlement alongside the new wooden railroad bridge, Topock has been witness to millions of travelers crossing the river first by train and ferry, and then, beginning in 1916, by automobile.

Located at the Arizona end of the, “Mother Road”, Topock has a long and storied history and a future full of promise. The community name derives from the Mohave term for “water crossing.”

In 1883, a small settlement began along the area where the Colorado was narrow enough to make it feasible for the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad to build a bridge. They built a wooden railroad bridge and then in 1890 the wood railroad bridge was replaced by the Red Rock Bridge,

"Old construction photo at Red Rock Cantilever Bridge nearing completion in 1890

The Needles Ferry began moving travelers across the Colorado in 1890.  The National Old Trails Highway crossed the Colorado river via the Needles Ferry.  In 1914, a flood took the ferry out of service. 

As an emergency measure, planks were put on the Red Rock Bridge and motorists crossed the bridge between trains.  The Red Rock Bridge continued to carry motor vehicles until the Trails Arch Bridge was completed on February 20, 1916.

When the Santa Fe Railroad opened a new bridge for their trains in 1945, the rails were removed from the old Red Rock Bridge, reinforcements were made, and the bridge opened for automobile traffic in 1947.

This photo shows the last train crossing Red Rock Bridge (center span) March 8, 1945 after new Santa Fe Bridge (left background) was completed. U.S. 66 crossing the river on the Old Trails Arch (far right).

When Route 66 abandoned the 800 foot Trails Arch Bridge the Pacific Gas and Electric took over the bridge.  They removed the roadway and replaced it with gas and utility lines. The bridge was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

In 1966, Interstate 40 came to the Colorado.  A four lane steel girder bridge was placed on five concrete piers immediately south of the 1945 Santa Fe girder and truss bridge and it was dismantled in 1978.

Today there are terrific outdoor activities located nearby and the great climate makes Topock the perfect place to visit.

The Colorado River provides some of the finest boating in Arizona. Boats, personal watercraft, canoes and other water toys can be launched from the marina. Water skiiers love the river with its current of 4 to 8 miles per hour which makes wakes disappear rapidly, leaving the “smooth as glass” effect that all water skiers are looking for.

For those on the river, Topock Gorge is located just 7 miles south where are fantastic rock formations, ravines, lava rock pinnacles, totem formations, and arches are everywhere. There are ancient Indian hieroglyphics on the Gorge’s beautiful wall.

Topock Marsh is great for fishing and hunting. Anglers find hefty rainbow trout, catfish, crappie, largemouth bass and stripers.

Havasu National Wildlife Refuge is located between Topock and Lake Havasu City along the river. Cattail and mesquite beautify the marsh and provide habitat for doves, quail, beaver, geese, and other wildlife. It is a great place for birdwatching of many varieties.

The surrounding area is an off-road vehicle paradise. Miles of paths through the desert are waiting to be explored. Those preferring more challenging off-road adventures will find many opportunities to traverse rugged terrain.

Kingman, Arizona - The Heart of Historic Route 66
Route 66 West of Kingman to Oatman, Golden Shores, and Topock
Route 66 East of Kingman to Peach Springs
Bullhead City Chloride Dolan Springs Golden Valley Kingman Lake Havasu City Meadview White Hills
Mohave County Recreation Mohave County Living Mohave Valley Living Northwest Arizona
Highways Boating Hunting Fishing Golf
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