Ralph Gräf's stunning photographs of abandoned motels and gas stations along Route 66

© Ralph Gräf

You know what they say, get your kicks on Route 66. And that's certainly what Ralph Gräf did on a recent trip along America's most famous original highway, travelling from California to New Mexico. The German photographer – featured previously – has a soft spot for the abandoned and forgotten corners of the world and created this series, Route 66, The Mother Road, to document decaying motels, gas stations and shops along the highway.

"Many roadside reminiscences and curiosities are left reminding the traveller of the exciting past when the country was developed for long-distance car travels," says Ralph. "While some old historic motels and gas stations are still in use, many are abandoned and prone to decay."

Within this particular series, which focuses on California, the photo Gassing up at Roy's won the travel category in the Sony World Photography Award 2017 and the Germany National Award in the same contest. You'll find Ralph's whole portfolio at graef-fotografie.de.

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf

© Ralph Gräf