Scot Cooper and his girlfriend Desiree invited us to stay with them in Sedona last weekend and sample the Muni rides there. Scot had tried it out last year and recommended it highly.
We drove in from Phoenix arriving after dark Thursday and so couldn’t see the area around Sedona. In the morning, it was clear and sunny and what a sight! Red towers and beautiful cliffs and spires all around town! We linked up 3 trails Friday which took about 4 hours. Megumi and Desiree hiked along enjoying the scenery and shooting some photos. The riding was very enjoyable, with technical sections, but nothing super extreme. Some steep climbing but not too long or tiring. The temp was perfect, warm and nice. The resort we stayed in had a great bar with pool tables and Beau was legal until 10pm, so we played for 3 hours!
Saturday we did a slightly shorter ride, the Broken Arrow trail out to Chicken Point. There’s a 4WD jeep trail right nearby and quite a bit of riding on slick-rock so it reminded me of the SlickRock Trail in Moab last March. It was windy and cooler, but clear and nice. We saw only one MTB rider the whole day plus several hikers. In the late afternoon, we drove over to a nearby town where Megumi was the featured storyteller at the local “Tellabration”, an annual world-wide StoryTelling Festival. In the evening, Beau demanded a chance to get even with us in pool and promptly won 3 games.
Sunday we did another 3 1/2 hour ride that was just fantastic. Varied terrain, technical sections, gorgeous scenery in all directions plus nice weather. But the highlight was visiting one of Sedona’s famous Vortexes. These are areas of great metaphysical power supposedly. I’ve only been to the one, but it sure looked magical when we saw it…across the river, looking from pure shade into gleaming orange sun light, seeing hundreds of small rock towers (one to five feet tall), carefully constructed beside a beautiful river. It was too much for me: I just had to go over but there was no crossing. We found one spot where you had to wade only a few steps, but the water was two feet deep, fast and cold. The tree branches we grabbed for handholds were encased in ice. But it was worth it and we spent some time adding on to the towers and building some new ones as well as just feeling the peaceful power of the place. Funny exchange: Scot sees a dry well-dressed couple wandering around: “How did you get here?” Woman: “From the carpark, just over there”. Obviously you didn’t have to do 3 miles of Muni and cross an icy river to get there.
After the ride, we met up with my cousin Becca, now a doctor in Zuni, New Mexico. We went up to the Sedona Chapel and found a secluded spot for a picnic lunch that was just great. The chapel is up on a hill, overlooking the valley, with great looking red cliffs all around. Definitely check it out if you’re there. After lunch, we headed down to the Bike and Bean store nearby, chatted with some riders, then packed our bags, blasted 90 minutes to Phoenix and flew home.
We were thinking it might be fun to have a Muni Weekend in Sedona, but I’m not really sure. It would be difficult to pull off without a local doing some of the organizing. Cheap places to stay don’t seem to abound, and while gorgeous and fun, the trails are probably not as technical and maybe not as plentiful as around Moab. Still, if you’re ever going anywhere near Sedona (and not in summer), I would recommend several days there riding - you won’t regret it.
Has anyone else ridden around Sedona?