“Sedona's heavenly natural sandstone bridge”
Devil's Bridge is the largest natural sandstone arch in the Sedona area; don't let its name fool you: It's one of the most heavenly sights in an area famous for them. From a trailhead elevation of 4,600 feet, there's a mere 400 foot climb in altitude during this moderately difficult, 1.8-mile roundtrip trek; the journey to reach the top won't leave you breathless -- but we would never say the same about the views you'll witness when you finally get there. This popular hike has attractions for both casual hikers who lack the desire or the stamina to stray too far from civilization, and the more adventurous outdoors enthusiasts. Starting at the parking area, follow the trailmarker that points the way to Devil's Bridge Trail. You'll find the early going effortless; the trail, originally built for jeep travel, is smooth and clear and leads you through washes filled with juniper and prickly pear cactus. The path slowly inclines uphill, gently growing more steep as you progress. There's some beautiful scenery to absorb as you proceed upward, but you've still got a ways to go before you get to see Devil's Bridge itself. After you've walked about three-quarters of a mile from the parking area, the trail will divide. Head down the path to the left and you'll end up at the base of the bridge. For a cool view, stand directly under the 50 foot high arch and look toward the heavens -- and take care not to strain your neck. But it's the topside trail that provides the biggest treat. Follow it up a steep, natural rock staircase to a wide open area that offers some fantastic views. Keep going, and you'll reach yet another level that leads directly to Devil's Bridge. If you have the nerve, you can walk across the top; once you're on it you'll find it's not such a tough walk. But use caution and exercise some common sense; it's a long way down.
The "bridge" at the end alone makes this hike worth the effort, and there are some other great vantage points along the way. The fork in the trail to the "natural steps" and the topside trail were not immediately obvious to us when we did this hike, so pay attention once you can see the underside of the arch.
One warning: the trailhead and parking area are only accessible with a high-clearance 4x4 vehicle. If you don't have one of those, you'll have to park in overflow parking and then walk to the trailhead. The trailhead is about a mile walk if you follow the 4x4 "road", or two miles if you take the more scenic hiking trails to the trailhead. So without a 4x4 vehicle, your hike is going to be 4-6 miles roundtrip.
If you don't have a high clearance vehicle be prepared to hike 4-5 miles round trip. We took our four kids (7, 5, 4 & 2 years old). The 7 and 5 year old loved and it enjoyed the hike all the way to the top. The 4 & 2 year old also enjoyed it but needed a lot of assistance-I ended up carrying them on my shoulders for half the trip. The view is amazing and well worth the trip. The bridge is not for the faint of heart.
Absolutely beautiful. I was married on the visitor rooftop and the backdrop can't be beat.
We started the hike late around 5pm after Xmas day. Kids (8, 11 and 13) and two dogs enjoyed the hike despite the weather was windy and chilly. The road is very uneven and after hearing a loud bump on our MDX at the beginning of the trail. We decided to return back parking lot to start. You really need high clearance truck to be able to drive to the trailhead. The beginning part hike was easy and part of trail shared with the dirt road with car. The last part of the hike from trail head is steep stairs but well worth it.
This is such a cool hike! We started from the Chuckwagon trail head to take advantage of the free parking. This adds a bit to the hike so brings a good amount of water/snacks, but it is a beautiful area so we definitely didn't mind! The tougher part of the hike is at the very end. Be ready to climb a couple fairly rugged natural staircases. The view is definitely worth the effort! Once you reach the split you take the trail to the right to go to the top of the arch or the left to go underneath it. We figured since we went all that way we might as well do both. I was very happy that once we reached the top people seemed to be very polite and wait their turn. This allowed you to get an awesome photo of your group alone on the arch. we also found a nice couple to trade photographer duties with. I would definitely recommend this hike to anyone visiting Sedona!
Difficult hike! Probably because we got lost and forgot our water but we had an awful experience! Make sure you know where you're going and don't forgot lots of water!
Great hike out to great views. The most difficult hike isn't too difficult, just much longer with great views. Make sure to pack plenty of water!
It's quite the hike but the view at the end is totally worth it! Was definitely not expecting the natural rock steps that were a bit tricky but once again all the hard work pays off once you arrive! Make sure you bring water!
Worth the hike!
This hike is 4-5 miles with vertical stairs up the mountain. It's totally worth it. Make sure you pack water and go before sunset.
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