Red Rock Scenic Loop, Crescent Moon Ranch, Lower Chimney Rock Trail: Sedona Arizona
It’s hard to believe we’ve been back from Arizona two weeks. It seems like two months we’ve been so busy around here and the weather has been crazy. Minnesota has been bombarded by snowstorms. The weekend we got back from Sedona we got a big snowstorm, then the following weekend we got hit again. A whopping 16 inches of snow here at our house. It would have been great in January, just not the end of April. Now we’re about two weeks behind. The yard and garden need a little help, but the work will wait.
I also set up an art display for the Rosemount Area Arts Council, located in Rosemount, Minnesota at the Steeple Center. We had opening night just last week. It is an honor to hang my artwork alongside award-winning water-color artist Laura Baker. Her watercolors are quite impressive, if you’re nearby you should check out her work. I even gave a speech! It went pretty well for my first time speaking in front of people. Thanks again to all who showed up. Artwork will be on display thru June, so if you’re in the neighborhood stop by and check it out. Just make sure you head upstairs, there is more on the second level.
But enough of that, let’s get back to Sedona. It was warm, sunny and the clouds were amazing. I just couldn’t get over the clouds there. It was like someone took a paint brush and added big fluffy white clouds on the deep blue sky. Such a contrast in colors. I also liked how the clouds often times framed a tree or one of the many rock formations. Nature is so cool.
Our day started with coffee and a healthy breakfast. From there we loaded the car with photo gear, several layers of clothing, lots of snacks and water. The weather changed frequently throughout the day, or depending on elevation, so we spent lots of time dressing and undressing. I am going to Alaska later this year so I figure it was good practice.
We started on the Red Rock Scenic Loop. It’s about fifteen miles long but could take you several hours to complete depending on how many times you stop to take in the panoramic views. I read a bit that traffic would be bad on the loop, but for us there wasn't a lot of traffic, just some really big trucks driving way too fast. You can click on the Red Rock Scenic Loop link to learn all about the drive. Take note of the trees there. Actually, not just there but all over the Sedona area. They are pretty cool if you take some time to study them. Some say that the energy vortexes play a role in their appearance. While I can’t speak to that, I can speak to their unique addition to the landscape. When I got back I found I had taken a ton of pictures of them.
Crescent Moon Ranch is also located on this loop. If you stop at Crescent Moon Ranch, it will cost you $10.00 to go in. It’s a pretty park and the trail takes you along the river. If you want you can cross the river and walk on the other side. They are known for the reflection photo of Cathedral Rock. I didn’t get the iconic shot while I was there, but with was a beautiful hike on a glorious day. Some might consider the $10.00 a lot for what the park has to offer, but if you consider it more of a donation in preservation, it’s definitely worth the stop.
They also have a beautiful picnic shelter there, in which we enjoyed our lunch before heading on to Lower Chimney Rock Trail. You do need a park pass to park in the parking area. It cost $15.00 and you can pick it up in the visitor center downtown Sedona. I would give Chimney Rock trail an easy rating as far as hiking goes, but I would give it an A+ on pretty.
The views from this trail were fabulous. And the clouds really preformed. There were also some rain clouds in the distance, so that was pretty cool. I was hoping for big storm clouds in the distance, with the big bolts of lightning, but alas that was not to be. Still we got some pretty cool views of the distant clouds and lots of big fluffy white ones that made the landscape pop. I really didn't have expectations of what I would find in Arizona, but I must admit I was expecting more of a dry desert area. So, I was quite surprised at the diverse landscape and the amount of trees that were around. The Sedona area does not get a lot of rain during the year, so the some of the trees have adapted by secreting acids from their roots which can eat through soft rock and allow the tree to search for water in the porous rock. Inner Journey's blog, wrote quite an interesting post about this. All in all, a great day.
Adventure on and to view more images from my journey through Arizona visit: Images of Arizona