Cyclerides.com Weekly Update
Well, this year I get to write the newsletter on my 49th birthday. It reminds me that it was 39 years ago when my fascination with 2 wheeled vehicles became apparent. I'll never forget when I through my leg across the seat of my first 3 hp. mini bike at age 10. I mowed lawns for $2.50 per lawn for 2 months to earn the $35 to buy my first set of wheels. As I think back now, that must have been a pretty big deal because I can still see in my minds eye the lawns that I mowed and remember saving up the $35 in anticipation of making my big purchase. Fast forward 39 years and several motorcycles later, I am still mowing my own yard and the passion for riding is still the same, although the equipment has gotten a little more expensive.
Unbeknownst to me that when I sold my 350 Scrambler when I left Kansas in 1980 that I was moving to one of the most interesting States in the nation to ride a motorcycle. But fortunately after a few small bikes in between raising a child, we were able to get back into the cruiser bikes and take advantage of the many sights that we have available to enjoy here in Arizona. And better yet, I am privileged to be able to write about these trips and share with you the many pictures from these rides. The most recent journey that Mrs. C. and I took was a ride to the Southern part of the State including Nogales, Tombstone, Bisbee, Kartchner Caverns and Saguaro National Park.
This was our first trip to this part of the State and one that I had been looking forward to for a long time. Not knowing much about the Southern part of the State, I called my buddy Bill Nash at Tucson Harley for some pointers and we were on our way. There is so much history in Tombstone and Bisbee that it is hard to even comprehend, much less absorb in a few hours in these towns. In order to take advantage of the best part of our riding we left Phoenix at about 6:30 in the morning and headed straight South on I-10 to Hwy 83 which is about 20 Southeast of Tucson. As you turn South on 83 you start a gradual rise to 4970 feet in elevation on your 25 mile ride to the small town of Sonoita. at the Junction of Hwy. 83 and 82. The country store named Sonoita Mercantile must be a popular rider stop as there were several groups of bikes there taking a break. From this point you can either go East on 82 and make your way to Tombstone or go West and take a nice ride through Patagonia to Nogales. It was only 10:00am and we had plenty time to take the 66 mile roundtrip, so it was a no brainer to find an excuse to tack on some extra miles and take the beautiful ride through the Santa Rita and Patagonia Mountains to Patagonia and then on to Nogales.
Once you reach Nogales you can park the bike and walk across the border for some sightseeing, but for us, it was all about the ride that day and we pulled the U-Turn at the border and experienced the ride from the other direction. I would recommend doing the same if you take this ride. You will go back through Sonoita and continue on Hwy. 82 for 20 miles to the junction of Hwy. 90. Turn South on Hwy. 90 for 10 miles to Fry Blvd. in Sierra Vista. This is also the main gate to Fort Huachuca. Turn Left on Fry Blvd. and go about 3 blocks to the Sierra Vista Harley store on the South side of the road. They have some excellent HD T-Shirt backs at this store. Everyone is very friendly so stop in a say hello. When leaving the dealership continue East another 2 miles to Hwy. 92. Turn North about 1/4 mile to Charleston Rd. and turn right. This will take you on your 17 mile journey to the town "Too Tough To Die", Tombstone, Arizona.
I'm sure most everyone has heard the stories of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, Wyatt Earp and the Boothill Graveyard, but I would recommend doing some reading before you go to really give you an appreciation of what went on in Tombstone in the late 1800's. It was apparently one wild town. Click Here for an excellent page of the history of Tombstone and several links for additional information.
We rode into Tombstone (elevation 4540 feet) on our Iron Horses and parked at the Hawg Corral with several other bikes. Tombstone was full of activity on this Saturday as tourists were taking a walk back in time on the wooden sidewalks just as they were in the 1800's. We enjoyed lunch and entertainment at Big Nose Kates Saloon followed by a walk through town, a customary tourist picture with the local Sheriff and a stop to view the actors performing an old west gunfight in the streets. The fun part about Tombstone is to walk the streets, look at some of the old pictures and artifacts and try to envision what it must have been like over a century ago when the saloon was hopping, there were gunfights in the streets and the likes of Wyatt Earp ruled the town. From there we took the short ride to Boothill Graveyard to see where the one's that lost the gunfight at the O.K. Corall were buried. It is a free tour and interesting to read the tombstones. Here is a particularly creative one.
After about 3 hours in Tombstone we followed Hwy. 80 the 23 miles to the old mining town of Bisbee, Arizona at an elevation of 5300 feet. History says that this town was once the most thriving town in all of the Southwest driven by the riches of copper and gold. But as with most mining towns, once the ore is gone, so are the people until the town is revitalized and turned into a tourist attraction. That has pretty much been the case with Bisbee. As you drop into Bisbee on Hwy. 80 there is a place to stop to get a great view of the town below.
