3/25 - 3/28
We Rode All The Way to the Kartchner Caverns,
the Chiricahuas & Tombstone! Here Are The.....
Well folks it's going to be long report because it was a long ride!
First thing I want to do is thank Ron Neagle for setting up this ride. He did a great job and I can't begin to tell him how much I and everyone else appreciates all his hard work.
Rob, Daryl, Carl, John G, Strawbobrob, and I took off at 9:00am from the Wheel Inn. Our route took us down the 10 fwy to the 111 hwy past the Salton Sea to El Centro for gas and a break. The weather was great and the roads were clear. We then took the 8 fwy to Gila Bend for another gas stop. From there Rob and Daryl split from us and keep going on to Marana. The rest of us wanted to take a route along hwy 85 and 86 through the Indian Reservations. It was about a 100 miles farther so we didn't get in until around 7:00pm. Wayne and Teri from Vegas came in shortly after. Ron had arrived earlier and we all enjoyed a late dinner.
It was an early start for us on Friday with a 8:00am kickstands up. Unfortunately Strawbobrob had a return to So.Cal this day for an unforeseen problem at home. Michael K, Robin, Tim, Sherry, Chuck and Bob from the Arizona VRCC showed up to join us for the ride. Ron lead us through the Saguaro National Park. The cactus was very thick and beautiful. Then it was on to Kitt Peak for a break and a look around the observatories. It was very cool on top with a temp around 48 degrees with some wind as well. You could see in every direction all the beautiful Arizona country side. Next stop was Three points for gas and then it was on to lunch at the Cow Palace. They gave us great service and the food was very good. After lunch Ron once again lead the way up hwy 19 to Tombstone. We hung around there for awhile and look at all the historical sites. It's hard to believe sometimes that we were standing in the very spot the Wyatt Earp and his brothers used to live and work. From Tombstone it was off to Sierra Vista and the Best Western to check in for the night. Some of us went to dinner at Outback Steakhouse and it was great fun.
It was an even earlier start at 7:30am. Ron took us to the Karchner Caverns for early tour. The Caverns were absolutely wonderful. They took such care to preserve them and it is truly something everyone should see. You had to walk through two special chambers and be misted down to keep all the contaminates from your body from falling onto the formations. I'm sorry to say they wouldn't let us take any pictures. The tour took about 90 minutes with a 15 minute movie at the beginning. We then made our way to Bisbee for lunch. Bisbee is a great old mining town and I was very surprised to see this giant hole in the ground on the way out. With a quick stop for gas it was off to the Chiricahuas National Park. The rock formations are truly spectacular. As Carl said they wouldn't last 5 minutes in So.Cal. with all the earthquakes we have. It looks like a slight breeze would just topple them over. I'm glad Ron was leading because I was completely turned around. It was back to Marana again for our last night. Most of the Arizona riders had left us now as they didn't need to stay being so close to home. We had dinner at the Cracker Barrel which is always good.
Well it was all over except for the ride home. John, Rob and Daryl left around 7:30 and Carl and I waited until 9:00 to ride to Vegas with Wayne and Teri. Wayne's friend Mike and his wife meet up with us as well for the ride back. All went well until we hit Tempe Arizona. Wayne had a blow out on his rear tire on the 10 fwy. Carl and I were up ahead and heard him tell us on the CB. After a few minutes of waiting Carl and I turn around to help them. Carl used his AAA to arrange a tow but the problem was where do you take it on a Sunday to get a new tire. Then I thought about Big BF and I new he lived in Phoenix but how do I get in touch with him? As we were waiting for the tow truck we saw Ron ride buy. I tried to call him earlier but it went to voice mail. He did see us and turned around and pulled up with us. I asked him about Big BF and he tried to make a few calls to get a hold of him but could not. He then went to Bills house and luckily he was home and could help Wayne. Bill went off to find a tire while we got the bike on the tow truck. Ron gave me Bill's address and I put it into my GPS. His house was about 20 miles away so it worked out well. Bill had everything need to change a tire. From bike lifts and tire changing and balance machine to do the job correctly. We lost about 5 hours by the time it was all taken care of but I thank God that Wayne and Teri were not hurt and Ron and Bill were there to help them. A big thank you to Big BF for taking time out of his Sunday to help a fellow VRCC member. By the time we left it was 4:00 and we thought we would stay in Laughlin for the night. By the time we got to Kingman we were all tired and decided to stay at the Travel Lodge. We all slept in a bit but Carl and I were on the road by 8:30 while Wayne and Teri left later as they didn't have as far to go.
It was a great weekend and I'm glad everyone made it home safe. I'm sure this is something we will do again next year. There are many places to see in Arizona and I would like to see them all.
See you on the next ride,
Southern California Event Calendar