The Mysterious Vortexes of Sedona / Where to Find Them

What are the energy vortexes found in Sedona Arizona? Can they really be explained? Will I feel the energy?  Our suggestion from Trips Into History is to visit this absolutely beautiful part of Arizona and experience the Sedona vortexes first hand.

sedona arizona red rocks

View of Uptown Sedona

Sedona’s Lure

There are many reasons to visit Sedona Arizona and one of the best has to be the spectacular and stunning red rock scenery. Recreation attractions in Sedona include plenty of excellent hiking trails, biking trails and off road jeep tours either on your own or with one of the jeep tour companies.

Sedona is all about tourism and you’ll find an excellent selection of unique shops, including crystal shops and restaurants, as well as fine lodging and resorts. The city is also a cultural center for the arts featuring over forty galleries.Sedona also offers more than 220 miles of dedicated trails for mountain biking and over 300 miles in total for hiking, biking and equestrian pursuits.

There’s something for everyone in Sedona including nightly UFO tours in the nearby desert and of course tours of the world renown vortexes which draw millions of people annually from around the globe.

cathedral rock sedona

View of Cathedral Rock

Sedona’s location in Arizona is also advantageous for tourists being about a two hour drive north to the Grand Canyon, a forty-five minute drive north to historic Flagstaff and about a two hour drive south to Phoenix and Scottsdale.

The Sedona Vortexes

In short, a vortex is an area of concentrated energy to which seekers of enlightenment are drawn. These are also referred to as energy vortices. Another description would be a swirling concentration of energy emanating from the earth. Yet another description would be a formation where visitors have witnesssed a feeling of inspiration from a beneficial source of energy.

Native Americans of this part of Arizona, Hopis, Navajo and Yavapai, were well aware of the special properties of these mystical sites for generations. The term “vortex” as we know them in Sedona Arizona was actually created by a local Sedona medium by the name of Page Bryant during the early 1980’s. Bryant called Sedona the “heart chakra of the planet“.

It’s very true that Sedona vortexes affect different people in different ways. Some may notice the power of the vortex and others may not.

Types of Vortexes in Sedona

The Sedona tourism industry has been in high gear for just a matter of decades whereas, as mentioned above, Native American knew these sites as sacred places for generations. The three recognized forms of Sedona vortexes are the balanced, electrical and magnetic. The balanced vortex is a combination of both electrical and magnetic. A magnetic vortex is of a feminine characteristic and the electrical vortex is of a masculine characteristic.

Where Are The Sedona Vortexes?

sedona hiking trails

View along the hiking trails

Vortex attractions in Sedona include four well known sites. These are found at the Airport, Bell Rock, Boynton Canyon and Cathedral Rock.

The Airport Vortex is located high up in the area of the Sedona Airport. This particular vortex is considered a balanced vortex. The site has ample parking and the views you’ll have from this location are second to none. Sunset viewing is stunning from this site. The vortex is located behind the saddle in the rocks near Airport Road. Getting there requires just a short drive up Airport Road, off of Hwy 89 A about one mile west of Uptown Sedona.  on a paved road. This is the closest vortex to the town of Sedona.

The Bell Rock Vortex is considered a strong energy field located just north of Hwy 179 between  Sedona and the village of Oak Creek about three miles south of Uptown Sedona. The youngest rock found in this formation is said to be 272 million years old. The vortex is found anywhere on Bell Rock.

See the Trips Into History articles on the links elow…

Could Be the Best Hiking Trail in Sedona

Visiting Arizona / The Roots of the Long Apache War

A La Jolla California Getaway

Visit Spectacular Bryce Canyon, Utah


The Boynton Canyon Vortex is located on a short spur off the Boynton Vista Trail. In fact you can take the spur directly to the vortex. The main trail is considered easy to moderate and is about 2.5 miles in length. The vortex site itself is located between the Kachina Woman and Warrior formations. To reach the trail

and vortex you’ll take Dry Creek Road north from Hwy 89 A about three miles west of Uptown Sedona.