Bisbee once thrived from the mining trade, but now the old buildings are inhabited by of art galleries, pottery sales and restaurants. My personal opinion of Bisbee is that it reminds me of Jerome, only a lot bigger and with a personality. Most all of the homes in Bisbee are built on the side of the hill similar to Jerome with very narrow roads to get to them. And when you go there you can't help but see evidence of the eclectic group of people that now call Bisbee home. It is reminiscent of the long haired, tie died look of the 60's, but their hair is now grey. I asked one of the locals about that and they said that the artsy types are finding Bisbee a desirable place to live. The old Volkswagen bus is even a vehicle of choice.
There are several Hotels and Bed & Breakfasts in Bisbee to choose from. We stayed at the Copper Queen Hotel. But there is also the Bisbee Grand on Main Street that looked pretty nice that I would try next time. While you are in Bisbee I would recommend riding up the hills on some of the streets to get a good look at the old homes and a great view of the city. They are narrow but you shouldn't have any problem with them. We didn't do the Queen Mine tour, but I have been told that it is very interesting. We ate at the Bisbee Grill located just across the street from the Copper Queen. It was very good. We also went to an old bar named St. Elmo's located just around the corner from the Copper Queen that had some great live music on Saturday night.
This is obviously a 2 day trip. From our house in the NW Valley we rode a total of 329 miles the first day spanning a 10 hour time frame. Most of this trip once you get past Tucson is at elevations of over 4000 feet, ending at 5300 feet in Bisbee. So if you can leave early in the morning like we did and get past Tucson before it gets too hot, it is still an enjoyable ride even this time of year. However, you do still have to get home and that can be a little warm. But it is possible to be home before noon if you leave early.
I give this ride 3.5 spokes out of 5. There is a lot of the same terrain, but the historical locations are worth the ride and one that I would certainly do again. Click Here for the photos from the ride. Click Here for the Day Ride Feature. I will be back next week with the ride home with a stop at the fantastic Kartchner Caverns and Saguaro National Park.
See www.cyclerides.com for all upcoming events.
This Week's Bike Night Events
Copper State Cycles Two Wheeled Tuesday. Who knew that north Scottsdale's newest bike night was such a great place to hang out. Last nights motorcycle trivia contest was a huge success, and the winner really enjoyed the grand prize. Join Copper State Cycles and K O'Donnell's this Tuesday for a great time on the mist cooled patio. Enjoy $2 Bud drafts, Happy hour pricing on appetizers or a great meal from the full menu. Come see the new 2005 Red Horse Customs on display and visit with your friends. K O'Donnell's American Bar & Grill (formerly Uno's Pizza) located in the north Scottsdale area at 14850 N. Northsight, just of of the 101 & Raintree. Every Tuesday night from 7:00pm until...... 61" TV's and music on the mist cooled patio! Reserved parking in plain view for all bikes. For more information call 480-596-6820.
Hooters at 1-17 and Bell Rd. Wednesday Bike Night. Hooters at I-17 and Bell will be hosting a new Bike Night every Wednesday night from 6pm - 9pm. They will feature a "Ride In" Bike Show with weekly prizes for 1st - 3rd. And then, the third Wednesday of every month we will crown the Bike of the Month with a Grand Prize and will also be featured on Cyclerides.com as the "Bike of the Week". We will have $2 Bud, Bud Light, and Mich Ultra bottles. There will be 20% off of all food and merchandise when you ride in on your bike. Stop by for loads of Raffle Prizes. There will be VIP Motorcycle Parking and you will be greeted at the front door by a Hooter's Girl waiting to give you your raffle ticket. Hooter's is located in the Bell Canyon Shopping Center at 2834 W. Bell Rd., West of I-17 on Bell Rd. 602-375-0000.
Thursday Night features 4 Bike Nights all over the Valley.
is one for those of you in the far East Valley!
Hooters Mesa Thursday Bike Night. Hooters in Mesa located at 6730 E. Superstition Springs Blvd. will host a Bike Night every Thursday night from 6-9 pm. If you haven't seen this Hooters yet you will have to stop by and take a look. This is one of the nicest locations that they have. Hooters will $2.00 Corona's and 20% off of food and merchandise if you ride your bike in. Stop by for raffles prizes every Thursday Night with Big Raffle prizes the first Thursday of every month. For more information call 480-396-9396.
