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Traveling to Sedona, Part 1

Best Hiking Spots

It’s quite the task to narrow down which hikes are the best in Sedona. Everywhere you turn, stunning views, incredible vistas, and scenic trails are awaiting you. So, the great news is, when you take a day trip from our Waypoint Outposts to Sedona, the 38-minute drive will provide endless possibilities for beauty and adventure. You really can’t go wrong!

Still, we want to pinpoint a few of our favorites so you can enjoy the beloved hikes in this tourist town. 

Top 3 Hikes to take in Sedona

1. Cathedral Rock

With an iconic destination up this trail, Cathedral Rock is a thrilling hike with an amazing photo op at the end! You’ll enjoy views of Bell Rock as well as the beautiful landscape toward the west once you reach the top. A narrow ledge at the final destination provides an iconic photo spot for your “on-top-of-the-world” pose. 

Bring lots of water, and be prepared to scale a few spots of smooth rock as you make your way up this trail. It’s a one-mile round trip hike, with an elevation gain of 550 feet. The short distance and stunning scenery make this a popular hike, so be prepared for a full parking lot! You can reach both parking lots via Back’O’Beyond Road, but the trail can also be accessed from the Baldwin and Templeton trails.

2. Bell Rock

The distinct shape and size of Bell Rock makes it one of the most recognizable hiking spots in Sedona. This out-and-back, 1-mile hike is a tourist favorite. The 400-foot elevation gain marks the hike as a moderate climb. You can divide it into three sections: Lower Bell Rock Trail, Upper Bell Rock Trail, and the Ascent. Each of these progresses in difficulty. So if you’re with the family and looking for an easier climb, stick to the Lower Bell Rock Trail. Experienced hikers can venture beyond!

Be aware there is little shade on this hike, so be prepared with a hat and plenty of water! Additionally, note the $5 Sedona trail pass fee, which should get you access for the day to any Sedona trail!

3. Devil’s Bridge 

Don’t let the name scare you. This hike is well worth the stunning view and sought-after natural sandstone arch photo op. Just over four miles out-and-back, you’ll also share much of your hike with pink jeep tours, ATVs, mountain bikes, and fellow hikers. 

We can’t remind you enough to bring plenty of water, as this hike lacks shade. After venturing through a long, fairly flat, rocky roadway, the hike settles into more of a steep climb with distinct rock steps to allow footholds along the way. 

As you near the end of the hike, you’ll see a secondary lookout, perfect for the first photo! But don’t stop there! Keep climbing a bit more and you’ll find the long line of tourists awaiting their solo walk onto the Devil’s Bridge. Fellow hikers are great about helping with photos, but plan to be waiting in line for a while, especially if you’re hitting the trail at a busy time. 

You Can’t Go Wrong

These three hikes are some of the most iconic that we wouldn’t want you to miss. But the truth is, you’ll quickly find that you can’t go wrong when choosing a hike in Sedona. Simply driving around, you’ll see the showcase of red rock beauty. But a hike is definitely worth the time when you plan your stop here. 

Our camp shower is a great stop after your dusty red rock legs are ready to settle in for the night at our Waypoint Outpost. We’ll be ready for you!

Adventure to Jerome, Part 3

Top 3 Tours to Take in Jerome

Meandering the streets of Jerome, you’ll quickly discover there are stories just waiting to be told of its history and heritage. You can venture on your own and try to catch the exciting spots, or you can rely on the experts. 

Booking with Jerome Ghost Tours offers a variety of thrilling tours to entertain and explain all of this town’s mysteries! You’ll find a range of tours to suit your interests. 

Ghost Tour

Two options are noted here if you’re itching to get out at night and discover some ghostly fun! Jerome offers a variety of ghost tours for its tourists to enjoy.

