Friday, February 8, 2013

Along the Baldwin Trail

Sedona's Baldwin Trail offers spectacular views of Cathedral Rock.
Cathedral Rock Ahead

Photo of the Baldwin Trail in Sedona Arizona
The Path Behind

In Sedona, two paths diverged in the woods and we chose the Baldwin Trail.  It is rated moderate -- perfect for two middle-aged women (the Nancy’s squared) on the loose in the wilderness.  Armed with our trekking poles and cameras (and water!), we set off into the wilderness for the loop around Cathedral Rock.  A rise of about 200 feet seemed more achievable than the 600-foot scramble up the Cathedral Rock Trail and so it was.  It’s exhilarating to hike on a sunny, cool day through a landscape that offers both magnificent vistas and cool forest paths.

They say that Sedona is a mystical place with vortexes of spiritual energy dotting the landscape.  I can’t say that I channeled a vortex but for sure the magic got under my skin and into my soul.  It is hard to put into words.  Perhaps it is the red rocks rising majestically up into the sky – all rounded corners and fantastical spires.  Or, perhaps it is the scrub pines bound to the earth by a shallow root system and seemingly always in danger of toppling over as they line the side of the path.

Maybe, just maybe, it is that rare opportunity to be alone with nature as my hiking companion (the intrepid Nancy B aka the B) turns the corner ahead leaving me with no one ahead and no one behind.  Just me, the golden grasses, Cathedral Rock ahead, the warmth of the sun on my face, the clean scent of evergreens, the sound of Oak Creek burbling in the distance, and the gentle wind rustling the bare branches of the sycamores.  A veritable feast for the senses.

Baldwin Trail in Sedona Arizona Winds through Red Rocks near Oak Creek.
Red Rocks Hiding
Photo of driftwood against the red earth of Sedona, AZ
Fallen Limb

Winter Tree in Sedona Arizona near Oak Creek along the Baldwin Trail
Snow Crystals Adorn a Sedona Cactus
Snow Melt
PicMonkey of Abe Lincoln and George Washington Rock Formations along Baldwin Trail in Sedona.
George Meet Abe, Lincoln Meet Washington
Photo of the colors of Sedona (driftwood, cactus, red earth)
Arizona Palette

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