Southern Pacific

I-8 is by far the fastest way east from Gila Bend to Tucson and beyond, but if you have the time and inclination to follow the old road, it took the long way around: From Gila Bend, US-80 veers north across the usually dry Gila River along what’s now an unmarked county road, then east through the towns of Arlington, Palo Verde, and Buckeye, where a 25-odd-foot statue of “Hobo Joe” stands along East Monroe Avenue downtown.

US-80 runs through downtown Phoenix on Van Buren Street (which was also US-60 and US-70) before heading south to Tucson.