  1. Jerome Ghost Walk: This one-hour tour will take you around to “haunted” spots in the town, with a reputation for discovering thrilling interactions with ghosts in the area. The trip is complete with electric and magnetic field (EMF) readers to guide the tourists in this spooky walk through history’s mysterious tenants of Jerome’s past. Tickets for this tour are around $45 each.  
  2. Pandora’s Box: A spooky two-hour tour awaits those wanting a bit more thrill. In the Pandora’s Box tour, guides will bring along spirit boxes and EMF readers to do their best and liven up the tour with connections from the past! Along the way, you’ll hear the tales of murder and mystery that haunt this tourist town. 

Jerome History Walk

This family-friendly tour is a one-hour walking experience through the town’s historical sites. From its rich copper mining history during the war, to the influencers of its day, Jerome boasted some great accomplishments in its height of glory. 

You’ll make stops along the way at old churches, hospitals, as well as hear an overview of exciting history from hotels in the area. Additionally, a pitstop at the United Verde Copper Mine provides some fun context to what grew this city in the first place! Tours from the Jerome Ghost Tours company are in the $39 range. 

Wild Wild West History Tour

As you may have gathered from any study of Jerome, the town wasn’t always best-in-class for its behavior. Many stories will testify to its rugged and rough reputation. The Wild Wild West History Tour with the Jerome Ghost Tours company will be filled with the wild tales of the good, the bad, and the ugly. 

Tickets for this 90-minute history tour are in the $60 range. And you’ll get to visit stops like the Sliding Jail, Husbands Alley, former brothels, and hotels will be featured along the way. You’ll also get a glimpse into the United Verde Copper Company. 

While most of these memories are not Jerome’s proudest moments, they culminate to tell the story of this crazy tourist town!

Enjoy your time in Jerome, and be sure to tell us what your favorite spots are!

Adventure to Jerome, Part 2

Best Restaurants

After you’ve adventured through Jerome, taking in the sites and history of this sleepy mining town, it will be time for an afternoon pick-me-up. Don’t worry. We’ve got a bunch of recommendations for the best spots in town to eat! 

You may find spooky rumors on your tours around town that Jerome is haunted. Stories of haunted hotels, mansions, and other previously abandoned buildings are endless, and, as with most ghost towns, Jerome capitalizes on the thrill of this with their guests. 

This brings us to our first restaurant stop. The good food will be just as thrilling as the ghost stories awaiting your arrival.  

Top 3 Restaurants in Jerome the Ghosts are Raving About

  1. Haunted Hamburger: Many years ago, when Michelle and Eric Jurisin obtained the building now home to this hamburger stop, testimonies of spooky activity sprouted up from the construction workers renovating the place. Hammers were misplaced, disappearing and reappearing. Doors slammed closed, even when windows had been sealed off. Later on, there were even claims of cans flying off the shelves as well as disturbance to the hot water. You be the judge! A trip to this fun hamburger grille is entertaining and delicious! You’ll find numerous burgers on the menu along with chicken, ribs, and other tasty options! 
  2. Asylum Restaurant: Continuing in our spooky feast journey, we move along to Asylum Restaurant. The spook-factor is apparent due to the location of this dinner stop. Located within the Jerome Grand Hotel, this restaurant was formerly a hospital. Now rumored to be haunted by the ghosts of patients past, the entertainment factor matches the award-winning meals! You’ll find an array of gourmet food alongside a lengthy wine list. 
  3. Bobby D’s: Enjoy delicious barbeque from the oldest operating dining restaurant in the state of Arizona. Established back in 1899, this kitchen was first home to a Chinese restaurant, owned by Charley Hong, an entrepreneur in the area who wore many hats! Beginning in 2011, Bobby D and his sister took over, transforming the restaurant into a BBQ house! Sweet and tangy smells waft through the streets, welcoming guests to come and enjoy the quality ingredients. Bobby D’s takes pride in their home-cooked recipes, all meats and sauces made in house. Try it out!

After you’ve experienced all the spooky stories and ghostly visits, you’ll be ready to head back to your cozy tent at Waypoint Outposts for some stories around the campfire! We love that we get to provide you with accommodations that bring people together. 

