“To Las Vegas on a Harley” – Maarten Schäfer

It’s early in the morning when I enter the Eagle Rider shop in Flagstaff. From here I will ride the Route 66 to the Santa Monica pier. I’m received by Jim, who’s a local from Arizona.

“For the trip you’re about to make, I recommend you take the Fat Boy” Jim says pointing at an impressive black bike standing just in front of the shop. I sit on the bike and push it to a vertical position to feel the weight.

It has been some time since my last ride, so I have to get used to the weight and the power of the machine again. I push the start button and the engine emits the unmistakable Harley sound. I engage the first gear and the bike slides away very smoothly.

“Take it around the block,” Jim shouts. The bike roars when I accelerate and I become part of the traffic on the Route 66.

Visions of Easy Rider’s Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper pop up in my mind. “Born to be wi-hild…” I sing out loud while I take my Fat Boy around the block.

Twenty minutes later I wave Jim goodbye and ride my bike over the Route 66 in the direction of Kingman, from where I will make a detour to Las Vegas.

Five hours and 270 miles later I hit the Las Vegas Strip and park our Harleys in front of the Bellagio. The plan for this evening is to lose a limited amount of money at the roulette tables and see a Cirque de Soleil show in one of the theatres.

“Of course I’ll have to finish the evening in the Harley-Davidson café down on the strip,” I say to myself. “It’s only one block from the hotel, but I’ll take my bike anyway to make the experience complete.”

Maarten Schäfer for CBNWS in Las Vegas

Maarten Schäfer for CBNWS in Las Vegas

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