Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is a U.S. National Monument and UNESCO biosphere reserve located in extreme southern Arizona which shares a border with the Mexican state of Sonora. The park is the only place in the United States where the Organ Pipe Cactus grows wild. Along with Organ Pipe, many other types of cacti, as well as other desert flora native to the Yuma Desert section of the Sonoran Desert region grow here. The Park is a beautiful preservation of the American Southwest. Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is 517 square miles (1,338 square kilometers) in size. In 1976 the monument was declared a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO, and in 1977 95% of Organ Pipe Cactus was declared a wilderness area. Land for the Monument was donated by the Arizona state legislature to the federal government during Prohibition knowing that the north-south road would be improved and make contraband alcohol easier to import from Mexico. In 1937 the land was officially opened as a national monument. At the north entrance of the park is the city of Why, Arizona; the town of Lukeville, Arizona, sits at the park's southern border. Lukeville is a border crossing point to Sonoyta, Sonora, Mexico. On August 9, 2002, Ranger Kris Eggle was shot and killed by a suspected Mexican drug smuggler during a United States Border Patrol operation. The visitor center has been named in his honor.
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Lake Havasu City, Arizona
Mighway, by TH2, allows you to rent your vehicle to discerning travellers when you’re not on the road, earning money and sharing the experience. At Mighway, you choose your level of service and we take good care of the rest. That means comprehensive insurance coverage, customer vetting, security deposits, payment processing and round the clock customer support for renters. It’s a bit like renting out a vacation home, with Mighway beside you all the way.LEARN MORE
London Bridge was falling down, so it got relocated to Lake Havasu City, Ariz. No, really. It is the very London Bridge built in 1831 that once sat astride the Thames across the pond. But by the mid-20th century, it could no longer handle the load of London's traffic and got auctioned off to an Arizona oil baron — he spent $2,460,000 on the bridge and then an extra $7 million to have it dismantled and reconstructed in Lake Havasu City in 1971. Guinness World Records calls it the world's largest antique. So you can drive over or stroll along a 950-ft.-long piece of history, complete with a Tudor backdrop. It's like being in two places at once.
High school can sometimes feel like you've been put behind bars... but imagine if you actually had to attend class in a former notorious Wild West prison! For four years, between 1910 and 1914, the Yuma Union High School held classes in the building that's now Yuma Territorial Prison State Historic Park, right after the prison inmates were transferred to the Arizona State Prison Complex in nearby Florence in 1909. It was after an unexpected football victory against a team from Phoenix that the school received its infamous nickname: The Criminals. The Phoenix team, bitter over the loss, began calling the Yuma players "criminals", and the Yuma players liked the moniker so much that it stuck. In fact, even today the Yuma High School's team mascot is a tough-looking convict, and they affectionately refer to themselves as "The Crims". They even named their school spirit shop "The Cell Block". But it is a little weird to consider that the school was once home to some of the West's most dangerous outlaws. It opened in 1876, and saw over 3,000 delinquents pass through its doors over its 33 years as a prison. Some better-known inmates included deputy sheriff-turned train robber Burt Alvord, notorious con-man and gunfighter Buckskin Frank Leslie (he once married the widow of a man he killed a mere eight days after murdering her husband), and Pete Spence, who was at the infamous gunfight at the O.K. Corral. An infamous Mexican revolutionary, Ricardo Flores Magón, a Mormon named William Flake who was convicted of polygamy, and the woman who committed one of the last known stagecoach robberies, Pearl Hart, also called the prison home. Today, the prison is now a museum and state historic park. If you visit, you can learn what it was like to be an outlaw behind bars in the Wild West-- it actually wasn't as bad as you might imagine. Most inmates were treated fairly well for the time and got the chance to go to school and make crafts to sell at fairs, although thousands died while staying there-- none of those deaths were executions, though; most were the result of tuberculosis. Twenty-six people escaped successfully, including two from within the confines of the prison-- those who were caught trying to break free got the ball and chain. Nowadays, though, it's pretty easy to stroll on out of the prison when you're ready to leave... no ball and chain necessary! -Roadtrippers On July 1, 1876, the first seven inmates entered the Territorial Prison at Yuma and were locked into the new cells they had built themselves. At Yuma Territorial Prison State Historic Park walk through the actual strap iron cells and solitary chamber of Arizona Territory’s first prison. Now a museum, the building houses photographs and colorful exhibits of those who once “involuntarily” stayed there and the prison life they had to endure. A total of 3,069 prisoners, including 29 women, lived within the walls during the prison’s 33 years of operation.Despite an infamous reputation, written evidence indicates that the prison was humanely administered, and was a model institution for its time. The only punishments were the dark cells for inmates who broke prison regulations, and the ball and chain for those who tried to escape. Come experience this fascinating slice of Arizona history. The park offers a museum with exhibits, a gift shop, video presentation, picnic area, and restrooms. The park is reportedly haunted by spirits who enjoy pinching children and those that wear the color red. Others have reported a "presence" that enjoys whistling.
Oatman is a former mining town in the Black Mountains of Mohave County, Arizona, United States. Located at an elevation of 2,710 feet (830 m), it began as a tent camp soon after two prospectors struck a $10 million gold find in 1915, though the area had been already settled for a number of years. Oatman's population grew to more than 3,500 in the course of a year. After a few other names, Oatman was named in the posthumous honor of Olive Oatman, a young Illinois girl who was taken captive by (presumably) Yavapai Indians and forced to work as a slave. She was later traded to Mohave Indians who adopted her as a daughter and had her face tattooed in the custom of the tribe. She was released in 1855 near the current site of the town. 1924 would see United Eastern Mines, the town's main employer, permanently shut down operations after producing $13,600,000 worth of gold (at the then government controlled market value of $20 per ounce; in today's gold market price of $1300 per oz. the equivalent gold value today is over $850,000,000). The district had produced $40 million (or $2,600,000,000 or so in today's market price) in gold by 1941, when the remainder of the town's gold mining operations were ordered shut down by the US Government as part of the country's war effort since metals other than gold were needed. Oatman was fortunate insofar as it was located on busy U.S. Route 66 and was able to cater to travelers driving between Kingman and Needles, California. Even that advantage was short-lived as the town was completely bypassed in 1953 when a new route between Kingman and Needles was built. By the 1960s, Oatman was all but abandoned.
