Tag Archives: hiking

Experience AZ Digital Issue

Experience AZ: Fall-Winter 2013

ARIZONA PACKS ADVENTURES FOR EVERYONE, EVERY DAY

Ten years after moving to Arizona from upstate New York, people still ask me what I like the most about living in the Grand Canyon state. My answer is always the same:

“I haven’t had to shovel snow once since I moved here.”

But if I lived a couple hours north, the yearly snowfall would give my home turf in upstate New York a run for its money. That is what makes Arizona great: Where else can you get a sunburn in Scottsdale and ski in Flagstaff on the same day?

Arizona offers something for everyone, every day.

From hiking and biking to shopping and spas, Arizona provides the opportunity for experiences that create memories that last a lifetime.

That’s what Experience AZ is all about. We want to guide you the the greatest adventures and experiences to make your visit to Arizona one that you will never forget. Based on votes from our readers, we have listed the five best dining experiences, tours, attractions, and places to visit in a variety of categories.

Want to know my personal fab five Arizona adventures? Hiking to the waterfalls of Havasupai. Running the P.F. Chang’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon. Relaxing at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain. Going to the Scottsdale Culinary Festival. And when friends visit, I always take them to Los Dos Molinos.

So get ready for the adventure of a lifetime. And use Experience AZ to guide you to a visit or vacation that will make you want to come back time after time to keep crossing the must-see hot spots off your Top 5 lists. And when you find a favorite, be sure to vote for it by visiting ExperienceAZonline.com so others can share in your amazing memories.

Michael Gossie, Editor in Chief

 

Michael Gossie, Editor in Chief

 

Experience AZ: Fall-Winter 2013:
Best of Arizona. Your Guide To The Top 5.

OAD_029

Work It Out Wednesday: Take a Night Hike

By Meg Krivanec

It’s no secret that the Valley is home to an array of hikes and ideal weather. Hiking allows you to enjoy the outdoors and get the leg workout of the century without making the commitment of camping — you don’t have to pitch a tent or make a fire.

Night hikes offer a new twist on Arizona hiking and allow you to undertake a nature

The view from Squaw Peak at night.

The view from Squaw Peak at night.

adventure. The sun’s gone down, so the Valley has cooled down a bit. Also, when you get to the end of your hike, the city lights below mixed with scattered stars above can’t be beat. The mixture of modern industrial living and staring up at the stars mesmerizes the senses, making the experiences truly unforgettable.

Here’s what you need to know if you want to keep this majestic adventure a safe one.

Flashlight: When going on a night hike, the most important tool has to be your flashlight. If you’re going in a group, make sure the person holding the light stands in back to illuminate the paths for the rest of the group. The ideal situation is for everyone to bring some kind of light.

Water: Depending on the length of your hike, you may want to bring two or three bottles of water. Don’t forget your cell phone in case of an emergency! The last place you want to be is lying on the ground with a sprained ankle a mile into the trail.

First Aid Kits aren’t the worst idea either. This can come in handy when bushes jet out and scrape your forearm or calf. Make sure you have Neosporin to minimize the risk of infections.

Footwear: Going up the mountain might seem harder than going down, and while going up can make you breathe heavy, the steep incline on the way down warrants caution. Make sure to wear appropriate hiking footwear and clothes or your feet will be regretting the decision the next day.

Camera: This hike is the perfect time to bust out your camera and take some photos of the city. You may need to bring a small tripod or find a sturdy rock to rest your camera on so the photos won’t become blurry because of low light conditions.

Friends: The climb up takes less out of you with friends helping and cheering you along. The top of the peak can turn from just a magical view to an unforgettable evening with your best friends, and the climb down will seem much less terrifying while holding onto your best friend’s shoulder.

Though you can’t hike at night in Scottsdale (the Scottsdale Preserve is only open from sunrise to sunset), trails in nearby cities are just a short drive away and open much later.

Where to go night hiking:

Hieroglyphics Canyon 

Lost Goldmine Trail 

Papago Park  - open until 11 p.m.

South Mountain  - open until 11 p.m.

