A ride to and through Page Springs, Arizona is an eye opening experience of what many would not expect to find in the high desert. After a boring 2 hour ride north on the I-17, you exit at the Montezuma’s Well exit and go back over heading west. After some gentle twisties and about 15 miles, you take a right hand turn on Page Springs Rd. Yeah, same old flat high desert scenery but wait, all of a sudden you are riding under a canopy of lush overhanging trees. To your left unfolds vast stretches of greenery. You have entered into one of the majestic, mostly unknown areas of Arizona – Oak Creek south of Sedona. As you ride along, it is hard not to let your eyes wander to the visual delights of such a vast amount of vegetation more reminiscent of wetter areas.
Take the time to stop at one of the wineries for a taste testing of some local vintners. Just up the road a bit further is the Page Springs State Fish Hatchery where you can view up close and personal the raising of native trout used to restock our dwindling rivers and streams. You can buy fish pellets here to feed the fish or be smart and buy some locally before you start your ride (cheaper and greater quantity).
Take the time to walk around the perimeter of this oasis in the desert. A self guided nature and exploratory trail is a wonderful break from the bug eating ride. While you are there, if you packed a picnic lunch, it is a wonderful place to enjoy it. An alternative is to go back west on Page Springs Road and just after you pass over the bridge spanning Oak Creek you will find the Page Springs Diner on your right. Here you can purchase cold beverages to slack your thirst and peruse a menu of good food. You can choose seating outside or inside but in either event, make sure you are able to look out and view the Creek as it soothingly passes by below you.
After some repast, if you enjoy nature, there is another wonderful area to explore. Leave your scoot parked at the Diner and walk across the street into the fish hatchery’s large breeding ponds area. Here you will find another self directed nature trail about a mile or so long that takes you through fields, into the woods and finally along the south bank of Oak Creek. If you are a birder like me, you are bound to see some cranes, ducks, egrets and many more avian delights. After your adventures along Page Springs Rd., the rest of your ride may seem dull and boring but I promise you that the memories of what you have seen and done will come back to you time and time again.
Ride safe – Ride often – Have fun – Share your life with others