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Snowshoeing in Durango: Our 7 Favorite Trails

Snowshoeing in Durango, Colorado this season? Here’s a few of our favorite snowshoeing trails for your next Microadventure in Durango!

Our 10 Favorite Places to Hike in Tucson, AZ

As you’re planning you Tucson, Arizona trip, here are our 10 favorite places to hike with trails around Tucson.

Snowshoeing in Boulder: Our 7 Favorite Trails

Snowshoeing in Boulder, CO this Winter? We’ve compiled a list of our favorite snowshoeing trails to explore in and around the Boulder area.

5 Best Portable Induction Cookers For RVs and Vans

To aid you in your next Microdventure, we have compiled a list of the 5 best portable Induction Cookers for your RV or van.

Our 10 Favorite Family-Friendly Hikes in the Grand Canyon

If you’re considering hiking with your family in the Grand Canyon, here are our 10 favorite family-friendly hiking trails.

What is Car Camping?

Trying to figure out what car camping is and why so many people are doing it? Here we define car camping for you in a simple way.

Car Camping Packing List for Your Microadventure

To aid in getting you set for your next car camping trip, here’s a list of essential and luxury things to pack.

Payson, AZ Free Dispersed Camping Areas

In order to help you narrow down where to camp, here’s a list of our favorite free, dispersed camping spots and areas around Payson, Arizona.

Flagstaff Free Dispersed Camping Map

To help make a decision on where to camp around Flagstaff, AZ, here’s a map of our favorite free, dispersed camping areas and spots.

Our 10 Favorite Hiking Trails in Flagstaff

Looking to go hiking in Flagstaff? Here’s a brief list of our favorite hikes and hiking trails in Flagstaff, Arizona.

A Guide to Camping in Sedona

The famous Red Rock Country city that is Sedona, Arizona. For those who haven’t visited, Sedona is a mecca for Microadventures. With miles of hiking and biking trails, climbing, and towering red sandstone views, you could spend a lifetime exploring Sedona and not see...

Sedona Free Dispersed Camping and Campgrounds Map

Trying to figure out where to camp around Sedona, AZ? We built a map of our favorite established campgrounds and dispersed camping areas.

Our 10 Favorite Hiking Trails in Sedona

With over 200 miles of trails, there’s a lot to choose from in Sedona, Arizona! Here’s a brief list of our favorite hikes in Sedona.

FAQS for Grand Canyon Rim to Rim

We’ve compiled a blog answering some of the most frequently asked questions surrounding the Rim to Rim hike in the Grand Canyon.

Hiking from Crested Butte to Aspen, CO

A brief look into the famous hike from Crested Butte to Aspen, Colorado via the West Maroon Pass.

Edge Of The World: A Personal Story

After a long weekend in Durango, I decided to stay local and enjoy an off-the-beaten-path area of northern Arizona. Edge of the World (also know End of the World to some) is located about 20 miles southeast of Flagstaff. I decided to make the weekend a solo venture- for meditation practice actually. I packed up the car and headed out into the woods late Friday night.

The tent was pitched without incident. Concerned about bears in the area, dinner was made far away from camp from the trunk of my car. Everything was smooth until I tucked in for the night. I turned my headlight off and no more than two minutes after my head hit the pillow, a large rustle came from the nearby brush. A bear…great…what a weekend to forget my bear spray. No later than a minute after realizing that I had nothing to defend myself in the tent, the bear started clawing at the tent’s rain-fly. After several minutes of panic, I muscled up the courage to shout at the bear. After shouting and shaking the tent, the bear wandered away from the tent and eventually left camp. As you can imagine, I slept horribly the rest of the night. Between a fear that the bear might return and the constant howl of coyotes, it was a rough night.

I awoke in the morning (alive) ready to explore the views and the one and only established trail – the AB Young Trail. After a quick breakfast, I hit the trail with the intent to hike four miles down to Oak Creek and back. Considering the hike was all downhill to the river, it was a great time. After spending an hour eating lunch on the creek and walking the banks, I decided to head back up the trail to camp. The hike was a steady climb so my pace was slow…until I noticed an approaching thunderstorm. With no cover except near the top of the trail (nearly two miles away), I decided to put some pep-in-my-step. My light jog increased to a full trail-run as the thunderclaps grew louder. I was also not the only thing in the desert concerned about the approaching storm. I had to literally jump over two rattlesnakes that were slithering on the trail trying to find shelter. My loud steps and breathing were enough to provoke both snakes into their striking pose but luckily neither rattlesnake took a strike with me.

By the time I had reached the top of the trail, it was pouring dime-sized hail and lightning was striking nearby trees. With another mile of road to get back to my camp (and car), I realized the gravity of the situation. Fortunately, I was not alone at the top of the trail and soon found myself seeking shelter in a stranger’s car. The four of them were caught off-guard as well and were thankful for a roof and rubber tires to absorb any lightning strike. I managed to snap a photo of the hail storm from the car window. After nearly an hour, the storm passed overhead and exposed a blue sky. What an afternoon!

I spent the rest of the day and night hiking to the various cliffs around the rim of the canyon taking photos of the big views, afternoon glow, and the subsequent sunset. I awoke the next morning without any incidents occurring overnight- enjoy the little things. A storm was passing overhead to the south of me and I managed to witness a sunrise with a double rainbow over the valley below. After nearly two hours of photographing the storm, I packed up the car bound for a shower and a hot meal. I walked away from the weekend after encountering a bear, two rattlesnakes, and some serious Arizona monsoon weather.

 

I’m truly grateful that I walked away without a scratch because it could have been a lot worse.

Nick The Rambling Man
Nick The Rambling Man

Nick is the owner and regular content writer for Southwest Microadventures. When he’s not writing, you can find him rock climbing, peak bagging, mountain biking, backpacking, or drinking strong coffee.

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