Tuesday, March 30, 2010

a place in the clouds, a foundation of stone

A dear friend and I hiked The Bell Trail last Friday. While downtown Sedona and the Village of Oak Creek may be chock full of fruits, nuts and flakes (just like a good gorp), the outlying areas around the various plateaus and otherwordly rock formations are nothing short of sensational. Okay, yes, you can still probably get mother nature to cleanse your chakras and/or fluff your aura by visiting one of the many vortices in the area, but if you're just looking for a good, basic day hike (as we were), then the azure Arizona sky is the limit. Here is what you see at the start of the first climb, heading toward the rock:

We found that March is a great time to make this hike, which is largely in full sun. Get too far beyond April and it's no doubt a scorcher.

Here are some lovely, hearty, trailside agave (I think). Any botanists out there who know better, feel free to correct me. 

And here's the rock as you pass right by and look up:

Our halfway point was a rushing creek fed by the intense run-off from all the melting snow up here in the high country. Not a bad place to have lunch, as we discovered:

Of course, now we're hooked and ready to do more. And I can't think of a more fitting way to celebrate the beautiful, sunny months to come here in our state of wide open spaces.

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