Well, we are on the downhill side of August and I am looking forward to
seeing September and the prospects of some cooler nights. If you
missed the newsletter last week about our Jeep trip over Imogene Pass from
Telluride to Ouray, Click Here to Read. This will definitely get you to cooler country at over
But if you want to stay a little closer to home, I have a ride
that I have spoken about before, that all of a sudden deserves a little more
urgency. Several months ago, we did the Queen Mine Tour in Bisbee which was
fascinating and well worth the effort. According to the Arizona Republic, they
might be shutting that tour down in the near future. The Queen Mine, a former
working mine is a major tourist attraction bringing in over 43,000 visitors per
year to Bisbee, and city officials are worried about the economic impact if the
tours end this year after nearly 40 years.
As quoted in the Arizona Republic about the possible closing of the Queen
Mine, “That possibility was on nobody’s mind in Bisbee until more
than a week ago when the mine’s owner, Phoenix-based copper and gold mining
company Freeport-McMoRan Corp., alerted Bisbee Mayor Adriana Badal and other
officials that it had detected elevated levels of radon at the mine in June and
planned to terminate the Queen Mine Tour’s lease in 60 days. The company told
the city the levels would not affect tourists but tour employees with long-term
exposure to elevated radon levels could be at risk from the naturally occurring
Freeport-McMoRan will be studying the matter over the next 4-6 weeks to
decided if they will continue the lease with the city of Bisbee to
safely operate the Queen Mine Tours. So if this tour has been on your bucket
list for a while, you might want to start making some plans to get down there to
see it while you can. There is certainly no guarantee that they will be able to
work this out. Here is the complete article from the Republic. Bisbee explores options to save the Queen Mine
Here is my story from our trip to the Queen Mine complete with
Queen Mine Tour –
an effort to find new destinations to bring to all of you, last Sunday Mrs. C. and I
checked another one off the list. I’m sure a lot of you have been to Bisbee, AZ
several times. We had too, but in the past, it was usually a ride through or a
destination for the night, and a quick walk around the town. What we hadn’t
stopped to see was the amazing history Bisbee has that was staring at us every
time we rode through. Always with time constraints, we just didn’t take the time
to enjoy it. This time, we made it a point to see what brought Bisbee into
existence well over 100 years ago.
community was founded in 1880 and named after Judge DeWitt Bisbee, a financial backer of the
Copper Queen Mine. Once known as “the Queen of the Copper Camps”, this Old West
mining camp proved to be one of the richest mineral sites in the world,
producing nearly three million ounces of gold and more than eight billion pounds
of copper, not to mention the silver, lead and zinc that came from the Mule
the early 1900’s, the Bisbee community was the largest city between St. Louis
and San Francisco. Bisbee, with a population of over 20,000 people in the early 1900’s, had
become one of the most cultured cities in the Southwest. Despite its culture,
however, the rough edges of the mining camps could be found in notorious Brewery
Gulch, with its saloons and shady ladies. Brewery Gulch, which in its heyday
boasted upwards of 47 saloons and was considered the "liveliest spot between El
Paso and San Francisco". (See www.discoverbisbee.com for more information.)
time we made it a point to see what started it all and went down to take
mine is located literally across the street and within walking distance from Old
Town Bisbee. Once you pay your $13 to take the tour, you are outfitted in a hard hat, miner’s headlamp with battery pack and
a yellow slicker before boarding a small train for your ascent 1500 feet into the
belly of Mule Mountain for a trip back in time. Tour guides, who are retired
Phelps Dodge Employees, lead the group deep into the mine where it is 47 degrees
to give you history of mining techniques, dangers, and what it was like in the
day of a miner complete with a demonstration of how they did the insertion
of dynamite and how to light the fuses. Our guide
named Joe was very interesting as he shared his 10 years of mining experience
were lots of questions from people on the tour, but one that I found interesting
was, “Since you are
stuck inside this mine for 8-10 hours per day, where do you go to the bathroom?”
The answer happened to be sitting right next to him. It was a 2 hole cast iron
portable toilet (see photo). He said you really tried not to have
to use it since it was 47 degrees in the mine, and that cast iron was very cold
to sit on.
history, as well as all history fascinates me. I think about the very
first person that ever picked up a rock laying on the ground and saw copper in
it. How in the world did they ever know that it could be extracted and used for
what would be the best metal to be used to carry electricity? The industrial
revolution with all of the innovation still baffles and fascinates me. The
history and innovation at the Queen Mine is also very intriguing. The following
is an excerpt from the Queen Mine web page.
