Coconino National Forest
October 28, 2020
Distance: 4 to 6 miles out & back depending on your trail.
Dog Friendly: Yes.
Restrooms at trailhead: Yes.
Google Maps + Trail Links
Official Trailhead: https://goo.gl/maps/ZSERdWja3q4Q1KxH6
Paved Parking: https://goo.gl/maps/6tYESSsnLNtwFEAS9
Devil’s Bridge Rock: https://goo.gl/maps/heZewjjVS4jbZAA47
Devil’s Bridge in Sedona, AZ is arguably the most popular hiking destination for visitors or locals showing visitors around. The hike to the Bridge isn’t overly demanding, it’s well marked, and the scenery of the red rock bridge against the often bright blue sky, layered Sedona rock formations, and green vegetation is worth a spot on your wall or phone background. Over the years, the spot has become increasingly popular as social media and the internet have grown. However, it’s nice to see Devil’s Bridge has not changed.
There are multiple ways to get to the start of Devil’s Bridge. The Devil’s Bridge Trailhead is in most phone map apps and can easily be searched: https://goo.gl/maps/c82mJQWtaYdmnKjQ9 The official trial head is off of Dry Creek Road (FR 152) – a rocky and sandy road requiring high clearance vehicles and 4-wheel drive. There are parking spots at the official trailhead, but again if you’re not experienced driving over large rocks or through softer sand, or don’t have a car with adequate clearance, we recommend you park at the Dry Creek Road trailhead. It is paved with 2 US Forest Service Restrooms. Parking is very limited and often you’ll see many cars parked along Long Canyon Road. It’s always a gamble whether to take the first spot you see or continue for one closer; we’ll let you decide!
If you follow most people and start your hike from the end of the pavement and the transition to the rough Dry Creek Road (FR 152), you’ll take the road for about a mile until you get to the official trailhead. It’s a slight right and easily identifiable. The US Forest Service does not recommend this route for pedestrians and recommends taking Mescal to Chuckwagon to Devil’s Bridge trails or Chuckwagon to Devil’s Bridge trails.
Admittedly, it is very easy to just follow everyone else walking down Dry Creek Road to the trailhead. At that point no OHVs (off-high vehicles) are allowed. You’ll soon enter Coconino National Forest’s Red Rock-Secret Wilderness: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/coconino/recarea/?recid=74365. You’ll take the well-defined trail for about ¾ of a mile until you come across a fork in the trail. Go left and you’ll be at the base of the bridge. If you continue right, there will be two series of natural staircases and large rocks to step on and over relatively close to each other. More often than not, you’ll be following others to the spot and it’s difficult to get lost. It seems that there is now a consistent line for the bridge during daylight, even on weekdays. Be patient and get a picture on the Bridge. It’s definitely worth it. Pro tip: for best lighting go spring and summer, if you’re there in the fall and winter, plan to get to the bridge before 11am local time or it could be in a half or full shadow of the surrounding rock.