I’ve had a lot of new blog visitors since I posted about the Hell’s Angels Prison Run. Here are some more photos from the event.
What was I doing out there anyway? AZ79 from Florence Junction to Oracle used to be part of US89, before that segment was decommissioned in 1992. I’m photographing a book on the entire length of the old Highway 89. The prison run is a (the) great event in Florence, no way I would miss it.
Where does Highway 89 go? Nogales AZ to Piegan MT. If you’ve been to Grand Tetons, Zion, Yellowstone, Glacier, Saguaro, Bryce, or Grand Canyon National Parks, you’ve surely traveled part of Highway 89. It has to have some of the greatest biker roads left in America. One secret stretch is between Great Falls and Livingston MT, a back route from Glacier to Yellowstone. Would make a great side trip around Sturgis time.
How can I get the book? Be sure to sign up to receive an email notification when the book comes out. I promise I will not use it for spam or other evil.
Please don’t hot link my blog photos to forum discussions or Myspace pages. It might seem free, but I pay for bandwidth every time someone reads your page. I’ve uploaded these photos to my Flickr account, so hot link from there if you want. Reprinting, editing, or redistributing these images without my permission would not make me happy. If you need them for something, just ask.
Hey that’s me? Please get in touch if you are in one of the photos.
Thanks to all the riders – it looked like you were having a great time. Hope nobody got hassled and everyone made it home safe. Maybe I’ll see you next year.
Update 15 Feb 2008: more photos here
The 25th edition of the Hells Angel Prison Run slowed traffic on the old Highway 89 between Tucson and U.S. 60 to a crawl yesterday. When Arizona became a state in 1912, the spoils of statehood were divvied up: Tucson got the university, Phoenix the capitol, and Florence the state prison. Incarceration is the basis of the town economy, to the point that the federal census is skewed by the numbers of inmates. The Hells Angels have organized an annual ride past the prison yard, and the town cooperates to the extent of redirecting traffic and bringing extra help into the McDonalds.
Much of Pinal County’s finest were driving the highway too. I saw the K9 unit, the commercial vehicle enforcement unit, the chopper circled overhead. They ran my i.d. once. I asked how many participants would likely spend an unplanned evening in Florence’s accommodations, but that officer wouldn’t speculate.
The Hells Angels were expecting between 1,000 and 1,500 bikes. I didn’t count them. A vast comparison shopping opportunity roared by, if one knew about motorcycles. I called Millie, the motorcycle enthusiast neighbor who dreams of a Honda Goldwing, and when a dozen bikes blew by, I held up the phone so she could hear the engines. I had a lot of time on the side of the road while I waited.
I park myself at my mom’s house in Phoenix when my Arizona locations are within day trip range. This morning she saw this photo and asked what I was doing in the middle of the road. I didn’t have a good answer for that question, other than that’s where the bikes were. She brought me up better than to say things like that, so I said we shouldn’t discuss it. I’m editing the rest of the pictures before I show her any more, because I did have to cross the road more than once.