Subway Cave hike in Sedona

I have lost count of how many times I have been to Sedona, but each trip is a memorable one, even if it is only spent walking in the downtown. The very sight of the red rocks from the highway, as you approach Sedona, fills up my heart with joy. The sweeping views never fail to mesmerize me and they envelope me in their embrace while I am there. I am always looking for a reason to go back and drench in its beauty and serenity.

Apart from its awe inspiring red rocks, Sedona is also quite popular for its vortexes and picturesque hikes. My friend T and I love hiking and after going through a list of several popular hikes, we picked the Boynton Canyon and Subway hike. Hiking in Sedona is a bit tricky both due to its distance and its popularity. It is ~2.5 hrs from where I live and the parking at trail heads for most of the trails fill up by 7:30 am. Luckily for me, T is an early riser and very punctual, so we were able to leave our house at 5 am and reach the Boynton trail parking lot  just before 7:30 am. 

The first couple of miles are relatively easy. You will pass by the Enchantment Resort and go on a sandy trail. The trail to the Subway Cave is located at the 2 mile point. But there is no sign marking the spur trial. An 'All Trails' map would have been helpful, which we did not have. We read in the 'EarthTrekkers' blog that we need to keep a look out for a large Alligator Juniper tree that will be on the left side of the trail around the 2 mile mark. The spur trail to the Subway Cave starts just across the trail from the tree, on the right hand side of the trail. Armed with this information, we went there with a lot of confidence but once there, a lot of trees looked like Juniper trees ;) Luckily for us, there was a couple with the 'All Trails' map and together we found the spur trail :)

We took the trail to the right and it is about 0.4 miles to get to the Subway cave. You will reach the spot shown below and this is where it gets tricky. You have to scramble up that steep incline on all your fours :) It is ideal if you can do it in one go using some momentum, but it is easier said than done. But it is short enough that you will eventually get to the top and enjoy this breathtaking view.

The Subway cave is the highlight of this hike. We spent quite a bit of our time there and did not want to leave. But we needed to make space for oncoming hikers, so we began to review our options. We could either continue on this trail, which did not seem very appealing, or explore one of the vortexes on our way back, which seemed more interesting. Though we did not know where the vortex exactly was, we had a feeling we will figure it out :) And true enough, just as we were approaching the vortex, we could hear a guy playing the flute. It was beautiful and almost spell binding; we knew we had to follow that. So we did and reached the vortex as he was almost on his last tune. We learned that there is a male vortex and a female vortex and we sat by one of them and closed our eyes. The sound of the flute was so touching that I teared up. We later learned that the old man playing the flute is Robert and he had been coming there everyday for several years. As he came down, I thanked him for so kindly sharing his gift of talent with the rest of us. He gave me this heart shaped rock and a memorable hug. 💗

A vortex is believed to be a special spot on the Earth, where energy is either entering into the earth or projecting out of the earth's plane. Vortexes are said to be found at sacred sites throughout the world – the Great Pyramid in Egypt, Machu Picchu in Peru, Bali, Stonehenge, Uluru/Ayers Rock in Australia, etc. and Sedona is said to be one of them. I have no way to confirm that except saying that it was very peaceful to spend some time there and we got up feeling very relaxed after that hike. Sedona does have that kind of vibe overall, which is what draws people to it, again and again.

Feeling totally relaxed and content, we then headed to my favorite restaurant in Sedona, the 'Chocolate Tree'. This place has an outdoor seating in its backyard and serves healthy meals and interesting drinks. It totally embodies the spirit of Sedona and exudes wonderful vibes. We couldn't have found a more perfect place to chill out after coming from that vortex.

We headed back to Phoenix after lunch, having spent another beautiful and memorable day in Sedona. Signing off for now while looking forward to many more to come...


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