Day 4 of My 5000+ Mile, 17 Day Motorcycle Ride (Eagar to Payson 231 Miles

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Day 4 Ride Route

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High School Domed Stadium in Eagar, NM

Today is day 4 of my 5000+ mile, 17 day motorcycle ride. We are still riding west down US 60. Our first stop today is just a few blocks away. We are riding over to have a look at the first domed high school football stadium in the world… I’ve seen it from the outside before, but I’m hoping I can get a look inside. I’m a bit curious about how it was constructed… Luck is with us… I was able to have a look inside. Local high school marching bands are competing at the stadium. Several of the competing bands stayed overnight in the stadium. There were cots everywhere with sleeping kids. It was early and most, if not all, the kids were fast asleep. One of the chaperones let me in but requested I be as quite as possible so the kids could sleep. I spent a short time quietly taking pictures… I was amazed; the dome was constructed from laminated wood beams! I was in awe… At one time I wanted to study architecture and it was an engineering marvel to behold. I thanked my host and quietly excused myself.

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Inside the Round Valley Dome Eagar, AZ

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Riding to Ft Apache Photo by Larry A.

It was early, but a bit warm for this time of the year, so we headed on down the road to Fort Apache. Judging from the last 3 days of riding it could get hot before the day’s end. Fort Apache is just 60 miles down the road via highway 260/73.  A detour from US 60, but a scenic detour, with a tree-lined roadway and rugged hill views in every direction.

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Made in the Shade at Ft. Apache

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Ft. Apache, AZ

Arriving at Ft. Apache, Larry A. found us a shady place to park our bikes. We toured the displays at the cultural center and museum. The cultural center is committed to the celebration and perpetuation of the Apache heritage. The museum has displays of Apache art, manuscripts, publications and historic photographs.

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Theodore Roosevelt School Ft. Apache, AZ

After visiting the cultural center and museum we toured the various buildings on the fort. The fort has several structures ranging from an early log building to two-story dormitories, a headquarters building, sleeping quarters, corrals, storehouses, a guardhouse, a magazine, stables and an old military cemetery.  In 1923 the fort became the site of the Theodore Roosevelt Indian School and still operates to this day.

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Ft. Apache, AZ

Admission to the museum and park is $5.00 per adult, and $3.00 for seniors (64+) and students. Children under 7 are admitted free. Admission also includes the Kinishba Indian Ruins which is located about 5 miles west of Fort Apache. If in the area this is a must see…

The fort is nothing like what was shown in the movies but is a step back in time. I can only imagine the sights, smells and sounds of that other time. If walls could only talk…

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Walking to Kinishba Ruins

To get to the Kinishba Ruins take Hwy 73 west 2.7 miles, then turn right onto W. Kinishba Road. Follow the road about 2 miles to the ruins. The W. Kinishba Road is hard packed gravel that is a bit rough and dusty. At the ruins the turnaround area is a bit tricky on a motorcycle. The area is covered with smooth stones fist size and larger. I would suggest making the turn while maintaining your speed and park so you are headed out to the road.

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Kinishiba Ruins near Ft; Apache, AZ

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Centuries Old Window view…

I really like the ruins. No one was there except us. The area is beautiful and I can see why the inhabitants settled here. The ruins were occupied by Zuni and Hopi ancestors until about 1400 AD. At its peak, Kinishba may have housed up to 1000 occupants. No one knows why this site was vacated. As I always do, I spent my time here walking around taking a lot of pictures, imagining what life was like when Kinishba was inhabited… If walls could only talk…

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These stone walls have stood for centuries… Amazing…

Back on the road we headed 22 miles west on Hwy 73 to continue our ride down US 60.  We are riding to the scenic Salt River Canyon. This is our second canyon on this ride. The Salt River Canyon has stunning scenic views, breathtaking twisty turns up and down throughout the ride. It is like riding the rim of the Grand Canyon but with turnouts for photo ops. As in our past 3 days, the temperature is rising and getting hot so we didn’t make a lot of stops. Riding into Globe, AZ after leaving the canyon area the temperature climbed to 103 degrees (F). We were ready to get to Globe, get out of the heat and finally eat some lunch.

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Salt River Canyon in Arizona

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Salt River Canyon

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Salt River Canyon

I’ve been to Globe several times over the years and it is a place you may want to have a closer look at. Globe is an old mining town with a lot of colorful history. I like the old downtown area because of its old buildings and the small town businesses. There are several locally owned restaurants with hometown ambiance that you may want to check out. Spend some time walking around downtown rubbing shoulders with the friendly people of Globe and check out those businesses.

Because of the heat taking its toll on these three old men, we didn’t spend much time here today, but decided to get back on the road.

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Saguaro Cactus Hwy 188 AZ

From Globe we leave US 60 behind and head up Hwy 188, 89 miles, to Payson, AZ. The ride to Payson was a scenic ride with panoramic views of the surrounding mountains. There was a surprising number of Saguaro Cactus along the roadside. Riding past Theodore Roosevelt Lake we looked down on the beautiful cool blue lake that looked very inviting to three very hot motorcycle riders.

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Theodore Roosevelt Lake Hwy 188 AZ

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Riding down Hwy 188 AZ… With Larry T & Larry A in mirror

Riding to Payson we were climbing in elevation of about 1500 feet above Globe. At the higher elevation it cooled to 95 degrees (F) but still 6 degrees warmer than average. After another day riding in the heat we were glad to get to our home away from home for the night. It was a hot riding day, but still a good ride…

Tomorrow we will pick up US 89/89-A north of Prescott, AZ. We head north on twisty US 89-A to Jerome and then on Sedona, Flagstaff and stay the night at the Cameron Trading Post in Cameron, AZ.

Come follow along and enjoy the ride over the next 13 days… I hope we see you down the road somewhere. Ride safe…

If you liked this ride post, you may checkout the other post from this ride below…

Hera are other rides you may like too…

I hope we see you down the road somewhere… Ride safe…

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