It’s a privilege to get to host you, and we can’t wait for you to book your stay so you can enjoy not only our campsite, but also the fun perks of surrounding towns like Jerome!

 

Sources:

https://thehauntedhamburger.com/our-story

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurants-g31253-Jerome_Arizona.html

https://verdecanyonrr.com/jerome-az-restaurants/

https://www.latimes.com/travel/la-tr-escape-jerome-20180218-story.html

http://www.bobbydsbbqjerome.com/index.html

Adventure to Jerome, Part 1

A Brief History of the Area

The quaint town of Jerome, Arizona, now home to just under 500 residents, is packed with rich history, ghostly attractions, and tourist spots. We recommend this day trip, as it’s a quick, 30-minute drive from our Waypoint Outposts. 

Along the streets of this city, resting high on a hill overlooking the Verde Valley, you’ll find traces of its mining history, ghost town stories, and other fun historical highlights. 

During the mid-1800s, when the area became part of U.S. territory, the population grew with ranchers and prospectors settling in, drawn to the mining possibilities of the land. But it was closer to 1880 before the interest in copper mining took off and several mines were established. 

You can visit the town and find out about the ups and downs of its mining history. Jerome has lasted through a tumultuous past, and now tourists are entertained daily by the stories and tales when they roam the streets. 

4 Historical Stops

  1. Tours of Jerome: Be sure to catch a tour of the town. There are endless stories to accompany the streets and sites of Jerome, and it’s well worth having a guide to chat through and give you a deeper understanding of the town’s past. Make note of which tours are family friendly, as Jerome offers spooky ghost tours in addition to historical tours of its shady past.
  2. Jerome’s Sliding Jail: Just down from Jerome’s main street sits a sad-looking jail. You can venture to it and find out how it received its name. Hint: it used to stand 225 feet from where it now rests. While the town (briefly nicknamed the “wickedest town in the west) used to be more in need of this jail’s services, the structure now sits quietly as a tourist attraction for a fun photo op.  
  3. Jerome State Historic Park: A museum dedicated to Jerome’s history lies within the old mansion of the Douglas family. As the founder of the Little Daisy Mine, James S. Douglas built his home initially as a hotel for his family along with important investors and officials. The historic structure still stands, and a tour inside its walls will dive deeply into the stories and adventures of Jerome’s past. 
  4. Mine Museum: If you’re specifically interested in Jerome’s claim to fame, check out the Mine Museum. You’ll get a front row seat to see various mining equipment used in the 1800s, including various cages, drills, and tools that miners used on a daily basis many years ago. Household supplies, hospital remnants, and gambling souvenirs are also included in the displays. You can make a pit stop in the gift shop on your way out and take a piece of history with you to remember your adventure. 

This cute and sleepy town is worth a visit while you’re staying with us at Waypoint Outposts. Whether it’s rich mining history, old ghost stories, or simply a look into the town’s past, you’re sure to find this quaint stop worth a visit with the family. 

 

Sources:

https://www.legendsofamerica.com/az-jerome/

https://www.travelingmom.com/family-vacation-destinations/jerome-az-ghost-town/

https://azstateparks.com/jerome/about-the-mansion/period-history

https://www.jeromehistoricalsociety.com/museums-buildings/mine-museum/

Exploring Camp Verde, Part 3

What’s Around Town?

It’s not difficult to fill your day with the fun activities and pretty sites of the Verde Valley. We want to point out some of our favorite stops so you can pack your vacation with adventure when you book your stay at Waypoint Outposts. 

A trip around town will offer a great variety of things to enjoy! Here are our highlights!

