Favorite Travel Quotes

"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts."
-- Mark Twain
Innocents Abroad

"Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and celebrate the journey." -- Fitzhugh Mullan

"A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving." -- Lao Tzu

Things Have Changed

Tuzigoot Ruins

Tuzigoot Ruins

©Bert Gildart: Two days ago we checked into Dead Horse State Park in Cottonwood (about 20 miles from Sedona) and have been catching up a little on all the work involved with writing stories while on the go. That includes filing digital photographs and then captioning them. Though it may seem as though we do little more than drift from one place to the other, such is not the case.

However, that is not to say that it’s all work either, and the past two days have also included short trips to some of the endless attractions this area offers that can be enjoyed as mini excursions. First on our list was the Indian ruins known as Tuzigoot.


Tuzigoot is one of the smaller National Monuments, but it preserves an important component of the Sinagua Indian culture. Once the pueblo consisted of 110 rooms, and in an eroded form the park preserves many of them. The rooms comprising the pueblo are perched high on a hill and gaze over the agricultural land the group once farmed. The group occupied the area from around A.D. 1000 to around 1400. Currently the site preserves 42 acres.

Our explorations of Tuzigoot were made two days ago, shortly after we arrived. Yesterday, Rich and Sadira took sympathy on our need to learn much quickly and rendezvoused with us at our campground then gave us another quick tour of the area they call home. If you know the route, the drive from Prescott to Sedona requires little more than an hour.

Striking on a red rock hike

Striking on a red rock hike

One of the activities the four of us share in common is the desire to explore local trails, and we drove first to Bell Rock located just on the outskirts of this very tourist-y town. Art galleries were everywhere and so were adventure exploring stores. One of the jeep touring stores actually had a Native American dressed in very traditional garb trying to lure folks in. He was the only Indian we saw.

We visited several of the stores to include the “Life is Good Store,” and “Rollies Camera” and a health food store.


I’ve been here before, but that was 20 years ago, and as we walked around I could not suppress my absolute horror at the way in which Sedona has grown. Gated communities and major housing developments are now creeping on the sides of the beautiful red rock canyons that initially lured these folks here. On the plus side is that most of the homes blend in with their surroundings, for they are all constructed of rock and that rock, of course, is from local sources. Though I’m not sure, I believe Sedona strictly governs the way in which people can build, and that, I think, is good. Sedona, for example, is the only place in the world where you’ll find a McDonald’s Hamburger demarcated by a small purple “M”. No golden arches here.

Oh, that were the way of things back in Montana’s Flathead Valley.

Bell Rock

Bell Rock

Fortunately, some of the land surrounding Sedona remains in public ownership, and that included Bell Rock and the trails that surround it. We hiked one 2-mile long trail that wound through the rocks. Many other people were also hiking (or biking) the trail, but the majority of folks were several miles away in Sedona, shopping. Though I’ll never understand the way in which some people place priorities, I’m glad that’s the way it apparently is.

Our companions were of a similar mind and we hope to see them again soon. As Rich has noted in one of his blogs, that could happen this summer in Bozeman, Montana, for that’s where the International Airstream Rally will be held.

Today, we’re off for a tour of Montezuma’s Castle.

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