Riding Devil’s Elbow, MO

Devil’s Elbow Route 66 Bridge

Ever wonder why it’s called Devil’s Elbow? In the days of logging in the Ozark mountains, lumberjacks would inevitably get their logs jammed at a particularly sharp downstream bend. That corner was fondly named “Devil’s Elbow.” Clever, right?

Despite the connotation of the name “Devil’s Elbow,” the area has been classified as a top “beauty spot” in Missouri. And, with the original Route 66 passing right through the area, there’s a lot to see on two wheels.

Allow us to offer you a brief riding tour of Devil’s Elbow.

The Classic Devil’s Elbow Route

A favorite among riders is the eastbound route from Devil’s Elbow to Doolittle, MO. The ride starts on Teardrop Road. Follow it across the Devil’s Elbow Bridge and follow Route 66 for about 20 miles until you reach your destination.

There are many well-preserved historical sites along the way, including the bridge, River Run Trading, the Stony Dell Resort, and Vernelle’s Motel. Don’t forget to stop and snap a photo!

Visit the Devil’s Elbow Route 66 Bridge

This bridge has historical significance, playing an integral part in connecting commerce between formerly isolated communities. The bridge is 589 feet long and goes over the Big Piney River.

Piney Beach Resort

No longer open for business, you can still take a look at the historic site. During its heyday, there were nine cabins, a log, and access to a private beach. The cabins were open until a 2017 flood, and there’s talk that the resort will be restored to its former glory. We’ll keep you posted!

The Elbow Inn

Known as a top biker destination on Route 66, stopping at The Elbow Inn is a must. Its humble beginnings were as a sandwich shop during the Great Depression, but when a four-lane road was added during the war to accommodate military traffic, the inn naturally expanded to accommodate the increased demand for food and lodging.

Later the inn was classified as a popular biker hangout, and tourists and locals flocked to the waterfront bar on lazy summer afternoons.

After the owners refused to renew the lease in 2019, the bar got a “facelift” and is being revamped to its original purpose of a sandwich shop, preserving the original look and feel.

Alternate Route: Devil’s Elbow to Osage Beach

This route takes you in the opposite direction, where you’ll head northeast from Devil’s Elbow to Osage Beach – home to Lake of the Ozarks State Park. The overall route is 52 miles, and the curves are plentiful. Enjoy the two-lane stretch of road flanked by lush, green forests.

The route starts much the same as the first route, beginning at Teardrop Road. However, you’ll soon switch directions after a brief stretch on Highway 66. Most of the route is on Highway 44, which replaced the classic Route 66, and is now the longest highway in the state.

Highlights on this route include the Uranus Missouri Towne Center, which has plenty of classic kitsch to bring home the nostalgia. The General Store houses the Uranus Fudge Factory, and the historic City Jail is nearby, too.  

Add Devil’s Elbow to Your Bucket List

Not all of the original Route 66 is open to traffic, but the area around Devil’s Elbow is alive and well. It is undergoing changes, but many landmarks are historically protected, and it’s exciting to see the old blend with the new.

The area is exceedingly motorcycle-friendly, so don your helmet and come on over. If you ever find yourself in an accident, please don’t hesitate to call Law Tigers anytime at 1-888-863-7216. We also offer riders a free Rider’s Benefit Card for additional protection and special bonuses.