Dogies Search for the Grail
On March 13th, the Westerners enjoyed a new route. Linda and Harry Schermer lead an excited and robust group of Dogies on a six mile plus hike in the Marg's Draw area. We split into two groups, with Linda leading the first group and Diane Luce tailgating and Harry lead the second group with Liz Sweeney as the tailgater. We carpooled to the first Schnebly Hill parking lot and met and broke into our groups there.
We hiked to the west of the "Snoopy Rock" formation and then proceeded on the Marg's Draw trail. The recent snow fall and copious amounts of precipitation resulted in a bit of a muddy walk. However, the dampness proved much needed for a more secure footing especially when making a descent. Snoopy rock can be seen from downtown Sedona, posing as if he is taking a nap on his doghouse.
Our hike leader Linda offered us an explanation of the origins of the name Marg's Draw from Jean Kindig's book, "Sedona Places and Names" . According to Jean's book, it may have been named after a mare called Marg whose range was the draw 1879-1881 or it could have been named for a Morgan horse owned by John Munds, or the name could have come from George Morgrietch, pronounced "mortgage" who had a winter range in Marg's Draw.......Marg or Morg? The hikers pondered all of these possibilities and began a side trail off of Marg's Draw and scrambled up a high ridge. However the name was derived, all thoughts were suddenly replaced with awe of surrounding beauty.
The brushy bowl area that we found ourselves in was obviously a meeting place and inhabited by natives long ago. It was loaded with chert which was a raw material used in prehistoric times to make stone tools. Our eyes scanned the ground to look for any "worked" pieces of chert. Also, what a spectacular view! The Twin Buttes, Battlement Butte, and Submarine Rock all made up the view to the south, and as our eyes swept to the east and north, the Crimson Cliffs shone brightly against the blue sky. To the west, views of Capitol Butte and Chimney Rock were spectacular.
As we continued east, several side trails were identified as a route towards a beautiful wash area, but this was not on our agenda during this hike. A short scramble down the ridge and then several ups and downs through smaller slick rock areas, led us off to the northeast to finally come to a lunch break area beneath the rock formation known as The Grail. We had found the Grail! Trickles of water still flowed through the slick rock lunch spot. And stone seats beckoned for us to have a rest in the warm, inviting sunshine. Reluctantly, we eventually rose to our feet to begin the trek back to our starting point. We had made a loop and had come to another end of a wonderful Westerners hike!
The Westerners always welcome new members. If you are interested in joining, visit www.sedonawesterners.org. You also may join at our monthly meetings. The next one is April 11th , 2013 7:00 PM, at the Jewish Community of Sedona and the Verde Valley, 100 Meadowlark Drive, Sedona