A BIT ABOUT SEDONA
The picturesque town of SEDONA lies at the mouth of beautiful Oak Creek Canyon, a breathtaking chasm. Sedona is surrounded by red-rock monoliths named Coffeepot, Cathedral, Bell and even Snoopy, because their massive shapes resemble these distinctive objects. Rising high above Sedona and its hallmark canyon is the Mogollon Rim, a 2,000-foot escarpment formed from ancient deposits of limestone, mudstone and sandstone. The rim serves as the southwestern boundary of the vast Colorado Plateau and is home to the largest contiguous stand of ponderosa pine trees in the world. The 1.8 million acre Cociano National Forest essentially engulfs this city.
Sedona visitors can spend their time here Hiking, horse-back riding, bouncing in a Jeep on the trails and dirt roads that crisscross the area or enjoy its many shops, art galleries and fine restaurants.
Hans and I were here many years ago, but I do remember some things esp in Old Town Sedona. I was simply amazed though by how much it has grown, with so many new hotels, condos and shopping areas. I was almost a little sad though that it has grown so much. I don't think it's as charming and compact as it used to be. It's so much more commercialized.
Will the Real Sedona Please Stand Up?
When we arrived in Sedona, we were not prepared for the crass commercialism, having to dodge timeshare salesmen, and the general attitude of "who cares? the next tourist is coming along". I had been prepared for the fact that Sedona would be touristy, but this place in my mind, was much worse than the Grand Canyon. Maybe because it isn't a National Monument.
For example, upon turning on the tv at our inn, we saw a "information channel". Eager to find out more about the area, we soon discovered the programming was a never-ending loop of commercials for the local Sedona businesses. We splurged on a nice B and B, where we ended up feeling like another number, and where some of the more obviously wealthier clientele just stared at us. That place was a mistake. Already disappointed on our first day there, I wanted to know where are the "real people" of Sedona lived. Our guide to the Hopi Mesas told me that most of them live in Cottonwood, about 1/2 an hour away. "How can normal people afford to live here?" I asked him. "Oh, there's trailer courts here" he answered cheerfully.
All I can say is, be forewarned, and try to get all that you can out of this astonishingly beautiful area. Get to know the REAL Sedona. I recommend staying in or near the village of Oak Creek, where you don't have to fight the traffic nearly as much, and the crowds are somewhat thinner, and where it's less commercial. Get out into the red rocks and explore and hike. Go see the "off the beaten path" sites like the Palatki ruins. Try to absorb as much nature as possible, before the next tourist comes along.
So much to see....so little time
The area is so amazing. From Oak Creek Canyon to the red rock buttes that dot the horizon. This is a great place to go for walks or short hikes. Sitting on a small cliff looking at the land below........still haven't found a place where you do not see a golf course in the distance..
RELAX!!! Leave ALL of your...
RELAX!!! Leave ALL of your troubles behind! Get lost in the beauty of the red rock, and the vortex that pulls you in for sheer relaxation! Shopping is a must, spas are a have to!!! Go hiking in Oak Creek, the West side is GORGEOUS!!! Then off for a mud bath and HOT shower to soothe those muscles. All of them. Each time I go it is a wonderful experience. Sedona seems to remove bad 'energy' from the body, leaving you feeling like a suit of armor was taken off. Listen to the running water and enjoy the crisp cool breezes that blow through the trees bringing the scent of peace and harmony.
Sedona's History from 8000 years ago!
The paleo-Indians came to Sedona 8000 years ago through the natural land bridges which connected North America to Ancient Asia - this is the currently accepted theory.
In 700 AD, the Hohokam Indians arrived and introduced irrigation to the area. You also hear of the Hohokams in the Greater Phoenix area, but they mysteriously disappeared.
Then, the Sinaguan Indians arrived and you still see the reconstructed remnants of their abodes at the Tuzigoot Monument. Can you guess what Sinagua means? Sin Agua --- No Water, meaning that these farmers relied only on rain for water! But there was a volcanic eruption in 1066 which created the Sunset Crater and led to the demise of the Sinaguans in the area.
But as with any volcanic soil, the ground becomes fertile and another group of Indians arrived called the Anasazi or "ancient ones" - and they built the multi-storied pueblos that you can still see today...