The Coronado Trail from Phoenix in a Day

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by dave6253, May 7, 2011.

  1. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,662
    Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
    I've been itching for some quality time alone with my first Dream Bike...

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    and a twisty road.

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    I had the day off so I jumped at the chance to ride a great road I haven't seen in awhile.

    The Coronado Trail US 191, aka The Devil's Highway (Formerly designated US 666)
    is a sublime motorcyling road. Tons of curves, scenery and almost no traffic for about 100 miles.

    I'll ride the Old West Highway and the Hashknife Pony Express Route
    to make it a big loop.

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    The letters designate the main photo stops.

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    Let's start bustin' bugs!!! (and anything else that gets in the way.)

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    #1
  2. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Friday May 6th, 2011


    It's gonna be a long day, so an early start is a must.
    I'm running east on the US 60 before sunrise.​

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    The Superstition Mountains​

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    Into the Light @ Sunrise​


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    Moving Asphalt​

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    Bird Strike!
    I was leaving Gold Canyon at 60 mph when I spotted a medium-sized brown bird coming in from the right.
    I wasn't really worried, because they always swerve at the last second, RIGHT?
    Well, this one didn't know that rule. It slammed into my right bicep and chest.
    I was worried the big 4x4 following was going to run over me when the birdie knocked me off the bike.
    It was surprising, the impact wasn't all that hard.
    I felt the bird flutter across my left chest and under my left arm.
    The next few miles were spent checking myself for feathers, bloods and guts.
    Did the bird puncture my chest with his beak and I just can't feel it yet?
    Unscathed, I carried on.


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    I'm surrounded by Sonoran Desert scenery...​

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    So I park the bike for a break and pics.​

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    Saguaro Cactus​

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    This Cardinal was singing,
    "Ha Ha! You left your zoom lens on the bike!"

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    I hike back to the bike to get the zoom lens.
    Four tiny bright yellow birdies perform a taunting fly-by before I can change lenses. ​

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    I hike back into the desert and didn't see another bird.​

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    The Saguaros are Blooming.
    It's hard to get close to a Saguaro bloom because they are so high.
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    However, I found one with a nearby enbankment and shot this with the zoom.​

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    I jump back on the bike and spent the rest of the morning
    with the sun in my eyes.​

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    #2
  3. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,662
    Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona


    Queen Creek Bridge

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    Queen Creek Tunnel

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    In

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    Out

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    Into the Blinding Sun

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    I rolled through the Historic Downtown of Globe looking for something to shoot.
    I got lost trying to make it back to the highway.


    It was a long boring ride across the San Carlos Apache Reservation.

    Stopped for a late breakfast and to reconstitute the bugs in Safford.

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    Finally, The Coronado Trail

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    #3
  4. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    3,662
    Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
    I found the old downtown of Clifton just off the highway.

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    Empty Streets

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    Up the Hill Towards Morenci

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    Looking Back at Clifton

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    #4
  5. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,662
    Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Hi Guys! My name is April. I'm a 2002 Aprilia RST 1000 Futura. Dave has owned me since I was born in Noale, Italy.
    My 998cc V-Twin soul was created in Austria.

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    I started this little trip with lot's of experience.

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    I used to think Dave would always love me, but ever since he brought that ugly orange beast home
    things just aren't the same. You should see those two! They go off together for days
    and always return dirty and smelly. I rarely even make the pages of advrider anymore.
    To make matters worse, Dave got himself a fancy motorcycle lift. He then let me fall off!
    It took months before he pieced me back together!
    But things are looking up! Dave just let me lean into the curves of The Coronado Trail
    and he promises to take me out to my favorite California Highways this summer.

    I hope you enjoy our day-trip. I'll let Dave tell you the story.

    April Ia

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    #5
  6. Wolfgang55

    Wolfgang55 Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,800
    Location:
    Next to Rio Bravo
    OK, got to say that was good.
    Even my blonde sleep over liked it & wants to do that ride....camera nut she is.
    #6
  7. larryboy

    larryboy Chopper Rider

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2005
    Oddometer:
    17,214
    Location:
    Über Alles,California
    Nice one, Dave!!

