Detail from "Rain Dance," an original quilt by Sherrie Spangler

Monday, March 7, 2016

High desert in Sedona

Naturalist at Red Rock State Park in Sedona.
Sedona's high desert beauty offers much more than desolate miles of sand usually associated with a desert. Its elevation of about 4,500 feet is several thousand feet higher than that of Phoenix and Tucson to the south, where you have a much different desert.

A desert duck!
Oak Creek flows through Red Rock State Park in Sedona, offering habitat for ducks (!) and providing soothing burbling water sounds. The wooden bridges in the park are regularly washed out when the water level rises during big storms.

Twisted branches in Red Rock State Park.
Red Rock and other areas of Sedona near the creek boast spectacular sycamores, oaks and other deciduous trees in addition to cacti.

Speaking of desert plants, the banana yucca (below) is well adapted to living in the desert. Its curved leaves collect water and funnel it down to the root system, making the most of scant desert rain.

The prickly pear cactus, below, provides food for javelinas as well as prickly pear nectar for margaritas. This is one of the most widespread cacti in the area.

Sedona is especially known for its spectacular red rock formations. We hiked through the areas pictured below yesterday and watched dramatic clouds pile up. Later in the evening it rained a bit. (Average annual rainfall here is 12.56 inches.)

As I've said before, everywhere you look in Sedona offers picture postcard views. Hope you enjoy these.

Have a colorful day


The Idaho Beauty said...

Yup, sure did enjoy the views!

Judy Sall Fiber Art said...

Looking forward to seeing them in person next week! We have to decide on a time and a plan...

Robbie said...

Love, love AZ! Your pics make me want to go there...Florida is nice..we are in Ocala which looks like up north Michigan (pine trees/etc.) but I love AZ