Blown Away and Freeze Dried in AZ - Rt 66

Saturday, September 28, 2013

As we mentioned in the last post, high winds took over the area on Wednesday so we opted to stay an extra day in Holbrook, AZ. Great, right? Sure...until they extended the warning for another 24 hours. We had already booked our hotel in Williams, AZ for Thursday and two nights in Kingman, AZ.

We got up Thursday morning to winds much higher than Wednesday morning but the temps were still reasonable. We loaded up and headed out as early as we could. The wind was heavy with a lot of gusts. We ended up staying on I-40 most of the way, stopping in Flagstaff for gas before landing in Williams around one. We were both well beaten up by the winds. There were reports of gusts of almost 50 mph. Yipes! We did take time to stop in Winslow, AZ for some fun photos!

We checked into the hotel, dressed comfortably and headed out for lunch. I was ready for a good beer and knew exactly where I wanted to go - Cruiser's 66 Diner. I ordered a Starry Night Stout and Stu got a sampler. Oh yeah, we ordered sandwiches, too. ;) We took our time, relaxing and enjoying the beer and the meal before browsing the gift shop and then checking out a a few gift shops up and down the main street. Most were the same as the last time we were here but a few had changed. The whole downtown area was doing very well, storefronts freshly painted and busy. We ran into a lot of European tourists, leading us to suspect a tour bus had stopped in town.

A quiet evening in the hotel, a good night's sleep and we woke to temperatures in the 30's. Yipes! Knowing we didn't have a long ride into Kingman, we took our time at breakfast. The sun was shining warmly but once we did get rolling, the temps were brisk. Actually, they were COLD! My heated jacket liner wasn't working well so when we stopped in Ash Fork, I switched the plug to another outlet. We had a fun stop at Ash Fork, chatting with some folks who were local and out riding around in their classic cars. This is also the stop where back in 2005, I had a couple of Asian gentlemen admiring my "Harry Davidson" motorcycle.

Back on the road to Seligman, it got colder and even with a rain liner, the heated vest, a long-sleeved shirt over a short-sleeved shirt, topped off with my mesh jacket. I stayed chilled most of the day, not warming up until we dropped to a lower altitude. It was obvious the mesh was letting too much air flow through, negating the warmth from the heated liner.

Seligman was packed, one tour bus was pulling out, quickly followed by two more pulling in. Motorcycles lined the streets and cameras were everywhere. The town was like Williams in that fresh paint was everywhere and we saw several new businesses open as compared to our last visit there.

We drove through some beautiful country - snapped a few shots where it was safe to pull over and passed up many others because it wasn't. We also passed two men and a burro or donkey who were walking for Wounded Warriers (Stu saw the banner on the trailer up ahead of them).

We finally rolled into Kingman just before two, pulled into Flying J and grabbed some lunch at Denny's. The Travelodge was just across the street and The Mother Road Harley-Davidson dealer was just around the corner. While Stu checked into the hotel, I got my clutch adjusted at the dealer's. While there I lucked into a great jacket on sale, something to keep me warmer on these chilly days. Of course, now the weather will be back up in the 80's as we continue on to Santa Monica. LOL! Then again, there's still the ride home...

Tomorrow we meet up with some friends for breakfast and then we'll drive the Rt 66 trip up to Oatman where we'll visit the burros. That should be fun and good for photos!

We made it to Arizona - Rt 66

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The morning started out cool, as expected, so we layered up. Of course by the time we got on the road, it was already warming and the trend continued all day. So we layered down...LOL!

It didn't take too long to move out of New Mexico and into Arizona. We had one road construction detour that forced us to stay on I-40 so we didn't get much back road riding. But that was okay, it gave us even more time to enjoy the Painted Desert/Petrified Forest National Park. We spent all afternoon, starting out with lunch at the visitor center (after we bought a few things) and continuing until around 4pm when we headed off to Holbrook.

Here is a sampling of pictures we took, including some panorama ones that Stu tried with his new camera. As always, there are more in the SmugMug album.

[click to see larger images]

High wind warnings for all areas west of us convinced us to book another night at the Howard Johnson's (where we had a great rate for a great room). Of course, now the wind warning has been extended another 24 hours but we already have reservations for the next three nights - one in Williams and two in Kingman (where we will do the trip up to Oatman on the trike). Hoping tomorrow isn't as rough as today has been. Time will tell....

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