The Cathedral Rock Vortex is said to have a relaxing energy. Cathedral Rock is probably the most photographed formation in Sedona. To reach the vortex points on Cathedral Rock drive south on Hwy 179 about three miles from Uptown Sedona (near the Bell Rock location) and turn right on Back O’ Beyond Road. Drive 0.6 miles to the parking lot on the left and the trail head. This is a steep climb with a 600 foot elevation change and should be taken with caution. As with all hiking be certain to wear hiking shoes and take along sufficient water.

airport vortex sedona arizona

View from Sedona’s Airport Vortex site

Sedona Arizona is known as a gem of nature and an excellent travel destination during all four seasons of the year. As you can see from what’s written above, Sedona attractions are plentiful.

Sedona Arizona is one of the most unique and popular tourist destinations in all of the U.S. and truly has something for everyone. If you’re visiting Arizona you’ll be glad you added this one to your travel planner.

(Article and photos copyright 2014 Trips Into History)


Could Be the Best Hiking Trail in Sedona Arizona

If you’re looking for ultra scenic hiking it may be time to head to Sedona Arizona. Sedona and it’s unique red rock scenery not only offers a large selection of hiking trails but also some of the best photo opportunities you’ll find anywhere in North America. One of these fun trails is the West Fork Trail.

west fork trail sedona

Sedona’s West Fork Trail

Sedona’s West Fork Trail

Many people will tell you that the West Fork Trail is the best hiking trail in Sedona.

This trail is located in the Call of the Canyon Recreation Area about 9.5 miles north of downtown Sedona along Hwy 89A. The trail head is on the left side of the highway when traveling northbound. It is between mileposts 384 and 385. There’s plenty to see along the West Fork Trail as described below.

Mayhew’s Lodge

Near the start of the West Fork Trail you’ll come across the ruins of what was Mayhew’s Lodge. The lodge was built near the confluence of Oak Creek and the West Fork of Oak Creek. Mayhew’s Lodge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1975 but ended up being delisted in 1980 after it was destroyed by fire. Today, hikers will view ruins of fireplaces and foundations.

mayhew lodge sedona arizona

Old Mayhew Lodge fireplace ruins

History tells us that the first structure built on the site in 1870 by Charles “Bear” Howard. It’s said that Howard killed five bears with his knife thus the nickname.

Later Howard moved further into the canyon and the cabin was occupied in 1881 by the Thomas Family. A second cabin was constructed on the site in 1902 by a Judge Bennett from Phoenix.

The first road through the canyon was built in 1912 and ten years later in 1922 the movie of Zane Grey’s story, The Call of the Canyon starring Richard Dix and Noah Beery, was shot at this site.

Carl Mayhew, a photographer who worked on the Zane Grey movie, liked the area so much that he and a partner purchased the site in 1925. After making the cabins into an operating lodge, Mayhew bought out his partner in 1927. The Howard and Thomas cabins were connected and more rooms were added over the years. After Mayhew’s death in 1943 his family continued operating the lodge.

All in all, the Mayhew Lodge operated from 1925 to 1968. The lodge boasts many famous guests including President Herbert Hoover, Clark Gable, Jimmy Stewart, Walt Disney, Cesar Romero, Maureen O’Hara, and Susan Hayward.

During the years of the Mayhew Lodge, many movies were filmed in and around Sedona Arizona drawing in well known actors and actresses. In 1968 the Mayhew Lodge was acquired by the Forest Service when the Mayhew children were unable to manage the property full-time.

What to Expect on the West Fork Trail

The West Fork Trail north of Sedona Arizona offers a little bit of everything. The official trail start is just beyond the Mayhew Lodge ruins. Signage may give you conflicting ideas of the trail’s total length. It’s a good guess to estimate that the trail spans about three miles each way with a total round trip hiking time of about five hours.

