Photo Essay: A to Z of an Arizona Road Trip

Words Paul Stevens
Date Apr 21, 2014

After a few months of riding through the dark, wet, spongy, BC winter, my washing machine was pumped to hear I was leaving on a trip to the desert. Finally it had a chance to take a break from chugging gallons upon gallons of muddy water, and rest in the knowledge that it could take a week off, and the worst it would have to deal with on its return to service would be a pinch of sand.


Arizona was the destination, and an RV was to double as the accommodation and transport. I met with the Pantling brothers Toby and Sam, and Roo Fowler, who had all flown in from the UK, and the road trip began. What follows is an A to Z guide of our adventures through AZ…


A: Arizona, where Americans love America.


B: Bikes. There are plenty of B’s that can make a road trip better, but the humble bicycle trumps all of them.


C: Cowboys. A trip to the Southern US of A wouldn’t be complete without some of these guys rockin’ through your camp in the morning.


D: The Dells, Prescott. If you like technical trialsy riding on rock that grips your tires like proverbial shit to a blanket, this is a must do.


E: Endos. A critical tool for technical riding, extremely useful at D.


F: Friends. You are going to need these guys for a number of things on a road trip.


G: Garmin. Great for any ride, but useful for finding new trails in unfamiliar zones, and tracking each ride.


H: The 3 H’s in Sedona: Hog’s, High line and Hang over, all three are amazing trails, definitely worth hitting. Made better with B and F.


I: Instagram, you have to make your friends at home jealous right?


J: Jokers. if you can’t take the piss out of each other and yourself, it’s going to be a long trip!


K: Knee pads, there are not many soft places to fall in the desert! Knee pads are a good idea.


L: Lensman. With such amazing scenery, bring at least one person who knows how to use a camera. Roo Fowler definitely knows.


M: Maps. Essential for a new area, especially if G fails. Also a cool memento of the trip.


N: Noodles, lots of them. The road tripper’s best friend.


O: Oreos. The perfect accompaniment to T.


P: Prescott. More buff singletrack than you can shake a stick at. Definitely worth a look.


Q: Questions. Ask lots of them. Local bike shops and riders on the trail are a wealth of knowledge for local trails.


R: RV. Redneck Vacation!


S: Sedona. If you are in Arizona with a bike, Sedona is a must-do.


T: Tea. No road trip is quite the same without a good brew each day.


U: Underwear and spare chamois. Personal hygiene is key when you are living in a confined space! Drop the ball on this one and you’re sleeping outside.


V: Vaseline or chamois butter. Not being able to sit down sucks.


W: Walmart. Free camping in the parking lot, and a great place to buy a gun, apparently.


X: X-ray machines. Don’t pack your new gun in your hand luggage, or you will lose it at airport security.


Y: Yes, you should do it. Really, what’s your excuse?


Z: Your bedroom walls are a curtain in an RV. If you want to maximize your Z’s, bring some earplugs!

Hope you sat down with a T and an O for that one…


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