Cadillac Ranch: These Are Not Your Grandad’s Caddys

Featured Writer: Melissa Laundre

These Cadillacs are part of a roadside art attraction on The Mother Road, Route 66 in Amarillo, Texas.

In 1974, a group of wayward hippies teamed up with a wealthy businessman, Stanley Marsh III. The San Fransisco-based hippies called themselves Ant Farm. Mr. Marsh wanted a piece of public art that would both confuse and entertain the locals. Well done, fellas. This is just about as confusing as it gets. But it looks cool…

Ten Cadillacs were driven in the dirt and half-buried, nose-down so as to show off the famous tail fin of the Cadillacs. Supposedly, the Caddys were even buried at the same angle as the Great Pyramid of Giza. Not sure what, if anything, that means but I thought I’d pass it along.

People started stopping along the way to walk out and view the cars. Some actually would rip off pieces of the Caddys for souvenirs. Others, would “vandalize” the art exhibit by spray painting it.

And so the rest is history.

Visitors are now encouraged to park along the access road and walk out into the cow pasture to spray paint their own masterpiece on these cars.

If you do make the trip, don’t be shy. Bring some spray paint or just pick up one of the hundred cans lying near the cars and start your graffiti experience. Make sure you bring a camera though because Cadillac Ranch receives hundreds of visitors each day and it only takes a few hours before someone has already painted over your display.

If you go, remember, it’s free! Also, remember that you will be walking into a cow pasture; shoes or boots are essential, especially after a rain. 🙂

Directions: Just west of the Amarillo city line. I-40 exit 60. Drive south to the frontage road (old Route 66), then turn left. Drive east one mile. Cadillac Ranch will be on the right (south) side; just park your car along the shoulder and enter the pasture through an unlocked gate. Visitors are encouraged; dog friendly.

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Check out Bucket List Publications Online Magazine for more great photos and articles from bucket list seekers. 

52 thoughts on “Cadillac Ranch: These Are Not Your Grandad’s Caddys

  1. Such a wonderful work! Route 66 has so many magical pieces of Americana and art. I have a couple of route 66 images i will be posting as a complement to this article. I am so glad i am following you guys, great work!


  2. These Caddies are definitely a part of life in the area. While in Texas Tech Pharmacy School (located in Amarillo away from the Lubbock campus), members of the Phi Delta Chi pharmacy fraternity frequently haze littles by getting them drunk and making them stand around the Caddies for hours in the middle of the night… don’t ask me how I know…


  3. We’ve driven by these a lot. Fun to see. The cross/stations of the cross off of I-40 is another great place to visit.


  4. Love it! I told my husband that when he retires next year, I want Route 66 to be our first road trip – I want about 3 weeks!


  5. THESE ARE AMAZING!!! I have never seen anything like this. Thank you so much for posting this Melissa and sharing these incredible images with the world. I think I know where I am going on my next road trip!!!


  6. I have been through Amarillo many times and did not know about this Cadillac Ranch! This is AWESOME–and carries some very imporant messages about our culture, as well!


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