Sunday, 7 August, 2005.
Flagstaff, AZ to Tucson, Arizona
We did not leave Flagstaff until well
after 9 a.m. taking I-17 south to Phoenix, then I-10 to Tucson.
John tries to figure out where we are and where we're going using
his well prepared trip itinerary.
Along I-17 after leaving the high country, probably about 3,000 feet
( I think we're still in the Coconino or Prescott National Forests,
The numbering of I-17 is a bit odd. It is one of few 2-digit
interstate highways that do not cross state boundaries (perhaps it should
more properly be called Intrastate-17.) It seems to me that if it
were strictly following the numbering conventions of the Interstate
highway system, it should be I-110 or I-140, as it functions as a "spur"
route from I-10 north out of Phoenix to I-40 at Flagstaff. (Perhaps
there is a plan to continue it north into Utah along US 89 at a future
It is scenic, though, dropping from Flagstaff's
7,000 ft. elevation to 1,000 ft. at Phoenix over its 145 mile length.
It was very hot as we rode through Phoenix — well
over 100°F. And there's concrete pavement everywhere — six lanes and
more of traffic!
Arrived in Tucson about 3:30 p.m. We're staying as
the guest of Ron and Hal. Ron is a former member of the Long Island
Ravens MC. We were almost to their house when prudent
behavior caused us to pull into a gas service plaza as a terrific thunder
and rain storm came through. Even though we were under the canopy of the
station, the wind was so strong that it rained horizontal. Blew the wind
shield loose from the Road King. Our helmets blew across the plaza
— Mike chased after them. And it was
quite a lightning display. We stayed about 1/2 hour before moving on. 15
minutes later we were welcomed by Hal and Ron. In spite of the
Monsoon season in the Southwest, this was the only significant rain we
encountered during the entire trip.
Ron prepared chicken cacciatore for dinner and we watched
— a great film.