Devils Bridge, a Popular Hike in Sedona

Devils Bridge, a Popular Hike in Sedona

 

Devils Bridge is the largest natural sandstone arch located in the Sedona area of the Coconino National Forest. This is a very popular hike that offers breathtaking views of Red Rock country.

It is a steep but short hike. The official trailhead starts off the unpaved portion of Dry Creek Road and requires a high clearance vehicle to access. If you only have a low clearance vehicle, you can park at the Dry Creek Road trailhead at the paved section, approximately 1 mile from trailhead, or at the Mescal Trailhead located on Long Canyon Road. Depending on where you park you have a few routes to choose from to access Devils Bridge Trail, including the unpaved portion of Dry Creek Road, Chuckwagon Trail, or Mescal to Chuckwagon Trail.

From the parking area off of the unpaved portion of Dry Creek Road, follow the trailmarker for Devil’s Bridge Trail. The early portion of the trail was originally a jeep trail so it is smooth and traverses through washes filled with juniper and prickly pear cactus. The path gently inclines uphill and gets steeper as you continue on.

About 3/4 of a mile from the parking area the trail will come to a fork and you will go left. Here you’ll end up at the base of the bridge. You will then continue up a natural rock staircase from which there are beautiful views. You will reach another level of stairs which will take you up to the bridge.

This popular trail is certainly a tourist attraction so make sure to arrive early to avoid large crowds. This is a fun hike for the whole family.

Hiking Information and Gear in Sedona

Hiking Information and Gear in Sedona

Sedona Arizona is the Day Hike Capital of America with over 100 hiking trails. Hiking is the largest and fastest growing sector of tourism in Sedona. The Hike House is committed to improving the hiking experience of each hiker and in doing so building a loyal Sedona tourism industry. Visit Sedona, visit the Hike House, experience Sedona hiking trails, and they know you will return again and again. The diversity of Sedona trails is as amazing as the challenge to select the best trail for you and your group. In keeping with their goal of delivering the best hiking experience they introduced the Sedona Trail Finder, a high definition visually interactive database of all of the Sedona trails and trail data (an experience in itself). Sedona hikes have never been easier to research and plan. The Sedona Trail Finder allows you and your group an opportunity to discuss criteria and filter through trails, identify appropriate trails, and select the best Sedona trails for you. Hiking Sedona has never been better and guaranteeing the best Hiking Experience has never been easier.

A beautiful hike in Sedona

Cathedral Rock

Cathedral Rock Trail is a short 0.7 mile but strenuous trail which quickly rises 608 feet in elevation. The midsection of the trail has a near vertical segment which requires climbing. The trail is well marked and many hikers can be found using the trail. The trail traverses the east side of the mountain and thus the hike is better taken in the afternoon so one is hiking in the shade. On the top, there is a narrow plateau with steep slopes on each side. The width is about that of a wide sidewalk and several stones are perfect for sitting. One can enjoy the view if not afraid of the heights. The hike ends at the northern saddle between the middle and northern spire.

Another hike in Sedona

Little Horse Trail

Little Horse Trail is a 3.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Little Horse Trail begins along the Bell Rock loop trail. Following this jeep trail southward for a quarter of a mile, you will come to a signed fork. Making a left, the trail start to climb gently and follows a few washes and through Arizona cypress patches. At the intersect of the Chapel Trail from the left, take a right passing through a gate boundary near 1.4 miles. Once you head through the ridge up to the Chicken Point, take the path left for a short climb onto the open rock range, full spectacular views. Note that this lookout is used by Jeep Tours heading up via Broken Arrow Road. If you a ready to leave, you can take the same way back or continue onward towards the Broken Arrow Trail. Note: this trail requires a Red Rock Pass – available at most gas stations in Sedona etc.

