Mild, Wild, & Oh My God

Everyone we talked to and everything we read was pointing us toward Sedona, AZ; How could we miss this?  We turned the 35 mile drive from Flagstaff to Sedona into a couple hours as we navigated the switchbacks, narrow roads, and pulled off the road everywhere there was room for the car to take in and photograph the amazing scenery.  Unlike the Grand Canyon, the cliffs and rock formations are viewed looking up from the bottom.  What an amazing drive!In Sedona, we went straight to an information center to learn more about desert jeep tours.  We settled on a 2 1/2 hour Diamondback Tour with A Day in the West tours described as “not for the faint hearted.”  The afternoon tour left us enough time to get some lunch and experience Sedona’s vortexes.  At the information center I met this very friendly 10 foot kodiak bear.  He was very easy going and didn’t seem to mind this photo-op.  However, when I saw him make a pass at Shannon, it was all over.

Just up the mountain and after a short hike we experienced a spiritual vortex.  I got this description from a Google search:

“The vortexes in Sedona are swirling centers of subtle energy coming out from the surface of the earth.  The vortex energy is not exactly electricity, or magnetism, although it does leave a slight measurable residual magnetism in places where it is strongest.  There are four energy vortexes in Sedona.  The subtle energy that exists at these locations interacts with who a person is inside.  The energy resonates with and strengthens the inner being of each person that comes within about a quarter to a half mile of it.  This resonance happens because the vortex energy is very similar to the subtle energy operating in the energy centers inside each person.  If you are at all a sensitive person, it is easy to feel the energy at these vortexes.”

As we hiked through the vortex to the top of a nearby flat topped peak and took in the incredible 360 degree view of red rock mountains I definitely experienced a high; maybe the scenery, the vortex, or the beautiful sunny day, or a combination of them all.

After a very quick lunch at a place called The Wild Flower Cafe, eerily similar to Panera Bread, we were ready for our Jeep Tour.  As we headed down the asphalt, then dirt roads to get to the trail, I started to wonder if there was really any off-roading.  Then we pulled into a rocky trail where our driver stopped the car and explained that there are three parts to the trail; mild, wild, and oh my god.  The mild was fast and bumpy.  The wild was fun for the first fifteen minutes, but then I started to just feel like a Heinz ketchup bottle as we bounced and swayed against the jeep.  Finally, the oh my god, a section they call the gauntlet; I resisted, but all I could say was, oh my god.  When we finally exited the trail I had a new appreciation for smooth asphalt roads.Shaken and exhausted, we were all ready to get back on the road to our next destination, Kingman, AZ.  This was a nice midway point for our final destination of Las Vegas, NV.  On the drive out, we experienced the most amazing Arizona sunset.

Not sure who had the monitoring function, but we found ourselves in the middle of the desert with only 10 miles to empty.  We coasted into the town of Selligman on fumes.  After filling up we followed Route 66 through a the small town that strongly resembled a scene from the movie Cars.  They clearly acknowledged this themselves with Cars murals and replicas on each of the businesses.  The only dining at this late hour was the Road Kill Cafe.  I’d seen a lot of t-shirts and posters, so I was anxious to live the experience.  I looked through the menu of this restaurant that resembled a cross between the high school cafeteria and a taxidermy shop, and the choices seemed to be either a $25 steak or $7 chicken tenders.  I opted for the “Fender Tenders.”  As I ate my dinner and looked around the restaurant, everyone seemed to be related, or at least acquainted.  I thought to myself anything could happen to us here and I don’t think anyone is going to talk on our behalf.  I’ve seen a lot of horror movies based on small western desert towns, and I was just happy when we were safely back on the road.


About bhoefen

Going on a road trip.
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4 Responses to Mild, Wild, & Oh My God

  1. Danielle West-Chuhta says:

    Wow – I love all the pictures from this part of your trip. Everything looks so beautiful! I also like the pictures of the onion rings….:)

  2. Cousin Michelle, Mario, and Simona says:

    Hot new glasses Shan! They must be a Wild west trend! Someone should tell Prada about those puppies!

  3. Uncle Lee and Aunt Sharon says:

    Whoa…crazy, almost runaway jeep…..what an adventure! The “Mild, Wild and Oh My God” sounds like an appropriate name for a daring roller coaster ride and maybe that’s what riding in a jeep down that rocky terrain felt like! Hope you all kept your lunches down! Maybe that is why they call it the “wild, wild west”!
    More gorgeous scenery and breathtaking views everywhere you turn! Bret, I’m so glad you explained what Sedona is all about. I’m embarrassed to say but I had no idea of it’s special significance but I knew it was someplace special since everyone was really encouraging you guys to go there. What a beautiful, memorable place!
    The “Roadkill Cafe” sounded interesting. Shanny, I think those onion rings would have made a great pair of dangly earrings.
    So now you are headed to Vegas – from rugged, remote desert, gorgeous mountains and spectacular multicolored sunsets to the big city – hotel after hotel, casinos and nightclubs lining the strip and dazzling lights everywhere – big contrast! Enjoy – hope you can do the buffet at the Bellagio and see a Cirque de Soleil show and of course try your luck at the slot machines. Have fun!!!!!!
    Thanks for making us feel like we’re right there with you enjoying your adventures!
    Much love to you all and big hugs.

  4. Pingback: Giving the Journey Heart and Soul | Bret Hoefen – My CCS Story

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