Safety in Travel in Northern Arizona

Mar 11th, 2019, 04:31 PM
  #1  
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Safety in Travel in Northern Arizona

My sister and I will be in the Sedona area in late September and we like to poke along the Road Less Traveled. Should we be concerned as two women traveling alone about pulling off into random picnic areas and trails in the area mostly midweek and less traveled times?
I live in a city and she lives on a farm. This is all new territory to us, so we have no idea what to expect. I don't want "fear" to keep us from experiences nor "naivete" put us in harms way!
Thank y'all in advance for any sound, non-judgmental advice!
SueBSouth is offline  
Mar 11th, 2019, 05:08 PM
  #2  
 
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The biggest worry that I know of in rural Arizona, where I spent 25 years, is flash floods in monsoon season, not generally an issue in September. There aren't actually all that many roads that won't have traffic unless you go off road which you probably won't want to do. If your car is a rental I believe unpaved roads are against the rules. All this to say go wherever you like on paved roads, you'll be unlikely to be alone and you'll be perfectly safe.
MmePerdu is offline  
Mar 12th, 2019, 07:32 AM
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We were in Sedona mid-week almost two weeks ago and it was busy. I'm not sure what you're expecting or planning as far as the "Road Less Traveled" but even during our off-road Pink Jeep tour we saw plenty of hikers and mountain bikers.
wtm003 is offline  
Mar 12th, 2019, 08:56 PM
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I doubt you will find the "road less traveled" as a tourist but if you want to be prepared, carry mace.
bailey123 is offline  
Mar 13th, 2019, 02:13 PM
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On this kind of 'adventure' and trying to get 'off the beaten path' ... I would always be more concerned about having a 100% reliable vehicle, plenty of gas, spare tires you know how to change, good road maps and/or GPS, safe places to sleep at night, etc. more than concern for personal safety in a picnic area.

(I have zero experience in northern Arizona but generally speaking for two women alone on a road trip.)
suze is offline  
Mar 13th, 2019, 06:07 PM
  #6  
 
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I drive all over Southern Utah by myself or with my two kids. NEVER have had a problem!!! You will be fine. I am more concerned for my safety in a big city than I am on a trail. Have a full tank of gas, 2 gallons of water, some food, and other emergency supplies. First aid kit is good. And that's it! (obviously use common sense, but I wouldn't worry)
StantonHyde is offline  
Mar 14th, 2019, 03:59 PM
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Fill up the gas tank whenever you can and don't count on having cell phone service all the time. Buy a good paper map.
breckgal is offline  
Mar 14th, 2019, 11:53 PM
  #8  
 
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Originally Posted by StantonHyde View Post
I drive all over Southern Utah by myself or with my two kids. NEVER have had a problem!!! You will be fine. I am more concerned for my safety in a big city than I am on a trail. Have a full tank of gas, 2 gallons of water, some food, and other emergency supplies. First aid kit is good. And that's it! (obviously use common sense, but I wouldn't worry)
Just a thought. I too think you will be fine. But I do know people of color have sometimes experienced negative comments while hiking. I don't know your background, so this point may not even apply to you. This article addresses the issue.

https://www.rgj.com/story/life/outdo...cape/91202800/
5alive is offline  
Mar 15th, 2019, 05:40 PM
  #9  
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Thank you all for your input. I feel that we are going to be just fine. I have already thought alot about the environmental safety of having lots of water and a safety travel kit (compass, whistle, leatherman, first aid kit, etc). I DID not think that there would be cellular gaps, thank you breckgal but my sis and I do have two different service providers which might help in terms of coverage one to the other.
My thoughts on this originated in a google earth view of the top of Mingus Mt (there are fire opals there they say!) and a picnic area and lake recreation area, so I thought, what the hey, throw out the question. Any and all help appreciated!
SueBSouth is offline  
Mar 18th, 2019, 04:40 PM
  #10  
 
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I am more familiar with the remote areas of the White Mountains of Arizona. If you are planning on taking some of the Forest Service roads, I would, as almost everybody has already responded, certainly at the least, have basic survival gear with you-2x water especially, some food, warm clothes and a tank full of gas. The best thing you can do before heading out is to give someone your planned itinerary and tell them when you expect to return and when you would want them to call the authorities if they don't hear from you. It is beyond easy to get lost on all of the FS roads. You can stop at any Ranger Station and pick up maps that show all of the various dirt roads that are otherwise not on many maps (look especially for the OHV vehicle maps) or you can order forest service road maps on line.
As far as personal safety, I personally do not enter the back country-ie Forest Service dirt roads, trails etc., without personal protection-the choice would be up to you and what you are comfortable with. Now, in the 30 years of having a cabin in the mountains of AZ and driving thousands of miles of back roads, I have never personally felt the need to use it nor been in a situation where I was relieved I had it, but my mother has-walking a relatively well traveled dirt road, in a popular vacation town, albeit very early in the AM. She was relieved to have a very protective Great Dane that raced from the hills when a truck full of men pulled up and began to verbally harass her. It is rare to hear of something bad happening in the backcountry areas but, I prefer to be prepared, just in case.
odie1 is offline  
Mar 18th, 2019, 04:42 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
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Oh yes, and you should absolutely be prepared for laps in cell service. We have a satellite phone we carry with us wherever we go (international too) but not everyone can do that so again-tell someone (or two) your land route and timeframe.
odie1 is offline  
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