Top 3 Things to Do in Camp Verde

  1. Horseback riding: Enjoy an hour-long, guided tour with Wild Western Horseback Adventures. This trip will take you around the valley, including the most beautiful scenery in the area. It’s great for all levels of riding experience. You can take the whole family! Or if you’re in the mood for more adventure, the Ride in the Vines tour takes you through Alcantara Vineyards. The mesmerizing scenery, just 30 minutes from Sedona, includes river crossings, old ruins, and of course the beautiful vineyard. This will for sure be a unique highlight of your trip! 
  2. Fort Verde State Historic Park: Discover the rich history of the Verde Valley! If you’re interested in frontier life and the military history of the area, a stop at Fort Verde State Historic Park will give you a glimpse into the 1800s. You’ll find some of the original buildings still standing and living history programs to bring the history to life! The park rangers are a wealth of knowledge and enjoy answering questions about this time in history. Be sure to check it out!
  3. Predator Zip Lines: We cannot forget the amazing experiences at the Out of Africa Wildlife Park. You can experience an aerial view of the park with their thrilling zip line tours! At Predator Zip Lines, a two-hour tour takes you through five lines in addition to a suspension bridge! As you fly through the park, see how many animals you can spot-lions, cougars, and tigers, to name a few. There are even options for nighttime tours! Not only will you enjoy the zip lines, but your senses will take in the sounds of the wildlife like never before in the thrill of the night! 

We haven’t even begun to dive into the wineries and breweries of the area! The truth is, this little town has so many attractions packed inside its 43 square miles. When you map out your list of things to do, it’s likely you’ll need to divide and conquer within a couple trips! 

Or, make it a regular family trip so you can experience the fun memories again and again! You know we have your accommodations ready to book at Waypoint Outposts each time! Have fun!

 

Sources:

https://www.horsebackwinecountry.com/

https://azstateparks.com/fort-verde/about-the-fort/park-history

https://predatorzipline.com/tours/the-predator/

Exploring Camp Verde, Part 2

A Guide to Local Coffee Shops

Nothing beats a stroll down Main Street with a cup o’ joe in hand, enjoying the sights and sounds of Camp Verde’s downtown buzz. 

If you have a few days booked with us at Waypoint Outposts, you can strategize your trips into Camp Verde for a rejuvenating treat at one of the local coffee shops. Just over a ten-minute drive into town, and you can pull up a chair at one of our favorite cafes. Our next blog shares more in-town adventures, but for now, let’s talk food. 

We’ll work our way down Main Street so you can get a scope of which coffee shop is your best fit.

Top 4 Coffee Shops

  1. Thanks a Latte Espresso Cafe: If you have time, we recommend you plan to dine in at this stop. Thanks a Latte Espresso Cafe is one of our local favorites! They roast their delicious blends of coffee beans on site. In addition to a large menu of pastries, breakfast items, smoothies, and of course, coffee, they offer lunch items as well. With comfy seating inside and out, you can enjoy a covered patio that is also pet-friendly. No one has to be left back at camp! A stop here is well worth your time. 
  2. Verde Cafe: Just down the road, you’ll find a cute little shop called Verde Cafe. Make note this coffee stop is only open 6AM-2PM on weekdays. Saturdays and Sundays, the cafe is closed. But, still make it a priority of your Camp Verde tour! You can find great prices and a variety of breakfast and lunch items to fill you up. There’s no chance of leaving hungry with the full menu of breakfast and lunch items. 
  3. Udderly Divine: What pairs better with coffee than a homemade apple pie? At Udderly Divine, you can pair your coffee with some of our favorite desserts in Camp Verde! Ice cream, pies, and other pastries are just one fraction of the menu. Stop by for your coffee and stay to enjoy the aesthetic of the old western decor. You’ll find colorful murals on the walls and other western-infused themes. We give this stop two thumbs up for your sweet tooth!
  4. Wingfield Bread Company: Since we’re on Main Street, we’ve got to throw in this stop for freshly baked bread! The smells alone will entice you in, but you’ll stay for the hot-out-of-the-oven, fresh croissants or focaccia bread. Pull up a chair for a unique, artisan sandwich, or enjoy a fresh salad! Wingfield Bread Company is a welcome stop for any visitor. The bright and fun colors make for an enjoyable atmosphere to enjoy a light lunch or an afternoon treat!