Hooters at Arrowhead Bike Night. Continues Giveaways and Raffles. Ride by and join in on the fun! Hooters will host a Bike Night every Thursday at the Hooters at Arrowhead located just 1 block S. of Bell on 83rd Ave. Stop by for some great food and Hooters Hospitality. There will be 20% off menu items, $2.00 Corona Thursdays and plenty of parking next to the outdoor patio. Stop by for some giveaways and raffles from Hooters and Arrowhead Harley as well as great wings and fun at Hooters. Click Here to see Pictures and all the detailed information.
Casey Jones Grill Bike Night. A valley favorite bike night for over 3 years. Ride in and sit out on the patio for what I call the Best Cheesesteak Sandwich in town. This thing melts in your mouth. They have 3 new pool tables, darts and foosball. Located in the Mervyns Shopping Center on the SE corner of 43rd Ave. and Thunderbird Rd. Casey Jones is a great place for a bike night featuring a large outdoor seating and over 150 people inside. And for those of you that want to watch a sporting event they have 50 TV's scattered throughout the restaurant connected to satellite to get any game you can think of. They have a full menu for lunch, dinner and a Happy Hour from 11:00AM - 7:00PM and a reverse happy hour from 10:00PM - 12:00 Midnight. $1.75 domestic bottles and $2.00 Jacks. There are always a lot of bikes showing up for bike night at Casey Jones Thursday night. Join them for open mic night on Wednesdays. Sunday. You can always count on lots of bikes here.
The Bike Night At The Billet Bar. Voted "BEST BIKER BAR IN PHOENIX" by New Times. There is no better place to watch all the Bikes ride down Scottsdale road than from The Billet Bar Patio. The Billet is ALWAYS packed with bikes Every Day. Stop by and take a look at the New Flamed Booths on the Paradise Patio. The new bars front and rear provide spacious seating, fresh air atmosphere, perfect temperature and courteous staff. The food is amazing and always the latest in cold libations await. You can sit at the back bar and watch your favorite TV on any of the seven big inch televisions. Play pool, listen to the latest music and socialize. The front patio seats over 75 people and is perfect for people watching on Scottsdale Rd. The Billet Bar is located right next to Genesis Custom Cycles on 3752 N. Scottsdale Rd. Check it out this Thursday night and all weekend long. Info: at 480-941-1876. Click Here for the New Billet Bar Page with pictures.
Every Saturday and Sunday
Cave Creek Roadhouse Bike Weekend. Take a ride and stop
by the Hottest New Restaurant/Bar in Cave Creek where every weekend will be Bike Weekend. There is plenty of motorcycle parking right out front. I have mentioned this place before
and now it has finally opened to rave reviews. CCR is located on Cave Creek Rd. in the heart of Cave Creek
directly across from Harold's. It is a restaurant and bar that focuses on a broad menu of good food and has a large
bar for socializing with your riding pals for a good time. It is built to look like something out of the 1800's,
but it is brand new. Stop by this weekend for lunch, dinner or just to have a drink and take a look at the place.
I can tell you that their hamburgers and steak fries are exceptional. Mrs. C. had the swordfish and said it
was very good.
Live Music Every Weekend:
Thursday: "Todd & Ethan" 8:30pm
Friday: Live Music with "Combo Deluxe" 9pm - 1:30am
Saturday Night: Live Music with "Wild Angels" 9pm - 1:30am
Sunday: Live Music with "Defenders of the Groove" 3pm - 7pm
Click here for the Cave Creek Roadhouse website. 480-575-3098
Sugar Daddy's Blues Biker Sunday Brunch.
Now is the perfect weather to be sitting out on the Sugar Daddy's patio, listening to Live Music while dining from the Brunch Menu. Live Music from 10am on the patio.
And Sunday Brunch Just Got Better! You now have 3 options to choose from.
Option #1: Eggs Benedict Ė Grilled English muffins, smoked ham, poached eggs and hollandaise sauce.
Served with your chose of fresh fruit or crispy potatoes. ($8) or Sugarís Pancakes Ė You wonít eat pancakes anywhere else. Buttermilk pancakes served with butter and syrup. ($5)
Option #2: Canít decide what to eat? How about an All-You-Can-Eat buffet for ONLY $12.
Option #3: Order off our regular menu.
