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Sedona in January - a couple of questions

sueoz

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Hi - we are headed to Sedona in January for a trip that will be mostly hiking with golf thrown in if the weather cooperates. I have a choice between Hyatt Pinon Pointe and the Ridge at Golf.

question 1 - is the traffic in January near the Hyatt still bad. My husband is a sit in traffic phobic and I don’t want to set us up for angst! I like that I can come back from hiking and then just walk the rest of the day, but will it be worth it? Don’t care about shopping, but do care about eating and ice cream.

question 2 - I know the Ridge is in Oak Creek village away from main Sedona and that some of the trail heads are right there, but if we choose to hike one of the other areas, won’t we just have to go through the same traffic to get to the trail heads?

the Hyatt gets great reviews but I think we stayed there over 10 years ago and had a two bedroom that was subterranean! The Ridge gets mixed reviews. Any feedback would be welcome! We’re mostly there for nature, but there’s something to be said for Starbucks at the end of the day. thanks, sue
 

klpca

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I can't really answer your specifics, but I can offer some real life experience from our trip last New Years. It was cold in Sedona! I expected it and enjoyed it but you would have to be a hearty soul to enjoy golfing at those temps. It snowed halfway through our trip and everyone from Phoenix came up to see the snow. Epic traffic jam in town. We had driven to Monument Valley the day before and came home through Oak Creek Canyon and what should have taken about 30 minutes took and hour and a half due to in-town traffic. I am sure that a lot of this was due to the timing (NYE) so I am not sure what it would be like if it happened on a non holiday week. There is a slight incline from Oak Creek village to get into town and I remember reading reports of cars having difficulty dealing with the ice on that stretch which contributed to the traffic.

My thoughts, if you are planning on doing a lot of hiking, I would stay in Oak Creek village - there are so many hiking trails there. But if you want to stroll around town, the Hyatt location is great.

I remember that there is a tugger who lives in Sedona. I will try to figure out who it is and tag them in this post and perhaps they can offer a more educated guess. Found them! @jerseyfinn
 
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sue1947

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I've been to Sedona for hiking in Jan a couple of times. The weather can be an issue. The last time we were there, they got a big dump of snow the week before. We had sunny skies and gorgeous scenery with the remaining snow on the red rocks.
Jan is the low season so many of the shops will be closed so traffic will be less. However, the Y near the Hyatt is a bottleneck and can be slow going at any time. We were staying at Sedona Summit at the west end of town and ended up driving through the Y area multiple times, but I don't remember it being too bad.
At Oak Creek, you can walk across the street to hike the Bell Rock area. There are a few restaurants, but if you like to eat out, the Hyatt is a better location. I also think the Hyatt units are larger? My impression of the Ridge units is that they are smaller? I'd go with the Hyatt. It's centrally located and if you do get a snow/ice situation, you can walk where you need to for the day while things melt out.

Sue
 

nightnurse613

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Absolutely agree with Sue, expect CHILLY weather. The Ridge sits right on a golf course and to my recollection the units may be larger and probably the weather will be slightly warmer (Sedona sits in a valley of sorts). There will be trails in both places (check into Red Rock Passes). The drive into Sedona from VOOC is about 8 miles and the whole purpose of the Y is to expedite traffic (you can check them out in VOOC). Sedona is a much better place for eating choices (and ice cream). The Bashas store had an in-store Starbucks and is located right near Coffee Pot Drive-what could be better; no Starbucks in VOOC.
 

SmithOp

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We go every year week 50, have stayed in both places, I’d give the Hyatt 1/2 star better rating.

1) We live in SoCal so the traffic there is nothing for us.

2) We usually hike Bell Rock, Cathedral Rock areas, so Ridge is closer. Hyatt is only marginally better for Dry Creek Rd hikes, you still have to drive past the shopping areas where the traffic seems most concentrated.

Hyatt has a better view and amenities at the pool area - hot tub, fire pit, steam room. Ridge only has the hot tub. Thats why we give it the slight edge.

We use our Senior Pass, its valid for Red Rock lots.


