City Guide: Yuma, AZ

It’s old(er) people. Like totally there are a lot of old(er) people, and Mexicans, and trailer and RV parks. But it’s actually super rad, and when it’s -26 with a whole bunch of a snow, a windchill that makes you feel like your bones are gonna cry and only $250 roundtrip to Phoenix from Calgary, you’ll take it.

It’s not like we went there 100% voluntarily, my mom was there. But I’d go back again to visit someone, for sure. We had a blast. Your rental car’s going to cost you almost double Canadian what your flight was, but hey, it’s all in the name of adventure right? What you pay for in a rental you make up for by staying for free in a double-wide trailer. Plus you get to stop in Dateland.

Dateland – Home of World Famous Dates, duh. I don’t know if there’s an actual town, but when you pull off the I8, you stop at a gas station / convenience store / medjool date store / Quiznos / shake place, and the shakes (if you like dates) is what you’re really stopping for.

dateland2Dates are kinda weird, and you eat chunks of it while you drink, order like a local and get a chocolate date shake.

Here are 3 other things to do in and around Yuma, AZ. Including going to Mexico.

Telegraph Pass
Some people go on vacation to chill out. I went to run 5k for the first time in 2 years and then do a 7.5k hike up a mountain 12 hours later to see the sunrise with legs that felt bruised from my ambitious 5k run around the block and a 1200 foot elevation gain all at the very end. But what a sunrise it was.

For sure I thought I was going to die, then we rounded that final corner at 7:31am, just as the sun was peeking up, and I’ll admit, it was totally worth it. It was also my idea from the beginning so, there’s that.

Go in the morning. Go for the sunrise. Go for the darkness on the way up and fewer people compared to when you’re coming back down. Go in the morning because depending on what time of year it is, you might call it a day once you hit the service road and the sun starts making you rethink all your life choices. Two people openly told us they threw-up on the way up. Just go though. Seriously.

Imperial Sand Dunes
On the California side of the border, they’re amazing to see! No sweat if you don’t have a permit to ATV out there (though you should do it), you can still stop for a quick stroll, photo op, ice cream treats from the truck driving around or a cold one and some meat from the beer and jerky truck if it’s there because, why wouldn’t you. Also Star Wars: Return of the Jedi was filmed there. If you’re into that kinda thing.

Los Algadones, Mexico
Need something done with your chops? A cleaning maybe or veneers? Maybe you need new glasses? Literally, this whole town is chalk full of dentists and optical stores. Apparently it’s quite cheap to get your cosmetic dentistry done in Mexico, just make sure you look for the clinics with big lineups or get a referral.

We went for the tacos. I love Mexico like a whole bunch so any chance I get to skip over the border, I take. If I didn’t already have a Mexican adventure blanket I would have bought one of those too.

Honestly, that’s not even all. From April until the fall you can float the river in Yuma, Prison Hill Brewing Co is on Main Street and across from it is Lutes Casino which is one of the most random and raddest bar / restaurants ever. There are wildlife refuges and cool spots you can camp.

Like I said, we didn’t go there 100% voluntarily, but I’d go back again, to visit someone, for sure.