Our friends told us not to miss Sedona as it was a beautiful area. Driving north from Mesa, we went through forests of Saguaro cacti, then Ponderosa pines. I was told we actually had driven through 7 climate zones by the time we finished our drive from Mesa to Williams, just 40 miles or so from the Grand Canyon. I couldn’t believe how the terrain changed all along.
When we left the Mesa area, there were many cyclists out for their Sunday adventure in the cacti forest. Then the hills got bigger as we continued to climb towards Sedona. The mountains there are colourful, mostly pink and red, with hoodoos. I loved how the town has retained the natural character by ensuring the buildings were all in the same colour scheme and style. Even the McDonalds had a sand coloured building with a green sign. As a point of clarification, we often stop at Macca’s for an iced tea or a coffee. I have to get my caffeine somehow. And the prices are reasonable, not as pricey as they were in Australia. Mind you, we do see some characters. There was a guy there who had his firearm clearly visible and we dressed all in black like some sort of combat outfit, yet had not identifying markers. I thought he might be a bodyguard for a celebrity at the Sedona Film Festival.
Sedona is known for its energy fields and you can tell there are many health spas and generally a lot of money invested in the area. If I worked in Flagstaff, I would want to live there. Just a gorgeous place!
We decided not to camp in Sedona as the campgrounds were south of the town and we were headed north. We drove on into an area called Oak Creek Canyon where we saw real snow, lots of it! We stopped to take pictures at the viewpoint before moving on to Williams, where we stopped for the night.
By the time we parked at the KOA, the temperature had changed dramatically from Mesa. I was still in my shorts and sandals and quickly changed into jeans. By sundown, we could feel the cold of the higher altitude. It is close to 7000 ft up in Williams. The night was brisk and we could qualify it as winter camping. We were told they had a big snow storm only 3 weeks ago and the snow left behind was its evidence. Again, I am constantly surprised by this weather. I never expected Arizona to have a climate so similar to some of our western areas, like southern BC or Alberta.
We rugged up, as they say in Australia, and settled down for the night in our cozy camper. I meant to blog but I couldn’t put my book down. I’ve now managed to finish 3 books on this trip. That’s 3 more than I finished last year! The latest book was The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman. I picked it up at one of the campgrounds. I see it will be made into a movie shortly. Very enjoyable (and with a plot that takes place in Australia)!