Oct 29, 2013
Let's see. Crown King, Cleator, Arcosanti, Child's Verde Hot Springs, Sheep Bridge, River crossings and some run ins with "Bro's." Don't tell me that doesn't sound like a good time!! I had a buddy in town visiting so we decided to do a good bang for the buck trip and see a lot not far from Phoenix. First up, an old classic I've do so many times, the back way to Crown King. Just needs windows! Fixerupper! "Handyman Special!" The good old general store! $5/gallon gas and all, but it seems cheap when you really need it badly. This is the most crowded I've ever seen Crown King due to the Apple Festival! Arcosanti is the creation of Paolo Soleri. Check out his Wiki page here. Paolo Soleri Wiki I would say that Arcosanti is worth the side trip, but not a dedicated trip. It's a neat place that's worth the $10 (Donation) for the 1 hour tour. Paola was way ahead of his time in using basic orientation and building techniques to make the most of what nature provides. Certainly, nothing I saw was revolutionary or a revelation, but it is a beautiful spot and some neat architecture. Not to mention that some "followers" or students of his have lived there from the day they started building and now have 16 year old children still living there. I think a couple months would be enough for a "city person" who doesn't know much and a couple hours is enough for more of a hands on person. The foundry. Not a bad view for a workshop. A lot of the structures are in need of work. It's neat that most of it was built by the residents and volunteers of Arcosanti, but our guide let us know that most of the full time work is either making bells (For sale to pay the bills) or maintaining the existing property. As impressive as this hall is it's actually "supposed" to be one of the smallest structures of Arcosanti. If you look at the models and plans on site the city is supposed to be more than 10 times it's current size, but most of it on the same footprint. yah, I could sit here a while. Town square, so to speak. One of many residences: The community stage. They show movies here regularly. Mental note, head up here on the moto to watch a show sometime. Not a bad view. Okay, that was neat, but time to keep on keeping on!!! We headed down Dugas road towards the Verde. At times it got pretty narrow. The Arizona Pinstriping factor was at 9. The view was worth leaving a little paint behind. The Verde Valley. We watched sunset as we made our way to the edge of the Verde. Amazing views at this time of day. What's that? Yes, there was beer... and it was good. Good morning! Time to go to the hot springs!! Since we were on the more remote western side we needed to cross the Verde River twice. That meant two crossings, two lower body numbing crossings! Made it, crossing 1 down. Just a mile hike and we're there. Crossing number two. Notice the left over power lines from the now defunct Child's Power Plant that used to harness Fossil Creek. This spot was once the site of the main building of the Verde Hot Springs Resort. Almost there. With views like this I see why people make the trek. The inside tub is filled with art from the last 70 or so years layer upon layer. Notice the painting of what the Verde resort used to look like. If this guys here, I'm coming back. What a cool dog!! After a morning swim we headed for Sheeps Bridge. Not a bad place to hang out. The original bridge was in fact a bridge for running sheep so they didn't have to get them through the Verde River. You can still to this day follow (In real life or on Google Earth) the remnants of the burned in sheep trail to the east from the bridge that used to take the sheep to and from higher pastures. Did I mention this is a great spot. Ernie appreciated the river! After crossing we headed out and back towards Phoenix. This was a Saguaro rich environment! More than I've seen in one spot in a long time. A couple more water crossings and we were back in civilization. What a great loop for a quick overnight trip!!