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PamMo

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Sueoz, we love winter in Sedona and and have enjoyed many stays in the Hyatt and the Ridge (and other resorts). I think it's a toss up. Like you mentioned in your first post, we've always been assigned a lower floor unit in the Hyatt, which is dark. Since we spend most of our time out hiking, staying in a nicely furnished basement isn't a deal killer, but I do enjoy having some sunshine and a view. The unit decor and pool area are definitely more upscale in the Hyatt than at the Ridge, but the Hyatt units are smaller (we usually book 2BR's). We stay for a month at a time, so a kitchen is a big deal to me and the Ridge comes out on top. The Pinon Pointe kitchen has frustratingly little storage or counter space.

Both locations have their pluses and minuses. The Hyatt is at the Y, so I love being able to walk to all the uptown Sedona and Talaquepaque restaurants and shops. Of course, the shops at Pinon Pointe are right there. We don't drive down to the Village for meals when we stay in Sedona proper, so it's fun to try them out when we stay at the Ridge - Cucina Rustica, Rotten Johnny's, Corner Table, Juniper, the friendly local hangout PJ's (good happy hour) and others. No Starbucks in VOC, but try the local coffee shops like Firecreek and Oak Creek Espresso!

We tend to do different hikes based on where we stay. If you know where you want to hike, that might make a difference.

Having the choice of the Hyatt or the Ridge is a win/win decision either way! (We'll be staying in both this winter.)

I forgot to add that if you're buying an Interval Getaway, note that the Hyatt charges a $20/nt resort fee now. The Ridge doesn't have a resort fee through Interval - yet.
 
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sueoz

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Thank you all for your thoughtful replies! The end result is that there is no clear cut answer. We have hiked Sedona before many years ago so I looked up what hikes we did and where they were. There were many that we have to use 89A for and some right near the Y, so I think we just need to deal with whatever traffic we get. We like to start early so that should help at least on our way out. The subterranean rooms at the Hyatt still bother me but not the end of the world. thanks again,
Sue
 

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Hyatt has a lot of units with bad views, but a few are good, and a handful of units have magnificent views. To get those, you need to rent an HRPP reservation from an owner.
 

BJRSanDiego

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... The end result is that there is no clear cut answer. ... The subterranean rooms at the Hyatt still bother me but not the end of the world. thanks again,
Sue
When there are two options and both appear roughly equal...it really doesn't matter which you choose. They both have a lot of positive attributes and are generally better than the other choices.

I've stayed at both the Hyatt and the Ridge. I would give the Hyatt an extra 1/2 star like someone else mentioned. I like being able to walk to the Sound Bites restaurant and the Cowboy Club. There is significantly better availability at the Ridge.

I enjoy hiking Bell rock/court house rock as well as the Chapel trail, the broken arrow trail plus the airport loop. I've taken each multiple times and it doesn't matter if I'm re-doing it. It is still fun and beautiful. I haven't found the Sedona traffic to be all that bad. But maybe I have been lucky.

I usually get a subterranean room (a low room looking into the side of a hill or bank). It is still pleasant.

Golfing in January? I've read that at least some of the courses will not operate if there is snow or will delay the opening (shotgun start?) to allow the snow to melt and the grass to thaw to keep the golfers from damaging the turf. I don't know this as a fact, but it is something that I've read. I'm hoping that some golfers with January/Feb Sedona experience will add their comments.
 

PamMo

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When we've stayed at the Ridge, it's been fun to explore the trails south of Sedona. We've really enjoyed hiking Turkey Creek, Baldwin, Hiline, Templeton, Slim Shady, Easy Breezy, Little Horse, etc.

We've been in Sedona in January when the weather has been spectacularly pleasant and great for golf. Last year was crazy, though, with heavy wet snow which caused lots of damage to trees.
 

jwmitchell02

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Thank you all for your thoughtful replies! The end result is that there is no clear cut answer. We have hiked Sedona before many years ago so I looked up what hikes we did and where they were. There were many that we have to use 89A for and some right near the Y, so I think we just need to deal with whatever traffic we get. We like to start early so that should help at least on our way out. The subterranean rooms at the Hyatt still bother me but not the end of the world. thanks again,
Sue
We love Sedona in January! Yes it can be cold but coming from the Houston area in Texas, its refreshing. Most shops are open and restaurants are much easier to get in as it is the "off" season. Ask for the top units in Phase 1. These have the best views. Weekends have some crowd issues as people come up from Phoenix but the week days are great!
 