Piestewa Peak  - open until 11 p.m.

walnut_canyon

Improvements coming to Walnut Canyon trail

Officials at Walnut Canyon National Monument are reconstructing a trail that gives visitors a view of 25 cliff dwelling rooms.

The one-mile Island Trail will be closed for the rest of the month.

Crews will be removing the asphalt along the trail to prepare it for repaving later this year.

Other improvements over the next two years include widening the trail, eliminating cracks and evening out the stairways.

The project won’t impact access to another trail that runs along the canyon rim.

The monument east of Flagstaff contains ruins of dwellings built by the Sinagua Indians more than 700 years ago.

JAMIE LOVES: Hiking Arizona

Popular Camelback hiking trail close

A trail to the summit of Camelback Mountain is closed until next fall to provide time for renovations to the parking lot and reconstruction of parts of the popular hiking route.

Since there is only limited street parking at Camelback Mountain’s Cholla trailhead, Phoenix parks officials are encouraging hikers to explore the city’s other mountains.

The Arizona Republic reports that the Echo Canyon trail is used about 400,000 times a year.

Extreme Sport, Arizona Adventures

Popular Camelback trail closed for work

A trail to the summit of Camelback Mountain is closed until next fall to provide time for renovations to the parking lot and reconstruction of parts of the popular hiking route.

Since there is only limited street parking at Camelback Mountain’s Cholla trailhead, Phoenix parks officials are encouraging hikers to explore the city’s other mountains.

The Arizona Republic reports that the Echo Canyon trail is used about 400,000 times a year.

Mission San Xavier del Bac is also known as the "White Dove of the Desert."

Southern Arizona Day Trips

Want to get away, but don’t have the time to plan a vacation? Then a short, fun day trip is the perfect option. Check out this list of southern Arizona attractions to plan a great day trip.

  • Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
    2021 N. Kinney Rd., Tucson
    520-883-1380
    The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is a world-renowned zoo, natural history museum and botanical garden, all in one place.

  • Bisbee
    1 Main St., Bisbee
    520-432-5421
    In the 1880s, this was once an important mining center. Today, it flourishes as a tourist town.

  • Chiricahua National Monument
    13063 E. Bonita Canyon Rd., Willcox
    520-824-3560 ext. 302
    The monument is a mecca for hikers and birders. Chiricahua plants and animals represent one of the premier areas for biological diversity in the Northern Hemisphere.

  • Colossal Cave Mountain Park
    16721 E. Old Spanish Tr., Vail
    520-647-7275
    Colossal Cave, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, had been used for centuries by prehistoric peoples when it was discovered in 1879.

  • Fort Bowie National Historic Site
    3203 S. Old Fort Bowie Rd., Bowie
    520-847-25004
    The site of the Bascom Affair, a wagon train massacre, and the battle of Apache Pass, where a large force of Chiricahua Apaches under Mangus Colorados and Cochise fought the California Volunteers. It stands as a lasting monument to the bravery and endurance of U.S. soldiers in paving the way for westward settlement and the taming of the Western frontier.

  • Ironwood Forest National Monument
    BLM Tucson Field Office: 12661 E. Broadway Blvd., Tucson
    520-258-7200
    The 129,000-acre monument contains significant cultural and historical sites covering a 5,000-year period. Possessing one of the richest stands of Ironwood trees in the Sonoran Desert, the area encompasses several desert mountain ranges including the Silver Bell, Waterman and Sawtooth, with desert valleys in between. Elevation ranges from 1,800 to 4,261 feet.

  • Kartchner Caverns State Park
    2980 S. Hwy. 90, Benson
    520-586-CAVE (2283)
    Discovered in 1974, these caverns just recently opened to the public and feature stunning stalactite and stalagmite formations.

  • Kitt Peak National Observatory
    Off of SR 86 on the Tohono O’odham Nation, Tucson
    520-318-8726
    Kitt Peak is the world’s largest working astronomical observatory. Open daily.

  • Las Cienegas National Conservation Area
    BLM Tucson Field Office: 12661 E. Broadway Blvd., Tucson
    520-258-7200
    Designated by Congress in 2000, this 42,000-acre area consists of vast desert grassland and rolling, oak-studded hills with a diverse plant and animal life, including several threatened or endangered species. Las Cienegas contains cultural resources within its borders, such as Empire Ranch House, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, mines and mining towns, and historic travel routes. Visitor activities include birdwatching, camping, hiking, horseback riding, hunting, mountain biking and scenic drives.

  • Mission San Xavier Del Bac
    1950 W. San Xavier Rd., Tucson
    520-294-2624
    Framed in the warm browns of the surrounding hills and the violet shadows of distant mountains, it rises, brilliantly white from the desert floor of dusty green mesquite and sage.

  • Old Tucson Studios
    201 S. Kinney Rd., Tucson
    520-883-0100
    Arizona’s Hollywood in the Desert since 1939. This world-famous working film location offers fun for the whole family — guided historical set tours, live stunt shows, gunfights, and saloon musicals, plus rides for the kids! While you’re here, enjoy a scenic trail ride in the unique and beautiful Arizona Sonora Desert.

  • Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
    10 Organ Pipe Dr., Ajo
    520-387-6849 ext. 0
    This scenic 516-square-mile preserve is filled with Organ Pipe Cactus, rare in the United States, scattered among mountains and plains.

  • Picacho Peak State Park
    Picacho
    520-466-3183
    Hiking, camping and picnicking 60 miles southeast of Phoenix, just off I-10.

  • Reid Park Zoo
    1100 S. Randolph Way, Tucson
    520-791-4022
    Come visit Tucson’s Reid Park Zoo and have a wild time. Meet more than 400 animals — rhinos, elephants, anteaters, polar bears, lions and many more. Venture into the African, Asian and South American regions. Explore the Flight Connection — the full-flight, walkthrough aviary.

  • Saguaro National Park
    2700 N. Kinney Rd., Tucson
    520-733-5158
    This national park protects more than 3,500 acres of native plants and animals.

  • San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area
    BLM Tucson Field Office: 12661 E. Broadway Blvd., Tucson
    520-258-7200
    This 57,000-acre area contains 40 miles of the San Pedro River, which is home to more than 100 species of birds and more than 400 species of migrating and wintering bird species.

  • Tombstone
    Tombstone
    520-457-3929
    Truly a historical American landmark, Tombstone is America’s best example of 1880 Western heritage, with original 1880s buildings, artifacts featured in numerous museums, gunfight re-enactments and Wild West legends.

  • Tucson
    100 S. Church Ave., Tucson
    800-638-8350
    Surrounded by rugged mountain ranges, the Old Pueblo is an international travel destination alive with character, history, art, cultural diversity, outdoor adventure and charm.

  • Yuma
    201 N. Fourth Ave., Yuma
    800-293-0071
    A visit to this growing metropolis offers something for everyone, from outdoor adventures to historic sites and museums. Yuma is also a great base for easy day trips “South of the Border,” and boasts varied dining, shopping and multiple casinos.
The Grand Canyon National Park makes a great day trip.

Northern Arizona Day Trips

Want to get away, but don’t have the time to plan a vacation? Then a short, fun day trip is the perfect option. Check out this list of northern Arizona attractions to plan a great day trip.

  • Aravaipa Canyon
    BLM Safford Field Office: 711 14th Ave., Safford
    928-348-4400
    Home to unique plant and fish communities, mountain lions and bighorn sheep, the canyon is protected by the Nature Conservancy and is a federal wilderness area. Historic sites left from thousands of years ago still exist, so visitors should respect any archaelogical sites and artifacts.

  • Canyon de Chelly
    Chinle
    928-674-5500
    Cultural resources of Canyon de Chelly include architecture, artifacts and rock imagery.

  • Grand Canyon National Park and Monument
    Grand Canyon
    928-638-7888
    One of the Seven Wonders of the World and one of the most popular attractions in the nation.

  • Grand Canyon Railway
    233 N. Grand Canyon Blvd., Williams
    800-THE-TRAIN (843-8724)
    Following tracks constructed 100 years ago, the Railway offers four classes of daily train service between Williams and the Grand Canyon. Covering 65 miles of high desert plains, small arroyos and portions of the world’s largest Ponderosa pine forest.

  • Hon-Dah Resort & Casino
    777 Hwy. 260, Pinetop
    800-929-8744
    Play indoors while in the White Mountains area at Hon-Dah Resort-Casino. This casino has 600 of the newest slot machines, Blackjack, poker, dining and accommodations are offered. The Indian Pine Restaurant, located in the casino, offers a full-service menu with a variety of tasty selections. From wood-fired pizzas to gourmet dinner entrees, there is something for everyone.

  • Lake Havasu
    314 London Bridge Rd., Lake Havasu City
    800-2- HAVASU (242-8278)
    Home to the world-famous London Bridge, Lake Havasu offers more than 400 miles of stunning coastline that is perfect for watersports, fishing, skiing, houseboating, camping, golfing and hiking.

  • London Bridge
    314 London Bridge Rd., Lake Havasu City
    800-2-HAVASU (242-8278)
    In 1962, the 130-year-old London Bridge was discovered to be sinking into the Thames. In 1968, the bridge was put up for auction and Robert P. McCulloch was the winning bidder. He spent $7 million to move the bridge to Lake Havasu City, which took three years.

  • Montezuma Castle
    Camp Verde
    928-567-3322
    A multistoried, 20-room ancient Indian cliff dwelling built more than six centuries ago.

  • Out of Africa
    3505 Camp Verde Bridgeport Hwy., Camp Verdea
    928-567-2840
    Call us wild! Call us crazy! Just don’t call us a zoo. At Out of Africa, you get a different view of wildlife. Here, exotic animals roam in spacious habitats, so you can see their natural behavior up-close. And, with exciting shows like Tiger Splash and the Predator Feed, Out of Africa is like nothing you’ve ever seen. Open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

  • Painted Desert/Petrified Forest
    One Park Rd., Petrified Forest
    928-524-6228
    A 160 million-year-old prehistoric flood plain. The largest and most colorful find of petrified wood in the world.

  • Payson
    303 N. Beeline Hwy., Payson
    928-474-5242
    Considered the Festival Capital of Arizona and situated in the world’s largest group of Ponderosa pines.

  • Red Rock State Park
    4050 Red Rock Loop Rd., Sedona
    928-282-6907
    Arizona’s famous Oak Creek meanders through this scenic park, creating a diverse riparian habitat abounding with plants and wildlife.

  • Sedona
    331 Forest Rd., Sedona
    800-288-7336
    Surrounded by magnificent Red Rock formations, Sedona offers the best in accommodations, dining and shopping. Visitors come here for outdoor activities/adventures and top-notch galleries and arts.

  • Slide Rock State Park
    6871 N. Hwy. 89A, Sedona
    928-282-3034
    The park is named after the famous Slide Rock, a stretch of slippery creek bottom adjacent to the homestead. Open every day.

  • Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument
    Wupatki Loop Rd., Flagstaff
    928-526-0502
    A once-active volcano, the crater is located 12 miles north of Flagstaff on Sunset Crater off Wupatki Loop Road.

  • Tonto National Monument
    Roosevelt
    928-467-2241
    Shallow caves overlooking the Tonto Basin in southeastern Arizona shelter masonry dwellings nearly 700 years old, which were home to the prehistoric Salado people.

  • Verde Canyon Railroad
    300 N. Broadway Clarkdale
    800-320-0718
    Offering one of the most beautiful views of Arizona you’ll ever see. Take a picnic or splurge for first-class cars with appetizers and drinks. However you go, this four-hour train ride takes you through a piece of “natural Arizona” that will take your breath away.
Bed and breakfasts can be the perfect option for those who'd like to get away while still enjoying the comforts of home.

Bed And Breakfasts Around Arizona

Getting away for the weekend can be fun, but sometimes it’s nice to have the comforts of home available even while away on vacation.  Bed and breakfasts can be the perfect option for those who’d like to get away while still enjoying the comforts of home. Here’s a list of bed and breakfasts around Arizona for when the average hotel just doesn’t cut it.

  • A Territorial House
    65 Piki Dr., Sedona
    800-801-2737
    A two-story, Western-style ranch adorned with old-fashioned furnishings, this comfortable and peaceful inn is charming and friendly. Outdoor hot tubs, fireplaces and a great desert landscape provide a serene situation.

  • Adobe Hacienda Bed & Breakfast
    10 Rojo Dr., Sedona
    800-454-7191
    A Spanish style hacienda with handmade Mexican furniture, antiques, Native American art, fireplaces, whirlpool tubs and full breakfast is served.

  • Adobe Hacienda Bed & Breakfast
    10 Rojo Dr., Sedona
    800-454-7191
    A Spanish style hacienda with handmade Mexican furniture, antiques, Native American art, fireplaces and whirlpool tubs. Full breakfast is served.

  • Amado Territory Inn
    3001 E. Frontage Rd., Amado
    888-398-8684
    Situated near the Mexican border, this bed and breakfast is considered to be great birding country.

  • Apple Orchard Inn
    656 Jordan Rd., Sedona
    800-663-6968
    With an eclectic mix of natural wonders, skip around town enjoying music, festivals, shopping and contemporary art. Full breakfast is served on the patio. Rooms come furnished with great amenities.

  • Bed & Bagels of Tucson
    10402 E. Glenn St., Tucson
    520-760-5595
    This bed-and-breakfast, offering a pool, hot tub and five-course breakfasts, welcomes pets and children. Special diets are accommodated and Bed & Bagels is suitable for most chemically sensitive (MCS) guests. Especially well-suited for foreign visitors, as the owner speaks four languages.

  • Bedlam Bed & Breakfast
    15253 N. Skylark Crl., Fountain Hills
    480-837-9695
    High atop a hillside, this B&B offers breathtaking views of the vast desert and surrounding mountains, including Four Peaks and the Superstition Mountains. Each bedroom comes with its own private bathroom, TV, telephone and high-speed Internet access. Closed June, July and August.

  • Birders Vista Bed and Breakfast
    5147 S. Kino Rd., Sierra Vista
    520-378-2493
    Guests at Birders Vista B&B can enjoy a wide array of birds in the lush backyard. Amenities include a reading library with 1,500 books, high-speed Internet access, TV and a telescope for your birding pleasure.

  • Boots And Saddles Bed & Breakfast
    2900 Hopi Dr., Sedona
    1-800-201-1944
    Each room is decorated in unique Southwestern themes and feature air-jet tubs, private patios, telescopes for star gazing, fireplace, refrigerator, luxurious robes and free Internet access. A fresh, two-course breakfast is served every day.

  • Briar Patch Inn
    3190 N. Hwy. 89A, Sedona
    928-282-2342
    Stay in one of the 19 cottages nestled in Oak Creek Canyon and enjoy a peaceful, natural setting. Located 3 miles from shopping, dining and great views of the Sedona sunset.

  • Canyon Villa Bed & Breakfast
    40 Canyon Circle Dr., Sedona
    800-453-1166
    This two-story Spanish Mission-style inn is luxurious, outstanding and relaxing. Take in the fresh flowers and the effortless entry to Oak Creek for a morning swim.

  • Casa Tierra Bed & Breakfast
    11155 W. Calle Pima, Tucson
    520-578-3058
    This Mexican-style adobe home makes resting easy, as it is located in an isolated area and is near many local accommodations.

  • Catalina Park Inn
    309 E. 1st St., Tucson
    520-792-4541Six guest rooms are strategically placed to provide privacy that opens to a walled courtyard. Built in 1927, this two-story Mediterranean-style mansion woos guests with its mahogany woodwork and architectural nuance.

  • Cozy Cactus Bed & Breakfast
    80 Canyon Circle Dr., Sedona
    928-284-0082
    This five bedroom bed and breakfast offers guests a choice of one- or two-bedroom suites with private entrances, Red Rock views and hiking access, plus many other amenities.

  • Desert Dove Bed & Breakfast
    11707 E. Old Spanish Trail, Tucson
    520-722-6879
    This Territorial adobe bed and breakfast is situated on four acres and nestled in the foothills of the Rincon Mountains near the Saguaro National Park East. Accommodations include great porches, polished colored concrete floors, open trusses, antiques and collectibles — all of which create a unique ambience.

  • El Portal Bed & Breakfast
    95 Portal Ln., Sedona
    800-313-0017
    Going beyond the ordinary, the architecture and adobe construction of El Portal is completely authentic. Nowhere else in Sedona will you find a luxury inn or hotel with 18-inch thick adobe walls that provide both quiet and history. All rooms feature free broadband cable high speed Internet, as well as free wireless access throughout the hotel, including the courtyard.

  • Full Circle Ranch
    40205 N. 26th St., Cave Creek
    623-465-7570
    A romantic hideaway nestled in the desert, complete with horse facilities, an observation deck, pool and heated spa.

  • Graces Secret Garden Bed & Breakfast
    1240 Jacks Canyon Rd., Sedona
    800-579-2340
    Pets are welcome to come along for the stay at Greyfire. Meet and greet with the four resident Arabian horses and enjoy your stay in the Southwestern ranch home decorated with antiques and positioned on more than two acres.

  • Graham’s Bed & Breakfast
    150 Canyon Circle Dr., Sedona
    800-228-1425
    Open all year, this contemporary, Southwestern inn offers a bountiful breakfast and beautiful views.

  • Grand Living Bed and Breakfast
    701 Quarterhorse Rd., Williams
    928-635-4171
    A two-story log cabin with a wrap-around veranda and country Victorian decor. Horseback riding, fishing lakes and hiking trails exist in the surrounding area.

  • Hacienda del Desierto Bed & Breakfast
    11770 E. Rambling Trl., Tucson
    800-982-1795
    Award-winning Spanish hacienda on 16 secluded acres next to National Park. Four luxury accommodations, three with kitchenettes. TVs, business center, garden, patios, views, nature trail, birding, outdoor hydrotherapy spas.

  • Heritage Inn
    161 N. Main St., Snowflake
    866-486-5947
    Has 12 rooms with full baths, Jacuzzi tubs, gas log stoves, cable TV, wireless Internet and daily gourmet breakfast specials.

  • Hidden Meadow Ranch
    620 County Road 1325, Greer
    928-333-1000
    Includes 12 luxuriously furnished log cabins, dining room, lounge and library. There is also a spring-fed trout pond for fly-fishing and canoeing.

  • Hotel Vendome
    230 S. Cortez St., Prescott
    928-776-0900
    A quaint 1917 inn, the Hotel Vendome is nestled in the beauty of the Prescott wilderness amid Victorian architecture. A shot away from the famous Whiskey Row and a charming small town, experience the settlement and then enjoy a glass of wine in the quietly shaded veranda while watching the sun go down.

  • Inn at 410 Bed & Breakfast
    410 N. Leroux St., Flagstaff
    800-774-2008
    The Inn at 410 Bed & Breakfast is an oasis of peace and serenity amidst our stressful world. The Inn’s spacious parlor is a relaxing place to sip hot cider and curl up with a book in front of the fireplace. The gazebo and perennial gardens offer summer guests an intimate retreat for afternoon iced tea or morning breakfast. A scrumptious, healthy breakfast and afternoon tea with homemade cookies are just two of the ways our innkeepers accomplish the task of making The Inn at 410 the “Place with the Personal Touch.”

  • Inn at Castle Rock
    112 Tombstone Canyon Rd., Bisbee
    520-432-4449
    Now remodeled, it was once an 1890s boarding house for miners. Full breakfast is served and a glass of wine is offered in the evening to enjoy on the patio under the starlit sky. Dinner and lunch are available at the restaurant located on site.

  • Inn on Oak Creek, The556 Hwy. 179, Sedona
    800-499-7896
    Private creekside decks, gas fireplaces, whirlpool tubs, full breakfast.

  • Jenny Kent’s B & B
    450 S. Orange Ave., Yuma
    928-783-4520
    Stay in a charming, historic house — Jenny Kent’s Bed and Breakfast — moderately priced and conveniently located off Interstate 8. Jenny’s is nestled in the the historic Century Heights District of Yuma.

