1933 Pine to Palm Tour

The 1930's was a grim time for the United States.  The Great Depression and the Dust Bowl had forced thousands of Americans to leave their homes and migrate west in search of jobs.  Our neighbors to the north felt the sting of the Depression just as we did in the States and perhaps that is why two young men found themselves leaving Manitoba in the dead of winter to search for jobs in California.  The need for work may have been part of the reason for this trip, but I think they were probably also out for an adventure.  From the pictures they took along the way, it appears they found it.

To prepare for the journey, both Excelsior Super X motorcycles were outfitted with custom panniers, designed to hold plenty of clothing and supplies. Remember that this was not just a motorcycle trip, but they were actually moving to California, so they needed a little more than just the necessities.  By December of 1933, the motorcycles were packed and ready to head south.  The photo below was taking as they were pulling out of Winnipeg, the temperature was a frigid 10 degrees Fahrenheit.

From Winnipeg, they headed south through the United States.  Whether it was due to the cold or they were just in a hurry, they didn't stop to take another picture until they reached Texas. The first landmark they came to was the Red River and they paused just long enough for a quick photo.

It looks like they finally took a break when they reached Dallas and stayed for a few days at the Beverly Hills Tourist Camp.  

When next we meet up with our adventurers, they have reached the deserts of Arizona.  This first photo gives a good look at those custom panniers they built.

This photo taken in front of some dwellings at the Apache Indian reservation.

Looking back at the Coolidge Dam, which had just been opened a few years prior to their trip.

Lunch stop in the desert, nothing like a can of cold pork and beans!

What trip to the desert could be complete with out a photo by a cactus.

With Arizona behind them, the journey continues into California.  One of their first stops was the town of Brea, which was the first major oil field discovered in California back in 1880.

The warm climate of California was not just great for riding, it also provided for a free lunch now and again.

Once in LA, they spent a little time seeing the sites, before looking for work.  Here are some shots from around the city, starting with Sid Grauman's Chinese Theater.

The recently built Los Angeles Coliseum.

Bob's Air Mail Service Station on Wilshire Blvd.  The owner had taken an old transport plane and converted into a gas station.

Members of the LA 45 Club.  This photo was taken during their Big Pine Run.  Almost all of them are riding Indians.

Finally they headed over to Hollywood in search of jobs in the film industry.  Looks like this picture was taken by someone who was not in the film industry, just a little bit crooked...

This great set of photos came from the collection of yourlonestar on Flickr.  He was kind enough to let me use the photos as well as filling in some of the details of the trip.  It's cross country adventures like these that inspired me to make my own cross country run next fall, Rebirth of an American Classic.