This weekend we threw the dogs in the Jeep and met friends Steve and Michele for a bit of Jeeping fun.  We headed out to Sedona with the plan of running Broken Arrow.  It is bumpy and rocky and the trail is rated difficult.  All in all fairly doable.  The guide book suggests skid plates.  You will want skid plates, skid plates are good, even with a vehicle being raised I would want skid plates, granted I don’t look under the Jeep I leave that to the man of the Jeep to tend to.

Skid Plates
We know we are in the right place

The red rock in Sedona is absolutely beautiful.  Not sure if I buy into the Vortex or any of the mystical stuff but the sights are truly magical.  The desert has begun its blooming and the Prickly Pear has flowers and the Yuccas have their Dr. Seuss trees growing out of the middle.  The sky is blue, the temperatures are warm (not hot just warm). And the tourists are out.  Pink Jeep tours can be seen at each worthy spot.  We start out with a rocky uphill climb that leads us to Submarine Rock, skid plates are good.  I see the reasoning for the name later on in the day when we are viewing it from another vantage point as when you are right up on it the rock looks like a long flat-ish rock.  Easy climb up on foot.  Up on top you look around and you are surrounded by red rock in its striped glory with green spreading out below.

The next stop is Chicken Point – I found a rock that looked like a chicken and one that looked like a bird but these apparently have nothing to do with the naming of the rock. This is where the Pink Jeep tours and such come in handy.  There is a rock that sits out overlooking the area with a taller rock in the middle.  Apparently Jeeps used to drive on this unless or until someone chickened out.  Whatever, I saw ‘rock chicken’ and his cousin ‘rock bird’ and clearly they are the overseers of the rocky land so that is what we are going with.  This area was pretty windy, Jeff later informed me there were 45 miles per hour gusts, which would explain why whilst up on said chicken rock we were getting blown.  We observed folks on mountain bikes doing the trail.  Well good for them.  I like my Jeep it has AC and windows. Two ladies had clearly chosen their backdrop for their Instagram page and clad in Yoga outfits perched themselves at Chicken Point doing headstands with various yoga positions.  Good for them but no, rock is hard on my head however the mountain bikers did indeed enjoy them.  Their yoga-ness was pretty good but not 45 mile an hour wind gust good.

Back in the Jeep and we take a pit stop to look around and see if we can assist another group who needs a welder, on a Saturday, out in the forest of Sedona.  Maybe they did not have skid plates.  Skid plates are good. Hopefully at the end of the day they were taken care of.  From this spot we can see Submarine Rock and yep, it looks like a Submarine!  (Chicken Rock at Chicken Point just saying).  Steve and Michelle were discussing movies that were filmed out here and apparently Broken Arrow (1950 James Stewart, I looked it up because we had G’s our there) was filmed here.  Great views from here, well actually everywhere on this trail had great views.  Nothing was disappointing.

Skid plates are good
You know it will be a good day when it is 4 Low, tires deflated, stability control is off and hill descent is on.

Just as you leave this little turn out you come to an area with a worn looking rock that you can indeed descend.  We have not done much as far as “rock climbing” in the Jeep but it looked easy enough so we did it and them Steve and Michele did it.  It looks easy, and likely it is, but when you are in the Jeep you cannot see where you are going and there are 2 “steps” the first one you just sort of fall for 20 seconds waiting for the tire to reach the next level, inch forward and do it again and bam! You are done.  I highly suggest this and for reasons that will be discussed in the immediate future.  To exit this area there is a bit of a bump, again skid plates are good.

On the way out of the area you come to what is known as “The Steps”.  Steve and Michelle went first as they had done this previously and were kind enough to offer to take pics and video of our first trip down.  They are exactly how they sound …steps.  Steep and Bumpy and as the daughter would say slow and low that is the tempo.  Now I suggested above that you go down the worn rock at the other landing because once you do that, this will not seem to be such a big deal.  The Steps didn’t seem as steep to me as the short ride down the worn rock but they are indeed longer and our buddy Steve can be seen in our pics standing at the bottom taking pics of us because apparently he trusts both Jeff and brakes.  Again, this area is rocky and skid plates are good.

Off to lunch.  As beautiful as Sedona is the truly most horrendous part of the place is being in the town.  There is always too much traffic and too many people.  Seriously every time I have been.  We took the dogs and sat outside at Canyon Breeze Restaurant.  We ate out front because of Hoodlum and Suki but if you have never been here then I suggest you eat out back.  The patio spans the length of the restaurant and all you have is this amazing view.  It is a magnificent view and I have always enjoyed sitting out there.  You can eat some food, drink a drink and enjoy the views and the company. On the flip side there is lots of people watching to be had at the front.  There are shaded tables out front and honestly the food is pretty good.

Back in the Jeep and off to Soldiers Pass.  A quick little Jeep run with lots and lots of hikers.  I can see why this would be a pretty fun place to set out on foot and they do indeed allow dogs.  Our pooches didn’t do too much outside time this trip but I wouldn’t mind taking them back when it was a bit less windy and maybe on a weekday.  So many people have their dogs off leash which is fine, most of the time but not all the time.  The roads here are pretty easy but it is one way in and one way out so oftentimes you have to get creative to make room.  Skid plates likely aren’t necessary but skid plates are good.  Anyways.  So we set out and found ourselves at Seven Pools which indeed has layers of pools, I imagine seven and it all depends on how you count.  Lots of rock formations surrounding you, if you are lucky enough to have a tour guide in your vicinity he can lie about what the Indian folklore is.  Honestly this guy, eh I wouldn’t trust him.  But if you need a good story I would be happy to provide you with one I just don’t think the one rock is about an elephant. To my knowledge there are no native elephants to the Arizona area.  But I digress.

Skid Plates are Good
Yes, it is intentional. Deflated for traction.

Next we went to the Devil’s Dining Room which is much more pleasant than it sounds.  This is a sink hole and there is a sign that tells you all the scientific stuff about how the sink hole was formed.  Personally I go with the land fell and boom! Sink Hole!  Michelle does not care for the steep drop offs at cliffs, and with the wind she really didn’t want anyone getting too terribly close to the edge. (In her defense it is a long way down…all day it was a long way down).  So when this “kid” (probably an adult, well adult-ish at least) sat down and dangled his feet over the edge, she was not pleased.  She said Oh No.  He was probably fine but I wouldn’t do it but then I am pretty clumsy.  Though as Jeff likely knows my life insurance is paid up and there is double indemnity for accidents.  But I like careful, remember skid plates are good.

I had figured about a half a day for this run and as it turns out we pretty much did a full day.  And it was worth it!  The worst part really was all the traffic in Sedona but I like quiet off the beaten tracks kind of places.  I like bumpy and rocky and skid plates, skid plates are good! Though I have to say people are always friendly on the trails and it is kind of fun to see the same faces at different stopping points.  I hope we hit another trail with Steve and Michelle, they are fun Jeepers.  All these things are kind of what makes Jeeping a social event even when you go out alone.  Please remember skid plates are good and give the Jeep wave!

Photos as always:

skid plates #SkidPlates, #JeepingWithDogs, #Sedona


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