Usually when people think of wine from the west coast, Napa Valley spring to mind. But the western state isn't the only one capable of producing renowned wines. Arizona hosts a wealth of wineries and vineyards, many of which are destinations of WineToursOfSedona.com's varied jaunts?including Alcantara Cellars and Arizona Stronghold. Once there, participants sample tastings of bold reds and chardonnays. The tour guides are on hand to answer questions and explain how taste, aroma, and finishes vary from wine to wine. Guides also snap plenty of pictures of the retreats, posting them on the Sedona Red Rock Adventures page where guests can download, scratch, and sniff them to remember the adventure.
At the age of six, when most kids are learning how to tie their shoelaces, Grand Canyon Adventures owner and guide Andrew Moore went on his first backpacking trip with his family to the Grand Canyon. Years later, Moore is still exploring the scenic gorge. But nowadays, he shares his expertise with the tour groups on Grand Canyon Adventures' day trips, hikes, and bike tours. And it’s still a family affair. Andrew’s nature-loving dad, Bob Moore, drives the air-conditioned vehicle and shares his vast knowledge about the Grand Canyon on guided excursions.
There are hiking expeditions to suit all skill levels. One is the Grand View Trail to Coconino Saddle, a 2.5-mile trek that runs along a 100-year-old former mining trail and climbs 1,200 feet in elevation. Or, opt for a bike tour along the historic Hermits Rest Road, a former pioneer trail that winds along the canyon rim—keep an eye out for Colorado River rapids below or a napping Wile E. Coyote.
It all started with a youth sports organization. Champions of Wickenburg Youth, or COWY for short, supports youth athletic programs and helps instill traits in youngsters, such as discipline, teamwork, and perseverance. But they need money to do so. That's where Wickenburg's Wild West Run comes in. The run, now in its second year, raises funds for the organization while encouraging the health and fitness of its participants. During the run, participants sprint along an undulating course that affords them views of the rugged landscape. Afterward, they gather in Sunset Park for the afterparty, which includes games and lively discussions about what the K in 5K might stand for.
Runners start the UV Splash Color Dash in white t-shirts, but by the end, they'll all be wearing the same colorful glow-in-the-dark uniform. As they traverse the 5K course, they'll be gently hit with splashes of UV-colored water. In the nighttime darkness?and under black lights that line the course?the colorful stains will glow, making the cavalcade of runners into a glowing, moving constellation. At the end of the race, each human painting can hang out and replenish in an post-dash celebration.
Forever Young Running Series' races and fun runs traverse the area's city streets, freeways, and nature trails, melding three racing styles into one event. From the starting line, the courses diverge and provide participants with different scenery. The 5K makes a loop on the nearby Skunk Creek Trail System, while the 10K incorporates a leg along the New River Trail System. The half marathon wends its way up 75th Avenue onto the asphalt of a blockaded, traffic-free stretch of Loop 101 and then back down the New River Trail System.
Along the way, runners get a dose of encouragement at morale-boosting entertainment zones, including Hot Rod Alley?hundreds of vintage cars blaring upbeat tunes?and the Superhero Journey, where costumed characters dole out high-fives. Once they've crossed the finish line, the post-race party welcomes participants to recharge with hot-rod and motorcycle shows, live music, and grub from food trucks. And an awards ceremony honors top finishers, unless they've used teleportation.
In the shadow of the mountains of Tonto National Forest, Bartlett Lake watercrafts skid across 2,815 acres of the lake's pristine waters. The marina abounds with recreational facilities—its fleet of professional jet skis, pontoons, and ski boats sit parked along docks of grills, a general store, and a covered, floating patio. A 45-foot yacht towers over the rest of the rental boats, furnishing lively parties of up to 25 people with a slide, bar, and restroom, while a large houseboat floats along the lake peacefully—an impressive vessel complete with private rooms, a deck, and kitchen. As visitors navigate the lake or forage the surrounding area's desert terrain trails, they have the opportunity to admire indigenous plants and abundant wildlife.