Tag Archives: Yuma

Ocean to Ocean Bridge

Ocean to Ocean Bridge Yuma Arizona

It’s a strange name for a bridge that doesn’t come within 170 miles of the nearest ocean. But once upon a time this little span that physically links Arizona with California over the Colorado River was the only automobile crossing that connected East and West for 1,200 miles. If you wanted to drive from coast to coast in 1915, the Ocean to Ocean bridge was one of the few ways to do it.

Legend has it that during the Great Depression California officials exploited this bottleneck by creating a makeshift immigration checkpoint at the northern end of the bridge. Folks trying to migrate west in search of work found the bridge guarded by California policemen who frequently turned people back. To this day a section of Yuma is called “Okie Town” for the population of Oklahomans who settled there after being turned away at the California border.

A Chaotic Kaleidoscope of Color

Yuma Balloon Festival Balloons in Flight

Regional festivals are something we never think to include in our trip planning. It’s an ongoing blind spot of ours. Mostly we roll into town and discover that we missed an annual extravaganza by a couple of days or weeks. Unless, of course, the event happens to be the big Harley Davidson Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota. Apparently if it’s the kind of gathering that inspires news segments contrasting this year’s criminal violations with those of past rallies we show up just in time.

Our luck in these things isn’t always bad, though. In Yuma, Arizona, an equally colorful event of a completely different variety awaited us. Every November for the past 22 years hot air balloonists from around the region descend on Yuma for a weekend of floating and plumage flaunting. Without planning it, we somehow arrived in Yuma the Friday before liftoff.

Read More…

%d bloggers like this: