We are continuing to have mild weather. It's been cooler the last few days and the monsoon season is back. Big clouds roll in during they day and we sometimes get some rain. Best of all, it's kept the highs in the upper 70's.
Today we took a ride out to Sedona, Az. just over a hundred miles round trip.
We should have been on Highway 89A heading south out of Flagstaff. But I didn't pay attention to the map thinking I could get to Sedona off I-17. However, after more than 50 miles on I-17 I hadn't seen a sign for Sedona, so it was time to break out the map. We made it to an exit which put us south of Sedona and thus we headed north on 179 from I-17 towards Sedona enjoying the beautiful red rock mesas.
Love this photo!
Notice the homes nestled in the hills.
Sedona is located in the Upper Sonoran Desert of northern Arizona. At an elevation of 4,500 feet (1,372 m), Sedona has mild winters and summers.
The famous red rocks of Sedona are formed by a layer of rock known as the Schnebly Hill Formation. The Schnebly Hill Formation is a thick layer of red to orange-colored sandstone found only in the Sedona vicinity. The sandstone, a member of the Supai Group, was deposited during the Permian Period.
As of the census of 2000, there were 10,192 people, 4,928 households, and 2,863 families residing in the city. The median income for a household in the city was $44,042, and the median income for a family was $52,659. Males had a median income of $32,067 versus $24,453 for females. The per capita income for the city was $31,350. About 4.7% of families and 9.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.1% of those under age 18 and 5.0% of those age 65 or over.
Sedona has a temperate high desert climate. In January, the average high temperature is 57°F (14°C) with a low of 31°F (-1°C). In July, the average high temperature is 97°F (34°C) with a low of 64°F (17°C). Annual precipitation is just over 19 inches. Temps were in the low 90's during our visit, milder perhaps due to the clouds.
Sedona began to develop as a tourist destination, vacation-home and retirement center in the 1950s. Most of the development seen today was constructed in the 1980s and 1990s. As of 2007, there are no large tracts of undeveloped land remaining.
The red rock formations surrounding the downtown areas were absolutely beautiful.
It's obvious that Sedona is a tourist town. The Main Street (89A) is lined on both sides with restaurants, T-shirt shops and Jeep tours.
We had lunch at a local Mexican restaurant and watched through the large windows as the storm clouds rolled in. The waitress made mention of flash flood warnings out of Flagstaff.
We had traveled in the truck as I hadn't driven it for over a week. It began to rain as we headed north on 89A towards Flagstaff. The rode was narrow and winding through a canyon. I was beginning to regret not having taken the Jeep because of the narrow twisting canyon road. However, it was very beautiful especially when we could see the water falling off the canyon walls. Unfortunately, the water often ran into the road creating potential flash flooding and falling rock conditions. We weren't able to take pictures do to the rain. Before long we came across some ascending switchbacks. After gaining altitude the rain began to subside as we drove through a pine forest that was littered with hail on the ground so thick it looked like snow. I'm glad we didn't drive into the hail as it was falling! The rest of the ride home was uneventful with sporadic rain showers.
Sedona is worth checking out if you're in the area. There are a number of hiking opportunities just off the highway. We had hoped to take advantage of one in a slot canyon, but were thwarted by the rain and lightning.