Ty's Ride for the Cure

Los Angeles-Boston





Day 8 Cottonwood, AZ to Flagstaff, AZ

46.3 miles

3:59 time,

4,500 feet of climbing

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Everyone was excited about today.  Although it would involve some steep climbs we would go from Cottonwood to Sedona and then on to Flagstaff.  The Sedona area is where is where Oak Creek Canyon is located and is the second most visited spot in Arizona behind only the Grand Canyon.  You might know Sedona from the beautiful red rock cliffs seen frequently in pictures in magazines.  This was the most beautiful ride of the tour.  I know I could certainly move out to this area and plan to come out later in the summer or fall for a little vacation.  In a car this time I might add.

We first biked from Cottonwood to Sedona which is about 19 miles.  We climbed about 1700 feet or so at this point.  We experienced some hills including a two mile long hill but nothing too severe.  Our definition of not too severe has changed over the past several days.  The scenery coming in on the road from Cottonwood was spectacular.  We stopped to take pictures several times.  In Sedona we stopped at a coffee shop which had a patio overlooking the cliffs.  It was breathtaking.  No one seemed to be in a hurry today.  Well almost no one anyway.   Nothing like a nice latte to get you going again.  You can see by the pictures how beautiful the area is. 
Sedona is at the mouth of Oak Creek Canyon.  After leaving Sedona we took the highway up into the Canyon.  It wound its way up the Canyon for about 15 miles in a nice upsloping fashion.  We were only yelled out by one lady in a minivan, but I think she was just probably angry at the world.  Most of the people are very nice.  The last 2.2 miles of the Canyon road is a steep ascent to get to the overlook.  We were almost at the 7,000 feet level and the temperature was very nice, especially considering the desert heat we had experienced.  When it gets steep I always rip off my sunglasses (to keep the heat off my face) and put in a little Led Zepellin or rock music.  I typically don’t wear headphones; only in a steep climb where cars are able to pass.  Yesterday someone told me my climbing didn’t count since music was an artificial performance enhancer.  The reward for getting up the Canyon was unparalleled beauty.  An endorphin rush followed by peace and serenity.  Standing out looking over the Canyon was just absolutely incredible.  I hope the pictures do it all justice.

People at the overlook all wanted to talk to us.  They are all intrigued by our journey and we are treated with a little bit of awe by the women and jealousy by the men.  “You mean you are riding to Boston”?, they ask.  They help with their little inspirations as do all of the people who follow us daily.  Our tagline is  “Goin to Boston” 

No major injuries for me at this point.  All in all I feel pretty well.  As I write this, it is our rest day in Flagstaff.  We do have some people with some major saddle sores, however.  Hopefully this will not affect their ride although I think this is just wishful thinking on my part.  Tomorrow the weather calls for 20mph winds, but this time they should be somewhat of a tailwind which will help our ride into Holbrook, AZ.  The low here tonight will be about 40 degrees, so we will certainly be starting off with leg and arm warmers for the 7:15 a.m. departure.  We will be on historic route 66 in the morning and will travel through Winslow, AZ.

Signing off until tomorrow.... 


Cottonwood breakfast. Note the big plate nearest to camera is mine. And it was truly Ghost City!!



The road to Sedona. It was a glorious morning.



The first little climb of the day. Note the sign.


Coming upon Sedona. A truly beautiful place.
On the outskirts of Sedona.
Almost to the top of the second climb of the day.

The big climb to get us to the overlook and to the canyon rim. Photo by Doc Jim.



The end of the big climbs for the day. We love these signs.!!!!



Happy for the upcoming rest day and happy after a thrilling day.