  • Jeremiah Inn Bed & Breakfast
    10921 E. Snyder Rd., Tucson
    520-749-3072
    Guest rooms feature private baths, queen beds, and other amenities.

  • Lodge at Sedona, The
    125 Kallof Pl., Sedona
    928-204-1942
    Located in the heart of Sedona, this four diamond bed & breakfast has gardens, mature pines, waterfalls, majestic red rock views, a fitness center, and many other amenities that provide a serene relaxing place to stay.

  • Log Cabin Bed & Breakfast
    3155 N. U.S. Hwy. 89, Prescott
    888-778-0442
    This three story rustic log cabin is open year-round and is located near Watson Lake/Willow Lake Recreation Area in the Granite Dells. Enjoy hiking out their back door or enjoy looking at the stars from the deck or the hot tub.

  • Maricopa Manor Bed & Breakfast
    15 W. Pasadena Ave., Phoenix
    800-292-6403
    Built in 1928, the Spanish Mission-style home offers seven suites with private facilities.

  • Noftsger Hill Inn
    425 North St., Globe
    928-425-2260
    The front rooms provide a panoramic view of the ruggedly beautiful Pinal Mountains. Rear rooms face the Old Dominion Mine, offering a picturesque view of historic mining operations.

  • Oakwood Inn Bed & Breakfast
    6558 Wagon Wheel Ln., Pinetop-Lakeside
    800-959-8098
    Oakwood Inn offers guests the opportunity to relax and enjoy common areas for their convenience. Guest rooms offer traditional decor with private baths. Home-cooked breakfasts are served family-style in the dining room.

  • Pinetop Country Bed & Breakfast
    2444 W. Jan Ln., Pinetop
    888-521-5044
    Romantic and charming, this B&B offers candlelit dinners and wine-and-cheese parties every Saturday night. The Victorian suite proves to be the most popular with its fireplace, private balcony overlooking a pond and a fire pit.

  • Pleasant Street Inn, The
    142 S. Pleasant St., Prescott
    928-445-4774
    Unwind in a 1906, two-story Victorian home with traditional English furnishings. Beautiful views and fresh flowers make this inn an enjoyable weekend getaway. Four rooms are available with private amenities.

  • Prescott Pines Inn
    901 White Spar Rd., Prescott
    928-445-7270
    Austrian lace curtains, white picket fence and grand flagstone porch create the feeling of Victorian elegance. The entrance to the guesthouse welcomes you with ivy and beautiful pink flowers.

  • Ramsey Canyon Inn Bed & Breakfast
    29 Ramsey Canyon Rd., Hereford
    520-378-3010
    A modern country inn that offers hiking trails through the hummingbird capital of the world. This B&B offers serene settings for a chance to relax amid its antiques and country furnishings.

  • Red Garter Bed & Bakery
    137 W. Railroad Ave., Williams
    928-635-1484
    A beautifully restored 1897 saloon in a Victorian Romanesque brick building with 12-foot ceilings, skylights and antique furnishings. Located in the heart of downtown Williams; sight-seeing is nearby.

  • Royal Elizabeth Bed & Breakfast Inn
    204 S. Scott Ave., Tucson
    877-670-9022
    An 1878 adobe Victorian mansion, located on a quiet street in historic Downtown Tucson. Enjoy colorful gardens, heated pool, spacious guest suites, period antiques, private baths and the services of a fine resort.

  • Sleepy Hollow Bed & Breakfast
    5522 E. Tapekim Rd., Cave Creek
    480-488-9402
    On a small knoll above a gently rising hollow, Sleepy Hollow is the perfect place to relax.

  • Spur Cross Bed & Breakfast
    38555 N. School House Rd., Cave Creek
    480-473-1038
    Offers four suites with amenities such as separate outside entrances, private baths, upgraded Southwestern furnishings, satellite TV, refrigerator, microwave and coffeemaker.

  • Sunglow Guest Ranch
    14066 S. Sunglow Rd., Pearce
    520-824-3334
    Located in the foothills of the Chiracahua Mountains, this ranch offers birding, hiking, biking, stargazing and the Sunglow Cafe for refreshing teas and mouthwatering desserts. Yoga classes available.