sueoz

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Hi again,
This question was worth asking, as I've gotten lots of related info! If nothing else, the replies have gotten me to start looking at hikes and making myself pick some we haven't done before. There are so many! The cold won't bother us, golfing or hiking. I'm hoping the Hyatt will at least look at requests - we are celebrating an anniversary and would be thrilled with any view better than a wall. We'll have a great time anyway and I appreciate so much all the replies.
Sue
 

SmithOp

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Even if you get a first floor there is always the pool deck. It's the best view for happy hour watching the rocks change colors as the sun sets. Take an adult beverage and sit at the fire pit.

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BJRSanDiego

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Hi again,
This question was worth asking, as I've gotten lots of related info! If nothing else, the replies have gotten me to start looking at hikes and making myself pick some we haven't done before. There are so many! The cold won't bother us, golfing or hiking. I'm hoping the Hyatt will at least look at requests - we are celebrating an anniversary and would be thrilled with any view better than a wall. We'll have a great time anyway and I appreciate so much all the replies.
Sue
If you got the res through an exchange, most likely you will be given the unit that you were assigned initially. Of the six times that I've been there that is my own experience. Same with Hyatt Highlands Inn. If you are logged in to Interval, go to My History, then exchanges, find the Sedona exchange and see that it lists as actual unit number. Do a google search for hyatt pinon point resort layout and find where your unit is located. With a previous exchange we had unit 0922. That translates into bldg 9, 2nd floor, unit 2. Another previous exchange was 0812B (or A). So we got building 8, 1st floor, unit 2 (the B side of the 2 BR lock-off). I have tried (more than once) at Pinon pointe to get moved to another unit and was unsuccessful. They told me that if the unit is taken out of service (i.e. problems) that I would be assigned another unit. Otherwise I would get what the original owner deposited. I've also found the same situation at the Highlands Inn and because of my wife's issues with mobility (she was using either a cane or a walker), then moved us from a 2 floor town home to a single floor unit.

If you have a second floor unit, you have a higher chance of a view from either the efficiency patio or the main patio. Most of our units have been lower floor and looking into a side of an incline. But it was private, we could feel the breeze and hear the birds. It was quite pleasant.
 

PamMo

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Your post is very helpful, BJRSanDiego. Thank you. I went back through my history to check if I got the units on my confirmations in the past, and you're right! Next year's confirmation is for a second floor unit (1321), so I'm curious to see if we get it, and what kind of view it will have. (I've only had "dungeon villas" before.)

TUG has a map of Pinon Pointe in the Resorts and Reviews section. https://tug2.com/timeshare-resort/default.aspx?Hyatt-Pinon-Pointe-Sedona-AZ&ID=13855
 
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sueoz

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All this info is great. I will try to see if I can figure out our room from 10 years ago. And maybe I can at least get an idea of what to expect this time. Whatever it is - we’ll have a great time.
Thanks
Sue
 

sueoz

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BJRSanDiego - thanks for the insight on the unit numbers. My upcoming one is 0921. If your formula is right - that will be great. We shall see. My number from 10 years ago followed the formula and was subterranean.
Anyway - thanks again.
Sue
 

BJRSanDiego

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BJRSanDiego - thanks for the insight on the unit numbers. My upcoming one is 0921. If your formula is right - that will be great. We shall see. My number from 10 years ago followed the formula and was subterranean.
Anyway - thanks again.
Sue
Earlier this year we stayed in unit 0922. Same bldg, same floor, just next door. I recall that the view from the main unit (which faces east and towards the activity center was a garden view, but the view from the efficiency (facing to the west) was pretty good and you could see the red rocks. But both views were pleasant. We weren't overlooking a road, trash collection, or a brick wall.
 