A fantastic hike in Sedona

Sedona Airport Loop Trail

This is the perfect cold weather hike! Imagine soaking in the warmth of the sun on a chilly day while savoring gorgeous, panoramic vistas everywhere you look as you trek along a three-and-a-half mile circular path around Airport Mesa and its famed positive energy flow vortex. Talk about an energy boost! Airport Loop is a wonderful introduction to Sedona’s red rock country because it provides great views of West Sedona and some of our most famous landmarks: Coffee Pot Rock, Chimney Rock, Capitol Butte (Thunder Mountain), Courthouse Butte, the Cockscombs, Wilson Mountain, Munds Mountain, Bell Rock, Cathedral Rock – and (whew!) Sedona’s very own “pyramid mountain.” Yes, you can certainly hike this in warmer months, but in the summer it can get very hot, indeed, with hardly a shady spot for cover. NOTE: If you’re with a group or a partner and one wants to do the hike and another just wants to meditate or soak in the vortex energy, this is an ideal choice.

A Beautiful Hike in Sedona

A Beautiful Hike in Sedona

Cathedral Rock is a short hike that offers beautiful views of the naturally occurring red rock formations in the heart of red rock country. This is a favorite hike in the Sedona area.

The Cathedral Rock trailhead can be accessed off of Back’O’Beyond Road. There is a small trailhead parking area. However, the trail can also be accessed from Baldwin and Templeton trails.

The trail ends with a short steep climb to Cathedral Rock. There are some steep sections so hiking shoes are recommended. There are great views along the entirety of the trail.

A Great Hike on Bell Rock Pathway

A Great Hike on Bell Rock Pathway

Short, sweet and simply stunning, the Bell Rock Pathway may be the most popular trail and one of the easiest of all the walk-ways and hikes in the Sedona area. Bell Rock, so named because the shape resembles that of a large bell, stands adjacent to Courthouse Butte and both, typically in tandem, are frequently the object of photographers and artists. The location also enjoys significant popularity as one of Sedona’s vortex sites.

The trail is wide, hard-packed with few if any hazards, easy to follow, and only 3.5 miles round trip, which for most (even us old fogies), can be accomplished in about an hour, packing a lot of scenic red rock punch for the time spent. The pathway heads out directly toward Bell Rock and through some beautiful upland desert—stands of juniper with a few pinon pine mixed in, yucca and agave, and thickets of manzanita. Bird song rings out from every direction and it’s not uncommon to rustle up a covey or two of Gambel’s quail scurrying for cover.

Hiking in Sedona

Hiking in Sedona

Witness red rock beauty up close with a hike in Sedona.  See forest service site for trail maps and descriptions of hiking trails.

Sedona and the Verde Valley offer some of the most picturesque hikes in the world.

There are dozens of options to keep the novice and experienced hiker delighted for many days–trails along rivers, trails on mesas and high up in the mountains, trails in canyons, trails through arroyos, washes and fields, and trails to scenic vistas and archeological heritage sites. Hikes on these trails vary by length and steepness. Trail information and maps are available at Visitors Center. There are also some excellent books on the subject.

1. Choose the hike that is best suited to your fitness level, interest and seasonal appropriateness. When you plan your hike, think of the position of the sun. On hot days you will want to hike early and late in the afternoon. If you do hike during the day, choose trails along creeks and those that provide shade. In the cooler weather, you may prefer to hike mid morning through mid afternoon to take advantage of the sun’s warmth. Although it doesn’t rain or snow often in Sedona and the Verde Valley, when it does, trails can be slippery and sometimes dangerous. Check with forest rangers and/or the Visitors Center for updates on conditions and/or closures.

2. Carry plenty of water. The hiking rule of thumb is to drink a liter of water per hour, but in weather than exceeds 85 F, the need for water intake increases dramatically. Carry more water than you think you will need. It is easy to become dehydrated very quickly without realizing it is happening.. Signs of dehydration include headaches, fatigue and nausea. Drinking small sips of water throughout the day is a good way to stay hydrated. Some hikers find that pliable water bottles with tube extensions, called bladder bags, fit nicely into daypacks, and offer hikers the opportunity to sip whenever they feel thirsty while keeping their hands free.

