After breakfast at the casino (where I got a full breakfast with a side of hotcakes for $5), I left Mesquite via Hillside Road. I had been told by a worker at the casino that it was flat, but my map showed it going down into a hollow and across a river, so I didn't believe her. Sure enough, there were some hills, though none were too tough. I was glad that I took this road instead of the Interstate, as it was much quieter and prettier. I got to see lots of eroded sandstone and some water. There was little traffic, and everyone that did pass me waved.
I had to get back on the Interstate to get through the Virgin River Gorge. The road winds back and forth, going down into the gorge via a series of switchbacks. Unfortunately, there are no shoulders on some of the bridges over the river. I had anticipated problems with traffic on these parts, but traffic was light and polite, so I had an enjoyable ride through the gorge and back up.Virgin River Gorge
Another shot of the gorge
Yet another shot of the gorge
After the gorge, I was able to get back off the Interstate for a while, but had to get back on coming into Utah. It was interesting to be able to cross two state lines and be in three time zones within one day of travel (I went through about 30 miles of Arizona, which does not use Daylight Savings Time). I rode the Interstate up into the city of St. George.
For some reason, St. George (and all the other Utah towns I saw afterwards) has little creativity in its choice of street names. Each town has a Main Street, some a Center Street and most (if not all) of the rest of the streets are named like 100 South. St. George, being a bigger town, also has a large Mormon temple, which is on Tabernacle Street. Since I have no sense of direction, this form of street numbering is helpful, but I wonder why the towns don't use more colorful street names. Perhaps the Mormons regard such naming as frivolous, I don't know.