Below are links to additional Trips Into History articles you may enjoy…

Explore Tucson Arizona’s Historic Landmarks

Visiting the Southwest / Apache War and Historic Sites

Visiting the Mysterious Vortexes of Sedona Arizona

A La Jolla California Getaway

An excellent guide to Sedona’s red rock country includes…Sedona Arizona Red Rock Country Tour Guide Book: Your personal tour guide for Sedona travel adventure! by Waypoint Tours.

sedona west fork trail photo

One of the stream crossings along the West Fork Trail

Obviously you can make the hike shorter depending on your wishes and abilities. We found the trail to be moderate and accommodating to most day hikers.

The trail is nearly always level and close to the stream for the first three miles. After the three mile mark the trail will climb steeply. The trail does continue past that point for several miles and joins another trail. For our purposes we used the three mile mark as the trail end. A good portion of the trail consists of stepping on rocks so make sure to take along those hiking boots or comfortable footwear.

You’ll cross small streams stepping from rock to rock. Stream crossings one way total six. The stream flows year round through a forested canyon.

Your West Fork Trail hike will lead you through forests, along the stream and past towering walls of red rock giving you some terrific photo opportunities.

sedona hiking

Looking up at one of the rock walls along the West Fork Trail

Explore Sedona Arizona / Hiking, Historic Sites and Vortexes

The West Fork Trail in Sedona is just one of the many fun recreational opportunities offered in this beautiful part of Arizona. The list of hiking trails in Sedona is large. Off-road jeep tours are also quite popular and will take you to some out of the way sites such as the historic Van Deren Cabin which you might not visit otherwise.

Sedona attractions also include the Chapel of the Holy Cross which was constructed in the red rocks in 1956 and draws tourists from around the world. Sedona also has a world wide reputation as being a spiritual mecca and global power spot. Sedona vortex sites have drawn people to the area for many decades. Vortex sites are believed to be locations having energy flow that exists on multiple dimensions. It is said that the energy from a vortex interacts with a person’s inner self.

(Article and photos copyright 2014 Trips Into History)


Branson Missouri / Fun Attractions and Great Scenery

The History of Branson Missouri

Like many other towns, Branson had it’s beginnings in 1882 with the establishment of a general store. The town is named for Reuben Branson who not only opened the general store but also operated it as the local post office.

branson missouri downtown

Branson Missouri along the riverfront

The start of Branson as an entertainment town actually began in 1894 with the Marvel Cave. This was a natural cave explored in the 1880’s and it was found to house quite a lot of marble.

The Marvel Cave was eventually purchased by a man named William Lynch and he opened it up to tourists. Lynch’s tourist business did quite well. The town of Branson grew and was incorporated in 1912.

Branson Missouri has become a premiere tourist destination for many families. The list of Branson attractions is long.  Many people travel to Branson because of the first class entertainment available in such a beautiful setting with plenty of outdoor recreation.

You will find more than fifty live performance theaters, a whopping twelve championship golf courses, three beautiful lakes, an international award winning theme park, a very historic downtown district and an excursion train that will take you on a pleasant short trip into northern Arkansas and back.

branson missouri scenery

Ozark foothills outside of Branson

A Popular Tourist Destination

Branson, located in the scenic Ozark Mountains of southern Missouri, bills itself as a very affordable family vacation destination, and it truly is. There is something in Branson for the entire family. The town offers some 22,000 hotel rooms and a huge selection of restaurants that will fit any budget. It’s estimated that Branson receives some 7 million visitors per year. There are about 100 live shows and a total of 400 restaurants.

See celebrities at Branson’s live shows. Explore the sights and sounds of one of the world’s top 10 theme parks, Silver Dollar City. Silver Dollar City evolved around the historic Marvel Cave. The theme park was built around the entrance to Marvel Cave, upon the foundations of a genuine 1800s mining town. When you visit the Silver Dollar City theme park your ticket also admits you to the cave. Cave tours leave about every half hour.
Branson features dozens of live performance theaters, three beautiful pristine lakes, championship golf courses.