3. Bring a snack for fuel. Sports bars, sandwiches, dried fruits, jerky and trail mix are some popular foods for taking on the trails to snack along the way for energy.

4. Protect yourself from the sun. Wear hats with broad brims, sunglasses, sun screen and long-sleeved clothing. Consider wearing layers to modulate your body temperature. If you hike early in the morning, the weather will get much warmer by mid-day. If you hike late in the afternoon, be prepared for a significant temperature dip when the sun goes down. Wear comfortable, broken-in boots or hiking shoes that will protect your feet from heated surfaces and loose, sharp rocks. A slip-free sole is a must!

5. Know and tell where you are going. Study the trail before you head out. Bring a map so you can keep track of where you are going. Keep landmarks in sight. Bring a fully charged cell phone and a first-aid kit. Be sure to tell someone where you are going and when you plan to return. Should you get lost or run into trouble, this will speed rescue efforts.

6. Consider bringing a walking stick to help with your balance and to relieve stress on your knees and joints. A staff can also alert wildlife that you are on the way. Although rattlesnakes do not often show themselves, they do live in the desert, especially in dense brush or rocky areas. So be mindful where you put your hands and feet.

7. Follow trail etiquette. Stay on the trails. The area’s cryptobiotic crust is very delicate. Pack out all trash, including garbage and toilet paper.Bury human waste at least six inches deep and 100 feet from any water source.

8. Leave what you find. Make it possible for others to share your sense of discovery: Leave rocks, plants, animals, archeological artifacts and other objects where you find them.

Red Rock Passes

A Red Rock Pass (or Golden Eagle, Golden Age or Golden Access) is required when recreating (hiking, biking, swimming etc.) on national forest land in Red Rock Country. The pass must be displayed in the windshield when you park at a trailhead; otherwise you may receive a citation.

A pass is not required if you stop to take a photograph or to enjoy a scenic vista for a few minutes. These passes can be purchased at the Sedona Chamber of Commerce, many commercial vendors and machines throughout the area. The cost is nominal: $5 per day; $15 per week; $20 per year.

#hikesedona

Sedona Hike Wilson Mountain Trail

Sedona Hike Wilson Mountain Trail

Wilson Mountain Trail

Welcome to The Big Hike!…Wilson takes you to the highest point in Sedona and provides the most dynamic panoramic views in the area. In order to get to this point you must put in the work. Wilson climbs over 2500 feet in just 4.5 miles (9 miles round-trip). This trail takes you through two distinctly different environments. The first part of the trail take you through a rough desert environment featuring low growth junipers, manzanita, prickly pear cactus and Parry Agave then past the “first bench” into a coniferous forest featuring a variety of large pines and oak trees. Don’t miss the views of San Francisco Peaks in Flagstaff as you make your way up the side of Wilson after the “first bench.” San Francisco Peaks hold considerable religious significance to numerous American Indian Tribes in the area.

Wilson Mountain Trail is a 10.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Sedona, Arizona that features a great forest setting and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round.

Wilson Mountain is 7,122 feet tall and named after Richard Wilson. Richard Wilson was a bear hunter who was killed by a grizzly in 1885. His body was found in Wilson Canyon, which is also named after him. This is the tallest mountain around Sedona, Arizona. The trail to the summit leads to an absolute killer-view of Sedona and far beyond, of Oak Creek, and even of the San Fransisco Peaks. The hike has two parts: Part 1 goes up to the First Bench. This can be done from Midgely Bridge (most exposed, but most scenic) and from Encinoso Picknick Area., also called North Trail. Part 2 goes from 1 bench to the Sedona Lookout. If you start out late, or loose your wind, only going up to 1st bench is well worth the effort. But the Sedona Lookout is unsurpassed, as you can see! A stunning, vertical drop of several hundred feet straight down, looking right into the famed red-rock stone sculptings of Sedona. Absolutely amazing.

Although hot and at least moderately strenuous, well worth the time.