All good last night, but an enormous thunderstorm and torrential rain through the night and it’s still pouring down this morning. That confirms my decision to miss the Grand Canyon, sadly. The cloud is down to the ground and what with the rain I think it is going to be a waste of a day as probably won’t be able to see anything.
Have breakfast, the breakfast area is thronged, obviously as it is a major tourist area. I manage to get a seat with some young people, one of them, Joel, decides to make conversation. He is there with his friends to celebrate his pals birthday. His pal is sitting next to him and looks spaced out already! When he finds out I’m from the UK he immediately tells me he knows someone in Wakefield… Pretty random I say, he laughs and agrees, that’s the benefit of social media, you get to meet people from the strangest places… Indeed you obviously do.
I wait to see if the rain will stop or at least ease off. It does improve so I get the bike all packed up and by the time I’ve got the romper on it has stopped.. Typical, however I keep it all on as it still looks like it could throw it down again.
I’m right, only a few miles on and it’s pouring again, good call Pogs! There is a Harley dealers at Bellemont so I stop there and get a pin to add to my growing collection. There is also a bar/cafe next door so I go in for a coffee. It’s a little early, but I decide to lunch now and save stopping again. A do it yourself burger looks good so I order that, she doesn’t ask me what DIY stuff I want on it, but returns with a raw burger on a plate and says ‘I’ve turned the grill on, follow me’ OIC DIY means literally cook it yourself, what a cool idea. They have loads of different toppings, cheeses, salad, sauces etc. And it’s all you can eat so a really great way to make the ubiquitous American burger different. It was delicious.
I pass by another route up to the Grand Canyon, but its still a grey day.
As I get down to around sea level the weather really picks up, and when I arrive at Ash Fork, I take the wet gear off.
Back onto 66 and the road winds down the mountains towards the next major point on 66, Seligman. It is famous for a couple of stores and I stop at one for a look around. The outside is far more interesting than the inside I can assure you.
and the other ‘tourist traps’…
Next up is the world famous Hackberry Stores… I have noticed that almost everything on Route 66 is ‘World Famous’… is this like the world series I wonder?
However, as far as 66 is concerned then this is one of the ‘must see’ sights.
Onwards now to Kingman where 66 turns into the interstate 40 to Needles California:
Unfortunately a couple of fast roads intersect here and I end up on the 93 to Las Vegas, I look for a place to turn around and then think.. Oh sod it, I’m going to LV anyway so I’ll just keep going. It’s getting really hot now as I travel further into the desert and the landscape is very different to what I expected, I thought it would be very flat for as far as the eye can see, but wrong…
I then see signs for the Hoover Dam, worth a look methinks although it is getting quite late it is still open and has many visitors.
There is parking, but the paid parking is closed so I park behind the dam, which is actually back over the state line in Arizona, and am unable to see the actual frontage, but never mind.
I think the architechture is very 20’s and reminiscent of Fritz Langs’ film ‘Metropolis’
The sun is starting to go down now and it is creating some interesting scenes, especially with the way the power pylons troop down the side of the mountain.
a rather beautiful sunset methinks…
Back past the dam and into Nevada,
As night falls I approach a brightly lit city in the distance… no not LV, this is Henderson. The one thing I really notice is there are casinos everywhere, even at the petrol stations.
At last I reach Vegas and it doesn’t disappoint… the lights are amazing and of course I have gone completely over the top photo wise. I have booked a hotel via booking.com that is just off ‘the strip’ so am really looking forward to my visit here. I will ride the strip tomorrow evening again and take some video.
I arrive at my hotel and find my room… it’s fabulous, I have a large sitting room with sofas etc, a small ‘kitchen’ area with a fridge and microwave, then a stairway up past a jacuzzi set into the corner to the mezzanine where the bed and shower room is… a bit strange I have to say! I am exhausted again but very happy to be here… Vegas is all I expected so am really excited to explore tomorrow.