February 4, 2015 Lake Havasu and Yuma, Arizona

We left the dazzling lights of Las Vegas and headed back towards Arizona. We decided to break up the trip by staying overnight in Quartzsite at the same spot we had previously stayed. On the way we decided to stop in Lake Havasu to see the London Bridge. Yes, a real London Bridge.

The old London Bridge of nursery rhyme fame was built between 1176 and 1209. During its 600 years, over 30 severed heads of traitors were displayed on the bridge as was the custom of the time.IMG_3489IMG_3488IMG_3490

By the end of the eighteenth century the old London Bridge needed extensive repair and was too narrow for river traffic. The new bridge was begun in 1799 and completed in 1831. However as time passed the new bridge began sinking at a rate of an inch every eight years. By 1924 the east side of the bridge was three to four inches lower than the west side. The bridge simply had not been designed to withstand 20th century automobile traffic. In 1967 the city of London placed the bridge on the market.

On April 18, 1968, the winning bid went to entrepreneur and Lake Havasu City founder Robert P. McCulloch for $2,460,000. Each block of the bridge was meticulously numbered before the bridge was disassembled and shipped overseas through the Panama Canal to California and then trucked from Long Beach to Arizona. The bridge was reconstructed in Lake Havasu City and finally dedicated on October 10, 1971. Including the expense for relocation and reassembly, the total cost of the bridge was $5.1 million.


Colorado River held up by Parker dam


Havasu Springs resort area

Lake Havasu City was incorporated in 1978 and became a legal municipality in 1987. It is quite a young city which makes the growth we saw pretty amazing. The city has shopping malls including a Dillards, as well as many box stores and restaurants. The motto of Lake Havasu is “Play Like You Mean It”. The city appears to be popular with snowbirds, though we did not see as many RV parks as other cities in Arizona.

As we continued on our way to Quartzsite we passed beautiful Lake Havasu Springs Resort. It certainly looked like a beautiful place to spend some time in the winter!

After a quick overnight stop in Quartzsite we continued on to Yuma where we stayed for a week. We drove over to Los Algodones, Mexico one day where Bill got a great deal on some sunglasses and had shrimp tacos for lunch. I got a great haircut, wash and blow dry for $10. The only downside to the day was the 90 minute wait to get through customs and walk back across the border. It seems every snowbird in Arizona was in Los Algodones that day making for very long lines. We spent the wait chatting with other snowbirds and watching all the vendors walk up and down the sidewalk trying to make that last sale before we crossed back over into the US.

While we were in Yuma the temperatures hovered in the upper 80’s. Life is tough!IMG_20150208_143436~2

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