    I tried really hard to buy one of those new. I missed a new orange one for $7,999 and the second one they had got bumped to $14,999 since they claimed it was the last new one in California. :ddog
    #7
  8. thegraydog

    thegraydog 2 wheels X 6 ways

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2004
    Oddometer:
    738
    Location:
    the Coconino
    Guys. Dave hasn't even stopped for coffee yet.

    Stunning photography....
    #8
  9. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    3,662
    Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
    I see a hot young blonde in bed with a dirty old man in a room lit by the dim glow of a laptop.:shog Thanks for the compliment. It's not over yet.

    Hi Rob. That would've been a killer deal. Too bad you missed it. IMHO there hasn't been a better
    SPORT-tourer built, ever. Your state has the best roads in the World for a long distance sport bike.
    You can still find low mileage used ones out there for good prices. Mine will never be for sale.:raabia

    Thanks thegraydog. I had no time for coffee. I did stop 3 times for fuel, twice for food, and 6 times for photo breaks.
    #9
  10. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    We raced a BIG TRUCK

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    and we won!

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    The highway runs right through mine operations.

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    #10
  11. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

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    The Largest Open Pit Mine in the USA

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    The Second Largest in the World

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    It's busy down there. I chatted with a mine employee who was sitting in a 4x4 truck at the overlook.
    She was in charge of all air quality issues for the entire mine. She has over 80 miles of roads
    to drive around the mine property.

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    I think this is a Turkey Vulture?

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    US 191

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    #11
  12. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    It's a long ride through the mine.

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    For some perspective. Here is a satelite image of the mine. From Clifton (Marker C) to the Overlook (Marker D)
    it is 10.6 miles!

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    #12
  13. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    "Danger! Blasting Area Ahead. Turn Off All 2-Way Radios and Cell Phones."​

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    Oops! Did I do that?

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    #13
  14. BlueSkyGuy

    BlueSkyGuy Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Oddometer:
    460
    Location:
    BRP, SLD,129, 421, 50, 219,6, 33, 250, etc...
    dog eared for a future ride thanks for posting and your pictures are great.
    #14
  15. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Thanks BlueSkyGuy. I've reported on rides to this area before. Check the link in my signature for more route planning ideas.
    #15
  16. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    I stopped at a bridge over a busy dump truck road.

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    That boulder balanced on top of the load is bigger than my bike.

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    Need your swimming pool filled within a few seconds?

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    Left Hand Traffic protects the driver in case of an offset head-on collision.

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    Once past the mine, the fun really increases.

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    #16
  17. TooTallRacing

    TooTallRacing Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2007
    Oddometer:
    180
    Location:
    Lanesville, IN
    Stunning photography....[/QUOTE]

    Fantastic Photo's...What a beautiful place to ride.
    #17
  18. stubmw

    stubmw some what aloof

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,444
    Location:
    Texas
    Was hoping to keep rt 191 a secret. :lol3
    Just ran it last week as part of a longer trip. The tail of the Dragon got nothing on it. :deal But the lack of guard rails in places was a little spooky. :evil

    If you turn right near springerville and head through Luna toward Silver city that route is also just about as good.

    Very Nice Pictures!!!

    looks like we took similar pictures of the mine. :lol3
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    PS coming out of Clifton till the mine overlook area those Tar Snake repairs on the road were giving me hell.
    #18
  19. quackPOT

    quackPOT Grand Master Fu

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2008
    Oddometer:
    113
    Location:
    Valley of the Sun, AZ.
    Another great ride/photo thread Dave! Thanks for sharing!
    #19
  20. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Thanks TooTallRacing!


    Stubmw, Here's a shot I hadn't shared that's very similar to yours.

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    Yes the tar snakes were slippery as snot. I was relieved when they ended. There was also sand and gravel on the corners for first 20 miles or so after the mine. I couldn't really find much lean angle. I've always enjoyed riding the 191, but for pure twisty fun, California can't be beat.
    #20