Our 5,000 sq. ft. temperature controlled patio has six air conditioning units, misters, and plenty of shade. Sugar Daddy's patio, food and entertainment is becoming a regular Sunday stop. If you haven't tried it yet, give them a try. Complimentary coffee is now served. Make Sugar Daddy's Blues your stop on your ride down Scottsdale Rd. for Brunch or Lunch from 10am - 4pm. Enjoy live music from 10am - 2pm Or maybe just relax on the patio with your favorite beverage and enjoy the beautiful weather and watch the bikes roll down Scottsdale Rd. Click here to see the awesome pictures and details of Sugar Daddy's located at 3102 N. Scottsdale Rd. between Indian School and Thomas on the West side of the road. Stop by and check it out. A great place to hang out. Plenty of Bike Parking. If you have suggestions, email them at email@example.com . 480-970-6556.
With temps in the 110's, there is still not much going on in Phoenix area.
Friday - Sunday, July 22nd - 24th
Too Broke For Sturgis. It is that time again when A.B.A.T.E. of Arizona hosts the Rally in Mormon Lake known as "Too Broke For Sturgis". The weekend features camping Friday and Saturday night, Bike Games, Bike Show, Poker Run, Tattoo Contest, Kids Games, 50/50, Wet T-Shirt Contest and many local amenities. Food and Beverage available on site. The Chuck Hall Band and Myklos will be playing Friday and Saturday nights. Cadillac Angels will be playing in the bar. $25 per person for weekend. $15 per person for Saturday and Sunday. Kids under 17 free. For more information call Billie at 480-855-3395.
I normally don't pass things like this along, but this one is just a classic "open
mouth and insert foot" case from some idiot in Peoria that has
nothing else to do but write letters to the Arizona Republic about something that wouldn't make a difference to
most of us. In this case he spouted off before checking out the situation and Lt. Col. Pleus made him look
like the jerk that he is. Here is the scenario: This ungrateful idiot from Peoria writes to the
AZ Republic the following complaint:
"A wake-up call from Luke's jets"
Jun. 23, 2005 12:00 AM
"Question of the day for Luke Air Force Base: Whom do we thank for the morning air show?
Last Wednesday, at precisely 9:11 a.m., a tight formation of four F-16 jets made a low pass over Arrowhead Mall, continuing west over Bell Road at approximately 500 feet. Imagine our good fortune!
Do the Tom Cruise-wannabes feel we need this wake-up call, or were they trying to impress the cashiers at Mervyns' early-bird special? Any response would be appreciated."
The following is the reply from Lt. Col. Scott Pleus at Luke Air Force Base:
Flyby Honored Fallen Comrade
Jun. 28, 2005
Regarding "A wake-up call from Luke's jets" (Letters, Thursday):
On June 15, at precisely 9:12 a.m., a perfectly timed four-ship of F-16s from the 63rd Fighter Squadron at Luke Air Force Base flew over the grave of Capt Jeremy Fresques.
Capt. Fresques was an Air Force officer who was previously stationed at Luke Air Force Base and was killed in Iraq on May 30, Memorial Day.
At 9 a.m. on June 15, his family and friends gathered at Sunland Memorial Park in Sun City to mourn the loss of a husband, son and friend.
Based on the letter writer's recount of the flyby, and because of the jet noise, I'm sure you didn't hear the 21-gun salute, the playing of taps, or my words to the widow and parents of Capt. Fresques as I gave them their son's flag on behalf of the president of the United States and all those veterans and servicemen and women who understand the sacrifices they have endured.
A four-ship flyby is a display of respect the Air Force pays to those who give their lives in defense of freedom. We are professional aviators and take our jobs seriously, and on June 15 what the letter writer witnessed was four officers lining up to pay their ultimate respects.
The letter writer asks, "Whom do we thank for the morning air show?"
The 56th Fighter Wing will call for you, and forward your thanks to the widow and parents of Capt. Fresques, and thank them for you, for it was in their honor that my pilots flew the most honorable formation of their lives.
Lt. Col. Scott Pleus
Luke Air Force Base
The writer is commander of the 63rd Fighter Squadron.
WHO AH! To Lt. Col. Pleus!!!!
For the guy that complained would be so insensitive to think that these pilots would be doing anything other what was totally professional and necessary is incomprehensible to me. What a dork! I live under the flight pattern for Luke and hear these jets go by every day and am proud that they are ours. I know these guys are out there to protect us and if they have to do maneuvers at 3:00 in the morning then so be it. When I see them fly by I look up and say "go get 'em guys". It is the least that I can do for these guys that are risking their lives for us.
OK, I have vented, but with so many bad things going on in this world that this guy could be focusing his energy on, it incenses me that he would take the time to write that letter about our own Air Force.
My thanks to our Air Force and our pilots at Luke for every flight they make.
Until Next Week,
Blessings and Safe Riding To All,
"The Road Is Yours - Take The Ride"
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