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Old 05-15-2015, 11:26 PM   #1
HayDuchessLives OP
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AZ - Indian Rte 15??

I'll be riding across AZ soon on my way to CO, and one day I plan to start at Flagstaff and end at Chinle. The shortest route is to take Indian Route 15 through the rez. It looks like the highway is paved - is it paved the whole way? It also sounds like sometimes there are few route signs to let you know where/when to turn. This route goes through sparsely populated areas (which I'm used to from solo riding all over Alaska and the Yukon) and I'm wondering how safe it is for a lone female, just in case something happens. Yes, I'm a little paranoid, but not overly so. I'm on kind of a time crunch so I may take I-40 to 191. I just thought it would be cool to take the route that is less traveled, for more of an ADVenture. I should have plenty of gas, but can carry extra and have been advised to be sure to adhere to the speed limit on the rez.

Happy trails!
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Old 05-16-2015, 07:03 AM   #2
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I have traveled a fair amount of thr Rez but I can't help with the paved question. The roads are so poorly marked that I never know what road I am on.

As to personal safety, I don't think it is any worse than any empty place in the west. Help is a long way away and cell service is spotty. The real danger seems to be livestock and drunks (and maybe drunk livestock). Our last trip across had horses, cows, dogs, sheep, two goats and a drunk walking down the center of the highway. Don't travel at night.

The Navajo Reservation is a beautiful place. Have a great ride.

-dod
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Old 05-16-2015, 07:52 AM   #3
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Res

Very well put!!!
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Old 05-16-2015, 09:24 AM   #4
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the wife and her sister just did that trip in her car a few weeks ago. she was surprised how good the road was. not very scenic, and very remote, but if the vehicle is in good shape, no problem.
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Old 05-16-2015, 07:31 PM   #5
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From my limited experience, most of the smaller reservation towns have little or nothing in the way of commercial establishments. So, watch your gas and plan your lodging accordingly. Just talking in general terms here.
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Old 05-16-2015, 07:43 PM   #6
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And again....
DO NOT drive at night

best of luck
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Old 05-16-2015, 08:03 PM   #7
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That's a great road!!! I have run that road from Indian 6 all the way to Flagstaff. Good pavement & not a lot of traffic. Never had a problem finding gas either. I commonly run the rez back from CO. One of the best roads is Indian 13 from 491 south of Shiprock over the mountain to Lukachukai then down Indian 12 to Indian 64 over to 191 at Chinle & Canyon de Chelly.

All of those roads beat the living heck out of 160 from Flag to the 491. Way better scenery.

I don't recall any places to stay along those routes but it's an easy day ride across.
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Old 05-18-2015, 09:03 PM   #8
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Thanks!

Thanks for all the comments! The stretch of Rt 15 I'm looking at is only 123 miles, IF I don't get lost due to lack of signage. I'm pretty sure my trusty little DR will get me through the rez - it brought me all the way down from Alaska last summer! Although.... she and I ended up "taking a nap" in Death Valley back in late January. (It was my fault - not hers.) I don't plan on riding through the rez at night and I'll watch out for drunk livestock.

I'm going on a horseback tour through Canyon de Chelly and am excited about that. Yeehaw!! After that I'm heading up to Bloomfield and Chama on my way to CO Springs. If you see a black DR650 with Alaska license plates, be sure to wave!
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Old 05-19-2015, 07:55 AM   #9
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I can't speak to Indian 15, but it looks on the map that it is a paved road. You might consider taking 89 to Tuba City and 160 to Kayenta. It is all good highway. Just east of Kayanta on 160 you can take 59 south to Many Farms. That is a pretty remote reservation road, but it is also paved. Chinle is just south of Many Farms on 191.

Leaving Chinle after your visit, I'd like to suggest taking Hwy 64 east to Indian Rte 12 North. A few miles north on 12 you will see Indian Rte 13 going east. That is one of the most spectacular roads I have ever ridden. It is twisty like the Tail of the Dragon. It goes over a pass and drops down into Shiprock Monument. I mean right next to it! From there it is a beautiful ride east to Chama on US 64. I think you cross two ranges on passes in the 9000' range.

I've ridden through that area solo quite a bit. You shouldn't have any issues as you won't see many people! Just plan your fuel stops well enough to not get stranded. Gas through there is available at Tuba City, Kayanta, Chinle, and Shiprock. Those are not particularly far apart.
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Old 05-22-2015, 05:37 PM   #10
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You can catch Indian 15 from 89 out of Flagg but it is a little tough to find the exit. The exit is Townsend-Winona Road 394. That turns into Indian 15 Probably easier to catch it off of I40 at Winona. Head north on 394 then right on 419 which turns into Indian 15 at the rez.

Stay far away from 160. What a miserable excuse for a road that is!!! Traffic, pokey people & Kayenta is a total loser, not to mention that it is much longer that way.

Indian 15 turns into 191 at the intersection--traffic circle--of 264. Just go halfway around the circle, right at the Chevron station and the next stop is Chinle. You will be running right next to Canyon de Chelly on the right for many miles. Take Indian 64 right out of Chinle to the entrance of Canyon de Chelly, then continue on that to Indian 12. Left there to Lukachukai, then right on Indian 13 across to 491 into Shiprock.

64 out of Shiprock isn't a bad road either. I have run it from there clear into Taos.

I will be headed out that way toward Cortez around the middle of June and will hit the rez roads for sure.

Good Riding.
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Old 05-22-2015, 08:21 PM   #11
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Hay Duchess,

If end up around NW Phoenix you have place to stay. Jade and Kelly are storing their bike at my place and were here last weekend. did Over Land with them. If I don't see you have a safe trip. Planning on D2D 2016!!
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Old 05-23-2015, 07:57 AM   #12
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We rode thru there last week. We were trying to stay on dirt roads, but did spend some time on 15. It is paved.

There is gas and a café in Dilkon and a grocery store.

Benchmark and GTR maps are pretty accurate as to which roads are paved and which are dirt.
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Old 05-25-2015, 09:22 PM   #13
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Gas is not a problem on any of the roads I mentioned and they are all paved. I ride sport bikes and have been on all of them. Cafes in Chinle for sure. I have stopped for snacks & Gatorade but no meals.

The rez isn't as primitive as you may have been led to believe....
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Old 05-26-2015, 07:32 AM   #14
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0Just back from this area. Came south from Cortez through Bluff, Monument Valley, Kayenta, Chinle/Canyon do Chelly, Gallup, Chaco Canyon to Farmington. No problems of any kind except some spots on Chaco dirt sections after the rain. Gallup to Chaco to Farmington was longest run for gas at 100 or so miles. Otherwise gas readily available on our route.

PS in Chinle restaurant at Best Western is not bad. Jeep tour of canyon well worth it.

FWIW
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Old 05-26-2015, 07:39 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VFR View Post
Gas is not a problem on any of the roads I mentioned and they are all paved. I ride sport bikes and have been on all of them. Cafes in Chinle for sure. I have stopped for snacks & Gatorade but no meals.

The rez isn't as primitive as you may have been led to believe....
+1 There are many more gas stations in small towns on the reservation than off in the southwest.
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