Perks of Camp Verde Coffee

There’s something special about driving into a cozy downtown, strolling down Main Street, and enjoying quality home-cooked food. Each of these spots made it on our top-four list, not only for the food and coffee, but for the memories you’ll make sitting around the table with your friends and family. 

We find Camp Verde to be such a great day trip to take from our Waypoint Outposts, and we hope you’ll get to experience the small town charm of all Camp Verde has to offer. 

Book with us soon so you can hit up these fun spots. How does…this weekend sound? We’ve got a tent with your name on it!

Exploring Camp Verde, Part 1

A Guide to the Best Hiking

Hiking is the main draw for many visitors to Arizona in general. With countless mountains, ranging from simple, to intermediate, to challenging, there is a place for any level of adventure seeker wanting to hit the trails. 

Climate Check: When to visit

We begin our travel guide in the quaint and cozy town of Camp Verde, Arizona. This small town is a quick 12-minute drive from our Safari Village Waypoint Outpost. It boasts mild weather year-round, making it a perfect place for hiking and enjoying the outdoors at any time. 

During the summer, you can expect average highs to be in the mid 90s. Wintertime brings averages down to the mid 60s, but spring’s blend of high 70s makes it the ideal time to enjoy this region. 

“Verde,” Spanish for green, gives the valley a fitting name due to the lush greenery. Sheltered by the surrounding mountains and watered by Arizona’s summer rain, this spot is ideal for fellow outdoor adventurers to get their fix of hikes year round. 

Top 3 Hiking Spots

  1. Montezuma Castle National Monument Trail: This easy hike is a short, less-than-half-a-mile walk to a historical landmark of cliff dwellings, preserved from over 1000 years ago! Most say the $10/person fee is worth it! You’ll get to enjoy a paved path, winding its way to some river views of Beaver Creek. At the end of the trail, marvel at the ancient ruins of the Sinagua, a diverse and resourceful people group whose structures stand to this day!
  2. Copper Canyon Loop Trail 504: Just under four miles, this hike is easy for all hikers. You can enjoy the views of the landscape and optional waterfall stretch, with minimal effort, making this trail a popular one! You can find this hike on the outer, southwest edge of Camp Verde. 
  3. McDonald Trail: The unique feature of the McDonald trail is its abundance of caves! This 1-mile trek out and back is a moderately difficult hike. Unique landscape and views will allow for some picturesque stops along the way. Don’t forget your water!

Exploring the Verde River

We can’t forget the namesake of the Camp Verde region! The Verde River is a big selling point for this vacation destination. Varying skill levels of canoers and kayakers can each find a good fit for venturing down the river. An 18-mile stretch through town is great for beginners to find spots to practice, while those seeking a bigger thrill can make their way to the 41-mile stretch of a more rustic and scenic float south of Camp Verde.

The following access points are great for beginners wanting to try some kayaking!

  • Lower TAPCO river access point to Tuzigoot 
  • The Skidmore Lane river access point to Bignotti river access point in the Prescott National Forest
  • Black Bridge river access point to Beasley Flat river access point in the Town of Camp Verde

If you’re looking for a pit stop to do some fishing or boating, the White Bridge Picnic Site offers options to set up for a picnic lunch and enjoy a lazy afternoon. This is a great spot for access to Beasley Flat or Clear Creek, with a paved ramp leading to the river.

After all this adventuring, you’re going to be hungry! Be sure to check out our favorite coffee shops and cafes in our next blog.

Don’t forget to tag us in all your adventure photos! We’ll be ready for you back at camp with a nice campfire when you’ve returned from a full day of outdoor fun. 

 

Sources:

https://www.campverde.az.gov/our-community/weather

https://visitcampverde.com/

https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/arizona/montezuma-castle-national-monument-trail

https://visitcampverde.com/verde-river/

http://www.bluetrailsguide.org/find-a-blue-trail/tips-for-paddling-the-verde-river/

The Adventure Begins

An Introduction to Waypoint Outposts

Welcome to Waypoint Outposts! If we haven’t met you yet, we want to! We love making new friends and growing our circle of outdoor enthusiasts.

