For the first time since we started Road Pickle in March 2013, Sash and I found ourselves all packed up and ready to leave town without a destination in mind.
Our original plans after Las Vegas was to ride into Huntington Beach, CA, for a few weeks, deep in the heart of Orange County. We actually had a hotel booked there. However, an ear infection kept Sash resting in our Vegas hotel room longer than we had planned. So, we cancelled the hotel in Huntington Beach and stayed in Vegas for a few more days.
Instead, we looked at San Diego, and found a condo on Airbnb in the North Park community, just a block from the famed "30th & University" corner where all the cool bars are located. We booked it, but the owner declined, explaining that he was still living in it, and forgot to update Airbnb.
So when the few extra days in Las Vegas was finally up, and the hotel told us they couldn't extend our stay due to being booked for the weekend, we had to vacate.
I asked Sash if she was well enough to ride. She said she was still dizzy and nauseous, but felt she could ride.
"Are you sure?" I asked. "We can just find another place here in Vegas."
"I'm sure", she said. "I'm sick of Vegas."
So, we sat at a bistro table next to our bikes right outside the hotel, trying to figure out where to go. We talked about St. George, UT. But I didn't care much for the idea, mainly because it would put us into colder weather. I had actually entertained Death Valley; there's a nice hotel at Furnace Creek, but I didn't mention it.
"What about Lake Havasu?" I asked.
"Where's that?" Sash asked.
"It's on the Colorado River, about a couple hours south of us."
"Yeah! That's sounds good!" she said.
"And there's also Yuma, about another couple hours south of Lake Havasu."
"Oh, Yuma!" she exclaimed with excitement. "I love Yuma, let's go there!"
"Are you sure?" I asked. "We're looking at about 300 miles. Can you make it?"
She insisted she could make it. She figured some time on the motorcycle would do her good. So, we jumped on our bikes, and took off.
I was nervous at first about Sash getting a dizzy spell and having her vision turn upside down while riding a motorcycle at 80 MPH. But she seemed just fine. Much the highway between Las Vegas to Yuma is sparsely driven, meaning little need to swing your head over your shoulder and shake up your balance.
Much of the route covered US-95 south, with a short stint along CA-62. We got to see how the desert scrub of the Mojave Desert transitions itself to the Saguaro cacti of the Sonoran Desert. The former is more flat and arid while the latter is more colorful and rocky.
By the time we pulled into a hotel in Yuma, Sash's dizziness seemed gone. We checked in for a week here, hoping the serenity of a smaller, quieter town would do her good.
In the end I found that leaving town with no idea where to go gave me a great sense of freedom. Most of the time we leave somewhere, we have plans and often commitments to uphold. As a result, we end up feeling pressured to get there. It's like we lose some freedom that way. On the other hand, not having any place to be, feels liberating.
Photos of the ride from Las Vegas to Yuma...