This morning my feet are driving me insane… the itching is terrible. Am now convinced there are bugs or fleas in the carpet as I can see red welts swelling up.
I stick with the plan and get my washing done. I also take the bike to a wash place. I put in $1.25 but the machine only works for about 3 minutes. It is a self service place with no staff so I just towel the bike dry. I pick up my laundry and go back to the hotel to pack up the bike.
Back on the road again heading towards Arizona. There is very little wind today, that’s good, but it does look like it is going to rain.
Within 30 miles I have turned around 4 times due to poor or missing roads.
As I get nearer to the Arizona state line I notice a lot more native american shops. One thing that strikes me is that some of them make a big statement on the hoardings about being native owned, which implies for me that at least some of them are not. Well I think I won’t stop at these ones along the interstate as I would prefer to be sure the money is going to the craftspeople and not big business.
Almost at the border and back on the route 66 road I see ‘Chief Yellowhorse’ selling native jewelry etc. I attempt to pull in only to find the gates shut and padlocked. The entrance, that I have already gone down, is gravel and a steep slope… yep I’m stuck, of course the bike’s still too heavy for me to move it. Just then a car comes up the drive to the gate; it seems Chief Yellowhorse and Mrs Horse are going to town. The shop is shut because the off/on ramps for the interstate have been closed for works so no-one is coming off the i40 to buy anything. Chief helps me to turn the bike around.
Hey, I am now in Arizona… I didn’t feel a thing! I have also gained another hour having crossed into PST Pacific standard time… This time zone thingy is very cool!
So now route 66 ends.. of course.. and I can’t get back on the interstate because the road is shut. I spot a tunnel under i40 and there is a road running from it westwards, the right direction for me.
I come to a junction that leads to the Petrified Forest… oooo wonder what it’s afraid of!! (I’m sure I’m not the first person to say that, but I never let corniness stop me).
It’s about a 28 mile detour to ride through, so I decide to go that way. There is a visitor information centre on the right and I pull in to use the facilities and have a look around.
Back out into the car park and I meet Suzie and Morris (Maurice??) a lovely couple who are Arizonians out for a days bike ride on their dyna. They tell me the best route up to the Grand Canyon, which I am hoping to visit tomorrow. Again, I can’t stress this enough, everyone almost without exception has been so warm and friendly.
As I turn to ride through the park there is a payment booth. It’s $10 to go in on a motorcycle… I have to say I decide not to bother, its not on my bucket list and 10 bucks will buy a tank full of petrol so I turn around and resume my journey to Flagstaff.
Again the road disappears, so I decide to get on the i40. I am aiming for Flagstaff, but will stop in Holbrook first for something to eat.
It is another 80+ miles to Flagstaff and I have just spied the wigwam hotel.. OMG why didn’t I check the guide book, I wanted to stay here. I ride over to see if they have a vacancy, but of course they don’t… damn!
I see some lightening in the distance and although its only 5.30pm I decide to stop here anyway.
I pull in to a Super 8 and get a room.. hope I won’t have any more bug problems.. sigh!