Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Kaleigh and Mia's Excellent Adventure

Recently, our niece, Kaleigh, and her roommate from UNC spent their Spring Break with us in Sedona. I thought they were supposed to go to Cancun or someplace wild but they seemed to want to take in the sights of the southwest. It was clear they were on student budgets as they must have found the cheapest flight to AZ from NC via NY. They got in about 10:30pm and we arrived at the terminal just as they walked out the door.
Later in the week, we decided to take the Mund's Wagon Trail for a good hike. This trail is about 4 miles long uphill (one-way) starting at the Schnebley Hill parking lot. As I was the least conditioned of the 3 of us, I decided that Judy would drive us up Schnebley Hill road and drop us off as close to the end of the trail as possible. We reached the gate that closes the Schnebley Hill road and the 3 of us walked up to the trail while Judy and Dottie watched us from a scenic overlook. We found where the trail ended and headed back down Schnebley Hill. Just after we started, storm clouds blew in quickly and soon we were in the middle of a hail storm. We could see the blue sky off in the distance so we figured it wouldn't last too long. It was really cool to see how quickly water funnelled down over the redrocks. We managed to make it over some of the slick rock and through some mini flash floods and worked our way down the trail taking time for a few photo ops. Sorry about the water on the lens... You couldn't come to the Sedona area without a visit to one of the Indian ruins. So, we visited Hunanki, a very interesting spot. I always include a little off-road adventure when we visit this location, so I subjected the crew to the back road to 89A. There might have been a few puddles along the way. Next on their "todo" list was Antelope Canyon in Page. We decided to do an overnight and include the Grand Canyon in the trip. We went directly to Upper Antelope Canyon. this was a real treat for Kaleigh as she had seen some photos and this was high on her list. The first steps into the slot canyon are a bit intimidating. Pictures don't always do justice to the slot canyons, but maybe this quick video will give it some perspective.

After the slot canyon we stopped by Horseshoe Bend where the Colorado works its way around a 270 degree turn on its way to the Grand Canyon. Here is Kaleigh looking over the edge. I think that is my shadow on the right, but I look a little emaciated.
Unfortunately, Kaleigh lost a memory card for her camera somewhere near the edge. We came back later when she realized she lost it but we couldn't find it. To provide solace to us all, Mia bought pizzas for dinner which we ate at the hotel while Mia studied for an exam. The next morning, we took another look but to no avail. Photos from her whole senior year at UNC were lost on that card.
Oh well, on to the Grand Canyon. We stopped first at the overlook for the Little Colorado River Gorge where we bought a flute for Bob and Evie Saunders and took in the beautiful scenery.
Once again, at the canyon, Kaleigh was in the forefront of things. I suppose she could have gotten closer and given me more goosebumps.

And here is a shot of the 3 of us enjoying this magnificent natural phenomenom.
It took us about 2 hours to get back to Sedona from the Canyon. I was the only one who stayed awake for most of the trip. Unfortunately, Mia was still studying for an exam for a teaching position and she had to leave the next day to get back in time for the test. It was great having her visit and enjoy the beautiful southwest.


  1. Great pix. Kaileigh was way too close for my comfort. Just looking at the pictures made me a little dizzy.

  2. I said I don't want to have to call your parents to tell them you fell into the Grand Canyon. She said, "you don't have to call them. Just wait til they visit." Yuk, Yuk.