Bisbee Mining History
story of Bisbee mining began in the late 1870’s when Lt. Dunn, in charge of a cavalry
detail from the frontier Army post of Fort Huachuca, was on a scouting mission
against the Apache Indians. Lt. Dunn and his men headed for a spring in the Mule
Mountains to camp for the night. The party camped on a spot of fairly flat
ground in the canyon below the spring—a site now occupied by Old Bisbee, only
several hundred yards from the beginning of today’s Mine Tour.
a walk after dinner, Lt. Dunn picked up an interesting rock. He found a few more pieces
along the slope of the south wall of the canyon. Unable to do anything about it
because of military duties, Dunn took a prospector by the name of George Warren
into his confidence and struck up a deal by which Warren would locate claims and
work the property with Dunn as a partner. But on his way to the site, prospector
Warren stopped to visit some friends and enjoy his favorite pastime—whiskey
drinking. He soon has new partners and they staked a new group of claims and
left Dunn out of the deal. When Dunn came along later to check, he was on the
outside looking in.
production began on a limited basis around 1880. Individuals and then
companies with capital gradually became involved and took over individual claims
and brought them into production. Phelps Dodge Corporation, through a subsidiary
the Copper Queen Consolidated Mining Company, became the dominant force and
eventually the sole operator of the mining district. Building on its base in
Bisbee, Phelps Dodge had long been one of the largest copper producers in the
almost 100 years of continuous production before the Bisbee mines closed in
1975, the local mines
produced metals valued at $6.1 billion (at 1975 price) one of the largest
production valuations of all the mining districts in the world. This staggering
amount of wealth came from the estimated production of 8,032,352,000 lbs of
copper, 2,871,786 ounces of gold, 77,162,986 ounces of silver, 304,627,600 lbs
of lead and 371,945,900 lbs of zinc!
you have never taken the time to do a tour of the Queen Mine
, I would highly recommend
it. This will
definitely give you an insight as to what it takes to extract the ore that we
use every day, not giving it a thought of where it came from and what it took to
get it. Bisbee, AZ is located on Hwy. 80 just 220 miles SE of Phoenix, 95 miles
SE of Tucson, 23 miles S. of Tombstone and 15 miles N. of the Mexico border.
There are plenty of arts, crafts and shopping to fill an entire day in Bisbee.
There are also lodging opportunities including B&B’s, the historic Copper Queen
the eclectic Shady Dell. With the elevation at 5500 feet, Bisbee has desirable weather and is a
good destination to beat the heat in the summertime.
my Day Ride feature that I did on a ride to Bisbee/Tombstone a few years
Month of August
of Scottsdale Hydration Station
. Cool off throughout the month of August at
our Hydration Station on Saturdays from 11 AM – 2 PM in the service
area. Enjoy Cold Water and Sodas, Get misted, HDOS Swag, Cooldannas and even a
Dunk Tank to thoroughly cool you off. HD of Scottsdale is located at 15600 N.
Hayden Rd. in Scottsdale, AZ. 480-905-1903.
Saturday, August 24th
1. Download our mobile app here
2. Tap on the "Cardinals" tab
3. Enter for your chance to win tickets!
4. Visit the dealership for additional daily
Plus, ride with us to the game! Click
here to register to ride with us to the game.
Enjoy Hawaiian BBQ and ice cold beverages before the ride plus get a ride
Saturday, August 24th
4:30-5:00 pm Check-in at Harley-Davidson of
5:30 pm Kickstands up
7:00 pm Game starts
Sunday, August 25th
Come join us for:
: 6AM – 1PM. It is time to do some Summer
cleaning of your garage. Get rid of those used parts that you are no longer
using so you can get some new chrome. Used parts only. No competitive items or
bike sales pleas. Space is limited, so call 623-247-5542, or email email@example.com to reserve a spot.
Blood Drive: 10AM – 2PM. All presenting donors may
enter into a drawing for an in-store $200 gift card.
Ladies of Harley Bake Sale: Time to load up on some
good home baked delights. Starts at 8AM.
Arrowhead Harley Girls Bike Wash: 11AM – 2PM.
All of this while enjoying Live Music!
Arrowhead Harley-Davidson is located at 16130 N. Arrowhead
Ftn. Ctr. Dr. in Peoria, AZ. Just South of 83rd Ave. and Bell Rd. 623-247-5542.
Saturday, August 31st
Hogs & Dogs
. Join Buddy Stubbs Arizona Harley-Davidson on Saturday,
August 31st from 11am – 2pm, where the competition for top salsa
recipe will be red hot! Mix up a batch of your best salsa and come prepared to
taste the competition. Prizes will be awarded to first, second and third place
finishers based on majority vote! Not a salsa connoisseur? Don’t fret, enjoy
FREE hot dogs and sodas, live music, museum tours with Buddy as well as a bikini
bike wash! For more information, or to sign up for the salsa contest, contact
firstname.lastname@example.org. Buddy Stubbs Arizona
Harley-Davidson is located at 13850 N. Cave Creek Road., Phoenix AZ. Check them
out online at www.buddystubbshd.com.
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Here is a compilation of people doing
stupid things caught on film, and lived through it. Many will make you go Ahhh!
Click Here to
Video of the Week. When it comes to dumpster diving, this is one
creative bear. Click Here to View. Click on the
Video of the Week graphic on the
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Until Next Week,
Blessings and Safe Riding To
"The Road Is Yours - Take The Ride"
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