Devils Bridge Trail. One of the most visited and iconic spots in Arizona. This arch is the largest natural arch in the Sedona area. It is a sandstone arch created from years of wind and rain erosion.
|Distance: 3.0 miles
Trail Use: Hiking
Hike Type: In and out
Pass Required: Yes
Season: Year Round
Dogs Allowed: Yes
Family Friendly: Yes but not for young children due to large drop offs.
There are two parking lots for this trail. One is a paved lot for 2wd vehicles. Another is a dirt lot for 4wd vehicles with high clearance. When you park at the paved 2wd lot you have two options to get to the arch. You can hike on the dirt road that the 4wd cars took or you can hike on the Chuck Wagon Trail.
The 4wd road is relatively flat, wide and simple to hike. You do have to pay attention to the ruts caused by the vehicles and pay attention to the vehicles driving up and down the road. Overall unless you are in a rush, I would avoid taking this trail the whole way. You are constantly inhaling dust clouds left from the ATVs and Jeeps and it is not that pleasant of a hike.
The Chuck Wagon Trail is much more enjoyable. It takes you on a scenic 1.2 mile hike through different terrains. You will enjoy blistering hot open canyons and then take shade in beautiful trees and large bushes. Eventually you will spill onto the 4wd road. You will only be on there for about a quarter of a mile before taking a right onto the Devils Bridge Trail.
The Devils Bridge trail is a moderate hike. It is 0.8 miles long and has a short steep section at the end. In the summer heat it can be quite challenging so make sure to have plenty of water. We had to take several breaks as this was our second hike of the day and the heat was getting to us. You have two path options, one that takes you to the lower part of the arch and one that takes you to the upper. Obviously the upper is the most popular so expect to see some crowds.
Once getting to the top, take a break and enjoy the great views. With such a popular arch, expect to wait your turn to walk out on the arch and get a great picture. We had to wait roughly 20 minutes as we ran into a group of millennials who needed to take a Facebook picture, a snapchat video, an instagram picture, a twitter picture and whatever other app they could find.
Do be careful on the arch. Sadly there are severe injuries and deaths almost every year. Many people want to take the daring photo with their feet dangling over the edge. The Facebook likes are not worth your life. Be smart out there.
Overall this is a great trail that I highly recommend to all. The main advice I would give, is plan to go early or on a day that the crowds will be minimized. Going mid day during peak tourist season will quickly ruin your experience here. Also, with the heights, I do not recommend bringing pets, children or any one that could be in danger of falling.