Woke up on Route 66 in Flagstaff AZ. Tonight’s stop is Kingman, which is about 140 miles away, which means I should take my time getting there. The only thing I really want to do is visit the Route 66 museum and gift shop.
As I’m kitting up, I turn on the TV and it’s showing the local news. There an in-depth, 10 minute segment on a new pastrami place in town which is apparently far better than any of the national parks. I’m starting to wonder if my choice of stops today is poorly advised. I’m also starting to wonder how the hell you can drag out such an innocuous story into a feature including interviews with the owner, chef and patrons.
Anyway, I eschew pastrami and head south to Sedona National Park. It’s a long, slow, windy road down into the canyon, and I’m in low gears the entire way. I’m reminded of the descent through the Swiss Alps into northern Italy that I did a few years ago. Similar riding, but this scenery is something else. This touristy town of Sedona is obviously very popular with bikers. I spend a few hours wandering around Sedona and plan my next steps. The quickest way to Kingman from here is to go back the way I came. But that’s no good. So I push on to the next town called Jerome, which involves a long, slow, windy road up the next mountain. Again, I seem to have hit an elevation of 6000 feet again. Jerome is a quaint town, with a lot of bikers, but I don’t stop. I push on to Prescott.
Prescott is a big town. I stop for gas and a “sandwich”, which seems to be American English for “hamburger with fries and a coke”. I then walk next door into a saloon with swinging doors, Cowboys in Stetsons, poker players and buxom wenches. Sure it’s a tourist set-up, but I obviously chose the wrong place for lunch.
On to Kingman, and the clock and fuel gauge are against me. I pull into the hotel and barely stop before I leg it to the Route 66 museum, the only thing I really wanted to do today. As I run into the museum, the curator is closing up. He’s a nice chap and gives me a Route 66 passport and stamp, shows me places to go and take a photo of me on the Harley at the Route 66 shield. But I’d deliberately avoided buying Route 66 merchandise on the way, as I wanted to buy it at the museum. No such luck.
Back to the hotel for a dip in the Route 66 swimming pool, then several bourbons at the bar, as I plan tomorrow’s onslaught to the Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam and Las Vegas.