Yuma Historical Trip

December 2015 

Led and written by Jerry Gilbert

Click here to read about Jerry's Challenges on this trip

Historical Yuma Trip – 12/15-16/2015

This trip started out about as cold as you would want.  When I left my home the outdoor temp (according to my bike) was 24 degrees.  The plus side, if there was any, the sun was up and starting to warm up as I headed to Cindy Lou’s II in Three Points (the starting point for this adventure).  I was joined by a co-worker and fellow R-Team Rider, Mark Grosvener and Quinten Hartin.  We had a hearty breakfast, which was needed given the temps that morning.  We are joined by fellow SEAT member Quentin Harden after breakfast.  We made it as far as Sells before Mother Nature took over and had to take a small break.

From there we ventured off to Why to fill up with gas.  Then we headed to Gila Bend for lunch.  It was at this point Mark headed back to Tucson.  Quentin and I headed to Yuma.  As we pulled in to Yuma Quentin pulled up next to me and started pointing at his tank, so we took the next exit to fill up.  From there we headed to our first historical site – The Yuma Territorial Prison.  Below are a few pictures:

We had a good time strolling through the site and learning about the prison and the inmates that were there and why they were there.  There is a lot of history here.  If you want the quick history watch the 8 minute video.  If you want to learn more stroll through the exhibits and read the information.  If stroll through the site, there is no need to watch the video.  It was fun to go into the cells and courtyards to learn about the daily life of a prisoner back in the day. 
After visiting the prison we headed to the hotel to check in and relax after a day of riding.  We headed off to dinner at Taco Mi Rancho, a nice little Mexican restaurant just a short walk from the hotel.
The next morning we headed to the Arizona Historial Society-Sanguinetti House Museum.  This was a misguided adventure since the online hours were incorrect.  Seeing the errors of our ways Quentin and I headed to the Yuma County Courthouse.

After visit to the courthouse we went to the Quartermaster Depot.  There we met up with a couple of guys who had just returned from a motorcycle trip to Mexico on their KTMs.  They had no good reason for returning since they were heading home to Denver where the temperatures were much lower.  After waiting around a few minutes the Depot opened and thanks to Quentin being a former military man we were all able to get in for $2, which is half price.  We had a good time strolling through the site and learning about the Quartermaster in Yuma.  The grounds are quite large, so you get a nice workout walking around and seeing the sites.  Even though most of the grounds is reconstructed, they did a great job showing the history of the area and what it would be like to live back then.  Unfortunately we were too early to go to the pie shop, but maybe next time.  Quentin started talking to one of the staff members and they provided loads of information about the area.  Below are a few pictures of the area:

After stomping around the Quartermaster Depot we headed back to the Arizona Historial Society-Sanguinetti House Museum.  After getting there we had to wait a couple of minutes before it opened.  Going here you will hear stories of how Sanguinetti came to Yuma penniless at just 15. How he quickly grew to become a civic-minded businessman whose various enterprises--electricity, ice house, ranching, farming, merchandising, banking, and real estate--advanced his own well-being and that of the community he loved. As you tour the house you get to see a little bit of Yuma history.  The ladies that were at the place were very good at explaining the history and you could tell they were excited about sharing the information they had.  The garden was a nice place to walk around and see the different plants they had.
After we left the Sanguinetti house we headed back to the hotel to check out.  Now it was time to head to San Luis.  Along the way to San Luis it was amazing how much agriculture there was, especially the amount of cabbage and lettuce that is grown in the area.  We were so close to the border fence along the way you could almost reach out and touch it.  Once we took our picture in front of the town sign, Quentin wanted to see more.  But sadly there was not much to see, we got very close to the border crossing and Quentin decided he had seen enough, so we turned around and headed back to Yuma.
After filling up and grabbing a bite to eat we headed to home.  After a long stop in Gila Bend for filling up we were able to continue home.  We found out that at the Love’s gas station the Premium gas flows slow sometimes and that day it flowed so slow it took about 10 minutes to fill our tanks.

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