Tortilla flats will shatter your teeth. I only recommend it if you have a really good dental plan or are into masochism, haha.
Here's a list of places to ride to:
- Saguaro Lake - The scenery on Bush Hwy is beautiful. Great ride if you're just wanting to do something close-by
- South Mountain - About 4 miles of twisties. This is a popular hiking destination so you'll find random spots of dirt and loose gravel so be really careful. Get to this place by following Central Ave.
- Theodore Roosevelt Lake - Going up AZ-87 to AZ-188 and then connecting to US-60 to head back to Phx. Nice scenic route. Temperature drops by around 5-10 degrees and there are quite a few cops in the 188. Takes 4-6 hours to go around, depending on how many breaks you take and who you go with, haha.
- Mt. Lemmon (Tucson) - One of my favorite rides. Twisties galore! Beware of cops hidden in pull-outs, get yourself some sonoran hot-dogs at Guero Canelo, make sure you have a full tank before going up the mountain, and prepare to have a grin that spans from ear to ear.
- Jerome - This, right here, is my all-time favorite ride. Take AZ-74 towards Wickenburg and continue towards Yarnell. Now, Yarnell, this place is where the fun starts. Sweepers after sweepers after sweepers. It's extremely fun, but like anywhere else, it's a motorcycling hot-spot and therefore it's also a favorite cop hangout. There's quite a few accidents in this area as well since many inexperienced riders end up going far beyond their abilities and end up hitting a rail and disappearing into the abyss. Continue onward towards Prescott Valley. Once again, you'll pass a section of slightly tighter twisties. This twisties require a much slower pace than the ones in Yarnell. Be careful not to run wide. Prescott Valley is a really cool place to take a break. Lots of good places to eat and the place just has a "slower" vibe to it. Really chill atmosphere. Now on to the good stuff! Continue to Jerome! The roads will now be much twistier. Non-stop hair-pins. Very exciting, even at a leisurely pace. Once it's all done, you'll find yourself in the little mining town of Jerome. Home of the Haunted burger (which actually isn't that great). Beautiful little town. Seems like something out of a movie.
Hope you have fun exploring AZ! If you want to get together for a ride and you don't mind going at a boring pace with no reckless behaviour, shoot me a PM and we can plan something.
Funny you say that about Tortilla Flats, because just after I posted this first message (and before I saw the recommendation in December to try Tortilla Flats), I went out that way to give it a try, seeing some others recommend it.
Well...... I wish I had gotten your advice earlier, because it was the most back-breaking, teeth-jittering, nerve-racking ride I've ever had. I'm not sure if the road used to be better, or what, but it is in sad sad shape now. The scenery was the most beautiful I've seen since I've been out here (although I haven't traveled far), but the road itself was unrideable. I can imagine the layout (tight turns and ascent/descent) would be thrilling if the road were in good shape, but the road is so uneven and destroyed that I was just trying to stay upright the whole time. I am just glad I didn't try to take my Daytona out there, because it was hard enough with my soft suspension Honda 500R.
Anyway, since your recommendation on TF was spot on, I will have to assume you are right about these other rides
. You've got me excited for some trips now. Thanks for the tips!
For South Mountain, I was trying to ride up there earlier this year, specifically on Summit Road, but I think it is currently closed due to a storm? Something about the storms last year causing some of the road to wash out. But I'm hoping they open that up soon because it seems like a good place to take a quick trip with the wife. She'll ride about an hour but that's her limit.
I'd definitely be down to do a ride sometime though. I'm not the reckless type, not rich enough to afford tickets unfortunately