Monday, January 19, 2015

Sedona - and the hardest hike I've ever done. That's saying something.

There is a stunning mountain in the Sonoran Desert at Lost Dutchman State Park in Arizona, called Flatiron.  It's a six mile roundtrip to climb up it, with a one-mile stretch where you gain 2,000 feet elevation.  In other words: it's a butt kicker.  You have to use your arms pulling yourself up and down boulders.  It's vertical and scary at times.  My ten and twelve year old sons made me hike it.  Since I still have the worst cold of my life, I was hesitant putting myself through this, but I was feeling better and coughing less, and I craved some mother-and-sons-only time.
It was worth it.  Here we are on top.  There was a guy (no other people were crazy enough to attempt the climb, I think), who asked us if we wanted him to take our picture.  He looked at me and said, "I don't know another mother who would do this alone with her kids."  Well, what can I say?  We thrive on adventure.

Steve and Eva came with us part way up, into the Basin area.  This five-year old girl is a tough cookie.  She wants to keep up with her brothers.  She is a strong hiker with a lot of attitude.  My heart leapt as I watched her hold her brother's hand on the way up.  I listened to him encourage her, and my heart leapt some more.  

See that pyramid-looking shape in the middle of the picture?  This is where we climbed.

Here are some more pictures of this gorgeous area, taken straight from our campsite, and on a different hike.  These are the Superstition Mountains.

The day after the hike, we spend most of the day driving, which was fine with me and my sore body.  I snuggled into the bed with the two big windows, hung out with the kids, knitted and read, while Steve drove.  We found a place to wild camp close to Sedona.  I can't tell you how awesome it was to not be in a RV park.  No hook-ups, no people, no barking dogs, just our little family, the beauty of desert wilderness, and a mind blowing sunset.

I love this red rock country.  It is so different from our rainforest home in Washington.  And the SUN!  The SUN!  We are getting a tan.
We bicycled to some cliff dwellings we visited two years ago, but you need an appointment for a tour, and we didn't this time.  So we took off on our and found a place a ranger had told us about the day before.  We scrambled through a lonely canyon and found amazing petroglyphs.  I wasn't the only one shouting with excitement!

The next day, we hiked up Doe Mountain.  I will let the pictures speak for themselves.

I feel guilty showing you all this.  I know many of you are at home and only dream about a trip like this.  I feel like a spoiled brat being able to do all this.
Let me just say: We make choices as a family.  We are not loaded with money.  In fact, we live very, very simply - more modestly than many of my blog readers.  We work very, very hard in the spring, summer and fall, so that we can leave in the winter, when grey rain and drizzle descend on our homestead week after week.  I get depressed and sad.  Being able to escape South and soaking up sun and adventure feeds me for months to come, making it possible for my huge energy output and work load.


  1. Wow!!! Superschön!!! Ich kenn jemand, der auch so verrückt wäre.... aber leider sind wir zu weit weg :(((((((((((
    Ich wünsch euch noch eine wunderschöne Zeit, und denk daran gaaaaaanz viele Bilder zu machen!!

    1. O Belli, es waere so schoen wenn du auch mit uns wandern koenntest. Schnief!!!

  2. So amazingly beautiful. My heart almost hurts. So happy you are there. And, I admit, I wish I was. So glad you're all healthy again and enjoying this. I drove through there 5 years Go and my soul felt it was home.

    1. Sally, I know what you mean about your soul feeling it was home. I feel the same way... It's magical, isn't it?

  3. It is. I hope everyone is ok. It's been a while since an update.

  4. No worries! I will publish my next blog post tomorrow morning! Thanks for asking!


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