Thursday, October 6, 2011
The Vortexes of Sedona
Last weekend, I gave a keynote address at the eClinical Works National User Conference in Phoenix, Arizona. As is usual when I travel, I look for interesting places to explore in the natural world within driving distance of conferences. I flew in at 2am on Saturday morning, giving me the entire day on Saturday to explore before my Sunday morning lecture and redeye back to Boston.
Sedona is 120 miles north of Phoenix and is well known for its red rock vistas, its spirituality, and great hiking trails.
Most intriguing to me was the concept of the Sedona "vortexes", which have been described as swirling centers of energy emanating from the surface of the earth.
Whether or not you believe in the physical manifestation of such energy centers, there are 4 great hikes to visit the vortex locations.
As you enter the Sedona area on Highway 179, you'll pass Bell Rock and Courthouse Butte. There's a trailhead on the right side of the highway with access to numerous loop trails from 1 mile to 4 miles in length. I highly recommend the Courthouse Butte loop, which passes the Bell Rock Vortex.
The photo above is the Cathedral Rock Vortex which is accessed via a .7 mile walk/climb accessed from Back-O-Beyond Road off Highway 179. It's easy slab climbing and a 700 foot elevation gain from the parking lot to a beautiful vista. I'm not sure if it recharged my spiritual batteries, but the breeze cascading through the pillars at the peak was refreshing on a 100 degree day and the shade of the Cathedral Rock walls boosted my hiking endurance.
The Airport Vortex is located on Airport Road off Highway 89A. The view of Sedona from Airport Mesa is spectacular.
The Boynton Canyon Vortex is located at Dry Creek Road off Highway 89A. I'm a fan of old Juniper trees (said to be an indicator of strong vortex energy) and you'll find plenty in Boynton Canyon.
After climbing/hiking 4 vortexes, I enjoyed a vegan lunch in a shaded outdoor garden at the Chocolatree Cafe , a very hip spot on Highway 89A. Highly recommended.
Sedona proved to be a very invigorating place, well worth the day trip from Phoenix and preparing me for the double redeye flights of the weekend.
Posted by John Halamka at 3:00 AM