Distant Drums RV Resort
Camp Verde, AZ
May 14, 2014
|Pearl and Red
We have enjoyed visits here at the park as well as several outings in Pearl and Red, their trail kicking, rock climbing, whopper of a jeep. Our first trip took us back to Broken Arrow which we wrote about in a post titled One Large and Beautiful View...Two Trails. As much as Joe and I enjoyed doing this short, difficult 4X4 trail the first time, it was really, really fun the second time! It was Dave and Lynn's first Broken Arrow ride so hearing the "wahoo"s sure put a smile on our face!
|Dave, Lynn and Allie at Chicken Point
Red performed flawlessly doing "The Steps" which is one reason this trail is rated difficult.
After the ride, we hiked the Baldwin Trail...a pretty good trail with lots of up and downs and wonderful views of Cathedral Rock.
Our second outing took us back down Schnelby Hill Road. It was my suggestion to go this way. I wanted to see some wildlife. A bear or a moose...just a deer would have made my day! Just not meant to be though as all we saw were cows!
We did however pass Balance Rock...
and Coffee Pot Rock also known as Eagle Rock (depending on the view you have).
We were on our way to Soldier's Pass 4X4 Trail. The real ride for the day! Soldier's Pass is a short, scenic trail that is rated difficult in our guide book. It gets its rating because of several steep, ledgy climbs.
Our first stop on this ride was Devil's Kitchen. Actually it is a humongous sinkhole. I say humongous because it actually collapsed several times. The first recorded collapse was back in the early 1880s. According to history, the crash was heard thru out Sedona, and dust filled the air all day making the sun look like it was shining thru heavy smoke.
There was another collapse in 1989 which enlarged the opening by as much as 1/3. The most common cause of sinkholes are from caves that collapse in limestone rock. But no limestone is found in Devil's Kitchen. In fact, the upper wall is made of sandstone from the Schnelby Hill Formation and the lower wall consists of siltstone of the Hermit Formation. Devil's Kitchen will more than likely get bigger. It does require regular inspection. The obvious danger point is the extreme south wall where many folks...like myself... walk unknowingly onto a severe overhang. Whew...glad I'm still here to warn all of you!
|I was standing on the over hang on the top far left...
The last section of trail had us traversing some slickrock on our way to the Seven Sacred Apache Pools.
Yes, there are seven pools...I counted them! I also walked among them from top to bottom and back up. These pools in the slick red rock only fill with rain and run-off water. There are no underground springs feeding the pools.
Yet, in recorded history, up thru 2003, at least one of the pools always had water. Some pretty cool amphibians call this home...
I was too busy holding on to take pictures, but this is the right turn as we began the decent...
to the beautiful shade of green in the middle of the picture below.
We also ran right into Oak Creek...
A look to the left...
and a look to the right!
I could hardly wait...the boots were off, the socks were off and in I went! The water was cool and clear. The rocks were smooth but not slippery like I thought they would be. Its was just one of those places that begs you to stay awhile!
Our time in the Sedona area has come to an end. Its definitely a place we have to revisit. There is so much we haven't done here. We didn't visit any of the state parks and there are quite a few. We didn't visit any of the National Monuments either and there are quite a few of them too. There are many, many more hikes we haven't done and a few we would love to do again maybe in a different season. We have heard fall is really nice here!
Today is packing up day...we are off to a place we have been before, but are so looking forward to returning to...Moab, UT.
So, we will bid Camp Verde farewell in the morning. It has been a real adventure! And we are taking some great memories with us.
Until next time, take care and
enjoy your journey!