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Devil’s Bridge Overview

In a landscape full of amazing sights, Devil’s Bridge stands out. Devil’s Bridge is a natural sandstone arch that serves as the destination of a popular hike in the Sedona area (along with a couple other classics: Cathedral Rock and West Fork Trail). The reason for its popularity? Simply put, Devil’s Bridge is an amazing sight and can get the adrenaline pumping. An easier hike (take the left path at the fork) will take you to the bottom of the arch, where you can admire the arch itself; a slightly more difficult trek (right path at the fork) will lead you to the top of the arch, where the views are even more breathtaking than the hike.

Because it is such a popular destination, do not expect the bridge to be empty (like the banner photo of this post indicates). I actually paid a local wrestling team a few bucks to clear the bridge so I could get a people-free photo! The photo below shows what the bridge will look like typically. 🙂 Even though this isn’t the hike for those searching for solitude, it is still worthwhile. You’ll enjoy Sedona’s famous red rock landscape along the way, and the view at the bridge will be a perfect reward for your efforts. Seriously — don’t forget your camera!

The trail is family-friendly if your kids are fit and have a positive attitude. With kids or without, just take it at your own pace! I have seen all fitness levels on this trail. I have even seen a woman with one leg complete this hike (with crutches).

If you’re feeling adventurous and sure-footed, you can cross Devil’s Bridge itself. It’s about 5 feet wide, so not too narrow; but with a 54-foot drop, it’s worth a little extra caution! Keep the kids close to you and safe.

Logistics

The trailhead is about 12 miles west of Sedona. From US 89A, turn north onto Dry Creek Road (FR152) and continue for about two miles, where the road splits.From there, you have a few options:

  1. Take the right fork, leaving the paved road, and continue for about 1.3 miles until you reach the trailhead and a small parking area (6-8 parking spaces that fill up quickly). This route is only recommended with a high-clearance, 4×4 vehicle; the road is extremely washed out, bumpy, and there are a few spots with major rock formations to overcome.
  2. Park near the turnoff to the trail and hike approximately 1.3 miles to the trailhead along the dirt road. You will be hiking along a fine dirt road that will be open to other cars, ATV’s, and jeep tours. Beware if you have respiratory issues or are particularly sensitive to dust, especially if you visit during more crowded times and/or when there has been a dry spell.
  3. Continue on Dry Creek Road/Boynton Pass Road to the intersection with Long Canyon Road, and turn right to park at the Mescal trailhead. Hike along this trail and follow signs to connect with the Chuck Wagon Trail and then the Devil’s Bridge trail. This will result in a longer hike, but you’ll avoid the walk along the dusty road and can enjoy the scenery a bit more.

The pin on the below map takes you to the primary parking lot area.

Devil's Bridge Sedona Arizona

Devil’s Bridge With The Typical Crowd

Gear & Gadgets

With a fairly straightforward trail, this hike does not require much in the way of special gear. There are some natural stone steps along the way, and no handrails, so leave your slippery shoes (and your fear of heights) at home.

Be sure to check out the Day Trip Gear Guide for general gear recommendations for this hike.

Further Reading 

Outdoor & Wilderness First Aid

Leave No Trace Principles

United States Forest Service Website

 

About The Author

Jeremy Meek is a native Arizonan with a passion for adventure and discovery of unique experiences. Whether exploring Arizona or setting out on an adventure abroad, Jeremy is constantly scouting truly great adventures and experiences.

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