Travel somewhere new every year. It's an adventure, it’s educational and it’s usually a needed break from everyday life.
Travel somewhere new every year. It’s an adventure, it’s educational and it’s usually a needed break from everyday life.
I started doing this in 2014 when I visited my former college roommate who had just moved to Sedona. Since it was my first time in Arizona, Tracy planned a super fun weekend for us.
Day 1: Pink Jeep Tour
Day 1, we did a Pink Jeep tour of Sedona’s red rock. If you’ve never been on a Pink Jeep tour, it is so much fun! We did the Broken Arrow Tour and it was spectacular. Think scenic off road adventure.
Imagine being surrounded by a vast landscape of red rocks. It was a very warm September day and the sky was blue. The rocky landscape was amazing. It’s steep and scary, yet serene. We drove over the bumpy rocks and steered our way through obstacles. It was a blast! Fortunately, we were the only people on that jeep tour, so we had plenty of chances to stop, soak in the scenery, explore the rough terrain and take lots of pictures.
Day 2: Grand Canyon
On Day 2, we ventured onto the South Rim trail, the most visited trail of the Grand Canyon. As we walked the footpath, we made a lot of stops to really take in the awesome views. The railing on the first part of the trail gave us a sense of security, but as we went farther out, there were no railings to hold onto. I’m not afraid of heights, but there were moments when I could feel my knees shake. We were several thousand feet from the bottom of the canyon, so that’s probably normal.
We slowly and carefully stepped as close to the edge of the rocks as we could to take photos. I felt daring and invigorated.
As we continued on the trail, a wall of red rock was to our left and the canyon was below, on our right. My friend motioned for me to come over to where she was standing. She whispered frantically, “come over here quick.” Then, she pointed to the huge moose that had been standing directly over my head.
OMG. At first, I was startled, but then I started laughing. My friend was afraid it was going to jump over my head while I was standing underneath it. I thought it might have been a snake by the way she reacted. Apparently it is not uncommon to run into wildlife at the Grand Canyon.
There were spurts of rain showers throughout the later part of the day. As we headed back to the car, we witnessed a beautiful double rainbow. It was an awesome ending to Day 2!
Day 3: Hot Air Balloon Ride
Day 3 and my last day in Arizona started even before the sun came up. Our adventure that day was a hot air balloon ride.
We watched as the hot air balloon was unpacked from a trailer. The balloon laid lifeless on the ground until they filled it with air. The orange and blue fire from the burner was warm and magnificent. The hot air balloon team helped load everyone into the basket and then we started our rise over the red rocks. We got a great view of the stunning landscape. It was not scary being up that high with only the floor of the basket underneath my feet. I found floating in the sky quite peaceful.
This is one of the best trips I have ever taken. There were a lot of firsts for me on this trip. It was my first time in Arizona, my first time doing an off-road jeep tour, obviously my first time to the Grand Canyon and the first time I rode in a hot air balloon. It was also the first vacation I had taken in a very long time. I felt re-energized and it even helped me clear my mind.
If you ever have the chance to travel someplace you’ve never been before, please do it! The new experience will be an adventure and may even be life changing.