Sedona





Sedona Arizona



February 18/19, 2006

I had been working in Phoenix, Arizona, since February 6 and I had another weekend off, so I decided to go to Sedona, a place that I had driven through before but never stopped at. I did a search on the Internet and came up with the Amara Creekside Resort. It is located within upper Sedona, right off the main street (route 89a which leads to Flagstaff about 28 miles away.)

Amara Creekside Resort

sedona
This is a view of the resort from part way up the hill that leads up to the main street, taken in early morning.
sedona
This photo was taken from a vantage point partway down the main street.

In the photo on the right you can see the resort down below (the brown buildings) with Giant's Thumb above. Also, you can see the gray looking trees lining Oak Creek. These are sycamores, and they have lost their leaves because it is still winter.




sedona
This is a view from near the swimming pool, looking out in the direction of Oak Creek.
sedona
Here we are looking back at the resort. In the middle are the windows of the restaurant, and in front of that is a patio area and the swimming pool.



Oak Creek

Walking down a few steps behind the resort takes you to Oak Creek, the only surface water in the area.



sedona
In this photo is a view of Oak Creek, with Giant's Thumb in the background.
sedona
This is a photo of an Arizona native grapevine (Vitis Arizonica), also called Canyon Grape, growing near the creek.



Javelinas

The town of Sedona is much like you would expect. It has all the things that a small town would have, like a grocery store, gasoline stations, car washes and so on. In addition, it has all the things you would expect from a tourist area; gift shops, specialty restaurants, etc.
In these photos you can see some javelinas (ha-va-LEE-nahs). Some cities have cows with special paintings; Nashville has guitars; Cheyenne, WY, has cowboy boots; and Sedona has javelinas.


sedona
This is the a portion of the main street of upper Sedona, across from the driveway that leads down to the Amara Creekside Resort.
sedona
One of the painted javelinas scattered around the streets of Sedona.




More javelinas.
sedona
sedona



Coconino National Forest

I saw signs on the drive up to Sedona saying that if you want to park in the Coconino National Forest, you need a Red Rock Pass. You don't need it if you are just going to stop and take some photographs and then continue on. But you do need it if you are going to park your car and do some hiking. So on Saturday morning I stopped at the Arizona Information Center/Sedona Chamber of Commerce and paid $5.00 for a one-day pass, and picked up some maps. Also, they told me about a parking area at the local airport where there are some good views of Sedona. So I drove up there and took these photos.



Views from the Sedona airport
sedona
Thunder Mountain, the only feature in the area that still has its original native American name.
sedona



Vultee Arch Trail

From the airport I drove to Dry Creek Road, took a right unto a very rough dirt road, and drove four miles to the trailhead for the Vultee Arch trail. I began walking up the trail, which is 1.7 miles from the trail head to the arch. It is rated as E-M (easy to medium) with an elevation change of only about 400 feet.



Here are a couple of photos I took along the Vultee Arch trail.
sedona
sedona



As I walked, I thought about how much diversity there is in the flora in Arizona. The place I was last weekend in southern Arizona was very different than what it is like in Phoenix, which is very different from Sedona. You would not see trees like this in either of those places:


sedona
sedona



I continued walking and began to wonder if I had taken a wrong turn. I have hiked this distance before, but it started to feel like I had been walking much farther than 1.7 miles. But I kept on and finally passed some people coming back. One of them must have read the expression on my face, because he said, "Only about 100 yards to go." I just smiled and thanked him. Just a short walk up a small hill brought me to a large rocky area where I could finally see the arch. It's not as impressive as many of those in Arches National Park, in Utah (which I have not been to) but it is still very interesting.



Views of Vultee Arch
sedona
sedona



Above where I was standing I saw a plaque, so I climbed up there. You can see it in the photo on the left. It reads, This plaque is dedicated to the memory of Gerard 'Jerry' Vultee, pioneer aviation developer, and his wife Sylvia, who lost their lives in the crash of their airplane near this site on 29 Jan., 1938. Erected by the Sedona Westerners and the Vultee Club of Calif. 27 Sept. 1969 So then I knew why it was called Vultee Arch. The other three photos are views in different directions from this area.


sedona
sedona

sedona
sedona




Here are a couple of photos I took as I walked back along the Vultee Arch trail.
The walk back seemed to go much quicker. :)
sedona
A dry creek bed.
sedona




Here are a couple of photos I took as I drove back toward Dry Creek Road.
sedona
sedona



Sedona Red Rock Jeep Tours

Later on in the day, I took a Jeep tour. A company called Pink Jeep Tours was advertised all over the place and their Jeeps could be seen everywhere. There are several other Jeep tours in the area, as well as a Hummer tour, so I decided to pick one of these. My reasoning was that they might work harder to compete with the big guys. I chose Sedona Red Rock Jeep Tours, and decided on the Vortex Tour. This tour, in addition to explaining some of the geology of the area, explained the presence of the energy spots in Sedona, known as vortices, and also gave some information about native American spitituality and some of their creation myths. They started out by taking us to Overlook Point, near the airport but looking in the oposite direction from where I had been that morning.


sedona
In this photo you can see the gray line of sycamores delineating Oak Creek.
sedona

sedona
sedona



Then we drove to an area along the dirt road off of Dry Creek Road, but not near the trail I had hiked earlier.


sedona
In this photo is an area with nine canyons.
sedona
This is a photo of the canyon that is most sacred to the native Americans and central to local native American creation myths.



sedona
Another view of the valley
sedona
Some of the plants in the area



sedona
Quartz imbedded in an indentation in a rock
sedona
Some sponges and coral imbedded in the rock

This area was under the sea several times during the last 365 million years, and the weathering that has occurred since then has revealed some of the evidence of this.



From there, we went to an area next to Oak Creek. Here we came up close to the sycamores and cottonwood trees that grow there.


sedona
sedona

On the left is a photo of a sycamore and a cypress tree that have grown intertwined with each other. This appears to have a lot of meaning for people who espouse the special powers of the vortices in the Sedona area.



Cathedral Rock

The rocks standing up in the middle seem to look like two people getting married (back to back) and the person performing the ceremony. The rocks around them are supposed to represent the family and friends witnessing the ceremony. Because of this, many people have their weddings here. There were some people getting married when I was there. On Memorial Day a couple of years ago, a record 31 weddings took place here.


sedona
Cathedral Rock
sedona
Another view of Cathedral Rock









Go To Project Gutenberg



Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional


Contents © Copyright 2001 Author: Lee Briggs except where noted. All rights reserved.