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October visit- need advice

Plymouth...
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October visit- need advice

Booked our trip to Sedona in February and now finally we can say "We'll be there next month"! I'm a big fan of tripadvisor and have spent the last 7 months lurking on the forum pages trying to come up with a list of things to do & see. We are arriving on Saturday, 10/8 (Columbus Day Wknd), so because the crowds will probably be higher, we want to have somewhat of a schedule so we don't waste time deciding what we want to do once we get there.

Day 1 Arrive PHX around 12:30. Drive to VOC, check in to hotel, visit Chapel and hit the grocery store.

Day 2 Pink Jeep BA tour 9am, lunch at Tii Gavo at Enchantment, Doe Mountain hike, time permitting- stop at Red Rock Crossing for some photos.

Day 3 One couple morning balloon ride/other couple morning mountain bike ride. Afternoon-Tlaquepaque. Attempt sunset from airport mesa.

Day 4 **Here's where the advice is needed** ????????? in morning, afternoon & dinner in Jerome

(possibilities here are- driving to Prescott, going to Montezuma Castle or perhaps a morning hike in Sedona).

Day 5 Oak Creek Vista/West Fork Trail hike in morning and free time in afternoon (most likely we'll have someone suggest an activity while we're in Sedona that would interest us, so we want to leave time open for it).

Day 6 **second advice needed day** Leave for 2 nights in Scottsdale before flying home. We could do Montezuma Castle on the way if we haven't already gone there, or if we have, is it worth the extra miles to stop in Carefree instead of heading right to Scottsdale?

Thanks in advance for your help, and to all who've contributed to the forum in the past. It's been a pleasure to plan this trip and I'm sure the only thing that will be better is when we actually get to experience everything we've heard about!

(P.S. Sister in law is in charge of restaurants, she's compiled a great list from the recommendations on this site)

Sedona, AZ
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1. Re: October visit- need advice

You have a good general plan. I think that by day 4 you should have a handle on the pace of Sedona and how far away you want to venture. I wouldn't push making that decision until then. Ditto for day 6. You'll either be ready to leave, or you won't.

You have not planned on the Grand Canyon. Have you been there before? If not, I would use a day for that, quite possibly day 4.

Not sure what you expect to do in Scottsdale, but if some funky bars and shops have appeal, then Cave Creek is a cool way to spend a few hours. I wouldn't rush to get there though.

Plymouth...
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2. Re: October visit- need advice

RedRox- Thanks for your reply!

2 of us have been to the Grand Canyon several times, but the other 2 have not. They will have opportunities to go to Las Vegas in the future, so they have decided to make that a separate trip.

At this point, I'm trying to narrow down all of our "wish list" to places that are really worth our time. All of us want to go to Jerome, just not sure if Prescott is more "worthy" than some other local destination (ie. Montezuma's Castle).

As for day 6, we'll be leaving our VOC hotel in the morning to head to Scottsdale, always the possibility that we won't be able to check into our new hotel til 2pm, so we weren't sure if Carefree or Cave Creek are worthwhile detours. On that day, our only plan was to have dinner and visit some galleries in Oldtown.

Hope my use of the word "worthy" doesn't sound strange. I just try and plan our vacations to include as many unique sights and experiences as I can. Of course, I always leave time for the "unexpected" trip enhancing moments as well :)

Cape Girardeau, Mo
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3. Re: October visit- need advice

Day 2: Have your S-I-L look into the Sunday brunch at Enchantment instead of Tii Gavo. It will be the only meal you need. Sunday night will be appetizer type food at the most. Instead of Doe Mountain, after stuffing yourselves on all foods immaginable at the brunch and washing them down with Mimosas, take a leisurely hike into Boynton Canyon instead of climbing straight up the side of Doe Mtn.

Day 4: Head up to Wupatki/Sunset Crater just noth of Flagstaff. Spend some time at this archaeological wonderland. Maybe lunch in Flagstaff and then afternoon either Museum of Northern AZ, or head back and do the West Fork hike in the afternoon.

Day 5: (If you did West Fork hike on day 4) Cross 179 and hike Bell Rock and Courthouse Butte Loop in the morning. It is a wonderful hike, we have done it at sunrise twice. Beautiful, but open and better in the early or late day if it is warm.

Day 6: Stop at Tuzigoot on the way to Jerome. Do Jerome and have lunch there. Leave and head back to I-17, stopping at Montezuma's Castle and then head on to Scottsdale. Take this day to see Jerome and then head south.

Washington, DC
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4. Re: October visit- need advice

I'm not sure if food or ambiance are more important to you, but I just returned from a stay at Enchantment, and while the red rock view from Tii Gavo was great and the prickly pear margarita was tasty, I was not all that impressed with my arrival night dinner. I chose to eat subsequent dinners at the Mii amo cafe (spa at Enchantment) or in town.