PamMo

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Anyone stayed in 1412? Dungeon? I hope not! We are going mid April.
The entry is dark, #1412 is the lower level of the building on the left here - https://www.google.com/maps/@34.867732,-111.7642661,3a,75y,247.49h,71.98t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s4I9y1FPsTuwM0VCPFKxdHA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656 , but the back looks out on green space. You can see the building in the center, below the white car here - https://www.google.com/maps/search/pinon+pointe+sedona+az/@34.8677708,-111.7654416,98a,35y,90h,39.14t/data=!3m1!1e3
 
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shellmo1

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The entry is dark, #1412 is the lower level of the building on the left here - https://www.google.com/maps/@34.867732,-111.7642661,3a,75y,247.49h,71.98t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s4I9y1FPsTuwM0VCPFKxdHA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656 , but the back looks out on green space. You can see the building in the center, below the white car here - https://www.google.com/maps/search/pinon+pointe+sedona+az/@34.8677708,-111.7654416,98a,35y,90h,39.14t/data=!3m1!1e3
Ok, thanks. Looks like nothing special but maybe not the worse... We will be out exploring most of the time but we do cook several dinners in our room and like to eat outside. Appreciate the pics!!!!!
 

jerseyfinn

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We live in Village of Oak Creek (VOC). We're 3+ years living here & what I can say is that our winters are short and not easily predictable. Last year (2018) I was hiking in 68F sun on Christmas Eve. Early February 2018 we got 18 inches of snow which locals say is a rarity -- yet a couple of weeks later the Sedona half marathon was run in overcast sky, but decent temperatures . . . and trails were very hikeable daytime. Good news is that the red rocks look beautiful with snow. Roads aren't good/drivable during snow/ice & day after if the sun doesn't melt snow on the streets. Sedona seems to be situated in it's own little climate bubble, but also remains dependent on the larger regional weather happenings.

So the real Sedona bottom line is that you're not gonna know the weather until you get here. You might find hints if you check NOAA weather and where the Jet Stream is. In general a higher Jet Stream above AZ tends to allow warmer air from S-SW to come through which could still bring low pressure systems/clouds with warmer, wetter air. When the Jet Stream dips far south or below AZ, this allows Pacific NW cold/low pressure storms to lay over us, bringing cold temps and snow up on the Colorado Plateau ( Flagstaff/Grand Canyon ). Sedona sits in a geologic transition zone where we're both at mountain altitude and desert climes at the whim of how a system forms. This later Jet Stream scenario has been present since November 2019 and low systems bring cold and snow to high altitudes, Sedona getting rain.

We ourselves were away T-Day into mid-December on a timeshare trade to Singer Island Florida where temps were 80F or just under. We fly home to 40F days and clouds with some rain since we got back 19 December. Only one day so far that I would say qualifies as sunny. Then again the red rocks look beautiful every day. ;)

---
As to traffic, the OP is visiting at low season when traffic heading north on AZ 179 doesn't form too many traffic jams ( beware special events that bring lots of people ). But we do indeed have traffic issues heading to Sedona on holidays and weekday high seasons. Our entire Verde Valley region is experiencing high growth/development and this brings more people and more traffic.


Before we moved here, we would do a TS trade into the Diamond Summit in West Sedona. I'm aware of the resorts here in VOC but have no experience with them. IMO a Sedona visit is more about hikes, sight seeing and for those who enjoy it, golf. If you're here more than a week, a resort with washer/dryer etc is a nice thing. Otherwise for a shorter stay it really doesn't matter as even a hotel or condo rental could suffice.

I would suggest staying in VOC because resorts/hotels are conveniently located and VOC is a walkable village with plenty of restaurants. Likewise there are 2 main trail heads located directly in VOC with 2 others some 2 to 3 miles north on the AZ 179. It's a 7 mile drive from VOC to the US 89 circle that takes you to downtown tourist Sedona.

Also keep in mind that it's full blown winter up on the Colorado Plateau where road conditions can turn gnarly in a few hours. I hope Sue oz & family have a nice visit. Any questions on trails here in VOC feel free to ask.

Happy New Year & lets hope our Sedona winter is a mild one.

barry
 

SmithOp

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@jerseyfinn we were just there the week you got back, it was very chilly but the weekend was nice, I swam in the pool at Hyatt Pinon Point. Uptown Sedona was a mess with the construction of the new roundabout and center dividers.

I'd be interested to know what you think of the new Westin hotel in VOC, it looked open when we passed by, that whole mall area is all new.

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