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96 April 2018 THUNDER PRESS by Felicia Morgan There's a little town that lies along the border of Arizona and Nevada that, for the most part, goes unnoticed by riders other than the once-a-year River Run that consumes the sleepy burg each April. Which is a shame since the area is rife with great riding and local lore and makes for a comfortable home base for rid- ers who enjoy day trips and evenings spent gaming, grubbing or simply gazing out across the gently-running waters of the famous Colorado River. The city of Laughlin, Nevada, is a biker-friendly community nes- tled in the desert where wide open spaces call to wanderers to come out and explore. A mere 30 miles from Needles, California, and spit- ting distance from Oatman, Arizona, Laughlin, lies at the center of some pretty exciting riding country with a few touristy points of interest. Rides along Route 66 are iconic and a trip to see the London Bridge and the English Village over in Lake Havasu are common, but we thought we'd LAPPING LAUGHLIN Cruising the Colorado share a few options that you might not have traveled while whooping it up during the River Run. Once in town and comfortably bivouacked at one of the hotels along Casino Drive, it's fun to check out some nearby Laughlin art. Created by a local resident out of gathered rocks and stones, there are eight labyrinths located off Thomas Edison Drive west of the Tropicana Hotel & Casino. Shaped in a variety of formations, a small stone monument marker indicates their location along the street side where you'll arrive at a cleared dirt area for parking. The concept behind the labyrinths is that the one entrance and one exit pro- vides visitors with a tranquil way to fi nd inner peace and a calming cen- ter of self as you walk through the paths. It's a pretty cool way to mel- low out and fi gure out how to spend all that cash you won at the slot machines, too. Afterwards, you might want to take a short ride along SR-163 for about two miles west to fi nd the turnoff towards the Heritage Trails on the north side. After a two-lane road you'll pass the Equestrian Trail Head to arrive at Pyramid Canyon Park, situated at the base of Davis Dam, which stretches between the states of Nevada and Arizona. Out towards the west side of the road are the remnants of a stone fi replace built by workers who constructed Davis Dam, which was completed in 1953. It's kind of a cool place for photos and to hang out at the park a bit while appreciating the work that went into constructing the earth- and rock-fi lled structure that was built as a means of controlling fl ash fl ooding as well as producing hydroelectric power. While there, keep your eye out for any wayward donkeys mosey- ing by. Just like in Oatman, you might spy a throwback descendant from the gold miners who mined the area in the early 1800s. For a longer, scenic ride we highly recommend heading out US-95 towards the El Dorado Canyon. Just over an hour north of Laughlin there's a sign for Nelson Landing, heading east on SR-165, which dead ends at the Colorado River. About 12 miles from the high- way, just past the town of Nelson, you'll come upon a fork in the road. Go left to find a little ghost town and really cool place to play. The proper- ty has served as a movie set for vari- ous films and offers tours through the historical Techatticup mine, which is the oldest, richest, and most famous gold mine in southern The Colorado Belle Hotel Casino Resort lies nestled on the banks of the Colorado River in Laughlin and is a great place to bivouac before riding out into the desert adventures

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