A number of films have been made in Oatman, including "How the West Was Won," "Foxfire" and "Edge of Eternity." One building, currently a used book and magazine store, the Glory Hole, was shown in some of the scenes of "How the West Was Won." From the side street, the site of Oatman Cemetery can be seen to the south and then east towards the mountains and the old mines, though not the cemetery itself.
Lake Havasu State Park is located on the shores of Lake Havasu, and features clean white sand beaches and a large grassy area. The park offers panoramic views of the lake and mountains beyond. Picnic tables, grills and shade covers make this the perfect site to spend the day on the beach, or you may want to stay and camp awhile. There are also group picnic areas for that special family reunion! There are many activities that make a Lake Havasu vacation unique. For those who enjoy hiking and walking, the park has the Mohave Sunset Trail, a short but scenic 1.75 mile walk and the Arroyo-Camino Interpretive Garden, home to diverse species of plants and wildlife. Birdwatchers may spot an Anna’s Hummingbird or a Great Horned Owl. Leashed pets are welcome in all areas except the beach. The scenic shoreline of Lake Havasu State Park is an ideal place to enjoy beautiful beaches, nature trails, boat ramps, and convenient campsites. This spot is truly a watersport haven located near the famous London Bridge of Lake Havasu City. The park offers 3 boat ramps, 47 campsites, a special events area (not available on holiday weekends), picnic area, and beach area. The Mohave Sunset Trail (1.75 miles) winds its way through the lowland desert and along the shoreline. The Arroyo-Camino Interpretive Garden showcases the diverse life that exists within the park and this area of the desert. Birds, lizards, and desert cottontails are common sights. The campground is open. All sites now have 50 amp electrical hookups and access to potable water at individual sites. Nightly camping fee is $30.00 a night; except beachfront sites which are $35.00 a night. Beachfront sites include site numbers: 3, 4, 7, 8, 10, 14, 16, 34, 36, 38, 40, and 41. Plant life is diverse in Lake Havasu State Park with Cottonwood (Populus spp.) and Willow (Salix spp.) along the river and Mesquite (Prosopis spp.) and a variety of cacti in the drier areas. Aster spp., Lilies (Liliaceae family), Agave spp., Daisies (Eriophyllum spp.), Primroses (Oenothera spp.), and Poppies (Argemone spp. and Eschscholzia spp.) are just some of the flowers to be found here in the spring. Following a wet winter, the park can have quite a spectacular wildflower display. There are also several rare Buckwheat (Eriogonum spp.) and Penstemon spp. in Mohave County. Lake Havasu State Park is also habitat for many animals as well. Mammals found here include several bat species (Myotis and others), Kit and Gray Fox (Vulpes macrotis and Urocyon cinereoargenteus), Mountain Lion (Puma concolor) and Bobcat (Lynx rufus) although both are rarely seen, and two kinds of skunk (Mephitis mephitis and Spilogale gracilis). Several kinds of squirrel, mice, and rat also make their home here. This area is also habitat for several kinds of snakes and lizards including the Desert Tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) which is protected in CA and managed in AZ. If you're between ages 6–12, you can become a Junior Ranger at Lake Havasu State Park! Pledge to do your part to help preserve the beauty of the park for everyone to enjoy! On this page, you can download a Junior Ranger activity for this park that you can complete on your own. It's just one of the fun activities you can do to become a Junior Ranger. After you complete it, bring it with you to the park and you're on your way to becoming a Junior Ranger. When you visit the park ask for a full Junior Ranger booklet at the Visitor Center, Ranger Station or office. Complete the activities during your visit and then bring it to a Park Ranger for review. When a Park Ranger approves your work you'll be asked to take the Junior Ranger Pledge and get sworn in as our newest Junior Ranger. You'll also be given a Junior Ranger Button. We hope to see you at the park!Visit Lake Havasu State Park
Dateland's location in the middle of the desert between Yuma and Gila Bend make it an ideal travel stop. For three generations now, people have visited Dateland during their travels across southern Arizona for date-flavored everything, especially their famous date milkshakes. Established in the early 1920's, Dateland was originally a water stop along the railroad lines. Back then, the old steam engines had to stop every 5 or 6 miles for water. Dateland was a welcome site to travelers during the hot summer, as the irrigation pond substituted as a swimming pool on a regular basis to travelers that would dive in, clothes and all. It was a popular spot, especially in the era before cars had air conditioning. Dates are the oldest fruit cultivated by man, and there are over 30 known varieties. Nowadays, the nine-acre date palm grove behind the travel center grows eight of those varieties, including the Medjool Date, Dateland's specialty, once grown exclusively for ancient royalty and considered to be the very finest date in the world. The Travel Center food court offers the Dateland world-famous date milkshakes (truly phenomenal) and four flavors of homemade ice cream, including date. The date bakery features homemade date cream pies, date bundt cakes, date cookies, date muffins, date squares, and date bread. There is also a Quiznos and gift shop. Next to the travel center are a number of outdoor pet kennels that can be rented for a nominal fee.Visit Dateland Travel Center
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