Money Saving Sedona Vacation Packages
These excellent hotels offer special savings when you stay with them and ride with us. Click on each hotel’s link to learn how they will help you save money when you visit the M Diamond Ranch!
Saddle and Paddle
For the following packages we have partnered with Sedona Adventure Tours to offer spectacular and unique ranch visits and recreational trips on the Verde River for a full day of eco-friendly outdoor fun.
To learn more about the boating aspects of these packages and to make reservations, please visit Sedona Adventure Tours at their website .
With this package you will enjoy horseback riding at the M Diamond Ranch and kayaking on the Verde River with Sedona Adventure Tours. The ride departs the ranch at 9 a.m.; we ask that you arrive around 8:30 for check-in. Please wear long pants and closed-toe shoes for the ride. You will have time to change to your “river clothes’ afterwards.
- One hour horseback ride plus kayaking on the Verde River:
- Adults: $165.55+tax
- Kids 7-12: $142.25+
Saddle and Tube (May – September only)
With this package you will enjoy horseback riding at the M Diamond Ranch and tubing on the Verde River with Sedona Adventure Tours. This ride departs the ranch a 9 a.m.; please arrive by 8:30 wearing long pants and closed-toe shoes. You will have time to change to your “riverclothes” afterwards.
- One hour horseback ride plus tubing on the Verde River: $ 103.00+tax
A Trip Back in Time on the Way to the M-Diamond Ranch
The M-Diamond Ranch is located approximately 6.5 miles southeast of the SR 179/I-17 interchange on Forest Service Road 618. Coming from Sedona, go under the I-17 overpass and you will be on FS 618. Or, when exiting I-17, turn east, away from Sedona. The M Diamond Ranch will be 6.5 miles on the left, marked with a sign. The last 4 miles are dirt, and you know the saying is : the Real West begins where the pavement ends! The Forest Service has designated FS Road 618 as Desert Canyon Scenic Drive. The M Diamond Ranch and the road have been featured by Arizona Highways and AZ Central. Those links are worth checking out!
So, for the auto-adventurous, here are some things to see and do along the way In nice weather, bring a box lunch, or picnic supplies, and picnic at the Beaver Creek Campground, about 2.5 miles from the interchange. Notice the old Beaver Creek Ranger Station nearby. James D. Bailey, a former Arizona Ranger, was the first Forest Service District Ranger there. He was a partner of Irvin Walker, who homesteaded the M-Diamond Ranch in 1908.
We highly recommend you stop at the V Bar V Heritage site on the right side of the road, just past the campground. It contains displays and information about the old V Bar V Ranch (our neighbor), and guided interpretive tours of world-class petroglyph rock art. Admission is free with a Red Rock Pass, or you can purchase the equivalent there. It is open Friday through Monday 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Plan on an hour to 1.5 hours for this stop.
At the 3.0 mile marker, you will see Sacred Mountain on your left. Drive onto the dirt byway to the fence line. You can take a free, self-guided tour of this ancient Sinaguan pit house and pueblo.
At about mile 4 marker you will see the beautiful red stone gate of Rancho Roca Roja, owned by the Ward family. They helped make Cowboy Artist George Phippen famous by putting his paintings of local western scenes on the old Brown and Bigelow calendars. We have a copy of one he did of Irvin Walker, original owner of the M-Diamond Ranch. Old timers tell us the Wards used to ride over to play poker with Irvin.
At about mile 5.5 is the entrance of the “new” V Bar V Ranch, our next-door neighbor. It is owned by the University of Arizona and operated as an agricultural research station.
And at just under 6.5 miles you will see the M-Diamond entry on your left. WELCOME adventurers!
Also in our area:
Sedona – Verde Valley Archaeology
Many of the sites mentioned here are part of the Sinagua Circle and the Verde Valley Archaeology Center has developed a Sinagua Circle self-guided tour that is worth checking out. For guided archaeology tours we recommend The Center Focus.