  • The Commons at White Mountain Lodge
    140 Main St., Greer
    928-735-9977
    The Commons at White Mountain Lodge provides guests with a choice of freestanding cabins or cottages in the historic main lodge. Both cabins and cottages in the main modge provide guests with spectacular views of the Greer Valley Meadow, Little Colorado River or Aspen Grove.

  • Touch of Sedona Inn & Retreat
    595 Jordan Rd., Sedona
    928-282-6462
    Located in the heart of uptown Sedona, and within walking distance to a wealth of fine art galleries, restaurants and easy hiking trails.

  • Valley O’ the Sun
    Scottsdale
    480-941-1281
    An authentic Irish bed-and-breakfast captured within a 1960s-style ranch home with traditional furnishings. Located near Arizona State University in Tempe.
Red Mountain Trailhead photographed by Kristine Cannon

The Fall And Ensuing Therapy Session On Red Mountain

The Fall & Ensuing Therapy Session on Red Mountain

The walls feel entirely too far apart at this point. I could feel myself breaking into a cold sweat. The orange-hued walls tower above me, the sunlight receding until it leaves me in the mountain’s chilly shadow.

That’s all this place was anyway – a large cave, it felt. Really, it’s a volcano with a natural amphitheater cut into it. And I felt trapped. I was left battling for my bones, even my life, to be spared.

Red Mountain, about 25 miles north of Flagstaff, is where Frank and I decided to spend our Saturday afternoon this past summer. This popular hiking site is definitely a kid friendly, easy stroll, but this trail had never scared me quite this much before because I decided to take a risk.

My footing slips a little bit, setting loose tiny rocks and kicking up a small cloud of dirt and heightened fear. My breathing and heartbeat quicken their pace. The rocks descending down the slick, steep slope aren’t nearly as audible now. They’ve been falling for a while, it seems…

Frank reminds me to hold on, that he’s going to pull me back up. I had to muster up the courage to move from my face down, arms-and-legs-outstretched position, clinging for dear life.

And then I lost my footing.

A shrilling shriek echoes through the amphitheater.

“Hold on!”

Adrenaline is pumping through my veins; I can’t feel anything but my feet sliding against the wall while trying desperately to stop this epic fall. I can’t hear anything but the rocks from above, below and alongside us falling rapidly down the slope. I can’t see anything but Frank clouded in the kicked-up dirt, tightly gripping my arm.

My eyes close, and suddenly we’re stopped, about 25 feet above level ground. It felt like it lasted minutes, but I’m sure it lasted a mere 15 seconds…maybe even less.

Our heavy breathing slows to a steady pace. “Well, we’re not dead,” I thought to myself, “But, whoa, what a rush!”

I’m not an adrenaline junkie by any means, but that was the first time in my life I had experienced something so frightening yet thrilling and exciting. I swore I would walk away with at least a broken finger. Instead, I walked away with an incredibly painful gash in my forearm, cuts and scratches all over my legs, and a new found respect for safe hiking.

I can safely say this was the most amazing, exciting, scary, wonderful, fun experience I’ve ever had in Arizona. Yes, I walked away bruised and battered, but aren’t those technically the most memorable experiences one could have?

And I mean really memorable…you remember the pain, the fear, the rush, the innocent hike preceding the horrendous fall, the nervous laughter afterward and overcoming the fear of taking a chance and stepping foot onto that mountain ever again. [I eventually did.]

But that’s life.

You never know what will happen the next minute. You never know you’ve made a mistake until you’re experiencing the repercussions of it. But the real test is how you handle it all – the fall and the aftermath.

On Red Mountain, I didn’t expect a cathartic experience. I expected to have a few hours of “getting away from it all” but ended up with a different take on life.

So, Frank helped me stand up on my shaky, unstable legs; I brushed myself of the dirt and debris, took a sigh of relief and thought to myself, “I’ll get back on this mountain soon…and this won’t happen again. And if it does, then I can call myself an idiot.”