As for the Scottsdale portion of your trip, if you enjoy Frank Lloyd Wright's architecture, be sure to tour Taliesin West. Have a great trip!

Plymouth...
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5. Re: October visit- need advice

Thanks for the suggestions!

We will definitely make time to hike at least part of the Bell Rock trail, since it's across the street from where we are staying. (My hubby and I will probably do our mountain bike ride there as well.)

My SIL wants to eat dinner at the Asylum in Jerome, so we'll need to do that on a day other than our departure day. So maybe Bell Rock trail in morning, stop at Montezuma Castle, then head to Jerome on Day 4?

I had heard that the West Fork trail parking area could get crowded, that's why I thought it would be best to do a morning hike there???

We would like to see the Enchantment resort, but since we aren't guests, the only way to go is to eat there. I think we'd love a long, leisurely brunch towards the end of our trip. On our first full day we will be in "action" mode and since Doe Mtn is one of my must do hikes, I thought a lite lunch at Tii Gavo would be perfect. I may be wrong, but I thought that the Mii amo cafe was only for guests of Enchantment? (otherwise we would gladly go there).

It will be a Sunday, and that's the only day Tii Gavo opens earlier for lunch. Our jeep tour ends at 11, and we'd like to hike Doe Mtn that day, so if anyone has any other suggestions for a lite lunch between Pink Jeep and Boynton Canyon, I would apprectiate it!

Thanks again for your input!

Cape Girardeau, Mo
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6. Re: October visit- need advice

Just an FYI, Doe Mtn is not a leisurely hike. It is a lot of climbing, so plan accordingly for your first hike.

Enchantment brunch is only on Sunday, that is why I suggested it. We were in full "action" mode on our first full day--a Sunday also. We took the 7am Pink Jeep Tour, then drove out through Oak Creek Canyon to the trailhead, then back to Enchantment for an 11:30 brunch. We then hiked 2 trails afterwards, Boynton Vista and Fay Canyon before heading back to town. I'd say that was a full action day as it was after 5:30 when we returned. If you want to do a brunch, the one at Enchantment is one of the best you will encounter anywhere, and it is only offered on Sundays. And you better have a reservation as it is that popular.

Day 4 is fine going to Jerome and the Asylum.

Parking at the West Fork trail is a problem on weekends, and especially in the summer vacation period. We hiked it twice in the middle of the week in late Sept. and never had any parking issues in the afternoon. In fact, there were only a 1/2 dozen cars there.

Sedona, AZ
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7. Re: October visit- need advice

If you are not experienced Mt. bikers you will likely only ride Bell Rock Pathway. All other trails off BRP are much more technical except Big Park Loops. If you don't want to duplicate bike and hike check out Baldwin Trail off Verde Valley Rd. just a short drive from VOC. The trail is on the back side of Cathedral Rock and loops around Baldwin's Knob. Very popular hike for locals. The Forest Service Visitors Center will give you a free map if you don't have a hiking book.

If you are comfortable with drops, ledges, loose rock, steep climbs and descents then head out to Templeton Trail and do an out and back. If you are not advanced riders do not let what ever shop you are going to talk you into riding Slim Shady, it is an advanced trail. I see too many people on this trail that are not up to the challenge. Also, Llama - Little Horse trails are more advanced than the shops tell you. I recommend Absolute Bikes by the way. They have a very nice free map and will describe the trail options.

Have a great time!

Edited: 08 September 2011, 23:49
Plymouth...
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8. Re: October visit- need advice

Sedona MTB- Thanks so much for the advice on trails. My husband is an advanced rider, I'm a 6 times a year girl. We also ride single track in the woods of New England, I'm sure the trails out there will be much different. I'll be sure to NOT get talked into a different trail. Bell Rock will let us enjoy the scenery without killing ourselves!!!

RedRox- not sure if you're still following this thread, but we were considering going to Harry's Hideaway for lunch one day. Is the menu similar for lunch and dinner?

Thanks!

Sedona, AZ
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9. Re: October visit- need advice

Actually the trails in Sedona are very different from the wet roots of N.E. The trails here are very rocky and exposed, with few trees. In addition to BRP I would sugggest Big Park look with is just off BRP. Since you at least do you ride you might be able to get through Templeton and just walking a few sections. I've let many hundreds of tours on the trails here when I had a mt bike touring company and there is always somewhere first timers here have to hike-a-bike. There a number of helmet cam videos on YouTube you may want to look at.

Sedona, AZ
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10. Re: October visit- need advice

Menu is pretty much the same for lunch and dinner. Check the website.