A family will find hotels in Branson Missouri to fit every vacation budget. You’ll also find several Branson vacation packages to fit just about any trip length. You’ll also want to check out the resorts in Branson Missouri, some of which offer cabins, marinas and boat rentals. Branson resorts also offer vacation packages.

For many years Branson was a popular destination for travelers from Missouri and other nearby states. A big change occurred with the establishing of music theaters by nationally known performers. These theaters found all along Highway 76 ( known as The Strip) greatly increased Branson’s popularity and as a result Branson Missouri is a destination for tourists from all areas of the United States and the world. Branson shows are one it’s main attractions.

branson scenic railway train

Branson Scenic Railway leaving downtown

Branson Scenic Railway

During my visit to Branson I took the Branson Scenic Railway on it’s very enjoyable one hour and 45 minute trip. The trip begins at the train depot in the center of town near the river.

The train travels through tunnels, over trestles, and through the southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas wilderness. The Ozark Mountain foothills offer terrific picture taking opportunities. The train is made up of unique passenger cars. If you love trains then you’ll love this fun rail excursion. The excursion is a forty mile round trip and snacks are available onboard.

branson missouri golf course

One of the many scenic golf holes in Branson Missouri

Plenty of Golf in Branson

Golf is another one of the popular things to do in Branson. If you’re a golfer, your Branson vacation will offer a fine selection of golf courses for any skill level. I was able to play several during my trip there.

The Ozark Mountain topography lends itself well to championship golf courses. In addition to this, while winter does make it’s way to Branson each year, the climate at Branson is mild most of the time. There are more than six major golf courses in Branson and three popular ones are Thousand Hills, Branson Creek and Pointe Royale.

See the Trips Into History articles on the links below…

Texas Railroads and Historic Train Depots

Three Historic Train Rides

Travel the Meeting of the Great Rivers Scenic Highway

Branson Centennial Museum

The Branson Centennial Museum shares the stories and legacy of Branson. The museum teaches the areas culture to future generations. Featured are rotating displays that change about every six to eight weeks. The museum is located at  Main Street and Veteran’s Boulevard in down town Branson.

Enjoy the free discovery trolley in Historic Downtown Branson which can take you to  the museum, the riverfront area and the scenic railway depot.

Getting to Branson

Branson is a perfect family vacation destination and depending on where you happen to reside, it’s one of the best weekend side trips you can find anywhere. Branson attractions offer something fun for every family member.

Located near the center of the country along the beautiful Ozark Mountains, Branson is less than a day’s drive for one-third of Americans.

Branson is located in extreme southern Missouri about 50 miles south of Springfield Missouri very near the Arkansas border. It’s about 220 miles from Tulsa Oklahoma mostly via Interstate-44. About 200 miles from the Kansas City area and about 155 miles from Fort Smith Arkansas.

Airports that serve Branson include the Branson Airport and the Springfield-Branson National Airport.

(Article and photos copyright 2014 Trips Into History)

Western Trip Ideas And Historic Sites



Virginia City Nevada and the Comstock Lode

Texas Rangers Hall of Fame

The Fetterman Massacre/Wyoming

Jesse James and the Blue Cut Train Robbery

Jesse James and the Northfield Minnesota Bank Robbery

The Old Western Hollywood Movie Ranches

Hollywood on Route 66

The Invasion of Columbus New Mexico

Wiley Post and His Record Setting Lockheed Vega

The Steam Powered Motorcycle

A Steamboat and an Indian War

The Surrender of Geronimo at Skeleton Canyon

Fort Concho and the Tragic End of Ranald McKenzie

California’s Famed Female Stagecoach Driver

The Battle of Fort Apache

The Story of the Smokejumpers

San Francisco’s World War Two Defenses

The XIT Ranch of Texas

A Six Month Journey on the Oregon Trail

The Colorado Coalfield War

New Mexico Santa Fe Trail Scenic Byway

Glacier National Park and the Great Northern Railway

Old Fort Parker and the Formation of Texas

Cripple Creek Colorado and the Last Great Gold Rush

Wallace Idaho and the Great Fire of 1910