We’ve found this community of people (people like you!) to be so much fun. A shared love for nature is a shared love for beauty, adventure, fun stories, new scenery, and most importantly…s’mores. Just kidding…kind of.

Each new friend and visitor at Waypoint Outposts is bound to experience the joy and thrill of nature, mixed with the comfort and ease of home. We think you’ll find it to be the perfect formula when you can be outside, enjoy wildlife, spend quality time with friends and family, and then head back to a cozy bed for the night. It truly makes all the difference when your first hours of camping are not spent setting up tents in the dark, tripping over coolers, and trying to pound out the rocks under your sleeping bag.

With your accommodations at our Waypoint Outposts, you can turn your full attention to the itinerary planning! We would love to spend some time sharing all of our favorite spots in the Camp Verde area, so stay tuned for the next blog, where we’ll begin to highlight the best of the best this area has to offer!

We’ve got all the tips and info you need to customize your next glamping trip at Waypoint Outposts for memorable fun throughout your stay. Consider us your glamping gurus. The truth is, we think glamping is the most epic way to experience the outdoors. Our founders at Waypoint Outposts have awesome experiences to draw from when it comes to glamping in style. Let’s meet them now!

Meet Jason and Taylor

Jason and Taylor are the masterminds behind this epic glamping experience. With an affinity for the outdoors, they make camping with family and friends a priority, enjoying nature and seeking new adventures.

But they are no ordinary campers! A knack for comfortable “glamping” accommodations has allowed them to adventure in style. Only this power couple could plan a six-week road trip, covering 6,000 miles across the Pacific Northwest and beyond, all with their three young girls, and come back with a dream for how to offer this experience to others.

The launching of Waypoint Outposts was a culmination of the joy and fun they experienced on this trip, mixed with the desire to provide a way for others to experience it too. They teamed up with many friends to make their dream a reality.

Jason brings the ability to visualize, develop, and market the plans, while Taylor’s creative eye polishes each site to its fullest potential. In turn, guests of the Outposts walk away with much more than a few nights under the stars. They walk away with laughter, rich conversation around the campfire, and lasting memories.

How It Works

Are you intrigued by the possibility of staying with us? We’d love to clarify how our Waypoint Outposts work so you can be confident when booking. When you reserve nights at Waypoint Outposts, you’re getting a furnished campsite with all you need for a comfy stay. It’s all set up and ready for you when you get here!

What’s Included

  • A spacious 120-square-foot canvas tent
  • Real beds, cozy linens, blankets, and pillows
  • Portable heater
  • WiFi
  • Dresser, rugs, and other accessorized furnishings
  • Shared fire pits
  • Camp kitchen access
  • Hammock stations
  • Yard games
  • Camp restrooms (with shower and flushing toilet)

Save the time and energy it takes to think through your packing list, haul the gear, and set up your site. The Waypoint Outposts are a perfect way to experience the fun of camping without the hassle of hauling and setting up gear.

About The Camp Setup

Each Waypoint Outpost, each campsite, and even down to each tent setup is intentionally built, furnished, and decorated with you in mind.

Enjoying a stay at one of our Waypoint Outposts is more than a space to sleep. It’s space to spend time with family while playing some corn hole. It’s space to laugh and sing around a campfire with s’mores to share. It’s space to take a breather from the busyness of life and breathe in fresh air, listen to sounds of nature, and be refueled inside.

It’s our joy to be able to provide a space that does each of these things for our guests. We love hearing the stories about memories made, relationships strengthened, and the all around refreshment nature can bring to our souls!

Jason said it best when summing up one of his family camping adventures. “We never could have anticipated the good that came from this trip. Our girls explored all day everyday. Seeing the way nature brought all of us such joy and rejuvenation to our souls, in ways we didn’t know we needed, was the greatest gift.”